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New computer or just new graphics card?

by blueFork / February 21, 2017 8:38 AM PST

Recently my graphics card died thus I need to buy a new one. But my computer is 6 years old and I'm afraid that the new graphics card won't be compatible. Should I just buy a brand new computer or at least a new CPU and RAM or will the new graphics card work fine?
My specs: processor: Intel Core i3-540
Motherboard: GA-H55M-D2H

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All Answers

Best Answer chosen by blueFork

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New Graphics Card for Sure.
by gaucherre / February 25, 2017 10:57 AM PST

Let's consider what will be the most cost-effective improvements you can make.

First, a new graphics should work fine. New entry-level and midrange Nvidia cards often need less power than, say, a GTX 460 from 6 years ago. This means your existing power supply can handle the load, no problem. Second, a new card will likely generate a bit less heat than your old one. This means if your case fans were providing enough cool airflow before, they will also provide enough airflow with a new graphics card. Third, for gaming, it's still the graphics card that provides the biggest boost to ensure good frame rates in your games. This means a new card will make most games playable at high-ish resolution and detail settings (depending on the game, of course). Fourth, your Core i3-540 will easily overclock to at least 3.7GHz with the stock Intel fan/heatsink, and it will go well beyond that speed with an aftermarket cooler in the $20 to $30 range if you wish. That speed boost on your cpu will give you several extra frames-per-second on most games. Combine that with an extra 4GB stick of RAM (for a total of 8GB) for a further small boost in fps and you have a system that will carry you for several more years. Fifth, even if you decide to buy or build a new PC next year, you can easily move the new graphics card to that new system. If it were my system i'd go for an Nvidia GTX1060 and an Arctic Freezer 7 Pro or Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO cpu cooler. Both cpu coolers can handle a good overclock on the i3-540.

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Looks fine from here.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 21, 2017 9:07 AM PST

I see the usual PCIe x16 slot. Should be great.

What made you think a new card would not work?

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Uefi compatible
by Worldbfree / February 24, 2017 6:39 PM PST

That is what is he referring to. I'm not sure about that Mobo specifically, but if it Does Not have a UEFI BIOS, a new graphics card ain't going to work period. If I were you, I'd hawk the entire setup and go with something modern or go full tilt Ryzen boogie for 50 cents on the Intel dollar. Newegg or Microcenter will fix you up. Btw, here are the advantages of going with a new build,

GPU slots operate at PCIe 3.0, rather than PCIe 2.0 (on Z68)
More chipset PCIe lanes (24 lanes at PCIe 3.0 rather than 8 lanes at PCIe 2.0)
Support for bootable NVMe storage and PCIe storage
Newer audio codecs and networking controllers
Updated Intel RST (RAID/Caching)
A move from DDR3-1333 to DDR4-2400
Native USB 3.0 Ports from the chipset rather than from controllers
USB 3.1 (10 Gbps) on board via controllers rather than a add-in PCIe card
Potential Thunderbolt 3 support (depending on motherboard)
USB Type-C
This RGB fad that apparently sells like hot cakes
More SATA 6 Gbps ports (six on Z270 vs two on Z68)

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With all due respect, that isn't what he asked
by Zouch / February 25, 2017 2:39 AM PST
In reply to: Uefi compatible

He asked whether a replacement graphic card will work. As Bob said, the machine has a PCIe x16 slot on the MB, pretty much any graphics card compatible with that will work.

The question really is whether a six year old Gen 1 i3 machine is worth the investment or is the better long term solution to upgrade to a new machine? Primarily, that comes down to budget, which the OP didn't specify. Also, he did not specify what operating system he is using. On a stock machine that age, one might assume Windows 7, though it may have been upgraded to Windows 10. If it hasn't, a new machine will most likely be Windows 10 - is that a transition the OP wants to make at this time? Or he may be running Linux or (perhaps less likely) an Apple OS-X machine.

A lower cost option might be tp seek out a graphics card that is a couple of years backlevel.

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Budget is key...
by Cireriblints / April 4, 2017 5:59 PM PDT

Budget is definitely the key thing here. I was in the same boat a while back and went with a gpu upgrade only at the time but wound up being frustrated with some games due to a processor bottleneck with an i3.

I also think blueFork is on point. Start with a gpu upgrade and if that alone doesn't seem to be accomplishing what you want then you can always hang on to the new gpu that you buy and stick in in a new system if you decide to go that route.

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Replacement video
by Rebelbw / February 24, 2017 6:42 PM PST

If you're already in bed with Nvidia and have a shoestring budget I would look at the GTX 1050Ti 4 Gb offerings which range between $140 to $190. If you wish to splurge a little more then the GTX 1060 6Gb will be even better. If possible ugrade the RAM to at least 8 Gb. In the AMD camp there's only 2 choices for budget and minimal gaming and under $120 RX 460 for medium to low extreme RX 480. That is all...

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Video card
by Bob__B / February 25, 2017 7:44 AM PST

Shop for a video card that has a dual bios switch or that the description states will work with uefi or bios.

That way your covered no matter what the mobo has.

As for upgrades or a new computer, shop around and put some prices on paper.
Other than the video card being busted does the machine function to your satisfaction?

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I Have The Same Issue But Different Model
by mercerik / February 25, 2017 4:29 PM PST

I have the same issue with my HP Desktop Computer. It has been about 2 weeks now since the graphics card died on me. This computer is also over 6 years old (01-09-2011). I have not made a decision as to Graphics Card Replacement or buying a new computer. The reason why I have not finalized my decision is because I love this computer. It was fast and efficient. Although I must admit, it has served its purpose and probably needs to retire. I know that if I decide to replace the Graphics Card, another Hardware might fail and die in the future. I also know that the best decision is to save the money that I'll be spending on a Graphics Card and buy a new computer instead. I think this response made my decision for me.

Model: HP Pavilion Elite HPE-510T
Processor: Intel Core i5-2400 (Sandybridge) (95W), 3.1 GHz

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Get a GTX 750Ti
by gaucherre / February 26, 2017 10:31 PM PST

An Nvidia GTX 750Ti will run nicely in your old computer, and the HP's power supply will not be overworked. Check the prices on, and maybe and you'll see there are very reasonable prices to give your HP a new lease on life.

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I Was In The Same Situation. I Opted For A New Graphics Card
by mercerik / April 4, 2017 8:56 PM PDT

My graphics card died on February 18. My Desktop Computer is also 6 years old. It is an HP Pavilion Elite HPE-510T, a Intel Core i5 2600 Processor. It took me almost a month to decide what to do. I weighed all my options. If I want a comparable new computer, it will cost me about $700. I also checked how much it will cost to buy the same Graphics Card that I have. I decided to replace the Graphics Card and I am glad I did because installation was quick and easy and it works. I even posted a video of it on YouTube.

If I were you I'll try the graphics card first.

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Computer restart automatically.
by BryanBrooks / April 4, 2017 11:12 PM PDT

Hi there, I have installed new graphic card in my computer and after installation computer is not working properly.

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Re: new graphic card
by Kees_B Forum moderator / April 5, 2017 12:57 AM PDT

Then either you did something wrong when installing it, or you didn't install the right driver, or the new card is defective.

Post was last edited on April 5, 2017 1:19 AM PDT

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Your post reads like
by Bob__B / April 5, 2017 9:41 AM PDT

I installed a part in my car and now my car is broke.

What car?
What part?

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Are you blueFork ?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 5, 2017 9:42 AM PDT

If not you may have other issues than blueFork.

Please alert the forum to have this removed so you can start your own new discussion without it being buried here.

Also, when you create a new post supply make, model, if self made the make, model of the PSU, age of the parts and a Speccy to start off with a nice set of information without us having to ask for it.

How? Read

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