I'm going to be buying a new GPU for my PC & I need facts not hype

When I look at websites they either have marketing hype or too much jargon this has me totally confused by all the hype so here goes.
This is for the 64 bit PC in my sig. I plan to buy an nvidia card.

  1. I have DDR2 RAM in my PC. Most cards I see use DDR3 does that make a difference?
  2. I have a PCI Express ×16 slot. I see PCI Express 2.0 on quite a few cards. Does this mean it’ll be compatible with my PC? Does the 2.0 mean anything?
    3.Is there anything else I need to know that I haven’t asked due to inexperience?

So it sounds like you can handle the present PCIe video cards. I presently use a GeForce GTX 560 in my main PC and also have a GTX 460 my other PC. I always load the nVIDIA proprietary video driver the hard way and it works like a champ for me. You can compare different video cards at this web site:

Performance Comparison Benchmarks @ Hardware Compare

I must also say that recently Linus of our kernel fame was pretty unhappy with nVIDIA, mainly due to Optimus support but also due to lack of help on the nouveau driver. You can read about this here:


I still like nVIDIA a lot as it just works well for me and if you don’t mind loading the proprietary video driver, its the way to go. I do provide help with this driver loading you can find here:

Installing the nVIDIA Video Driver the Hard Way - Blogs - openSUSE Forums

LNVHW - Load NVIDIA (driver the) Hard Way from runlevel 3 - Version 1.45 - Blogs - openSUSE Forums

S.A.N.D.I. - SuSE Automated NVIDIA Driver Installer - Version 1.46 - Blogs - openSUSE Forums

You may already be aware of these links, but I throw them in for anyone else that reads this message and does not know about them. Good Luck in your purchase…

Thank You,

For almost a decade now, NVidia has consistently given me much less pain than ATI/AMD.

Any reasonably recent NVidia will work nicely with proprietary drivers and have support for vdpau (hardware video decoding) - a must to keep HD content playback from hogging your CPU.

But I’d stay away from hybrid video cards - although AFAIK those are only found on new notebooks. To avoid those I recently bought an HP netbook with AMD’s Vision hardware (HD6130, I think), and recent updates (or not-well-thought upgrades, perhaps) completely broke the fglrx driver. I’m usually competent enough to fix these things, but I’ve been at it for three weeks now and it is still broken. So YMMV.

Thanks you guys I feel a little more confident as a result I’m looking at these 3.
A GT 520
eVGA GeForce GT 520 Graphics card - 1 GB - DDR3 SDRAM

A GT 430
eVGA GeForce GT 430 Graphics card - 1 GB - DDR3 SDRAM

GeForce 8400
PNY GeForce 8 8400GS Graphics card - 1 GB - DDR3 SDRAM

I’m not sure if you guys needed the links but just in case there in too.
One more thing I have the stock 300W PSU.

On 2012-07-06 05:06, Sagemta wrote:

> GeForce 8400
> ‘PNY GeForce 8 8400GS Graphics card - 1 GB - DDR3 SDRAM’
> (http://tinyurl.com/brr85e2)

I have a 9500 GT card, works well with the nouveau driver. Vendor is MSI.

Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)

I used Nvidia cards for a long time with great results, but the last machine I built I decided to try a an Ati Radeon HD6870, also with great results whether I used the opensource driver or the proprietary Ati driver

(Though I will say I had to play around a bit to get the dual monitor setup working properly on Arch linux, not so with OpenSuse)

Since then the Nvidia card in one of my other machines died a death so I replaced it with a Radeon HD6770 and got much the same results. Both machines are on 64-bit operating systems, and both cards have DDR5 memory

Having said that, don’t know what board yours has but it looks like it has an onboard Geforce 6 so I’d be inclined to stick with an nvidia card, I seem to remember a fair number of boards with onboard Geforce’s from around that time running on nforce chipsets and it could be you’d have less chance of issues if it was kept ‘all nvidia’

As for compatibility, much depends what type of pci-e slot your motherboard has, the onboard geforce 6 you have is pretty old spec so it could be quite an old board, pci-e 2.0 is from around 2007 while Geforce 6’s were around a few years before that but were still used as onboard cards at least until geforce 8’s were available if IIRC, maybe longer so it’s hard to guess what pci-e you have, the motherboard manual or bios should tell you if it isn’t marked on the board itself

However, don’t panic if your pci-e is earlier than 2.0, cards made for pci-e 2.0 slots are backwards compatible with the earlier pci-e 1.x slots, they just won’t run as quickly as if they are plugged into a pci-e 2.0 slot

Cards made for pci-e 2.1 slots though won’t work on pci-e 1.x boards though, but should on pci-e 2.0 boards

(Most of that compatibility stuff btw is from my own experiences and observations from buying parts for and working on a plethora of old to new machines rather than being some all-knowing completely up-to-the-minute hardware guru)

Hope that helps

BTW … Might also be time to upgrade that 300w psu, I remember having a win 98 machine with a 400w, but it was considered hi-spec then along with it’s ‘massive’ 13 gig hdd and ‘huge’ 512mb of 133mhz sdram!