Looking to upgrade video card

I am checking two things before I get an updated card: the HCL and Tom’s Hardware Graphics Card Hierarchy.

Focusing on nvidia 7600 GT (or the 7800 GS, if I can get one)and an ATI HD 3850. However, that radeon card says it needs more than a 400 watt power supply which I don’t have. The HD 3650 is also a possibility. All of these are the 512 MB variety

Does anyone have any experience with power supplies being a problem?

I have had really good luck with the nVidia graphics cards when using their proprietary free binary Linux driver. I have no complaints at all, it just works in everything. Without their binary driver loaded, like during the install, you may see weird things go on like sparkles in the background when the screen in black or sometimes the screen goes blank and then come right back. It seems to vary based on which nVidia card you are using.

As for which nVidia graphic video cards works with Linux I have used a 7600 GT which works great. Same for a 8600, same for a 8800 (I use a 8800 GT in my Linux Machine right now), same for a 9800. They all just work with the Linux binary driver loaded.

I recently purchase a GT 240 and when I first bought it, no Linux driver for it existed, but since then, their latest driver does support the GT 240, which is meant for media center PC’s driving an HDMI input on a TV, but works DVI or VGA as well.

I have not had all that good of luck with ATI, though I have not purchased a new card from them since they started beating nVidia in speed when working on Windows machines. Still, I would buy nVidia for Linux and that is all I would do.

Thank You,

On Thu, 2010-04-22 at 21:46 +0000, Prexy wrote:
> I am checking two things before I get an updated card: the HCL and Tom’s
> Hardware ‘Graphics Card Hierarchy’ (http://tinyurl.com/y2grboe).
>
> Focusing on nvidia 7600 GT (or the 7800 GS, if I can get one)and an ATI
> HD 3850. However, that radeon card says it needs more than a 400 watt
> power supply which I don’t have. The HD 3650 is also a possibility. All
> of these are the 512 MB variety
>
> Does anyone have any experience with power supplies being a problem?

My old dual AMD 275 with 4G and a 7600GT ran on a 300W PSU.

I like the 7600GT. Enough power to run UT2004 at 1920x1200. And, of
course, it’s really cheap now (used). (assumes use of the proprietary
Nvidia driver)

Thanks for the advice. I’m glad to hear first-person accounts on these. Think I’ll focus on the 7600 :wink:

Checking for power supply compatibility is a good idea. Unfortunately its not easy to do with an older computer. I wish I could help there, but I can not.

Prexy wrote:

>
> I am checking two things before I get an updated card: the HCL
and
> Tom’s Hardware ‘Graphics Card Hierarchy’
(http://tinyurl.com/y2grboe).
>
> Focusing on nvidia 7600 GT (or the 7800 GS, if I can get
one)and an
> ATI
> HD 3850. However, that radeon card says it needs more than a
400 watt
> power supply which I don’t have. The HD 3650 is also a
possibility.
> All of these are the 512 MB variety
>
> Does anyone have any experience with power supplies being a
problem?
>
>
you really want to focus on a newer Nvidia series because at some
point video processing is gonna be able to offload to the video
card using vdpau. I’d go with a 9xxx or better series - I got a
9500gt refurb off NewEgg for $25 after rebate


openSuse 11.2 x64bit, KDE4.4, Opera weekly

On Fri, 2010-04-23 at 11:06 +0000, oldcpu wrote:
> Prexy;2156310 Wrote:
> > Thanks for the advice. I’m glad to hear first-person accounts on these.
> > Think I’ll focus on the 7600 :wink:
>
> Checking for power supply compatibility is a good idea. Unfortunately
> its not easy to do with an older computer. I wish I could help there,
> but I can not.

PCIe, bus power from the slot is more than enough.

On AGP, you might have to get supplemental power. My last AGP
computer had a 6600GT (also plenty of GPU horsepower), but I think
it did require a molex plug direct off the PSU in addition to
the limited power provided by the AGP bus.

On Fri, 2010-04-23 at 12:34 +0000, google01103 wrote:
> Prexy wrote:
>
> >
> > I am checking two things before I get an updated card: the HCL
> and
> > Tom’s Hardware ‘Graphics Card Hierarchy’
> (http://tinyurl.com/y2grboe).
> >
> > Focusing on nvidia 7600 GT (or the 7800 GS, if I can get
> one)and an
> > ATI
> > HD 3850. However, that radeon card says it needs more than a
> 400 watt
> > power supply which I don’t have. The HD 3650 is also a
> possibility.
> > All of these are the 512 MB variety
> >
> > Does anyone have any experience with power supplies being a
> problem?
> >
> >
> you really want to focus on a newer Nvidia series because at some
> point video processing is gonna be able to offload to the video
> card using vdpau. I’d go with a 9xxx or better series - I got a
> 9500gt refurb off NewEgg for $25 after rebate

I agree, BUT, cost can be a factor… a 9500GT isn’t a stellar
performer… and unless you have a lightweight processor (unusual
today), it might not be necessary… even though efficiency is always
desirable (it’s like the fact that we ignore CPU overhead in software
RAID… we’ve got cycles to kill… and we don’t mind using them in
general).

My mobo doesn’t have pci-e. I’m pretty much stuck with AGP since I see few (if any) good video cards with straight pci.

The hierarchy chart helps but gives me a headache. I’m running an old FX5200 (ultra?) and some of the 9xxx nvidia cards are essentially at the same performance level. There’s not much expansion left in this old box. That’s why I would like to get it as far as it will go for now. I maxed out the ram at 2 GB; and now I will look to see if I can find a low priced 9xxx card at newegg that will keep me running a bit longer. If not, the 7600GT seems like an acceptable choice.

Interesting… unless I missed it, no one has anything good to say about Radeon.

Prexy wrote:

>
> My mobo doesn’t have pci-e. I’m pretty much stuck with AGP
since I
> see few (if any) good video cards with straight pci.
>
> The hierarchy chart helps but gives me a headache. I’m running
an old
> FX5200 (ultra?) and some of the 9xxx nvidia cards are
essentially at
> the
> same performance level. There’s not much expansion left in
this old
> box. That’s why I would like to get it as far as it will go
for now.
> I maxed out the ram at 2 GB; and now I will look to see if I
can find
> a low priced 9xxx card at newegg that will keep me running a
bit
> longer. If not, the 7600GT seems like an acceptable choice.
>
> Interesting… unless I missed it, no one has anything good to
say
> about Radeon.
>
>
re: Radeon, it’s driver issue - the Nvidia’s are much better
(though closed source)


openSuse 11.2 x64bit, KDE4.4, Opera weekly

Prexy wrote:

>
> My mobo doesn’t have pci-e. I’m pretty much stuck with AGP
since I
> see few (if any) good video cards with straight pci.
>
> The hierarchy chart helps but gives me a headache. I’m running
an old
> FX5200 (ultra?) and some of the 9xxx nvidia cards are
essentially at
> the
> same performance level. There’s not much expansion left in
this old
> box. That’s why I would like to get it as far as it will go
for now.
> I maxed out the ram at 2 GB; and now I will look to see if I
can find
> a low priced 9xxx card at newegg that will keep me running a
bit
> longer. If not, the 7600GT seems like an acceptable choice.
>
> Interesting… unless I missed it, no one has anything good to
say
> about Radeon.
>
>
9500GT $25 after rebate - you’ll not do better, and I have no
issues with it
www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127469


openSuse 11.2 x64bit, KDE4.4, Opera weekly

The 9500GT looks like a great bargain, but it is pci-e only :frowning:
Out of luck on that one.

Hi
Why not use PCI then?

GeForce 9500 GT 1GB 128-bit DDR2 PCI Low Profile


Cheers Malcolm °¿° (Linux Counter #276890)
SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11 (x86_64) Kernel 2.6.27.45-0.1-default
up 8 days 16:28, 4 users, load average: 1.97, 1.26, 0.68
GPU GeForce 8600 GTS Silent - CUDA Driver Version: 195.36.15

I went thru this exercise over a year ago, where I wanted better HD video playback capabilities in one of my older PCs.

Your video requirements and your OS selection really should help you in your selection here. Do you spend 50% of your time in MS-Windows? That is a MAJOR consideration. Do you wish to play games with better video? Do you simply wish snappier performance with X window and 3D special desktop effects? Or do you not care about any of the above, but just want to be able to play back most HD videos? Note you can NOT have all of the above with no PCI-e slot.

In my case, I did not care about any of the above other than I wanted to be able to play back most HD videos. Also, I never boot to MS-Windows.

To play back HD videos, one needs to use either the ATI AVIVO technology or the nVidia VDPAU technology. But wrt needing the AVIVO technology, that immediately eliminated ATI cards from consideration by me as the ATI AVIVO technology is not supported in Linux. The nVidia VDPAU technology is supported.

I then determined there is no real selection for AGP nVidia cards that support AGP. Hence for an old computer with no PCI-e, one is looking at a PCI card, with all its bandwidth limitations.

I ended up purchasing a nVidia 8400GS PCI card to replace a nVidia FX5200 AGP card. I learned that the older AGP FX5200 card had superior performance for 3D/special desktop effects (because of its AGP architecture) over the PCI 8400GS (due to superiority of AGP bus over PCI bus). The nVidia 8400GS PCI, when using VDPAU, could play back HD videos significantly better than the FX5200 despite being limited by bandwidth.

Hence for my HD video requirement, the nVidia 8400GS was a smart choice.

But note power requirements was a SIGNIFICANT factor in the considerations, and in fact the 8400GS card did NOT work in one of my older PCs where the power supply had degraded so much over the years it could not drive the card, even though on paper it should have been able to (had the power supply been new). Fortunately the main PC that I had this 8400GS earmarked for (with a slightly smaller but higher quality power supply) did work with the 8400GS PCI card.

Take a look at my posts in this thread: It is time to get best Graphic card out there? - openSUSE Forums to see how my thinking gradually progressed.

Then take a look at this post where I gave some of my experience: openSUSE Forums - View Single Post - laggy video output

And then take a look at post#12 in this thread (where I am initially WRONG about the nVidia 6xxx card) Looking for compatible video card - 11.2 - openSUSE Forums and then post#14 in same thread which corrects my error as 6xxx card is limited for HD video.

Note if you use MS-Windows 50% or more of the time, then an ATI AGP card with AVIVO capabilities (you need to research which ATI cards support this) may be a better choice than a nVidia card. This is one place where ATI has an edge over nVidia , where an ATI AGP card in MS-Windows should play HD videos and a nVidia card will not.

This is new. I don’t think that card existed a year ago?

With 1GB RAM its not cheap. But the same was true for my 8400GS (with 512MB of RAM). It was not cheap.

Note having lots of RAM in a nVidia PCI card is important if one wishes to play back HD videos. For the very highest 1920x1080 at a high bit rate, my 8400GS card does not have (IMHO) sufficient memory, while I suspect the 9500 GT 1GB should have sufficient RAM.

This mythtv site is very good for providing an assessment of VDPAU capabilities: VDPAU - MythTV

I also suspect that the old FX5200 card Prexy is removing will (because of its AGP bus) have superior performance than the 9500 GT (with the PCI bus) for games and 3D / special desktop effects. BUT in HD video playback when using VDPAU capabilities, the 9500 GT on a PCI bus should really shine.

My video card arrived and it is installed. Trying to get it to work put me on information overload. For those that enjoy seeing me suffer, read on.

I received an nvidia 7600GS 512 MB AGP card. When I installed it in the AGP slot, I could see that to change a RAM stick, I would have to remove the card due to the tight fit. Luckily, I am maxed out with 2 GB of RAM. On first boot, it failed; and the second and the third. Forgetting at the moment how I got to the error message, but I was notified that I had not plugged the power cable into the card. :shame: I looked for it when I installed the thing, but was looking for the wrong connector and in the wrong place. It was then I noticed the connector opening on the edge of the card.

The next tribulation was getting a power connector to the card. The only open one was cinched to other wires at the very top of the case. I couldn’t cut the cable tie for love or money. I ended up sawing it off with a razor blade- delicately so as not to cut any wires.

Getting it loose was only the beginning. It didn’t reach the card. I ended up bumping every power connector down one peripheral until I got to the lowest connector. That didn’t reach because it was part of another connector attached to my floppy drive. I decided to sacrifice the floppy. Luckily, I found another loose cable to re-connect the floppy.

I booted and the card started ok but I wanted to optimize it. This card replaced a working FX5200 128 MB PCI card, which I intend to bump down to an old Dell that has an AGP card that roars like a jet engine, continuously. I had the legacy driver 173.xx.xx installed for the 5200. In shorthand, it was the nvidia G01 which I think is from the nvidia repo. For the 7600 card, I thought I should upgrade to the G02 driver, so I installed it through yast. I did not, however uninstall the G01 first. A reboot brought no difference because it was still using the old G01 driver.

To fix that, I uninstalled both of the G01 packages: nvidia-gfx-G01-kmp-default and the x11-video-nvidiaG01. Now, x wouldn’t start at all! So, I tried re-installing the G01 packages but the x11 one would not re-install for reasons I didn’t write down but I think it was a case of no provider.

Now, with no working nvidia drivers and no x, I fell back on what I knew: sax -r -m 0=nv and I got x back.

The card is working ok but I don’t know why the driver isn’t working as it should. I have an nvidia repo but the G02 came out of the obs. I read a half dozen threads here and got more confused. Should I be going to the nvidia website and install a driver “the hard way?” Should I uninstall G02 and change the repo? Should I try to find a way to drop back to G01?

As it stands, I am no better off than before I started, except I now can put a working card into my old Dell. I should say that the desktop does seem “snappier.” I tried videos at HBO.com and they are so choppy that they are unwatchable. Lower quality videos at youtube are slightly better than they were with the FX5200, which had terrible lag between the audio and video. Lots of the threads I read were on VDPAU that may or may not work with this card and may or may not be updated in linux and may or may not be improved in the next kernel.

Other details: I’m running 11.2 with KDE 4.4.3. I’m using the search and launch desktop. I can no longer tell if 3D is enabled or if compositing is on or off.

There are lots of questions in here, but the first is what driver and how to get it in. Thanks for reading :slight_smile:

Well, I would install the nVidia driver the hard way I think. I looked up the driver for the 6000 series and the 195.36.24 Dated 4-28-2010 is said to work. If we can assume you read “the hard way” to install it here this is what I would do. Download the 32 or 64 bit version from Welcome to NVIDIA - World Leader in Visual Computing Technologies that matches your openSUSE version to a known place like “/home/user/Download” where user is your user name and without the quotes. I would remove the G01 drivers if they are still installed from YaST. Then open up a terminal prompt, making sure to to close all running applications. Run one of these two command sets:

For 32 Bit Use:

init 3
root
password:******
cd ~/Download
sh ./NVIDIA-Linux-x86-195.36.24-pkg1.run

For 64 Bit Use:

init 3
root
password:******
cd ~/Download
sh ./NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-195.36.24-pkg2.run

You will be asked a few questions, I think the answers seem obvious, but I do normally load the 32 bit GL Libs, even when I user 64 bit Linux, this is not a questions if you only use 32 bit. I always allow the nVidia video driver to set the default driver to use, the last question you get. I normally reboot the computer after the install (Ctrl-Alt-Del). Hopefully, your X session will then start as normal.

Thank You,

I upgraded the driver the hard way. It wasn’t too hard. Now I wonder if it was worth it. The NV driver was at least as (if not more)“snappy” as this nvidia proprietary one.

Youtube videos work well but the big video files work no better. I’m using hbo.com videos as a test. The images are sharp but the video is choppy and doesn’t sync with the audio. I expected some improvement going from 128 MB card to a 512 MB that is 5+ generations newer.

So, the topic of VDPAU comes into play. If I read correctly, that will appear in the next kernel in 11.3. Am I correct that it will offload some video processing that fully utilizes the video card?

I suppose I should try to update the HCL, but that was daunting the last time I tried.

VDPAU is present now. I wrote this some time back: Video editing/avchd - openSUSE

… BUT you need the proprietary driver for VDPAU. It does not work with “nv” driver.

On Wed, 2010-05-12 at 16:36 +0000, Prexy wrote:
> I upgraded the driver the hard way. It wasn’t too hard. Now I wonder
> if it was worth it. The NV driver was at least as (if not more)“snappy”
> as this nvidia proprietary one.
>
> Youtube videos work well but the big video files work no better. I’m
> using hbo.com videos as a test. The images are sharp but the video is
> choppy and doesn’t sync with the audio. I expected some improvement
> going from 128 MB card to a 512 MB that is 5+ generations newer.
>
> So, the topic of VDPAU comes into play. If I read correctly, that will
> appear in the next kernel in 11.3. Am I correct that it will offload
> some video processing that fully utilizes the video card?

No… at least NOT in the case of all video because there still needs to
be some coordination to take advantage of the vdpau.

So… it all depends on what the video player is more so than the
acceleration features of the driver (IMHO).

Full screen high def video WITHOUT VDPAU should work reasonably well on
most contemporary systems (there’s enough CPU horsepower)… but that
assumes at least Xvideo acceleration. Just using plain ole X11/XShm
won’t be enough for very high resolution video (e.g. 720p+).

The nv driver (no longer supported by Nvidia) is better at handling 2D
acceleration (last time I checked) vs. the proprietary one. Which is
probably why it seems “snappy”.

A feature like vdpau is VERY useful with low end CPUs and in cases where
there isn’t enough CPU horsepower left to take on the extra video
processing. So… it IS a welcome feature, but NO, that does NOT mean
your flash based video player (for example) will take advantage of it.
However, players like mplayer, etc, probably will use it (if compiled
for it).

So sites like the Apple trailers site, if using the gecko mediaplayer
plugin, do handle HD pretty well… because mplayer can at least handle
Xvideo acceleration (my card doesn’t do vdpau… it’s an 7600GT)… HD
works fine (esp up to 720p), using mplayer through that plugin.