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Old 08-01-2008, 04:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

I recently purchased a slightly used Gateway GT5644E and happy with most of the specs aside from the graphics card. I am looking to upgrade to a more gaming friendly card but I am in college so I don't need anything over the top to suit my needs. I play online games that require minor graphics but would like to be able to play games like Battlefield 2 and F.E.A.R. and have them look decent.

I can't afford more than $100-140 and I need to know if I upgrade the card if I will need to upgrade the power supply as well since it is only a 300W.

I was also wondering if I purchased a new card if anyone could walk me through the steps to upgrading it because I have never upgraded a PC before and have slightly above average PC knowledge.

Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 08-01-2008, 05:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

You will need to upgrade the psu. For $140 you can get a Antec Ea380 psu and a ATi HD 3850.

Newegg.com - Antec earthwatts EA380 380W ATX12V v2.0 Power Supply 100 - 240 V UL, CUL, FCC, TUV, CE, CB, C-tick, CCC - Power Supplies

Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100226L Radeon HD 3850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

To install the video card (after you have installed the power supply)

1. Uninstall the drivers for your current video card
2. Shut down the pc and disconnect the power.
3. If you have the 8300gs currently remove it from the PCIe x16 slot.
4. Install the HD3850 in the PCIE x16 slot and screw the bracket into the back panel.
5. Connect the 6 pin power cable from the psu to the HD 3850.
6. Reconnect the power to the pc and turn it on.
7. Go to the Ati website and download and install the newest drivers for the HD 3850.

The video card should come with instructions for the installation and I recommend reading over them also.
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Old 08-01-2008, 09:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

Wouldn't I need a bigger psu to handle that card? I was thinking of spending a little extra money and getting this:
Newegg.com - Thermaltake Purepower W0100RU 500W ATX 12V 2.0 Power Supply 115/ 230 V UL, CUL, TUV, FCC, and CB certification - Power Supplies

Do you guys think that it would work? By the way, I have no idea how to install a psu (like what plugs into what) so if someone could help me with that as well, I would greatly appreciate it.

Thanks so much again.
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Old 08-02-2008, 05:01 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

its just common sence, these days, the power supplys are Fool-proof, so they only fit in one place.

When you finish unpluging your current power supply, your training will be COMPLETE.
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Old 08-02-2008, 12:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squidslime View Post
Wouldn't I need a bigger psu to handle that card? I was thinking of spending a little extra money and getting this:
Newegg.com - Thermaltake Purepower W0100RU 500W ATX 12V 2.0 Power Supply 115/ 230 V UL, CUL, TUV, FCC, and CB certification - Power Supplies

Do you guys think that it would work? By the way, I have no idea how to install a psu (like what plugs into what) so if someone could help me with that as well, I would greatly appreciate it.

Thanks so much again.
The Antec EA380 will be fine. Watts are not important the amps on the 12v rails and the psu's quality are.

That Thermaltake has less amps on the 12v rails than the Antec.
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Old 08-02-2008, 05:41 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thumbs up "Word to your graphics card..."

This one's pretty OK. PCIE x16, Doesn't require an extra power connector...

NVIDIA GeForce 8600GT 512MB DDR2 PCIe Video Card w/DVI TVOut

You won't need an extra power supply to use this card, It's overclockable, (though If you're planning on OCing this card, I STRONGLY SUGGEST you attach a better fan to it. The one it comes with isn't that great.
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Old 08-02-2008, 08:00 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

Thanks for the responses guys. I made $60 today helping my sister move crap to her new apartment so I have some more money to put forth on the psu and graphics card. I'm currently looking into a deal that my brother-in-law is getting me (he worked at CompUSA as an lp and has connections) from his friend who says he could get me a good card and psu for under $100.

If you guys have any other suggestions for a higher level card and psu for about $180 now then I would be able to look into that instead.

Also, this might be a stupid question but does the mobo that is in my current comp affect the card and psu that I can put in it?

Let me know guys. Thanks for the help.
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Old 08-02-2008, 08:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

For $180 I would keep the EA380 and get a 8800gt.

Newegg.com - ASUS EN8800GT/HTDP/512M GeForce 8800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

The motherboard doesn't limit you on the card or psu.
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Old 08-03-2008, 01:14 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading Gateway Desktops Graphics

Thanks for your help again and I've been looking into what you said but from the one review on Newegg that they have for the 8800GT, the guy said you need a pretty extensive power supply to power it. I'm pretty sure that I would not be able to afford a 650w psu on top of that card.

I'm not looking for anything extreme, but I was looking more towards a slightly above average card to play the mentioned games that maybe had a tv tuner or hd capabilities. Let me know what you think. Sorry I keep adding requests, I just have a very small idea on what I need to do.

Another question, since I have a pre-built computer, would I need to purchase a different case if I buy a new psu and card to fit them or would that even work with the parts in my computer?

Thanks again. :happy:
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Old 08-04-2008, 10:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Question "psu???..."

I believe that what I mentioned earlier is what you might be looking for. The 8600GT doesn't require an extra power connector, runs F.E.A.R on highest settings at native speed. I have this card, It's good.

You don't need another PSU if you have this card. It draws it's power directly from PCIe port and it's overclockable.
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