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Old 02-19-2009, 10:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Video upgrade not working

Let me first admit that I'm new here, but not to working on my computers... (which I built in April of 2005 - the hard drive crashed in October and I just replaced it.) I use this one for transferring VHS tapes and TV shows (after taking out the commercials) to DVD, along with normal everyday stuff and am not a gamer in the forum sense of the word...

My system consists of Win XP Pro running on:

300w psu (gonna be 400 soon, I think, but not quite yet)
Asus A7V400-MX mobo, BIOS Rev 1009, w/4x/8x AGP and 3 PCI slots and
o/b VIA/S3G UniChrome IGP - 64mb shared video
AMD Athlon XP 1.25 GHz cpu
2-512mb DDR SDRam, PC 2700
SB Live! 5.1 Digital sound card
WD 250GB
Mitsumi CR-4804TE CD-R/W

Quit laughing - it serves me well! That said, I recently bought a game that requires 128 mb of video ram.

I ended up purchasing a couple of AGP cards - hopefully, one for this tower, one for another one of mine and one for my son's...

What I bought, on my - meager - budget were, 1 each:
eVGA GeForce 6200 8x AGP 512mb DDR2
Agle GeForce 5500 AGP 256mb GDDR1
Sparkle GeForce FX 5500 256mb DDR

*Note - I have not yet tried the Sparkle card, so it's possible that with a different type of onboard ram, it -might - possibly work. I got too frustrated with the other two to try again tonight, after having installed OS and programs on the new 250GB hard drive. Enough was enough for tonight; I'd been at it for about 6-1/2 hours... Install, reboot, re-route shortcuts to their new folders on the start menu, delete the desktop garbage, repeat... you know the drill, I know you do!

Anyway, everything was working fine with the new install until I went from the onboard graphics to installing either one or the other of the first two new graphics cards. After I put the card in, my system totally refused to cooperate. Monitor's black, with orange light on the normally blue lit power button (you know, stand by). Graphics card fan was working, but that was all. No boot beeps, no nothing. Turned it off and re-hooked monitor to onboard and everything's fine. Did this with both the eVGA and the Agle cards. :grind_teeth:

So, who can tell me where my problem is? I'm guessing either the psu's not big enough, or that the mobo isn't compatible with the power needs of these cards, but I don't know. Duh - that's why I'm posting and asking, isn't it?

I know, when you said more is better in the beginner's pages, you didn't quite mean THIS much more! sorry. -- please, help?!! :sigh:

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Old 02-19-2009, 11:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

Try resetting the BIOS, and setting the init display to AGP first. I had the S3 ProSavage onboard at once, and you'll definitely notice a HUGE gain in your graphics. Your power supply MAY need upgrading, but these cards can run on a 300W power supply.

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Old 02-19-2009, 11:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

Oops - I knew no matter how long it got, I'd forget to say something - I DID check my BIOS, after the first try, and AGP was already set to first. sorry! Oh, and I gave up and tried the Sparkle card, and it won't do anything either.

I was doing some - more - research and got to wondering if maybe the card voltage is too high for this old a mobo? The book says 1.5v AGP, but I can't find anything on the cards. I CAN believe this might be the problem, but there's no way to fix that, is there? Aside from a lesser graphics card or new mobo?
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Old 02-20-2009, 05:23 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

you might need a more powerfull PSU i had a 250w on mine and needed a 400w to run my graphics card
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Old 02-20-2009, 05:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

I Would have thought that 300w would be enough for those cards however what PSU is it and I'm guessing the PSU on that machine would be about 7 years old? It may just may be on it's way out.

And what you mentioned about the voltage on AGP cards that won't be the problem.
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Old 02-20-2009, 09:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

What about old drivers? I had the same thing when I put an old video card into my dad's computer (AGP card). I think it was because I didn't uninstall the old drivers for the on board graphics. Could be wrong though, I'm new to this stuff.
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Old 02-20-2009, 10:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

Okay, I was up until 4:30 this morning, researching this, and came up with some interesting stuff. Wikipedia has wonderful info on AGP, making me think it WAS the voltage, until I tried to Google the architecture for the mobo AGP slot this morning. I came up with the book for the SE version of the board, which also has 2 SATA connection points, and showed a pic of a double-slotted card (like these) in it's picture. So, I guess the voltage is prolly not the problem after all.

However, NOWHERE can I find specs on the architecture of the AGP slot. The PCI slots are 32-bit... These AGP cards are 64- and 128-bit. Anybody think THAT might be my problem?? (and, no, I'm not trying to put AGP into PCI, just curious if the AGP is ALSO 32-bit.

Gilles: I'm pretty sure it's got nothing to do with drivers, since I had previously been using the onboard 64mb shared video. Only decided to upgrade to a card cuz of the 128mb requirements of the new game. I can try uninstalling the onboard graphics drivers, but I really don't think it'll matter with BIOS set to AGP first... Did that WORK for your situation? and had your dad ONLY been using the onboard before that?
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Old 02-20-2009, 10:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Video upgrade not working

Your power supply wattage is adequate, I ran a 6500 on a 300 watt at one point.
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Old 02-20-2009, 06:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Talking Re: Video upgrade not working

I'm sooooo sorry, guys - and feel like such a stoopid NUUB! (not even a regular N00B, cuz this is almost unforgiveable for a techie type person!!)

I forgot to enforce the cardinal rule of screwed up hardware -- trying known good in suspected bad, and suspected 'bad' in known good... Guess what? Turns out the AGP slot on that mobo is 'not working', shall we - politely - say!!

I tried a known good card in there, and STILL nothing! So, I took one of the new cards and put in my up and running tower, and lookie at me! :laughing: I've got display resolutions all the way up to 1680 x 1050!!! :speechless: Yay!!!

I really wanted this card (the 512 one) in my other tower, but hey, if that AGP slot's dead, I'll put it in this one! Looks like my daughter will end up with a Verto GeForce card after I put the 256mb FX5500 in my third tower, after I get THAT hard drive done up!

And, my son should (hopefully, if HIS AGP's not also dead) get to be able to play his game, after all!! :super_happy:

Thanks for all your help and input, and next time, maybe we'll all remember to ask if there's another similar computer in the house to try that with... :embaressed:

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