Need help upgrading graphics card (overwhelmed by options)

Beta member
My computer is actually pretty good (Dimension 8400). I realize that it's pretty old, but has so far survived the ware and tear of time. Two Pentium 4s running in synch at 3.2 Ghz, and 1GB of RAM, and a 128mb X300 ATI graphics card. Other than my CPUs, my computer is an overall weak system, and that's why I have been lookign to upgrade. Realizing that it is indeed a Dell, and that the motherboard is pretty much impossible to switch out because of the annoying BTX standard that Dell insists on using, and the fact that Intel and other manufacturers dropped it, I can't switch out so I can use a better CPU. With that in mind, I have been looking for more RAM to put onto it, but enough about that, I want to get on with the graphics cards.

I'm having somewhat of a trouble deciding which graphics cards are good to use for my computer, I visited Dells site, and I searched graphics cards that were compatible with my system, but none of the were "good" and all of them were refurbished pretty much. This gives me the impression that none of the newer graphics cards would work with my computer. Can you help me decide? I happened upon one of ATIs newest cards called the x1950 and was wondering if my rig could handle it. I have an ATI x300, which is far ancient, and am not sure if it would be compatible. My comptuer can support all of it's features, that I know as I checked my systems info, it's getting the card in the computer that I'm worried about. I have little idea if it's form factor would work. To give you a general idea, here are my current graphics card's specs:

Name:Radeon X300
Manufacturer:ATI Technologies Inc.
Chip Tyoe:RADEON X300 SE (0x5B60)
DAC Type:Internal DAC(400MHz)
Approx. Total Memory:128.0 MB
Current Display Mode: 1024x768(32 bit)(60Hz)

I'm not sure if this helps anyone any, but if you can help determine if the chip I linked to would be compatible with my computer it would be of great help (once again, it's a Dell Dimension 8400). Thanks.


Fully Optimized
it all depends on your slot
do u have agp for pci exspress
if u got agp x1950 would be great
if u got pcex
go for an 8800gts or gtx graphics card
and for ram go for at lest another gig and u should be good for a while


Site Team
Staff member
for a system that old, its probally going to be AGP if not normal PCI. Also, what kind of price range are we looking at here?