I would like to put more ram into my pc as well, however, i have a few questions. I have 512 MB of PC2700 DDR -133 SDRAM. It has one more slot available to insert a 512 MB for a total maximum of 1 GB of RAM. I would just like to know if it would help improve the performance of the games I play on my system. I have an AMD Athlon 2.2 GHz, 512 MB of RAM, 160 GB hardrive, an Xtasy Visiontek 128 MB 9200 se video card (its the same as the ATI Radeon 9200 except its a newer and more current card and its manufactured by a different company). My graphics card is capable of running most games at high resolutions like 800 x 600 or 1024x768 and with most settings at a medium and sometimes high. But, on games like Psychonauts, Far Cry, The Chronicles Of Riddick, DOOM 3, Brothers In Arms, etc. things start to chug when there is a lot on screen. The framerate drops considerably, so I am forced to turn the resolution to a lower 800 x 600 or sometimes even 640 x 480. Now, what i find strange, is that Half - Life 2 runs perfectly for me at 800 x 600 and with Texture detail and model detail set at high and with all the other settings set at a medium or high setting. If i bought 512 mb more ram would that make most of my games run smoother at higher graphic settings?
Thanks in advance


adding more RAM won't really help much at all. Your problem is that the 9200SE display card you have is a quite underpowered card that is more suitable for desktop applications and older games, and quite UNsuitable for modern 3D games.

Replacing the display card with a better one is what you need to do!

That video card is just not a work horse, its a lower end card, my own ATi R8500 should outpreform that in most tasks even though the card is much older, It has more ram and a few other things.

since when is 800x600 high resolution O.o

Ok, im not about to go buy a new card, because i just got this one on Christmas. Are there any alternatives to this problem such as optimerizers or game accelerators? I really do not want to buy another card..

No! Sorry to have to downplay the card you've recently obtained, but a 9200SE is, (coz it is SE) a cut down version of an already underpowerd card.

Your only realistic option is to stick to less demanding games ;)

Oh, lol i didnt realize it was an underpowered card. It was only $40 (after 2 $20 rebates). The graphics it produces are pretty amazing looking, especially half life 2. If you dont believe me i could post a few screenshots... i just wish it would run a little smoother, but i just dont think spending $400 on a graphics card is really what i wanna do. thanks for the quick responses, ill just go back to playing my games at a 640 x 480 resolution lol :-|

Even in Australian dollars $400 sounds more excessive than you'd need to outlay. Check pricing in your area and local currency for the NVidia 6600GT and the ATi X700 pro - both quite capable mid-range cards.

You should be able to pickup a ATi Radeon 9800 Pro for 150 USD...

Yeah i think ill pass on a new card, ill just use this one until games will not work on it. Because some games look really good, and i can still play all of the newer games, only at lower settings. Thanks for the help though. Wow, i wish i could get 2 nvidia 6800 cards, but my motherboard dosent have 2 pci express slots, just 4 pci's and an agp, which my graphics card is in the agp. I didnt realize that some of the 256 mb cards are sometimes as cheap as $150, i shouldve shopped around a little more before getting this one...oh well, ill just have to live with it.

As I've mentioned elsewhere - don't get sucked into thinking that because a display card has more RAM it must be better. That's not true. A card is only 'better' if it has a better graphics processor.

As I've mentioned elsewhere - don't get sucked into thinking that because a display card has more RAM it must be better. That's not true. A card is only 'better' if it has a better graphics processor.

What makes a good processor???

Oh wow! That almost falls into an "Are you for real?" category, senegal! Short answer, I guess, is basically 'higher price'. Cards with better graphics chips are more expensive as a general rule. There's no such thing as a 'cheap' graphics card which is 'good' for highly demanding 3D games.

But there are a couple of factors to look out for:

* Recency
Graphics processors which are developed more recently will generally be better than older models. Each generation of graphics chip adds more function and power to that provided by the previous generation.
* Position within a product line.
Each 'generation' of graphics chips sees display cards which range from low powered to high powered. Higher powered models will generally be 'numbered' more highly. In the current generation of NVidia cards, for example, the 6800 display cards are far better than the 6200 cards.

In short, more functions, more processor clockspeed, more RAM speed = better display card.

Identify a card which seems interesting, Google for reviews and benchmark tests, compare the information you uncover with similar information about competing products, make your purchasing decision.

But don't, ever, just think that you find the cheapest possible card with enough 'RAM' and that'd be good enough. Shitty cards with more RAM are still shitty cards ;)

I used this program called Game Boost that says it will improve performance in games, and i figured id give it a shot, and to my surprise it worked! I am know playing Half Life 2 at 1024 x 768 with model detail and texture detail at high without a hiccup! ill try other games later

I can play HL2 on 1280x1024 on meidum settings on my R8500 with no adverse effects :p thats power.

Try playing it on a mid-range DirectX 9 card and you might change your opinion about "no adverse effects" ;)

I've run it on a GF4 Ti4200 and an FX5900XT here. Like your Radeon 8500, the Ti card will run HL2 at a reasonably acceptable framerate. But bung it on the DirectX 9 card and have a look and all of a sudden it's "Shit, that other card didn't do it properly!"