so what are the main things that make graphics run smoothly and look amazing? i mean i know a lot of it is down to the the graphics card so i bought the radeon 9800 pro and i have to say its does make a difference. however my games do tend to be "choppy" still and often seem to get stuck when the game tries to bring up the graphics for the first time after launching the game. i have 512mb RAM which is more than enough according to most game's manuals so maybe i need a faster CD drive to be able to load it quicker? im not sure wondered if anyone could help?

Could you post details of your motherboard, processor and ram type/speed please? I'll move this to the appropriate hardware section if necessary.

Motherboard: ABit A17 motherboard
CPU: Pentium 4 2.53ghz
Graphics: Radeon 9800 pro

Have you got the latest drivers for your graphics card ??

Yep, doesn't look like a hardware problem, because tht system should play even Doom3 and Half Life 2 or similar just fine.

Check BIOS POST screens at startup (before Windows loads) to ensure that everything is detected at it's correct speed (processor, RAM etc).

Download and install the most recent motherboard chipset driver from ABit. Bownload and install the most recent ATi Catalyst driver from

Check that you have the most recent version of DirectX from Windows update.

Then check the ATi control panel to ensure you haven't got settings too high for AA and AF. High settings reduce framerates. Check ingame options to see if you've got particular games set to maximum levels of detail for textures and other video settings. Setting everything in a game to its highest setting can slow down even a 9800 Pro in the most recent games.

ok thanks guys will try some tweaking and let you know how it goes.