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Guest Strikehawk Mech

Old computer upgrading to it's maximum for FS9

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I have an old P4 3.4 (478 socket) computer that's running FS9 between 24 - 36 FPS on 1280x768x32 with a 22" monitor. I also have ASv6, FE, UT, and a AI traffic program with the traffic slider at 85%. The computer currently has 1GB RAM DDR400 and an ATI 9800 Pro with 128MB (AGP 8X slot).I'm trying to run this old computer to it's maximum before I build a new one sometime next year. I will max out the allowed RAM by replacing the current dual channel 1GB RAM for 2GB sometime this week.Which video card would be a great replacement for the current one (AGP 8X)? It would be great if the new video card could run FS9 at 1680x1050x32 on the 22", I can do it now with my current video card, but my FPS goes down to the teens.

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Hi,For the AGP card: I recently got an nVidia 7900GS 512Mb card on AGP but they are rare and hard to find! It's very good though and a vast improvement on the 6800GT it replaced - especially in big resolutions. Now, if you want to stick with ATI then I am told that the X1950Pro is one of the best AGP cards ever to exist but as I've always sided with nVidia I have never investigated further.Geoff

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With that resolution, FS9 takes up around 250ish VRAM and demands around 180ish Watts of PSU under 100% load, so the X1650 will do it, that said at that resolution 1600+ you might want to ease on eye-candy, and overall AA/AF. Its an O.K. $100ish interim GPU for your next years total upgrade. As far as the 1950, you should be ok with that PSU, the 1950pro under full load consumes for around 220/225ish watts under 100% load (Total system). And as far as your rails, granted that you could use atleast 20amps, the thing is you have a good brand PSU, so if you stick with a single card (NO-SLI) 15amp, is OK, meaning it will do it as long as the rest of your system isnt too demanding.

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Thanks for the great advice. I'll probably get the X1950Pro.

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Just an update on what happened.I upgraded the ATI Radeon 9800 to a Sapphire X1950Pro. Since the power supply was on sale, I also went ahead and upgraded the 420 watt power supply to 600 watts. Because of the X1950Pro I was able to hook up another digital monitor that was collecting dust in the closet, having dual monitors is awesome for flightsimming and other general computer use.The computer/motherboard is maxed out to the limit as far as hardware upgrades. I extended the life of this computer for at least another year before I build a new one.

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Nice to hear man, glad your enjoying it. BTW, good that just went and got another PSU, never hurts. What brand did you get?.

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Since the Enermax 420 worked flawless for several years I went ahead and bought an Enermax 600.Thanks again.

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Hi, 2GB and FS9 is sweet. Maybe check the AGP-aperture? With 2GB you have a couple of options, regardless the amount of GPU-mem - AGP's great advantage over PCI-e. ;-) You probably have it or had it at 128MB, with 2GB you could easily assign 256MB (and beyond). Have fun and kind regards Jaap

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When I first built this computer I had set the AAS to 128MB, since I also work with some graphic programs...Photoshop, Illustrator..etc. 64MB was the default setting in my BIOS, but that was when 512MB of RAM was standard and 1GB was high end.I'll give 256MB a try, now that you've mentioned it. My Mobo only goes as high as 256MB anyway. Do new Mobo's go higher?

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AGP? New? ;-) Well, some AGP boards indeed go higher but 128/256MB should be fine with FS9. Min 1.75GB remaining is ok for OS & FS9. If it's a 512MB GPU, maybe leave it at 64 or try the other way, 32MB etc? I was assuming you got a 256MB GPU. Anyhow, something to play around with. :-) If you make such long flights, it's the result after 2-3 hours which matters. 10-20 minute flights are likely not a valid indication. ;-) FWIW, some GPU numbers, I've never seen FS9 beyond 190MB (almost maxed). FSX uses upto ca 380MB GPU-mem at 'nice' settings. Both are single view measurements w/ 1024x textures @ 1680x. For those who like these kind of details... :-) http://blogs.msdn.com/ptaylor/archive/2007...ress-space.aspxBest and kind regards Jaap

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>>AGP? New? ;-)LOL, what's wrong? you wouldn't buy a brand new AGP mobo? ;-) JKHere's the complete specs of my rig.Antec Sonata case w/ Enermax 600PSUAsus P4P800 SEIntel P4 3.4 / 478 socket / Arctic-Cooler Freezer fan/heatsinkKingston 2GB DDR RAM / dual channelSapphire ATI X1950Pro / 512 GDDR3 / AGP8Western Digital 160GB HDDWestern Digital 250GB HDDCreative Labs DVD R/RW 8XNEC DVD R/RW 16XViewsonic 22"Princeton 17"Creative Labs 2.1 speakersCH YokeSaitek Rudder PedalsI've recently reinstalled my OS and FS9. Framerates are always above 35fps with default aircrafts in VC and running ASv6, GE Pro, and FSC8. Flying a PMDG 737 in VC, framerates stays fairly similar, above 25fps. The single biggest factor in increasing framerates was the CPU upgrade, from a P4 2.8 to the P4 3.4. With the video card the framerates went up slightly but the eye-candy is ten times better and no delays in visual rendering, plus I can now use two DVI monitors.BTW; When I did a clean install of my OS I decided to try FSX w/ SP1. It ran fine on my rig with all the setting sliders in the middle. After a few days of flying with FSX I really missed what I had with FS9, the awesome weather and terrain eyecandy, AI traffic and after-market aircrafts in my hanger. So, I reformatted the HDD again and gave it a clean install of OS and this time with FS9.

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Always nice to see older systems getting a positive boost :)Hehe yeah X has a lot of potential, but needs time to grow, why not put both X and 9 on your system, saves you formatting all the time ;)

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