Best use of AGP 8X slot

I have an ancient computer, with an AGP 8x slot, and I am not ready to replace or upgrade the motherboard.  I don't do gaming, but I edit large images and apply the images in slide shows and other features.  I would like to have the best hardware acceleration for the AGP interface.  I"m considering an nVidia Geforce 6800 and wondering if there is a better recommendation (other than scrapping the system in favor of PCIe).
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Kruno DžoićSystem EngineerCommented:
radeon HD 4670
dude it is better card but only problem associated with this card is that it is power consuming. but overall it is best for your pc config. alos i would strongly recommend radeon 4870 . it is better and cheaper .... but its upto you finally. :-)
Sapphire Radeon HD 3850 or Radeon HD 4670

Video Card Benchmarks - maybe this link can help you to compare results (based primarily on pci-e).
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ddantesAuthor Commented:
Some ads for Radeon HD 4670  Thank you for your comments.  There seem to be a variety of Sapphire Radeon HD 4670 graphics cards on the market.  Can you be specific about which one is preferable?
tell me your budget and pc config .....
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Using Asus P4P800SE motherboard with 8X AGP interface.  The system has a Pentium 4 CPU @ 3.2GHz and 2GB DDRAM.   Budget is flexible, depending on the benefits.
oh dude then the above radeon card may not work properly on your system ,

check below link for best graphic card for your system,

ddantesAuthor Commented:
Thank you for your comment.  However, in contrast to the case described in your link, my motherborad doesn't have any PCIe slots, only PCI and AGP 8X.  
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
A Radeon 4670 is a far better card than the GeForce 6800 [G3D score of 759 vs. 300], and is the highest performing AGP card that's readily available:

It DOES require a minimum of a 400w power supply ... so check your system's PSU to confirm you have adequate power.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Thank you for your recommendation.  I have a 480W power supply.  Right now I am using a Geforce FX5200.  Do you think the Radeon 4670 would make a noticeable improvement?  My specific issue is that I have slide shows and scrolling virtual tours on my website, and there is motion artifact which I try to correct by improving the javascript.  But other observers say it is a hardware acceleration problem in my system, not a software issue.  So I am looking to improve the video performance and then check the quality of my website's graphic features.
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
"... Do you think the Radeon 4670 would make a noticeable improvement? "    :-)  :-)

" noticeable improvement" is a significant understatement.     The FX5200 scores 45 on the G3D benchmark.    The Radeon HD4670 scores 759.    In addition, the 4670 has signfiicantly better acceleration features.

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ddantesAuthor Commented:
All expert comments are appreciated!
ddantesAuthor Commented:
I installed a Radeon 4670 graphics card this morning.  Unfortunately, there is no discernable improvement in performance of the graphics features which I enumerated earlier: the slide show fade transition is still jerky under Safari and the virtual tour vibrates and hesitates.  
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
In that case your issue is not your GPU's acceleration features, but either insufficient CPU power or too little RAM.     Your comment, "... I edit large images and apply the images in slide shows and other features ...", makes me think it's likely RAM ... but you can isolate it a bit by doing the following:

(a)  Run Task Manager and watch the CPU utilization percentage as you run your slide show and/or the virtual tour  [You can either watch the Performance tab, or just watch the little rectangular indicator in the task bar by the clock].    If you're running at very high CPU utilization, then your CPU is simply being overloaded -- in which case there's nothing you can do to help except possibly try difference codecs for the video types you're using.

(b)  Run RAMMAp and see how much RAM your processes are using.  [ ]     An even better statistic would be to track your actual page faults, but that's fairly complex [If you want to do that, you'll need run Perfmon and then look at the detailed statistics files for the page faults/second counter].

If your system has less memory than it supports, you can probably get a notable improvement by bumping the RAM to its max;   if you're already at max RAM, then about the only thing you could do short of upgrading to a newer system is try difference codecs to see if you can find one that's less memory and/or CPU intensive.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Thank you for your comment.  The board supports 4GB DDRAM and I had 2GB installed.  I populated the remaining two memory slots, but there was an unexpected problem when I started the system.  The motherboard enunciator said "CPU failed system check", and there was a puff of smoke before I cut off the power.  I couldn't see where the smoke originated, but replacing the CPU did not result in a POST on power up.  I'm going to replace the motherboard and try again.  If you have any insight, it would be appreciated!
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
Wow!    Puffs of smoke are NOT good :-)

Were the memory modules the right kind for that board???

In any event, clearly you need to replace the motherboard ==> this might be a good time to just "bite the bullet" and also update to a newer CPU (although this would also require new memory and a different video card).
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Yes, the modules have all worked in that board in the past.  I'm not quite ready to take that bite, so I'll replace the board (I have spares) and try again...
ddantesAuthor Commented:
One of the memory modules which I had added is faulty.  After removing it, the system now has 3GB RAM instead the original of 2GB, and there is no improvement in performance.  The CPU is not overburdened by the slide show or virtual tour, although there is a difference in CPU usage with Safari as opposed to IE. During fading slide transition, IE uses around 2-5% of CPU and Safari uses at least 25%.  Do you have Safari installed?  If so, can you look at the slide show at  and the virtual tour at and let me know if you observe fluttering during slide transition and hesitation of the scroll in the virtual tour?
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
I don't have Safari installed, but I tried both the slide show (including both shows of the individual cottages -- VERY nice, by the way) and the virtual tour on both IE v9 and Firefox v8 and the results were the same ==>  the slide shows worked perfectly as near as I can tell (nothing I would call "fluttering"), but the virtual tour does have a few spots where it seems to "stutter" a bit (not a "pause" -- just a bit of a stutter ... I assume that's what you're calling a hesitation).

Just for grins, I also tried this on a fairly old laptop running XP with IE8 and the "fluttering" you described is obvious on the slide shows.     But the CPU utilization clearly spikes to near 100% during those transitions -- watching the little rectangular indicator in the tray, you can see it fill to all green when the show is transitioning between slides.    Interestingly, however, the virtual tour runs very smoothly on the old system !!   BUT it rotates much slower -- taking about twice as long to "go around" as the newer (and MUCH faster) system.    This is with a 2.4GHz Celeron with only 640MB of RAM.   The old system shows a fairly consistent 70-80% CPU utilization with the virtual tour -- but as I noted it runs VERY smoothly.

ddantesAuthor Commented:
Thank you for taking time for that testing.  I will start to research contemporary systems.  My hesitation relates to the fact that I have invested in many spare parts (motherboards, CPUs, RAM, IDE drives, etc) and I also have two identical computers in the office.  But I know that dinosaurs must evolve or...
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
If you are going to built a more contemporary system, I'd suggest a socket 1155 motherboard and a Sandy Bridge CPU.

For what you're using it for, the on-chip graphics is fine ... especially if you get a CPU wtih HD3000 graphics, although even the HD2000 would likely be fine.

This motherboard:

with this CPU:

and this memory:

... would give you a superb system that will last for years for ~ $400 (plus on OS).     No dedicated video card needed -- the HD3000 graphics will easily render your sites -- I just tried it on an i5-2400S and they work perfectly ... even the virtual tour is very smooth.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Gary, thank you so much for your thoughtful recommendations.  I was bewildered whenever I started to look into current technology, and easily abandoned the project for the reasons I enumerated.  This makes it much easier.  Happy New Year!
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Sorry, a few belated questions if you don't mind...

1. Will my ATX case work with that board?
2. What about my existing 480W power supply?
3. How about the IDE drives, including hard discs and CD/DVD-RW?
4. This board has integrated graphics, is that correct?
5. My USB and Ethernet devices are currently connected to PCI expansion cards.  I guess I will need a different type of expansion card?

Thanks again.
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
Yes, a micro-ATX board easily fits in an ATX case.    You need to adjust the standoffs in the case to match the requirements of the board -- but that's easy.

The power supply has plenty of power ... BUT may not have the right set of distribution lines.    Does it have a 20 or 24 pin ATX connector?    ... and a 4-pin or 8-pin auxiliary CPU power connection?    You can get adapters for these ... but if both are the wrong kind, I'd replace the PSU with a high quality (80+ certified; active PFC) unit.  [This is a good choice: ]

That board doesn't have any IDE channels ... so use this one instead:
... it has a single IDE channel, so you connect up to 2 devices to it.    You may want to switch one of your devices to SATA (SATA optical drives are very cheap, so that would be the least costly).    Eventually you probably want to migrate to all-SATA ... but you don't have to with this board.

The board doesn't actually have integrated graphics -- it has chipset support for on-chip graphics that are on the actual CPU chip.    Works VERY well.

The board has onboard gigabit ethernet and a LOT of USB ports (6 on the ATX panel in back plus 10 more internal that you can bring out if needed).    I doubt you'll need any expansion cards -- but the board does have 2 PCI slots just in case.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
That is very helpful.  Right now I have two IDE hard drives, an IDE CD-RW and an IDE DVD-RW, as well as one SATA hard drive and one SATA REV drive.  For the other two IDE devices I might use an external USB to IDE case, or a PCI card which has another IDE channel.  Does that sound reasonable?
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
Sure ... a simple 2-channel PCI card will add support for 4 more devices (2/channel)
Something like this:
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Very good.  Have a wonderful new year, and thank you for sharing your expertise beyond the scope of my original question.
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
No problem -- I'll just take a free week in one of your amazing cabins :-)
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Glad you enjoyed the photos.  It is a wonderful place to live, and a great job, too.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Gary, the motherboard and memory arrived today and I'm excited about building the new system.  However, the motherboard manual says that 32-bit Windows O.S. cannot use more than 3 GB of memory.  Thinking I could use all four memory slots, I ordered four 8GB modules of the kind which you recommended!   Do you agreee with the 3 GB limitation?
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
The memory I suggested was a pair of 4GB modules -- not 8GB modules.

Did you order two sets of them?

I had assumed (probably should have confirmed it) that with a new system you'll install Windows 7 x64 => but if that's not the case, then yes, the OS will only "see" 4GB of address space ... and can only use something in the range of 3 to 3.25GB of the installed RAM.

It will still work fine -- it just won't be using the additional memory.     If you install a 64-bit OS, it will use all of your memory.

I suggested a pair of the modules for a reason -- it's much more reliable with unbuffered memory modules to only use one module/channel.    It will work with 4 modules installed;  but the bus loading is appreciably higher, so I prefer to only use a pair of modules.    And 8GB of RAM is PLENTY :-)

In any event, go ahead and build and load the system -- whether you use an x32 or an x64 OS, it is going to be SO much faster than what you're used to :-)
ddantesAuthor Commented:
Gary: you weren't kidding.  It's a joy to use the new system.
ddantesAuthor Commented:
...And a RamDisk helps make use of the extra RAM, despite the 32-bit O.S.
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