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World of Warcraft Video Card??

Posted on 2014-01-20
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Last Modified: 2014-01-20
Hey Guys,

I have a question for you.  I am looking to upgrade a video card for a client to be able to play World of Warcraft.  I am not sure which one to buy.  The computer is a Compaq Pro 4000 Small Form Factor so I need a video card with a low profile bracket.    I have upgraded the memory to 8GB.

Thanks in Advance,

Jazz
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Question by:Jazzanlex
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by:tmx84
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 39794970
I'd really not recommend the ZOTAC ZT linked to above for your Compaq system.  It's often quoted on WoW forums as the low profile card to buy because it's pretty much the most powerful given the limits of the low-profile format.

What's generally not considered is that Small Form Factor cases do not usually contain high powered gaming machines!

The ZOTAC has a really large heatsink and fan bolted on top which increases the depth needed to fit in a SFF case & as you need to get the airflow right you can't afford to place the fan right next to another card as it will overheat.  It is also a PCI-E 3.0 card which your B43 Express motherboard can't really take full advantage of.

Most importantly your motherboard can only support a maximum of 25W power supply to he PCI-E x16 slot - that card runs at between 25 and 50W so won't be able to pull enough power from your PSU to function correctly and you really don't want it failing in the middle of rendering a massive boss raid :)

As WoW is pretty forgiving in terms of graphics power I'd suggest you scale back a little and look at the low profile version of either the AMD Radeon HD 6350 512MB or Radeon HD 6450 512MB both of which have been tested with the Compaq Pro 4000 and are around the mid-point of the cards that Blizzard have approved for use with WoW and Hearthstone.

Blizzard list their supported card ranges here
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by:Jazzanlex
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 39795024
Yes, you might want to hunt for the HP branded version (P/N QM229AA) which was made for your case as well but looking quickly I think the HP was around $20 more for effectively the same hardware.  You may have better luck with a search.
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by:tmx84
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Yes, sorry I didn't consider power, and as far as the card you listed above...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121439

There it is on newegg with reviews, i will let the reviews speak for them self when it comes to gaming..

The limitation on the power supply is going to make it fun to find a video card that will provide well for gaming, but that's just my opinion..
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by:Jazzanlex
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With only 512MB of memory do you think I should get the one from Amazon which has 1GB of memory?  I was looking for something with a little more memory, the unit belongs to a kid and I know when he reads the box with 512MB of memory hes going to tell his mother its not good enough...lol  or does it not matter?  I am not into gaming at all so don't have an answer.
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by:tmx84
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Jazz, your issue is going to lie with the power though.  If you can't power the card, you can't get the full benefits anyways.  And yes, I partially agree, you are upgrading his computer to 8 gigs of ram, but then putting a sub par video card doesn't really make sense to me.. (When I'm sure the whole point of this upgrade was for gaming and nothing else..)

Here is another option, staying in the lower range, but I can't find anywhere the minimum power needed... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127738
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☠ MASQ ☠ earned 250 total points
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Whatever you do with this you still fundamentally have a business machine built to a budget by HP/Compaq - Not a games machine.  As I said earlier with WoW it's not too much of an issue as Blizzard are pretty forgiving with their graphics requirements.  With this machine though you're never going to be able to get huge frames per second scores or see the reflection of rippling water in the land of WoW but if you're happy reducing screen resolution and losing some bell and whistles it will work.  If the kid in question is comparing this to a friend who has a full sized desktop system with a 650w PSU then it's not going to make that kind of expectation.  If he's happy with the compromise it will be an improvement on what he has but it will never upgrade to a real gaming rig.  The important concept here is compromising on gaming quality in order to get something that will work with the hardware you have.

It's also worth noting at this point that less forgiving games (and that's just about everything in the games charts right now) will really struggle with this setup.
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by:Jazzanlex
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Okay I am going to try the one you suggested above with the 512MB thanks to both of you for your input!!  If its okay with you guys I will split the points??  

Thanks Again!!
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