Mainboard / Video card compatiblity question

I have a Soltek SL-85DRV3 Socket 478 mainboard and this is a quotation from its manual:

‘The AGP slot on board supports 4X / 2X AGP card configuration. User can install either a 4X or 2X AGP card for CRT display.’

I have just bought a Samsung SyncMaster 940BW LCD Monitor and now need to upgrade my video card. I am looking at buying an ATI Radeon 9600 video card and would like confirmation from someone with more knowledge than myself that the video card will work with this board and that the DVI socket on the video card will be able to drive the new monitor.

This is a quotation from the ATI website regarding the video card I have in mind:

‘Intel® Pentium® 4/III/II/Celeronâ„¢, AMD® K6/Duronâ„¢/Athlon®/Athlon XP® or compatible with AGP 4X (1.5V), 8X (0.8v) or Universal AGP 3.0 bus configuration (4X/8X).’

From this information, can someone please confirm that this video card/mainboard/monitor are compatible, and that DVI is possible, please?

you can run the new monitor on the old card with the analog d-sub connector, it won’t be as crisp as digital dvi, but it will work for the time being. the new vid card should work with your mobo, it will be limited at 4x speed, but it won’t make any difference in performance vs. 8x since its an older card and doesn’t really need the extra bandwidth.

“Limited 4x”, there no card for AGP (including 8x) thats even near utilizing all bandwidth that AGP 4x provides. :slight_smile:
A Radeon 9600 should work fine, although keep in mind that its getting very old.
You might want to have a look at the X1300, X1550/X1600 series instead.

Thanks to both of you for your replies. My mainboard does not have a PCI slot - only AGP 4X. Therefore, I need to get the best card ATI has to offer that is compatible with the mainboard that I have.

Another question: Will the ATI Radeon 9600 support Vista Aero? It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t; what I really want is DVI output to get a better image on my new monitor.

Thanks again.

I agree with DiiZzy. The Radeon 9600 is getting long in the tooth and since you’re already shelling out money to upgrade - you might as well get one that is going to last you for a while. The X does not mean they are PCI-express cards. For example the X1300 card comes in both AGP and PCI-express variety.

The vast majority of cards sold today have a D-sub and a DVI input. Last year I bought an Nvidia 6600 GT card that came with an analogue to DVI adapter. This will allow you to connect the regular analog cable from your Samsung monitor to the DVI input on the video card. The difference for me has been significant. I absolutely love the DVI clarity.

Thanks for the reply. Do you know if the X1300 would work on an AGP 4X mobo? It is not at all clear to me from the ATI website. Thanks.

Looking over the specs in general, it seems there are no AGP 8x cards that are not backward compatible with 4x, so any current 8x-capable card should be ok with a 4x-capable slot.

Here is some info on vista aero (not the best but its something).

vista aero myths

If you can afford a decent card ~$100US, get something like this:
HIS X1650pro AGP 4x/8x 600MHz $105 AR

Thanks very much for your reply and suggestion. Since starting this topic, I have been trying to find information on various sites and maybe you can help with just two remaining queries:

  1. The card you suggest sounds very good, but I have heard that some 8X/4X cards will not run on 4X mobos because of a voltage problem: 8X uses 0.8v and 4X uses 1.5v. Do you know if this card runs 4X @ 1.5v or 0.8v? [My mobo only has 1.5v, and if the card needs 4X @ 0.8v then it will not run] I have looked on the ATI website but there is no info about voltages.

  2. This is another question that no one seems to be able to answer: I have bought a Samsung SyncMaster 940BW LCD widescreen monitor and need a video card that gives a resolution of 1440 x 900. Does the card you suggest fit the bill? Again, there is no info on the ATI website and an answer I got from their support team was less than useless :frowning:

Just a final thought: I understand that this card requires additional power which can be taken from the floppy disk power cable. Do you know if this is true?

Yes this card requires that you connect a floppy power connector to it, it is necessary for it to operate properly. If you do not have an extra floppy power connector on your system, then you can probably buy an adapter to convert a standard molex power connector.

The card is backwards compatible with 4x. In the specifications on newegg it says 4x/8x.

That resolution can be set with this card. there are a couple programs that can be used to set the resolution, like ‘ATI tray tools’ (ATT for short), or ‘multires’.

You should make sure your motherboard has the latest bios flashed as well.