[RndTbl] HW question

Trevor Cordes trevor at tecnopolis.ca
Wed Jan 27 05:18:56 CST 2021

On 2021-01-26 Kevin McGregor wrote:
> Hey would anyone like to venture an opinion? :-)
> Would this card:
> GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER GAMING X 6GB PCI-E w/ HDMI, Triple DP

I have a fair bit of personal experience putting newer cards on older
systems.  They do often look like they'll be backwards compatible, but
in the real world it'll sometimes not be true.

There are a few problems:

1. Newer cards have much higher slot power draw requirements and many
old boards (esp PCIe v1) won't provide that much power.  It was a big
problem for using v2 cards on v1 boards.  Symptom: no display, system
dead or beeping.

This might be less of a thing using v3 on v2 (compared to v2 on v1)...

2. Even worse is older cards often had the 6 pin PCIe supplemental power
connector to make up for lackluster slot power.  Most new cards that
aren't crazy high-end solely use slot power, making the power situation
in #1 more of a problem.

3. X card just doesn't like Y old board even though power specs look
ok.  Hit this many times trying to use low-end low power draw v2 cards
on random v1 boards.  Low-end cards should not experience power draw
issues ever.  But some still won't work.

If you can, make sure you can return (or sell) the card if it doesn't
work in your board.  Based on my experience it's like 20% probability it
won't work.

As for the (if it does work) it'll be overkill argument already put
forth: depends.  If you're just trying to get 2D / desktop (no games)
and you're mostly interested in the massive-multi-monitor capability,
do like I did and get the lowest-end card that does the newer DP spec
and daisy-chaining.  Then you only need 2 digital-out ports on the card
to get 3 (maybe 4) monitors.  1 DP can drive 2 monitors daisychained.

If it's gaming, then better/faster vid card will help, but like they
said, you'll start seeing diminishing returns as your CPU/RAM become
the bottleneck, not the VC.  But I wouldn't say it's completely
useless, assuming it works.  Getting a $700 card for an old box is
probably silly, but $200-$300 doesn't sound horrible, especially if
you're getting other features you want.

And make sure your PS is a good one (Japanese caps) with enough juice

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