Need to replace my Nvidia GT-720 graphics card - what should I buy?

Soen Eber

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My graphics card has started failing, with the screen going black every few seconds but for only a second - and the interval is varient on what I am doing, while playing a game or in SL it goes black every 10 or so seconds, but while browsing a simple web page it might be every couple minutes. It's not too bad if I shut down and restart it later - maybe when it first starts up it goes black more frequently but I think that's just stress from everything saying "good morning". Rarely I get static for a few seconds, and have to turn the monitor off or Alt+Tab, followed by a "No Video Signal" message. That may just be the HDMI cable, it's a tad loose.

It's an older PC, a few years old - i5, no SSD but reasonably rugged and stable. Video is GeForce GT 720; I have a 650 Watt power supply which a previous tech said is more than enough for my current system, and the box is fairly large with good air flow. I don't remember what the motherboard, but I seem to remember it's ATX (which is pretty common, IIRC).

The GT 720 is on a single long rail IIRC. I have two long rails but I don't want to push my device given the age and power supply. I'll probably end up replacing the entire machine in another year or two with what would be considered a mid-spec used box by today's standards.

Obviously I can't get anything current - not enouph power - but a reasonable upgrade from GT 720 would be good. It should be the same basic configuration as what I have.

So ... what can I get? Thanks.
 
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Clara D.

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A newer card might draw less power.


Even a used GTX750TI would be an improvement over a 720
 
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Anya Ristow

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Download the latest nvidia driver and reinstall, checking "custom" and then "clean install".

If that doesn't fix it, try replacing your hdmi cable. Borrow one from your bluray player or xbox or whatever. If you have one available, try another monitor.

If you can use the other video out on your video card, try switching to that.

From the nvidia control panel, desktop menu, enable "display GPU activity icon in notification area". Open that thing, google all the things it says is using your video card and see if there's anything surprising.

Make sure there isn't a lot of dust in your system. Make sure the fan on your video card is running. Make sure the system fans are running. Make sure the PSU fan is running.

Try re-seating the video card.

It would suck to replace the video card and that not be the problem.

650W is more than enough for almost everybody, if the thing isn't just broken. If you have PCIe power available from your PSU (6/8 pin, probably two of them on a single cable) you could put quite a powerful video card in there. You could put a 750 ti or a 1050 ti or a 1650 in there without any auxiliary power, just make sure the card you get doesn't require it. But if it does require it and you have it, you're good to go. Make sure there's nothing on the motherboard that would block a larger card. Be careful while removing the old one that you un-latch it. There will be a tab to push down or to the side at the back of the socket.

The modern equivalent of your card is a 1030, but it isn't a good value. It's also long in the tooth.
 

Ashiri

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What sort of budget? If you can afford a new mid-range card it could be re-used in the next machine.
 
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Romana

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It's not the power supply, since like Anya said 650W us a good amount. Another thing you can try if you have a free PCIe slot is try the graphics card in it and see if the same thing happens (if you're going to try re-seating it anyway).
If it still happens after you try all of that and you get a new card, make sure your motherboard can handle it (like my current PC; 750ti is as high as it can go; one reason I had to take the plunge on a new PC).
If it is the PCIe slot, it might be gone to start saving for a new machine, but hopefully something will work.
If you do get a new card and send up having to get a new Kevin's, though, you'll be able to use the new card, at least. They told me I'd be able to use my 750ti if I wanted.
 
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Clara D.

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To add to what people have said, it sounds like a bad cord or a physically damaged connector on either end. Start up a game and wiggle both ends of the cord.

A bad power supply would cause random shut-offs specifically when gaming and/or inexplicable random bluescreens.

The usual symptoms of a dying video card *usually* involve various color artifacts up to what I call rainbow death. Only after this does it go black and never come back. Side trivia -- SL's old cache corruption made me poo myself once because it simulates dying graphics.

Unfortunately, the window on the cheap refurbished 750ti's that hit the market has passed and they've inexplicably jumped back up in price ($200+ o_O), so if you do need to replace it, you'd need to explore your options - for a little less you could get a 1050ti.

It uses *less* power and should fit int the same space as a 750, and would be a decent transfer over to a "middle of the road on a budget" system.


Or a 1650, this one is currently on "promo" at Newegg.


While I'm an MSI drooling fangirl, I'll also post an ASUS ;)


I prefer "Sold and Shipped by Newegg" -- they now are running a 'marketplace' so there any of a number of sources, you can get cheaper stuff from Asia, but shipping times tend to be horrid and any returns can be a clusterfuck.

MSI is on my "liked" brands list, they tend to go overboard on cooling and do factory overclocks. Other good ones are ASUS, eVGA, and Gigabyte.

Be wary of cheapish cards, there a lot of dubious "cranked out of a sweatshop" ones out there, more trouble than they're worth for the initial savings.
PNY and anything with "Power" ie (IBuyPower, SparklePower, etc.) in the name.

Also, not all cards with the same model number are the same. The ones I linked are double-fan versions with 4G of vram.

If you want to find out things like your motherboard(mainboard) model, CPU, and memory there's a wee utility that works nicely:


Depending on what you currently have, it might make more sense to just upgrade CPU, Graphics, and Ram rather than building a new system.

[---------EDIT TO ADD---------]
Most important if replacing a GT720 -- is it a "full height" or "slim" case?

There are a few options for slim cases, but they tend to be more expensive with fewer choices:
Example:
[---------------/EDIT--------------]
 
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Eunoli

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Worth a reminder that today is apparently the best day of the year to purchase refurbished electronics at a discount. Might want to take a look at what the major retailers have and for how much - you might find you can get a completely new refurbished system for almost the same cost as a new card.
 
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