Do I need an expensive graphics card?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by strantor, Aug 3, 2015.

  1. strantor

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    I got a barebones Win7 desktop machine with (I believe) integrated motherboard graphics, that has only the 15-pin monitor output. I think I want to use it as Home Theater PC, which means I need/want one or more HDMI output(s). I don't do any gaming, just want to use it watch videos. I might be upgrading to a 4K UHDTV. So, do I need anything other than the cheapest barebones graphics card to play 4K videos over HDMI? AFAIK the only reason for an expensive graphics card is for rendering graphics in gaming; I suspect for playing videos where the graphics are already rendered, you're just playing back a recording, and nothing special is required. BUT there there things I don't know about, like transcoding and such, so I ask.
     
  2. Brownout

    Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2012
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    I'm going to show my ignorance and ask why is the onboard graphics unsuitable?

    Edit: never mind. I see you want extra display ports. (but why)
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2015
  3. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    I sometimes find playing HD movies troublesome with on board graphics.
    I recommend to do a search for HDMI and 4K support card that is cheap. I believe it can play movies but may not be suitable for power gaming
     
    strantor likes this.
  4. strantor

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    Well, maybe a bad assumption, but I assume the 15-pin monitor output cannot deliver the full awesomeness of 4K ultra HD. But even if it can, it cannot deliver the sound along with video, and my A/V receiver only accepts HDMI.,
     
  5. Brownout

    Well-Known Member

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    Ah! You're talking about the really old VGA connector. Sorry, I didn't think they were still putting those on PC's.
     
  6. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    #12 likes this.
  7. ISB123

    Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2014
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    What is your budget?

    ATI HD7700 series should be able to run 4k movies without problem or
    R7 series.Display port 1.2 provides best Hz at 4k but you are going to need at least low end quad core CPU and 4Gb of RAM.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2015
  8. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    My $0.02
    I tend to avoid ATI stuff based on years of experience running both ATI and Nvidia cards with CAD workstations..
    Dollar for dollar....Nvidia always performs better/better driver support,etc...

    You can pick up a GTX 750 for $100
     
  9. ISB123

    Well-Known Member

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    Never had problems with ATI been using them for 3D Modeling and rendering for 7-8years.
     
  10. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

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    I never had a problem either (or never thought I did) till I switched to Nvidia (same specs as the ATI) and watched by frame rates/performance increase by quite a bit..
    We did a bunch of benchmarking too and the ATI cards could never compete..
     
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  11. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
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    I was build custom benching pc too and always wanted to run on liquid nitrogen .. The battle over who is better will never be solved and I am running a powercolor 280x gpu and never had problems with either and I have ATI 4870 and I really pushed that card and won a couple awards on HWBot.org and never gave a lick of problems ..
    Any time you want to compare cards then just google the cards and you will see some games do better with one and then the other so it's a toss up..
     
  12. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

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    yep.. like I said just passing on my $0.02
     
  13. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
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    Oh sorry back to the point here ... What are you running system wise and was custom built or store OEM bought???
     
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