New Video Card

In 2006 or 2007, now I’m not quite sure when, I got money for helping Darrin and his brother refurbish a house that was left to them by their mother when she past away.  I did a lot of work and didn’t get paid until the house sold.  I believe I got $2000.

When you get $2000 and you have an old computer what do you think you do with that money?  You buy a new computer!  Well, since I build computers I didn’t buy a computer, I bought all of the guts to build a new one.

Well, first I bought the hard drive from Tiger Direct but then when I went to turn my computer on nothing happened.  I think the mother board was too old for that hard drive.  The computer I was trying to install the new hard drive to was one that I built in 2004.  So I figured it was only a few years old, it should work.  But it didn’t because technology had already surpassed that computer.

So, I was forced to buy all new stuff so I just put the old hard drive back in there and gave it to Darrin.  I bought myself a new case, motherboard, cpu (w/heatsink), dvd burner and video card.  New computer!

A week ago we went to San Diego to visit Chips brother for his 50th anniversary party.  My computer did an update (which I could only assume was a Windows update) and suddenly I’m getting these strange blue screens (of death aka BSOD).  I didn’t worry about it because I didn’t want to stress on anything while we were gone so I put it in the back of my mind.  When we came home I was having the same problems.

Someone told me that I might have gotten a virus but I’m not convinced that is true.  I don’t visit websites on my desktop, I only visit websites on my Chromebook, I use the desktop for my Microsoft Money program and playing Lord of the Rings Online.  So there is no way I could have gotten a virus from visiting websites because it never happens.  I don’t even read emails on that computer.  My desktop is strictly for video games and Microsoft money, that’s it.

I got a couple of BSOD and accidentally allowed Microsoft to report the issue.  I have a jerk reaction to click no but for some odd reason I clicked yes.  When the report was sent a browser window popped up explaining to me that the issue was with my video card software or hardware.  Then suddenly another BSOD.

After that last blue screen I was done with being in regular mode so I went into safe mode.  I figure if I could download the driver update I might be ok.  How wrong I was.  I downloaded and installed the update and my monitor didn’t come on.  I plugged my monitor into the chromebook and everything I look at on the chromebook showed up on my monitor.  Ok so it’s not the monitor.  I plugged it back into the desktop and it turned on.  BSOD.  I turned it on again and the monitor wouldn’t even turn on.

So that is where I am at now.  I haven’t had a desktop in a week and I’m starting to go through LOTRO withdrawals lol.

This is my current configuration.  Well, I can’t turn it on so I can’t tell you the full details now can I?  This I do know.  I have:

  • MSI K9N4 Ultra motherboard – AM2, Nforce4 Ultra, 2*DDR2, Gb Lan, 5.1ch Audio, 1.
  • Gigabyte Tech GeForce 7600 GS 512MB DDR2 PCIexpress video card (I dug the boxes out of my closet)
  • Windows XP
  • I’m not sure about my CPU but I think it’s an AMD Sempron, don’t know the speed.
  • 1GB DDR2 memory

So this is what I’m looking for.  Any brand video card with 1GB DDR2 memory, PCIe.  I’m looking at Tiger Direct again for this new card and this is the one I have chosen.

Visiontek Radeon HD 4650 Video Card – 1GB DDR2, PCI Express 2.0, CrossFireX, (2) Dual-Link DVI, S-Video (Refurbished) – it’s $36.99 which is what I can afford.  My other video card was over $100 in 2007 and I just can’t afford to spend that kind of money right now.  I’m going to be paying for shipping which means I really can’t afford to spend any more on it.  So… is it a good one?  I won’t have the money to buy it until August so hopefully it will be on sale by then and they will hopefully still be in stock lol.

I think it’s a good video card but I’m no expert so I would love some feedback.  I’m choosing 1GB because I play Lord of the Rings Online and sometimes I get a lot of lag and I’m hoping that more memory will help that but you tell me, will it?  I would love some feedback on this.

So… until August lol.  By the way, I am not hung up on Tiger Direct so much that I want to wait 7 to 21 days for it to ship to me.  If I have to go to the computer store and pay a few extra $’s then I will.  As long as it’s not over $50 that is.

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Straight Talk

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Straight Talk for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

When I got my first cell phone 9 years ago, I was afraid of getting a phone with a contract because they were just so darned expensive.  I went with a prepaid phone with maybe only 250 minutes per month for $25.  That was perfect for me because I don’t really use it that much.  I only use it when I’m traveling or on the bike trail.  That old phone is long dead and I’ve been looking for a new one.

Straight talk has phones with everything you need such as the “All You Need Plan” with 1000 minutes, 1000 texts and 30mb of data for only $30/mo.  They also have unlimited plans for only $45 a month with calls, pictures, text, web and messaging..  That is a huge savings if you are currently paying $75 to $100 per month.  I love that I would feel richer with those savings.  What would you buy with the money you are saving?  I think I would be buying more groceries, then again I might buy some music or books, who knows.

Straight Talk has an international option for only $5 more so you can call a friend in Mexico, Germany, England or anywhere you need to call.  I see people buying these phone cards from the store on the corner for Mexico and I just think they are wasting their money.  They can just get one of these prepaid cell phones and call their family for only an additional $5 with their international plan.

Scott Canterbury talks about Straight Talk in this YouTube video hook, line and sinker.  He talks about how much money he is saving each month and as a family he’d be saving much more.  Watch and see.  It’s just such a good plan to go with, I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to.  They even have refurbished cell phones for as low as $10 with a camera, mp3 player, web and blue tooth.  They even have smart phones with touch screen, apps, maps etc.   There are no activation fees, contracts or credit checks.  You can’t beat that in a cell phone.  So watch the videos (links) and save some money for crying out loud.

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