2 – Does My Video Card Really Need Upgrading?
Take stock of what video card you have and then look at what is available in the market. If you are running an AGP video card in your computer, then it is likely time to upgrade. However, this may prove difficult and expensive because you will also need to upgrade your motherboard so your computer can support the newest PCIe graphics card standard.
Many websites discuss the relative advantages of upgrading from one video card to another. For example, Tom’s Hardware publishes useful information on the power and processing ability of a variety of graphics cards from the top manufacturers. The top two video card manufacturers are nVidia and ATI, both of whom at any given time will boast about having the most powerful card on the market.
Although not always accurate, using the three-year rule is often a good idea. The three-year rule states that a computer becomes more expensive to keep and maintain than the alternative of buying a new one. This rule of thumb has been touted by such giants as Intel and Microsoft and is a computer hardware industry heuristic for determining whether computers should be fixed or replaced as they begin to fail.
If your video card is under three years old, you have a good excuse for upgrading. However, if your video card is more than three years old, you need to step back and see the big picture. Perhaps your entire computer, not just the video card should be replaced. This brings us to our final question.