Upgrading your video card is sometimes necessary when you are using high-end software or running the latest PC games. New video cards can greatly improve your screen color and resolution settings, especially if you are using an old built-in video card.

Computer systems that use built-in low profile graphics cards need to allocate a portion of their system RAM to display graphics. On the other hand, computer systems with separate or dedicated video cards have access to video RAM in addition to system RAM. The extra RAM can have a profound effect on a gamer’s life. You can experience an overall increase in your computer’s speed after you replace your built-in low profile graphics card with a dedicated video card.

Before you go ahead and buy a new video card, you first need to know the type of card used by your computer. Video cards are generally connected to your computer in two ways: via an Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) slot and via a regular PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) express slot. These slots are located on your motherboard.

The best way to know which type of graphics card your motherboard supports is to check its manual. You can download one at the manufacturer’s website.

AGP slots are a going technology but since many users hang on to their old computers and equally old motherboards, AGP cards are still widely used. You can get better results with the more advanced PCI express graphics cards. PCI express graphics cards can render better graphics and work faster. If you have quite an old computer, you may need to replace your motherboard as well since it most probably will not support PCI express graphics cards.

The great thing about PCI express graphics cards is that you can now use up to four of them at the same time in one computer. This can make your computer extremely powerful with amazing graphical abilities. Multiple video cards can be only be done using a SLI video cards or CrossFire video cards.

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