External Video Cards?

  • midgetsy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Okay, let's say you have a laptop, and it's got Intel Extreme Graphics 2, an integrated graphics solution. You want to get a video card for your laptop, but you can't because your laptop isn't meant to be expandable to host a video card. Are the external solutions where you can hook up a video card via USB 2.0 or another connection?
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • Sovi3t
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Would you just hook up a USB device and it would display better graphics on the LCD?

Or are you hooking up the laptop to a video card which hooks up to a separate monitor?

(this would be cool if it's possible, I also have an integrated intel and would like better gfx)
  • Sumen
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I've never heard of being able to hook of a video card that way.
But why do you want to? If its for improved speed USB would probably end up slowing you down more anyway
  • Foxy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well, in order to use a external video card, the computer would have to be tricked into beliving that usb is a video card, etc, and usually, i have not seen a video card externally, except, for like Inputting video, like a external tv in adapter, or, tv out as in just displaying and not a actual video card, if something existed as a external video card it would probably be so expensive your better off getting a new computer with good video cards....
  • SpooF
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The problem with getting a external vid is you still have the one inside your laptop. Some how you sould have to tell your computer to rout all video to the usb and back, this is probly the worst idea. considering that usb maybe fast but travling the distance out and back would destroy the point of getting a fast card. you would have to get a really nice card to make up for the time. thats why vid cards are direcly connect to the mother board. that way they can have short distance to the proccesor. putting 5 feet between that card and the mother board is going to really slow it down.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

plus, if your comp has a *plum* graphics card, I beat its USB 1.1 = usb 1.1 sucks a whole lot...
  • xk2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

USB 2.0 can support speeds somewhere in the 480mbps range, so I don't think speed is a huge problem- and i really don't think 5 feet would cause the speed to detoriate that much. I've only ever seen video cards with 256mb of memory.

On my dell inspiron 5100 notebook that has an ATI graphics card and running windows xp, i am able to right click on my desktop, select 'properties', and on the 'settings' tab pick a display adapter- that is my guess on how the computer would be able to switch video cards.

And if a company like ATI, nVidia, or AGP ever game out with an external card, i'm sure they would provide software to configure it correctly.

I have also briefly read about possible future technology where a graphics card could be contained in a PC card, which most laptops are equipped with.

In my opinon, graphics cards can only do so much. Memory is usually an easy upgrade- i have upgraded my laptop's memory already to almost a gig. If you are looking for a truly upgradeable gaming experience, i suggest a desktop.

-replies are appreciated-
  • xk2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

[quote="Sumen"]I've never heard of being able to hook of a video card that way.
But why do you want to? If its for improved speed USB would probably end up slowing you down more anyway[/quote]


What about other connection means, like firewire? (up to 800mbps).
  • lucassix
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The whole reason behind having a video card is taking all the video processing off the CPU and having all the calculations done by themselves on a GPU. (Graphics Processing Unit.) The reason you don't see any USB or Firewire video cards is despite the speed of the connections, it would still tax the CPU and it's bus down so much sending information back and forth from that external port.

Just my guess, but it sounds right to me anyway. :)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

That seems like a logical statement, but the video card has its own memory. Firewire and usb connect to the motherboard, which would probably then display on the lcd either through the old gpu or a direct connection to it. I'm not seeing how the processor is slowed in the process.


do you agree? :shock:
  • lucassix
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well, if it was still making the actual graphics connection through the old GPU, how would you have a performance increase? Thats like saying you could plug an external 3ghz processor into a pentium system, still use the old cpu, and have a faster computer. The system is still going to be bottlenecked by the old precessor.
  • xk2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Then how do you suppose it can connect to the lcd? Maybe the new gpu could do all the calculations and just use the old one as a sort of 'gateway' to the lcd? How else can you connect to the lcd? if you have video-in on your old gpu? it's still going through it, but i don't think it would make a difference.
  • lucassix
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Post 3+ Months Ago

xk2 wrote:
Then how do you suppose it can connect to the lcd?


It couldn't......that's my whole point. I don't think an external video card would work very well.
  • xk2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I agree. External Video Cards aren't a big possibility. Might as well get a new computer.
  • john_mcgee
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I was thinking that it could be connected to the existing vga port. Would come with a custom driver designed to make the onboard graphics card output data in it's raw format so an external graphics card could process...without any tac paid by my memory or my cpu

This would enable me to bring an ultra-portable to uni ect and then have decent graphics at home when i dock the laptop to a 24" 1080p lcd.

btw post if you know any 12"-14" laptops with 128-256mb DEDICATED graphics
  • GT500Shlby
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The USB architecture might be able to handle a theoretical 480Mb/s, but the USB to host bus will run at 133Mhz, Thats it. PCI-E x16 blows that out of the water any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Now, if your laptop has crappy graphics, I hate to dissapoint, but your screwed.

There are plans for external video cards, however they will be based on an entireley new connection based on PCI Express.

As for using a PC-Card as a video card, it would be worthless. the PCMCIA slot and bus are deprecated and slow. There is a new super-duper-ultra-propreitary-buzzworded type of PC-Card going on, but I know little about it other than there is nothing that really supports it yet, and it will probably suck just as much as the PCMCIA does.

If you guys want a laptop that is going to replace the top teir of gaming rigs, you might as well be cryogenically frozen and thawed in 10 years. Because we ain't there yet. Just because they call them "desktop replacement" laptops doesn't mean they will replace the bleeding-edge decent user workstation. They will probably be good to replace your normal $600 flea-market dell desktop.
  • think.correctly
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Post 3+ Months Ago

super-duper-ultra-propreitary-buzzworded type of PC-Card :)

dell's m90 which is a workstation (and highly competent one at that) replacement
dell's m1710 gaming dtr
alienwares 19" gaming dtr

phear my url text :ninja:

now, i didnt make any argument that the price for one of these laptops would be able to achieve enough cost-effeciency to compete with a desktop. the 4 ig ram upgrades on the two dells cost as much as one fully equipped desktop.
  • GT500Shlby
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I am sure those laptops will perform well, but then you have to look at price, heat and size.

4Gb is overrated. I have 4gb in all my work desktops, but I've had 64bit vista on them and they still only reading 3.25 - 3.50GB. Server 2003 R2 64bit reads a full 4GB. Regular 2003 Server I can get to read 3.81Gb on my Poweredge 2850's.
  • brodycrider
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Post 3+ Months Ago

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... &CatId=165
closest thing to an external video card you will find.
  • GT500Shlby
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Necroposts!

Anwhoo, I believe the original thread was based on gaming for laptops. No way an $80 USB 2.0 VGA adapter could do any real damage on a good game.

I recently saw a few Dell gaming laptops and they look good for your run of the mill games. But a desktop would be the choice for a hardcore gamer. Those gaming laptps would be good for your normal college kid who plays some gaes instead of doing their calculus homework.
  • think.correctly
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Post 3+ Months Ago

well, if its being posted in, asus is going to release a new peripheral which is essentially an expresscard shell for a pci-e video card and is touted as an actual "external video card"

http://www.asus.com/news_show.aspx?id=5369
  • craigy27
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Post 3+ Months Ago

i found this link online hope this helps http://www.engadget.com/2006/07/28/ati- ... ideo-card/
  • humelbr
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If you have an express port on your laptop and run win 7 or an Ati video card you can expand to 3 more monitors.

Solution is a Vidock 2 check out the specs @ villagetronic

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