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I'm looking to upgrade to a more powerful graphics card.

However I'm not sure what my case and motherboard can fit!

Could I please be advised with how to identify which cards will fit and work?

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closed as off topic by studiohack Nov 29 '11 at 0:37

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reviews.cnet.com/desktops/dell-xps-420/… - it looks like it is a single standard PCIe x16 slot. Any single PCIe graphics card up to 16x will work. If you still have the stock card in there, it appears it is a 256MB geforce 8600 gts with gddr3 sdram, so shoot higher. –  MaQleod Nov 28 '11 at 21:27
    
Welcome to Super User! I have made the question more generic to avoid it from being closed for being too localized, MaQleod seems to have been kind enough to look up the details for you. Good luck on finding the right graphics card... :) –  Tom Wijsman Nov 28 '11 at 21:28
    
Especially with newer video cards, there is the problem of the card's physical size as well - some PCIe cards are too long to fit in mini-tower cases... you need to check the physical dimensions of the card, especially if it looks big. –  user55325 Nov 28 '11 at 21:54
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1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Identify the slot type (eg. AGP / PCI / PCI-e) which should be enough to know what cards are supporte, these are listed in the technical specifiations of both the motherboard and the video card.

For example, if your motherboard supports a PCI-e x16 slot. Any PCI-e card up to x16 will work...


In the case of a small case, you might also want to compare the dimensions of the available space:

  • The length from the back of your case into your computer.
  • The height from the connector to the top of your case.
  • The width available to the card.

You can then compare these specifications to the size listed in the technical specification of the card.

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I don't think that's what he's asking necessarily (though one can't know given the relative ambiguity of the question). Instead I believe he's trying to determine if the card will fit length-wise in his case, given performance cards these days have been tending to get longer and longer. My answer to that would be to measure the length from the backplane to the drive/drive mounting bay, and then buy a card which lists physical dimensions that fit. –  Garrett Nov 28 '11 at 23:19
    
@gman: I have added a note into the answer now. –  Tom Wijsman Nov 28 '11 at 23:25
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