How much system RAM to make available to the graphics card?

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Scott Gardner, May 16, 2004.

  1. This is kind of piggy-backing off of my other post about which card to
    buy, but the other post was getting too long.

    I have a P4/3.2 Ghz with 1 Gig of RAM. My graphics card (GeForce 3)
    has 64 MB of RAM on it. I currently have my BIOS set to make an
    additional 128 MB of system RAM available for texture storage. With
    1024 MB of total RAM, would I be better off allocating more main RAM
    for texture storage, or is 128 MB the right amount? I'm running
    Windows XP Home.

    I thought I remembered an old "rule-of-thumb" that said you should
    allocate twice as much system RAM for texture storage as the video
    card itself has. So, for my 64 MB GeForce, I set the BIOS to provide
    an additional 128 MB. Is this still a good ratio, or have things
    changed? It seems like video card RAM is getting larger more quickly
    than system RAM as time goes by, so I didn't know if the "conventional
    wisdom" still held true.

    Thanks,
    Scott Gardner
    Scott Gardner, May 16, 2004
    #1
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  2. Scott Gardner

    Michael-NC Guest

    I doubt it makes mush difference but the best way is to benchmark the video
    card with the different settings and see which one your system likes. I use
    Mad Onion 3D Mark 2001SE. You can expect no big increase in performance when
    you get the cache optimized.



    "Scott Gardner" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > This is kind of piggy-backing off of my other post about which card to
    > buy, but the other post was getting too long.
    >
    > I have a P4/3.2 Ghz with 1 Gig of RAM. My graphics card (GeForce 3)
    > has 64 MB of RAM on it. I currently have my BIOS set to make an
    > additional 128 MB of system RAM available for texture storage. With
    > 1024 MB of total RAM, would I be better off allocating more main RAM
    > for texture storage, or is 128 MB the right amount? I'm running
    > Windows XP Home.
    >
    > I thought I remembered an old "rule-of-thumb" that said you should
    > allocate twice as much system RAM for texture storage as the video
    > card itself has. So, for my 64 MB GeForce, I set the BIOS to provide
    > an additional 128 MB. Is this still a good ratio, or have things
    > changed? It seems like video card RAM is getting larger more quickly
    > than system RAM as time goes by, so I didn't know if the "conventional
    > wisdom" still held true.
    >
    > Thanks,
    > Scott Gardner
    >
    Michael-NC, May 16, 2004
    #2
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  3. You were right - it didn't make much of a difference. I adjusted the
    texture cache size from 128 MB to 256, and my 3DMark score didn't
    change a bit. I also adjusted the ABIT IC7-MAX 3 BIOS "Game
    Enhancement" settings from "Auto" to "Turbo" to "Street Racer", and
    those changes didn't make a significant difference either.

    Overclocking the CPU didn't seem to matter, either. My CPU is a 2.8
    GHz, but I've been running it at 3.2 Ghz since I bought it. Going
    back to 2.8 Ghz left the 3DMark score unchanged as well.

    I think my graphics card is so far behind the rest of my system,
    performance-wise, that the tweaking had no real effect.

    I hadn't realized how "behind the times" my graphics card was until I
    submitted my results to 3DMark. Of the 2 million submissions using
    3DMark 2003, there were only *ten* other systems that had a GeForce 3
    card in a Pentium 4 Computer. Mine was faster than all but one of
    them, but most of them had 1.4 or 1.6 Mhz CPUs. The one system that
    was faster had overclocked the GeForce 3 card from 200 Mhz to 246.
    I'm not going to mess around with overclocking my video card - at this
    point it would just be putting lipstick on a pig. I'll just wait a
    month or two and replace it altogether.

    Thanks again for the help.

    Scott Gardner

    On Sun, 16 May 2004 20:20:45 GMT, "Michael-NC"
    <> wrote:

    >I doubt it makes mush difference but the best way is to benchmark the video
    >card with the different settings and see which one your system likes. I use
    >Mad Onion 3D Mark 2001SE. You can expect no big increase in performance when
    >you get the cache optimized.
    >
    >
    >
    >"Scott Gardner" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> This is kind of piggy-backing off of my other post about which card to
    >> buy, but the other post was getting too long.
    >>
    >> I have a P4/3.2 Ghz with 1 Gig of RAM. My graphics card (GeForce 3)
    >> has 64 MB of RAM on it. I currently have my BIOS set to make an
    >> additional 128 MB of system RAM available for texture storage. With
    >> 1024 MB of total RAM, would I be better off allocating more main RAM
    >> for texture storage, or is 128 MB the right amount? I'm running
    >> Windows XP Home.
    >>
    >> I thought I remembered an old "rule-of-thumb" that said you should
    >> allocate twice as much system RAM for texture storage as the video
    >> card itself has. So, for my 64 MB GeForce, I set the BIOS to provide
    >> an additional 128 MB. Is this still a good ratio, or have things
    >> changed? It seems like video card RAM is getting larger more quickly
    >> than system RAM as time goes by, so I didn't know if the "conventional
    >> wisdom" still held true.
    >>
    >> Thanks,
    >> Scott Gardner
    >>
    Scott Gardner, May 17, 2004
    #3
  4. Scott Gardner

    Michael-NC Guest

    Yeah, that's a valuable lesson. Screwing with your video card's timing's on
    less than a dedicated gaming system can only bring you grief. The
    performance gains are not worth it, IMO.

    "Scott Gardner" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > You were right - it didn't make much of a difference. I adjusted the
    > texture cache size from 128 MB to 256, and my 3DMark score didn't
    > change a bit. I also adjusted the ABIT IC7-MAX 3 BIOS "Game
    > Enhancement" settings from "Auto" to "Turbo" to "Street Racer", and
    > those changes didn't make a significant difference either.
    >
    > Overclocking the CPU didn't seem to matter, either. My CPU is a 2.8
    > GHz, but I've been running it at 3.2 Ghz since I bought it. Going
    > back to 2.8 Ghz left the 3DMark score unchanged as well.
    >
    > I think my graphics card is so far behind the rest of my system,
    > performance-wise, that the tweaking had no real effect.
    >
    > I hadn't realized how "behind the times" my graphics card was until I
    > submitted my results to 3DMark. Of the 2 million submissions using
    > 3DMark 2003, there were only *ten* other systems that had a GeForce 3
    > card in a Pentium 4 Computer. Mine was faster than all but one of
    > them, but most of them had 1.4 or 1.6 Mhz CPUs. The one system that
    > was faster had overclocked the GeForce 3 card from 200 Mhz to 246.
    > I'm not going to mess around with overclocking my video card - at this
    > point it would just be putting lipstick on a pig. I'll just wait a
    > month or two and replace it altogether.
    >
    > Thanks again for the help.
    >
    > Scott Gardner
    >
    > On Sun, 16 May 2004 20:20:45 GMT, "Michael-NC"
    > <> wrote:
    >
    > >I doubt it makes mush difference but the best way is to benchmark the

    video
    > >card with the different settings and see which one your system likes. I

    use
    > >Mad Onion 3D Mark 2001SE. You can expect no big increase in performance

    when
    > >you get the cache optimized.
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > >"Scott Gardner" <> wrote in message
    > >news:...
    > >> This is kind of piggy-backing off of my other post about which card to
    > >> buy, but the other post was getting too long.
    > >>
    > >> I have a P4/3.2 Ghz with 1 Gig of RAM. My graphics card (GeForce 3)
    > >> has 64 MB of RAM on it. I currently have my BIOS set to make an
    > >> additional 128 MB of system RAM available for texture storage. With
    > >> 1024 MB of total RAM, would I be better off allocating more main RAM
    > >> for texture storage, or is 128 MB the right amount? I'm running
    > >> Windows XP Home.
    > >>
    > >> I thought I remembered an old "rule-of-thumb" that said you should
    > >> allocate twice as much system RAM for texture storage as the video
    > >> card itself has. So, for my 64 MB GeForce, I set the BIOS to provide
    > >> an additional 128 MB. Is this still a good ratio, or have things
    > >> changed? It seems like video card RAM is getting larger more quickly
    > >> than system RAM as time goes by, so I didn't know if the "conventional
    > >> wisdom" still held true.
    > >>
    > >> Thanks,
    > >> Scott Gardner
    > >>

    >
    Michael-NC, May 17, 2004
    #4
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