PNY GeForce 8500GT 512MB ReviewMussicho -
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As with any graphics card installation, no special tools are required. Depending on your case, the only tool you may need is a Phillips screw driver. If your case utilizes tool-less technology, then obviously you won't need any tools. Personally, I always secure add ons with screws, as this ensures a solid connection. The first thing you will want to do is unplug your computer from your surge protector or duplex wall plug. After that, pull off the case side, disconnect the external power cord (if it has one) from the old graphics card, and pull it out of its slot. Next, you will want to find the PCI-E slot and plug the PNY 8500GT 512MB PCIe into it. Carefully snap it into place and secure it in. Don't worry about plugging the external power into the PNY 8500GT 512MB PCIe; it doesn't have this feature. Replace the case side and then connect your monitor to the DVI or VGA outlet at the back of your case.
So now that the PNY 8500GT 512MB PCIe is firmly in place, it's time to install the software.
Installing the drivers is easy. Turn your computer on and place the VGA Driver CD that came with the graphics card into the CD-ROM drive. After a few seconds, the main menu appears and simply follow the on-screen instructions.
Click on "Install Drivers" and the next screen you will see is the Windows XP Drivers Notice - click "Install Windows XP Drivers". The next screen will ask you to choose 32-bit or 64-bit. Choose the one you have. Don't worry about the next screen you see. What it's saying is that Windows XP is not sure if it is compatible with the operating system (it is). Click "Continue Anyway" and your computer will now chug along doing its thing and then will finally ask you to restart, so go ahead and do so (don't forget to go to PNY's website and download the latest drivers).
Once your computer restarts, go into "Start" and click on "Control Panel". You will see the NVIDIA Control Panel. Choose this, then select the standard option and click "OK". The next screen you will see is NVIDIA advising you of your monitor's recommended resolution. In this case, click "Yes" for now and the resolution adjusts. You can later go back in and change your resolution to your liking. NVIDIA will then display another screen of choices where you can adjust the settings. Close this screen. Again, you can go into this at a later time and play with the settings.
Now, for those so inclined, if you go back to the drive with your PNY installation disk, you can install DirectX 9. Most should have this by now so this topic won't be discussed. However, you will see a bonus software feature. It is recommended you choose this. Why you ask? Because you will find an NVIDIA Demo called "Luna and the Ocular Oracle". It has this Asian princess that takes you through many caverns of the "collective subconscious." The demo features PixelShaders 3.0, Translucence, Displacement Mapping , and Real-Time Hair. You can play with these settings to your desired likings. A step by step installation won't be done, but it's basically the same as before. Check out these screen shots.
Alright, so now that the PNY 8500GT is installed, let's take a look at its specifications and features.