Maximum GPU for XPS 8500

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Maximum GPU for XPS 8500

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Hi all,

I recently bought an xps 8500 thats arriving in a couple weeks and im looking to get the most powerful graphics card in there with the stock power source. Theres a Geforce 620 in it when it arrives and Im looking at putting a 670 in it ( have heard about Dell's and Nvidias safety factor for power ratings). it appears as if the 670 could be 40W over the rated.source...but im wondering if there actually is a decent buffer zone in these power ratings. I could go with the 660ti, but would prefer the 670.

Any expertise would be much appreciated!!  :)

Thanks, 

Alex

Verified Answer
  • Hi Alex,

    The hardware warranty will become void only for video card and PSU. The system warranty will remain intact. If you are purchasing the video card and PSU from a local retailer or any 3rd party vendor, these parts will also have manufacturer warranty on them.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

  • Blelele
    @Kelbear1 - do you have an xps? The way it looks like from.the images is that all the power cables are built in to the PSU, so replacing it would require new cables to power everything, correct? If not ill probably go with a 680 and swap out the power source...just a 1080p monitor that's coming with the comp. I've got a 3d tv and will eventually be looking at 3d surround.

    The cables are built into all power supplies so you will be replacing the entire unit if that's what you choose to do.  I would recommend brands like Corsair, Antec or SeaSonic.  You can get modular power supplies that will use a few less cables, but even these still have some or most hard wired.  Most retail ATX type PSUs will fit.  However, you will have more cables and longer cables to deal with than your stock power supply where they are all cut, tailor fitted and routed in your case.  The cables are longer so they will fit in full size towers which are much larger than your mini tower.  If you jump up to the GTX 680, then look to get a 650 watt PSU at minimum. 

    I do not have the XPS system. 

All Replies
  • Hi Alex,

    The XPS 8500 is tested to run with the below mentioned video cards.

    Discrete — nVidia GeForce GT620

    Discrete — nVidia GeForce GT640

    Discrete — AMD Radeon HD7570

    Discrete — AMD Radeon HD7770

    Discrete — AMD Radeon HD7870

    All these video cards will work with a 460w power supply which is shipped with the XPS 8500.

    The nVidia GeForce 670 will need a 500w power supply. So if  you wish to upgrade to GeForce 670 the PSU will also have to be upgraded. I have checked the BIOS setup of the XPS 8500 and there is no buffer zone setting as such. I have researched  on other forums to check if a 500w GPU will work with a 460w power supply and it came up with mixed reviews. You can try the PSU calculator : images10.newegg.com/.../index.html

    Please reply if you have any further questions.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

  • Obviously, the GT 620 is a very low-end video card and not even in the same league as the GTX 670 so this is a huge jump from what you have.  Do you have the right monitor to match up with these higher-end cards?  The GTX 670 and GTX 660 Ti are two of the best Nvidia cards out today.  Only the GTX 680 is better and the GTX 690 that costs $1000.  There may not be enough performance difference between these two cards to justify the difference in cost so look at it that way also. 

    I feel if you can afford these high-end cards then you should not be reluctant to upgrade your power supply along with them especially if you're going to be pushing them regularly with gaming.  On the flip side, these newer cards are becoming much more power efficient than the ones they replace so you are getting better performance with less power consumption.  It seems hard to believe today with a card like the GTX 660 Ti and its performance that the manufacturer only recommends a 450 watt power supply.  The GTX 670 really does not use that much more power over the GTX 660 Ti.  At idle speeds, these two cards use the same amount, but under stress the GTX 670 is going to use more. 

    It's up to you if you want to give it a try.  If you experience system crashes or shutdowns, then you'll know your power supply would need to be replaced.  I use a 650 watt power supply with just an HD 6870.  It's not that I really need this much, but when you're upgrading the power supply you just tend to get more than what you need.   There is a certain percentage of the maximum output where your power supply will run best at so you don't want to stress it too much. 

  • @Kelbear1 - do you have an xps? The way it looks like from.the images is that all the power cables are built in to the PSU, so replacing it would require new cables to power everything, correct? If not ill probably go with a 680 and swap out the power source...just a 1080p monitor that's coming with the comp. I've got a 3d tv and will eventually be looking at 3d surround.

    @dell - So I'm assuming doing the above will void my warranty. I think I read somewhere that swapping out video cards is ok  as far as the warranty goes,  just swapping the PSU will void it, correct?

  • Hi Alex,

    The hardware warranty will become void only for video card and PSU. The system warranty will remain intact. If you are purchasing the video card and PSU from a local retailer or any 3rd party vendor, these parts will also have manufacturer warranty on them.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

  • Blelele
    @Kelbear1 - do you have an xps? The way it looks like from.the images is that all the power cables are built in to the PSU, so replacing it would require new cables to power everything, correct? If not ill probably go with a 680 and swap out the power source...just a 1080p monitor that's coming with the comp. I've got a 3d tv and will eventually be looking at 3d surround.

    The cables are built into all power supplies so you will be replacing the entire unit if that's what you choose to do.  I would recommend brands like Corsair, Antec or SeaSonic.  You can get modular power supplies that will use a few less cables, but even these still have some or most hard wired.  Most retail ATX type PSUs will fit.  However, you will have more cables and longer cables to deal with than your stock power supply where they are all cut, tailor fitted and routed in your case.  The cables are longer so they will fit in full size towers which are much larger than your mini tower.  If you jump up to the GTX 680, then look to get a 650 watt PSU at minimum. 

    I do not have the XPS system. 

  • ARGH!!!

    People do not seem to realize that the total wattage of a power supply makes very little difference -- the manufacturers rate their video card wattage requirements based on averages for stock supplies, NOT based on the supplies like Dell uses in the XPS systems that are calibrated for Dell's specific requirements.

    Generally speaking, Dell has always used MUCH better than average supplies in most of its mid-high end systems (the ones they use in the low end Inspiron's and Vostro's aren't terrible -- but they aren't even in the same ballpark quality-wise).

    What matters is the total amount of current in AMPS that the power supply can supply on the 12V rails. Off-the-shelf supplies tend to be a bit more heavily weighted toward 3V and 5V, that Dell's supplies are. This is simply because an off the shelf manufacturer has no clue what type system you will be putting it in or what the possible 3V or 5V loads will be. Dell, on the other hand, knows every configuration they will sell the systems with and what motherboard will always be going with the system and has a VERY good idea what all the possible 3.3 and 5V loads will be, with a margin for user expansion.

    The end result is that most of their power supplies are much more top heavy on the 12V range than other, off-the shelf power supply manufacturers are. Dell's own supplies also tend to be built quit well and tend to maintain regulation to a much heavier load percentage than most off-the-shelf units.

    Basically, Dell tends to actually rate their power supplies honestly -- which a lot of power supply vendors do not.

    When Dell says a supply is capable of 465W, they mean it. Plus, the supply in the XPS 8500 is rated to supply up to 385W of that power solely to the 12V rail.

    If you check over at TomsHardware, the maximum power draw of a NON-OVERCLOCKED GTX 670 reference design is 168W (this is the draw of the card itself, not the system) on the 12V rail. This is running a GPGPU test which is using the Nvidia chip as a math coprocessor and basically utilizing the card to it's ultimate capacity. When used for gaming, the peak load of the card was 153W.

    Assuming the following: a high end processor (Core i7 3770) that draws 77W max TDP, that a rough guesstimate for memory is about 1/2W per 2Gb, a 1TB WD Dell OEM series drive pulled from an XPS 8500 I have here has a current draw of 0.42A on the 12V rail, the H77 chipset has a max TDP of 6.7W, and allowing for, say, 10W for associated circuitry on the motherboard (which is overkill).

    This means the motherboard, CPU, hard drive and memory (say, 16Gb) consume probably no more than 106W on the 12V rails under MAXIMUM conditions.

    So, if an Nvidia GTX 670 reference design consumes 168W maximum, this gives us a rough maximum of 274W maximum 12V load -- with the processor operating at absolute maximum TDP (i.e. Prime95 torture test and a GPGPU torture test running on the video card). This leaves a power budget of almost 90W still available on the 12V rails!

    If we investigate further, the power supply in the XPS 8500 has three rails 12V-A is 18A, 12V-B is 16A and 12V-C is 8A (which, added together exceed 385W, but that is the total concurrent load for the rails -- which basically means the rails can supply more than the maximum rated amount, but the total aggregate shouldn't be more than 385W -- basically so it doesn't overheat).

    Based on this, 12V-A & 12V-B go to the motherboard and the video card and 12V-C probably goes exclusively to the SATA power connectors for hard drives, etc.

    This means we can move our estimate for the hard drive (5W) over to the 12V-C rail, so we are left with around 269W on the 12V-A & 12V-B rails in my example -- which is WAY less than the combined current capability of a 12V 18A and 12V 16A rail.

    If you are running an overclocked 670 (i.e. > 915Mhz), then the picture may change (some heavily OC'ed 670's can pull up to 215W under a GPGPU torture test), but even then, we are still at only 316W on the 12V rails.

    In other words, odds are very good that the XPS 8500's stock power supply can run the GTX 670 without even breaking a sweat -- even for gaming.

    Simple answer: read the amperage on the 12V rails and the maximum wattage allocation to the 12V rails, NOT the total wattage of the supply!

  • Hi, I have a XPS 8500 and I was wondering if I could install an Corsair AX850 PSU along with an MSI Geforce GTX 670 without voiding my warranty and making sure they would fit, as I wouldn't like spending that much money in parts and not being able to use them. 

  • It will not void your system warranty, but the new parts will have their own warranty and not be covered by Dell.  However, you may want to reconsider spending this much money for just two upgrade parts.  For example; you could just get a GTX 660 or GTX 660 Ti and then not even have to replace your power supply.  In this situation, you would only be spending less than half the money and most likely have all the performance you would ever need.  

  • I agree with you that keeping the PSU and therefore the warranty is a good idea, but have you ever thought about the fact that if he's asking because he doesn't like the 192-bit bus on the 660 and 660 Ti and wants to move up to the 256-bit GTX 670?

    frpcastro just keep in mind the dimensions of the GTX 670. Some guy said that an XFX 7950 would barely, barely fit in the XPS 8500, I think he even snapped a picture of it. the XFX 7950 DD is 10.5 inches. The reference cooler based MSI GTX 670 OC is only 9.5 inches, but the Power Edition one is 10.51 inches long, and that might be a very very tight squeeze.

  • Hi frpcastro, if I may share my own experience using a Leadtek gtx 680 and seasonic x660 PSU. The seasonic just managed to squeeeezee through with a little bit of pressure, however you will need to take out your HDD first after disconnecting all cables before attempting to remove the DELL PSU and inserting the new one.

    I am not sure about the Corsair 850 size, I presume it will be about the same dimensions - pls check carefully before buying, as not all ATX compatible have exactly the same dimension.

    The GPU was slightly trickier and needed some finger gymnastics as even though the card is about 10.5 inch, the 2 6pin cables comes off on top of the card so needed to find the right space. And because the Mboard only have 1 PCI 16X slot, you will need to adapt your cables a such so that all SATA and power lines can reach their destination AROUND the card.

    I am sure many xps users have the same experience and mine just to confirm that it can be done.