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Info: What is AGP aperture size and what should I set mine to?

post #1 of 9
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The AGP aperture size (measured in MB) is memory that has been reserved from your system RAM for graphical processing. This takes the RAM out of use for you and your Operating System. I see this as a common problem with people that know they have a certain size module(s) of RAM and then look in a program to find they have 8mb, 16mb, 32mb, 64mb, 128mb, and 256mb less memory. This setting was needed back in the day because GPUs did not have as much memory as they do today. This was to add to the memory. In many pre-built systems there is integrated graphics, this is similar to a graphics card but much less powerful. (Not even a fair comparison, as we all know).

Now, how much should you dedicate?
If you have a video card with 256MB of memory usually people recommend that you put the size to 64MB or the lowest. If you do very intensive work with say photo editing, movie editing or rendering (I'm not sure). I suppose in the near future or even now with some settings on certain games it may perform better with a little extra memory (64mb-128mb).
For cards with 128MB about 64mb-128mb is usually recommended. For cards with less... I would recommend the same amount as 128 as the card most likely cant utilize all of that if it is that old. That was assuming you have at least 512mb of memory.

I would not recommend 256 to anyone unless they're main use of the machine were photo editing/movie editing/rendering and something else I'm sure I forgot.
If you have less then 512mb I would recommend 32mb size =)

People argue that setting this to any setting doesn't really make a difference and some believe other wise. I would take into account the suggested sizes and try them and bench them all. With more memory dedicated to graphical processing you may achieve better game play but other programs **could** not necessarily have to, suffer from this because your taking ram away you and the Operating system to use.
Making this small give you and the Operating system more ram to use. But cuts down on the graphical processing ram.

My final verdict:
After reading a lot of things about this, just test all of the settings with the games you play the more or intensive apps while playing games. You may notice better/worse performance. You may not notice much of a difference at all.
If you have more then 1GB of ram. I would set it to 128 this won't be an issue for you or some time.
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post #2 of 9
Great FAQ, I remember when I saw that in BIOS I was going to ask what it is in a post, but forgot, happy to see this FAQ.
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post #3 of 9
Very good FAQ, I've wondered what it was.
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post #4 of 9
What do i do?, i have 8MB
    
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post #5 of 9
Thanks i've always wondered what it was and me with my big head put it to 128 (my memory size is 256 )
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post #6 of 9
It does not directly reserve it but instead it just sets a max of RAM to use for texture memory.
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post #7 of 9
My FX5200 has 128MB when I set AGP aperture into 128MB the computer gave me the BSOD.
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by shajbot
My FX5200 has 128MB when I set AGP aperture into 128MB the computer gave me the BSOD.
If the pc that its in dosnt have enough memory, windows wont load. Windows wants at least 64 MB to run, so if you have anything lower than 192MB of system memory, your gonna want to tone that down.
post #9 of 9
I read this FAQ this morning and decided to test out this idea. I set my machine to base setting then went to the BIOS and ran tests with each of the settings (mine went from 4mb - 256 mb). I needed a test that would test the graphics and be rather quick so I chose Aquamark3. After 30 minutes of testing and restarting, here are my results:

App Size/Aquamark Score/Graphics Score
4mb System Locked up During Test
8mb 48,606 6,693
16mb 58,454 8,742
32mb 58,608 8,784
64mb 58,526 8,769
128mb 58,722 8,802
256mb 58,556 8,778

Looks like most of the scores were pretty even. I scored the best when it was set at 128mb, so I guess i'll keep it there. I assume each system is different so everyone should try this and see which works best for their rig.
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