Question Advice on the best graphics setup for simple remote desktop access

Jun 10, 2019
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Hello everyone,

I'm after some fairly specific advice on the best way to make use of an old Dell high resolution monitor and what machine and graphics card I need to buy to make full use of the screen.

Quick backstory:

My wife remotely connects to her work PC via a PC at home. Her current setup at home is as follows:

Home PC:

– Dell Optiplex 760 Mini Tower
– Graphics card – Zotac Nvidia Geforce 210 1GB
– 30" Dell monitor 3007WFP displaying at a resolution of 2560 x 1600
– The monitor is connected via a DVI-D to DVI-D cable from Zotac graphics card to monitor. DVI-D is the only viable option on the monitor.

Once she's remotely connected to her desktop PC at work, she can then see her remote desktop in 2560 x 1600 resolution which gives her lots of screen real estate to see masses of rows on spreadsheets, or even split windows so she can see comfortably two different program windows running side-by-side.

The above setup is getting a bit long in the tooth and she wants something newer and smaller. She wants to keep the Dell monitor but replace the base unit with something as small as possible.

I initially thought, 'yeah, no problem. I'll just buy a second-hand USFF or SFF base unit from eBay, buy a new low-profile graphics card to shove in the x16 PCIe slot and job done! However, I'm beginning to doubt myself because of the power requirements of graphics cards. All USFF and SFF devices seem to have a power supply of ~250W, yet every decent graphics card I've seen seems to require a minimum of 300W.

So I guess my questions are (given my user-case requirements):

1) Will I realistically have to stick with a mini tower PC with a 300W PSU to run a decent graphics card?

or

2) Will a SFF 250W PSU be enough to support a graphics card in a PC that's effectively just used a remote terminal with a 30" screen showing at a 2560 x 1600 screen attached?

I'd like the lowest cost solution, so am looking to either tell the wife 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it', or buy a 2nd hand small base unit from eBay and an appropriate graphics card to go with it.

Thank you so much for any input you might have. I've been researching this for days and am starting to get a bit fatigued by it all. Some third-party input would be most useful at this point :)
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
There are plenty of low power and low profile cards you can run in a small system. nVidia 1030 would be fine, just don't get a system that is too old that would have BIOS issues running it. A 4th gen or newer Intel CPU should be OK. If a 210 card can run that resolution you won't have any issues with any other card.

If you want to get a cheap used card to run, a GT 730 would also be OK.
 

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