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new ASUS A8N-E- MSI 6600 vid card malfunction


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#1
Scargo

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Here is what's in the new PC I built:
ASUS A8N-E (nForce4 Ultra Athelon 64 FX, Skt939 ATX Motherboard w/Audio, Gigabit LAN, RAID/Serial ATA (4GB DDR, 2000MHz FSB) with 1 PCI Express interface

AMD Athlon 64 4000+ Processor Socket 939
CPUCOOL ZALMAN-CNPS7000B-CU LED
OCZ DDRAM #OCZ4001024ELDCPER2-K (“Platinum” 2 x 512 matched pair, 3200 DDR/dual channel)

ADAPTEC-29320A-R SCSI RAID CARD (single channel 320)
Fujitsu MAU Series MAU3036NP 36.7GB 68pin U320-SCSI -15,000RPM Hard Drive w/8MB Buffer
Western Digital Caviar RE WD2500SD 250GB Serial ATA 7200RPM w/8MB Buffer
NEC ND-3520A 16X Double Layer DVD±RW

VGA MSI- NX6600-TD256E RT (PCI Express interface)
ADAPTER - DVI TO VGA ADAPTER
Antec P160 Anodized Aluminum Super Mid Tower Case
Antec TruePower 2.0 TP-II 550 550W Power Supply

Microsoft Windows XP Professional

I built this computer specifically for working in Photoshop with a dual monitor setup. I intend to use the 15,000 RPM SCSI drive for my “scratch disc”… I want to eventually fool with overclocking….

As you can see, I am using an adapter (off the digital TV output-“DVI-I”) for my second (VGA) monitor out. Right now, on the new PC, I have two small VGA’s hooked up for setup/testing but will use my 21” BENQ CRT and a digital LCD monitor in the final setup. FYI: with my old rig, I am using a PNY GeForce 5200FX 128 mb (dual monitor) card, and I like it fine.

The new PC booted up fine. I loaded the OS and all seemed well until I installed drivers for the video card and tried to use them. I get a frozen image and frozen computer, with lots of small scattering of the image (not a technical term) when I try repositioning a window with my cursor. Also, the computer seems a little slow. I tried installing the last release driver “71.89” from MSI and that seemed to make the symptoms worse.
This is the first PC I have built from scratch and I may have done something grossly wrong or missed something. I thought the MSI board would go nicely with the ASUS board and suit my (non-gaming) graphic needs. I have not touched the BIOS…
The only other (probably unrelated) weird thing is that I can “see” the SCSI drive in my system’s hardware, but I do not see the drive, as an option in Photoshop or elsewhere!
HELP?!?
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#2
audioboy

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based on the model number, it looks like the video card is an MSI version of an nvidia 6600 card. is this correct? I would check to see if it can use the actual nvidia drivers (most likely), then use them instead. in my experience, MSI video drivers are not quite as up to date as the original manufacturers.
also go into BIOS and make sure it is set to use the PCIE. I dont know much else about PCIE unfortunately, maybe someone who does can give you specifics on that.

for the SCSI drive, it may need to be formatted and/or mounted in order to access it.
Im curious why you went with the SCSI drive and card, since you already have SATA available. while not quite as fast as SCSI, SATA is pretty close. that said, that SCSI setup is very solid, and will last for years...

thats a pretty hardcore system you built there! having only these minor problems, especially for your first build, is pretty impressive.
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#3
Scargo

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Yes, I believe it is the same as Nvidia.
I tried the Nvidia driver and it did not seem as good as MSI's. I checked the BIOS and it is set for the PCI-Express. What is confusing to me (and I cannot find the info at ASUS site or in the documentation) is that the hardware description (in Windows) says that it is on PCI slot "4" and the IRQ is 18. There are only PCI slots 1-3 in the handbook and the list of IRQs only goes to 15. The slot I have the video card in is "PCI-EX16-1"! What, if anything, does this mean? In BIOS, I have the PCI-Ex as the boot-up video slot.
I tried the suggestions in Windows (and fooled with the monitor settings) and messed with the BIOS. Nothing is helping.
Regardless of the driver or settings I get a garbled screen whenever I try to "move" a pane or resize it with the mouse, at anything over a very, very slow movement!! This locks up the computer and I have to reboot or it does it automatically. Usualy the main screen goes black (lose a signal and shut down?).
Of course everything works fine in "safe mode" and I get the cloned screens.

About why I chose the SCSI: I felt like it left me with more options for the future, in case this did not exactly suit my Photoshop needs. Perhaps I just saw better performance numbers and stumbled off onto that path!
I am stuck, for now, on the video card issue. I hope someone has a solution.

I forgot to add: Besides saying that the card is at PCI slot 4, it also says the video card is on PCI bus 1, device 0, function 0.
Also, I should have said: In the ASUS MB handbook there are only PCI slots #1-#3 and in BIOS the list of IRQs only goes to 15. The slot the video card is in is (called by ASUS) "PCI-EX16-1"!

Edited by Scargo, 28 April 2005 - 07:52 PM.

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#4
Scargo

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MSI responded to my on-line tech support request with this:

"Any kind of artifacting would indicate a problem with the video card itself. Also irq 18 is fine, anything over irq 15 is a virtual irq, which is fine. Also for the why it says pci slot 4, you would need to check with Asus about this.".

Earlier, their phone support tech was less difinitive, saying it might be bad...
He wanted me to pull my SCSI board and try another mouse. I did this to no avail. I guess, after so many crashes, Windows would not boot up and I had to do a repair install. After that my 'pooter works fine with an old (1997) Magics vodeo card.

Edited by Scargo, 30 April 2005 - 09:04 AM.

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