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Possible Graphics Card Problem


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#1
reconman

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Hey guys, recently (as in 5 minutes ago) I was in Crysis's Sandbox 2 editor and for no apparent reason, my screen becomes pixelated with medium sized, multi-colored squares and my computer locks up, forcing me to do a hard reboot.

This happened once before a few days ago in the same application but this time, right as it happened, my computer made a beep. It sounded the same as when you first press the power button on your PC.

I've always used EVGA precision to make sure my fan runs at 100% but my card has always run a little hot. It idles at around 45c with the fan running full speed.

It gets around 65-75c or so running Crysis (including the editor) but I've never had this problem before.

Is my card simply overheating or is it taking a crap on me?

System Specs:
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- E8400 @ 3.6ghz
- EVGA 8800GT 512MB
- GA-P35-DS3L (rev. 2.0)
- Corsair VX550 550w PSU
- 2GB of Corsair CM2X 800mhz RAM

Any help on what could be causing this is appreciated.

Edited by reconman, 08 April 2010 - 09:02 PM.

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#2
admin

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While hot, I don't think those temps are out of spec for a GPU. However, what you describe does sound like overheating. Could be a hardware issue like a loose heatsink, bad core, or it could be due to software.

Has anything changed? Are you overclocking? Has the ambient room temp gone up? Have you updated the video driver?
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#3
reconman

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Thanks for the reply, Admin!

No overclocking and according to both EVGA along with other programs such as RealTemp, ambient and other temps have remained normal.

However, I did install those Nvidia drivers a few weeks back that messed up people's cards, upon reading said customer reports, I reverted back to the 196.21 drivers.

Haven't made any hardware changes and I think I recently installed the latest EVGA Precision after the first time this happened, hoping it was simply the software not operating the fan at the speed it said it was.

I vacuumed out all of the dust after the first instance for better airflow and operation but that didn't seem to do much.

What do you suppose my next course of action should be?

Thanks for the help :)

Edited by reconman, 09 April 2010 - 01:00 AM.

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#4
litefogg

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With a 880mhz gpu, it very well could be overheating. I'd put an aftermarket gpu heatsink/fan on it,(something like this http://www.newegg.co...-037-_-Product)
even if it's not a fan failure. The cooler it is, the faster it can process.
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#5
admin

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I guess I would first check to see if it's still under warranty. I think EVGA now has a 1 year warranty, but that it was lifetime not too long ago.

If it's not under warranty, then inspect the heatsinks, make sure they are tight. Maybe replace the heat sink compund if it's something your're comfortable with, and the design permits it. An aftermarket cooler is another option.
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#6
reconman

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I registered the card with EVGA when I got it, so it's under a limited lifetime warranty.

Perhaps I should contact EVGA and see if they feel it's enough for an RMA?
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#7
reconman

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I installed the latest beta drivers (197.13) to see if that helped remedy the problem but as I was switching back and forth between the sandbox editor and photoshop, my screen suddenly went black with the monitor power indicator slowly blinking, as if it were sleeping.

There was no way for me to get it out of this "sleep" like mode, so I had to reboot.

I'm almost certain it's the video card at this point, thinking I'll just RMA this thing or buy a new card altogether.

EDIT: Took out the card to inspect and saw there was a good amount of dust under the case, vacuumed out what I could and re-vacuumed the rest of the pc, popped it back in and now the thing is running a good 7-8 degrees cooler.

Will test it now to see if it just needed a good cleaning.

EDIT 2: Loaded up the sandbox had it running for a good 45 minutes or so and everything is good with my gpu temp never reaching 60c and pcb temp maxing at about 45c.

From the looks of it it seems like there was just a lot of dust clogging up the fan/card :)

Edited by reconman, 10 April 2010 - 01:53 AM.

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