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Old 08-07-2006, 07:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 3d games kill my PC (need advice)

Hello everyone,

I have a really bad problem with my PC, and I don't have any more ideas how to fix it.

Whenever I load up a game with 3D graphics, (especially Prey/Quake 4 , but I've noticed it on AoE III and Call of Juarez,) it runs fine for about fifteen minutes, then it starts to hang. After I get out of it, the screen is sprinked with various colored pixels, and then the monitor starts to blink on and off until it goes dark entirely and acts as if the computer is turned off.

Now, I've tried lots of solutions and diagnostics - nothing seems to work. So far, I've:

-Updated my drivers (chipset, graphics card, BIOS)
-Ran Memtest and Video Card Stability test - no problems overnight
-Checked Computer and GPU temperatures at peak loads, (40c cpu, 53c gpu)
-Checked power supply calculator - ~320 max load, with generous tolerances, and I have a 380W power supply
-Downclocked the graphics card using Powerstrip - the games run without hanging, but once I exit to desktop, same things occour.

There is one caveat, however; the mobo I have is apparently very picky about the RAM it takes, and the modules I have aren't supported, But I downclocked it to 533mhz, it runs fine, and as I said, it went through memtest no problem. Other than that, my computer is run on stock settings.

I've really run out of ideas for this - I don't know what else I could do. Could anyone please give me some advice as how to proceed?

System specs:

AMD X2 3800+ AM2
Asus M2N-E Mobo
eVGA Factory Overclocked 7600 GT
2X1gb Corsair Value RAM DDR2 667mhz
Samsung 320 GB HDD
LG 16xDVD-ROM
LG DVD-R
Samsung 920p LCD Monitor
Cooler Master 380W power supply
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Have u checked the temps?
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yes, under full load, the CPU is at around 47 degrees C, and the video card is at around 63 C, which are decent temperatures, right?

At idle, cpu about 30, video card 41
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Old 08-07-2006, 09:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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63 degrees C for your GPU is not good...it looks like your video card is overheating. Try swapping out the video card with another one you may have laying around. Or try intergrated graphics to see if that works. Also try swapping out the RAM too, you'd be suprised that RAM can be the cause of many problems, even though memTest may not detect it.
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Old 08-08-2006, 08:48 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by LiQuid STATus
63 degrees C for your GPU is not good...it looks like your video card is overheating. Try swapping out the video card with another one you may have laying around. Or try intergrated graphics to see if that works.
Well, from what I've heard, a 7600 can easily get to 80 degrees C, so I don't think it's overheating. Nonetheless, I have an old 5200 lying around (no intergrated graphics), so I'll try swapping that out. Keep you posted.



Quote:
Originally posted by LiQuid STATus
Also try swapping out the RAM too, you'd be suprised that RAM can be the cause of many problems, even though memTest may not detect it.
Yeah, I was afraid of that. The motherboard is apparently very picky about ram; it only has a coulple dozen kinds it can take. Unfortunately, I have to order in my ram, it would take at least two weeks to get in. I'll try the video card first and let you know.

In the meantime, are there any other diagnostics/system settings that might help?
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Old 08-09-2006, 02:13 AM   #6 (permalink)
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There are many different utilities to test out pieces of your hardware, but nothing is as good as swapping it out with another piece of hardware. Many problems can be overlooked by test utilities thus defeating the purpose. Why do you have to order in RAM? Please don't tell me you're using a Dell computer.. I know some Dell computers use RIMM, I hope thats not the case. Later
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Old 08-11-2006, 02:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Lol, no I don't have a Dell; its just that the computer retailers in my area suck, I wouldn't be able to get a decent piece of ram to save my life here.

As to the graphics card, I let it run in Prey and Quake 4 until it killed the PC, which gave me infinite loop errors in nv4_disp.dll. I visited a few forums regarding this error, and apparently its a real problem among nVidia owners. I swapped it out with a PCI 5700, and while it runs Prey very slowly, it runs without problems - no stuttering, no lockups.

So I guess that the problem is the video card. What's the best thing to do - exchange it in the hopes that its just a card glitch, or get a refund and purchase a different card?
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