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Old 12-24-2008, 05:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default I'm stumped

Ok, here we go....

Basic comp story, working (seemingly) fine one min, and boom, down the next. This one has me somewhat stumped, but I think it's more that I don't want to admit what's wrong and I'm hoping I missed something.

Here's what happens. I get what looks like an interference pattern on the screen on boot. The pattern changes twice as it goes through the boot process but always the same pattern at the same time, and it doesn't "run" across the screen like a normal interference pattern would. Just a static repeating graphic anomoly. No P.O.S.T. errors. It will boot into safe mode, but not regular windows mode. In safe mode - anything involving more than the standard user interface (I.E. flash video, test patterns, etc) causes the system to error out but not crash. Additionally, my wife now tells me (after it's apparently too late) that it has been slowing down and lagging in games more and more for the last few weeks.

So far, I moved the Video Card to another PCI-E slot and the interference patterns didn't go away, but it will boot to windows. I then replaced the video card with a known good card in the original PCI-E slot and the patterns are gone, but random white dots remain during boot but once the system has gone through login and reached the desktop (and wallpaper) the dots are gone. So far, so good, However, once any graphic load starts, like a game or even the "bubbles" screen saver, the video goes haywire (artifacts, stobing image components, the exact problem depends on what is on the screen). Again this is with a KNOWN good video card. The exact same response is recieved in both PCI-E slots. I have checked the PSU rails and they are not perfect, but are within Manufacturer nominal limits.

One last thing to add to all of this. I stress tested the system (after I got it limping into windows again) and the CPU heats up FAST. 58-59C in under 5 min. Since my wife plays WoW for hours on end, I can only believe that the load the game places on the system would have it operating above, if not well above, 65C. Yes, I know that's too high. Denial ain't just a river in egypt.

Anyway, here's the build.

Asus P5K-E Mobo
Pent D 330
BFG nVidia 8600 GT (original)
nVidia 7900GS (known good card replacement)
2g corsair xms ram

Here's what I think is the problem. Heat. I think that the high operating temp fried the CPU (and possibly the Mobo) and it will limp while load is low but flips out when load goes up. Unless someone can think of something that I missed, I figure I'm buying a new CPU / Mobo set.
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Old 12-24-2008, 05:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

You may want to consider a better case seeing more and/or larger case fans as well as a good 3rd party cpu cooler. Seeing nearly 60C idle is a sad case there since high temps on a load will cause all kinds of problems to appear.
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Old 12-24-2008, 06:04 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

It actually idles at about 46-48C which is still higher than I would like, but not by too much. The high temps are only under load. Case is actually not bad for air flow, It could probably use another fan or two. Currently 120mm fan in front (intake) and back (exhaust), 80mm fan on side (intake), and the PSU has a front intake and rear exhaust.

Oh yeah and it has an Arctic Cooler oversize heatsink w/ 80mm fan.

here's the messed up part, my system sits 6 feet from hers. My CPU is overclocked from 2.6g to 3.2g (hers is not O.C.d). Same aftermarket heatsink/fan, I have a 120mm intake and 2 80mm exhaust with a side intake and my system sits at about 35-38C at idle and doesn't go over 48C under an extended period of full load. Same case too.
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Old 12-24-2008, 06:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

Could try reseating the heatsink/fan (re-apply thermal paste).

May also want to try testing the RAM: Memtest86+ - Advanced Memory Diagnostic Tool Let it run for at least 4 hours (minimum). If there's any errors, then you know its bad RAM as well.

Since you're heating up fast though, you may wanna check the heatsink/fan first. Make sure the fans are spinning (disable auto fan control in BIOS as well).
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Old 12-24-2008, 08:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

When was the last time the case was blown out with a can of air cleaner? Once the fans and board are loaded up a bit temps will climb. Are both systems running the same Artic Cooling model cooler?

Pentiums are known for seeing higher stock temps anyways while the fans could be loaded up needing a good cleaning. The fan on the hsf stock or 3rd party may have simply quit on you. The case here could use a reapplication of paste since it's been going steady for over a year already.
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Old 12-24-2008, 09:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

my pentium d 940 never got over 55c while using the intel burn in test. so i wouldn't say all pentiums get hot.
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Old 12-24-2008, 10:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

Pentium 4's are the problem-childs with heat.
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Old 12-25-2008, 12:00 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

You can fry eggs on P4s! But like I saying before seeing right about 50C when idling is still a bit high for a stock cpu.
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Old 12-25-2008, 01:42 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

Quote:
Originally Posted by eyeCpc View Post
You can fry eggs on P4s! But like I saying before seeing right about 60C when idling is still a bit high for a stock cpu.
He said it idles at 46-48C .

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjones14
It actually idles at about 46-48C which is still higher than I would like, but not by too much
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Old 12-25-2008, 03:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm stumped

Quote:
Originally Posted by carnageX View Post
He said it idles at 46-48C .
I corrected that typo. Thanks for the heads up there.
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