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Graphics Has my graphics card died?

Discussion in 'Tech Support' started by will., 7 Feb 2010.

  1. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    Last night, playing Mass Effect II my the game crashed after a few seconds of pretty colours dancing all over my screen. I alt tabbed out planning to shut everything down sharpish as my first thoughts were overheating and that the cooler on my gfx card had died. Irritatingly I accidentally clicked back into the game and after some even prettier colours I was presented with a BSOD... My first one in at least 4 years now!

    After a quick inspection and some canned air everything seemed to be working, fans were fine and now everything is pretty much dust free. Anyway, next time I booted up everything seemed ok, but quickly went wrong as soon as I got back into mass effect.

    I'm pretty sure at this point my graphics card is on it's way to the grave, but I booted up again and updated all the drivers anyway. That didn't work either.

    It's not booting at all now.

    I'm just after confirmation at this point really; does it sound like I need a new graphics card? Or could this be a corrupted driver issue? From what I've read, driver issues tend to cause errors, not boot issues as the drivers aren't loaded until the OS loads.

    My only other thought is that this could be a PSU failure and that the graphics card simply wasn't getting the power it required?

    Just so you know, I've got an 8800 GTX. About 2.5/3 years old now I guess. Pretty heavy use, but no overclocking. OS is windows 7.
     
  2. Bonzo45

    Bonzo45 Ex CPC

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    I'm not sure about a PSU issue, as the card will not require that much power on start-up. I'd try a different card in your PC and see if it makes it past POST, as there's not much else you can try without being in Windows.

    The artifacts you got normally indicate an unstable overclock/overheating of your GPU.
     
  3. FuzzyOne

    FuzzyOne

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    A freind had this exact problem playing L4D a few nights ago with an 8800, after 15mins in the oven it was back to working ok.

    Might be worth a try.
     
  4. Denis_iii

    Denis_iii What's a Dremel?

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    oven? what temp :) i'll stick my laptop in and fingers crossed lol
     
  5. FuzzyOne

    FuzzyOne

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  6. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    In the oven? I think I've heard of 360 owners employing the same tactics against the RROD. I'll think I'll wait and see if I can get it replaced under warranty from EVGA though first. I should have the ten year one as I registered it the day I bought it.

    I've done some more investigating... Unless the heat sink somehow parted company with the chips on the board and then put itself back together again there is no way it could have overheated. From what I can tell, the card is exactly as it should be. All the other case fans were doing there job fine and Mass Effect is hardly the most taxing game.

    Best bet I think is to get a cheapy card in there for now while I get going on the undoubtedly lengthy replacement time. Hopefully that will sort it and I'll know for sure it's the card and not something else... I really hope that's the case though. I just bought new speakers, I can't afford a new PC right now :(
     
  7. tk421

    tk421 Idiot.

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    actually, that isn't all that uncommon. card or hsf assembly will warp a bit under stress ... causing loss of contact and rapid instabilities. shut her down for a bit, everything goes back to normal, and appears to be just fine. likely you are getting memory artifacts from poor mem chip contact.

    that's why people shim 360 system boards to beat the RROD ... it keeps things in place, but usually only for a short time.

    only way to tell for sure, is to remove the hsf unit and see what condition the TIM is in ... likely after 3 years of heavy gaming, and constant heat/cool cycling, it has just dried out. if warranty replacement isnt an option, you might want to reapply TIM and try it again. i had to do that with my old radeon 9600 after i had it for about 3 years ... and it was still running strong until my brother let the fan gunk up and overheat it.
     
    Last edited: 7 Feb 2010
  8. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    Any ideas on a cheapy graphics card that will still let me watch decent quality HD video? I'd rather not go over £50.
     
  9. Toxic_Lemon

    Toxic_Lemon What's a Dremel?

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    Are you 100% sure it`s your gfx card ?, take it out and run off onboard gfx (if your mobo has it ) and try to see if you get problems then.
     
  10. saspro

    saspro IT monkey

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    Pretty random colours on the screen usually indicate a dead/dying card. I've had 20-30 cards do that over the last year.
     
  11. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    No on-board graphics unfortunately, but like saspro mentioned, it does look like artifacting is nearly always a gfx problem.

    Looking at all the hoops I'm going to have to jump through with this EVGA warranty, it's going to be a while until I get a replacement.
     
  12. Andy Mc

    Andy Mc Modder

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    I'm getting artifacting on my 9800gx2. The only way to stop it is to run the HSF on it at 100%, which is very annoying. It artifacts in any dx game and is a pain if the fan is not 100%. Cooling wise the case is an antec p900 (the dual PSU one with the 22cm fan) so airflow in the case is not an issue.

    So I'm after a replacement myself that is similar performance wise but not too heavy on my wallet.
     
  13. saspro

    saspro IT monkey

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    An nvidia 8400GS should do just for video & costs less than £30
     
  14. tk421

    tk421 Idiot.

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    for full 1080p video, i use a 4350 (diamond multimedia, passively cooled) w/ 512mb ram ... works quite well with a e7400 and 4gb ram ...
     
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  15. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    Went for a 4350 in the end. Should keep me going until I get the replacement. Thanks for all the help. :)
     
  16. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    Bah... It's out of warranty... Tits!

    £350 down the pisser then... :(

    More upsettingly though, I can't play Mass Effect II now!

    I wonder if my home insurance would cover it? I could easily spill some water in the top of my PC... :p
     
  17. tk421

    tk421 Idiot.

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    hrmm ... sounds like time for a 5xxx series upgrade!
     
  18. will.

    will. A motorbike of jealousy!

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    Is it worth upgrading right now though? For starters, Crysis is the only game I can't play at full settings at 1080p. Nothing else even stutters. I'm thinking that I might just wait until the DX11 stuff has matured a little bit. Of course, I will need something more substantial than my £30 stand in, but I think I'll just go for something around the £80 - £100 mark for that. Might even keep the cheapy for a HTPC.
     
  19. tk421

    tk421 Idiot.

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    ya, i'm quite pleased with my 4850 for the time being ... rips thru everything ive thrown at it on my 22" and on my 37" 1080p set ... even crysis. and it was only $100 and change ...
     
  20. October

    October Mariachi Style

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    Same, only with a 4890 and £140... Think I'll probably skip the 5 series, or maybe get one when the 6s' make them nice n cheap :thumb:
     

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