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Help Needed: New System Crashing During Gameplay

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July 16, 2013 1:04:12 PM

Hi guys, I've lurked for a good while (this site is way helpful), but it appears that I've hit a wall in troubleshooting an issue with a new system I built for a friend.

The issue is a total system lock-up when playing most games. Games affected are Planetside 2, Borderlands 2, Metro 2033, and Metro Last Light. It may be worth noting that Left 4 Dead 2 runs perfectly fine from what we can tell.

Hardware is as follows:
Motherboard: ASUS M5A99FX Pro R2.0
Processor: AMD FX-8320
Memory: Team Vulcan 8GB DDR3 @ 1600 MHz
Video Card: MSI GTX 670 Power Edition
Power Supply: Corsair TX-750w
Case: Corsair 500R

System is running Windows 8 x64 and all Windows Updates are installed. No system dump information is generated, and the Event Viewer only reports that the computer was restarted improperly. It's also worth noting that no manner of overclocking has been done on the hardware, though some of the power-saving features have been disabled to ensure consistent performance in games.

Steps taken thus far:

  • Installed DirectX redistributables, Visual C++, and .NET Frameworks.
  • Updated to most recent Drivers for Video Card, Chipset, Audio.
  • Rolled back to previous Video Card drivers (clean installs between versions).
  • Ran Memtest86 for 2 passes, no errors found.
  • Temperatures appear to be normal. 30's on the processor, chipset ~ 30-32, and no more than 55 on the video card.


  • The power supply previously ran my system a few months prior, which is similar except for MB/Processor (M5A97 R2.0 and FX-8150 respectively) without any issues whatsoever. Voltages appear to be fine from what I can tell.

    The only consistent thing I found between the games is that they're all PhysX titles. The issue occurs if the PhysX device is left as Auto or GPU in the Nvidia Control Panel as well.

    Do any of you fine fellas have any suggestions? My next line of thought was to swap out the GPU to see if he got a lemon, but I don't feel that is likely.
    July 17, 2013 11:16:18 AM

    You've gone through the list of most of the things I would have checked. You could try a prime95 run for several hours to rule out the CPU. (Make sure to run as many instances as cores on the CPU). I don't have experience with PhysX myself so I won't be much help there.

    If you haven't already I'd disconnect and reconnect absolutely everything from the PSU. Also try the other 2 PCI-E power cables (shouldn't matter, but might as well try).
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    July 17, 2013 11:25:07 AM

    battlemarz said:
    You've gone through the list of most of the things I would have checked. You could try a prime95 run for several hours to rule out the CPU. (Make sure to run as many instances as cores on the CPU). I don't have experience with PhysX myself so I won't be much help there.

    If you haven't already I'd disconnect and reconnect absolutely everything from the PSU. Also try the other 2 PCI-E power cables (shouldn't matter, but might as well try).


    Hey, thanks for the response. I've kinda got the feeling it's video related, but some stressing on the CPU wouldn't hurt just to rule it out. I'll have the system at my place tomorrow for some troubleshooting, so I can even swap out the video card with mine since we own the same model.

    I'd love to rule out the PSU being an issue, is there a reliable way to do so short of swapping it out for another as a test?
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    July 18, 2013 9:05:04 AM

    Video related is my best guess as well, seeing as you have a quality PSU that was working well in another system.

    The Prime95 run could actually help check the PSU. If it is the 12v rail giving you problems then pushing the CPU to it's limits will tax that more heavily than a normal workload. As this is the rail the GPU is on as well, it could give some clue if you get a lockup like before.

    Easy solution is to find another graphics card (Preferably also PhysX), but that may not be easy.
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    July 18, 2013 12:09:14 PM

    battlemarz said:
    Video related is my best guess as well, seeing as you have a quality PSU that was working well in another system.

    The Prime95 run could actually help check the PSU. If it is the 12v rail giving you problems then pushing the CPU to it's limits will tax that more heavily than a normal workload. As this is the rail the GPU is on as well, it could give some clue if you get a lockup like before.

    Easy solution is to find another graphics card (Preferably also PhysX), but that may not be easy.


    Good to know. Video card replacement will be the easiest, I have the exact same model GTX 670 and an old GTS 250 laying around, so testing that won't be hard. I'll be looking into it later today, so I'll definitely post my findings.
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    July 21, 2013 11:09:16 AM

    I didn't get a chance to check until the other evening, however replacing the video card in the system with my working one did not fix the issue. I went to test it on Prime95 as well, and this will more often than not cause the system to freeze also.

    We're doing a refresh on the Windows 8 install, however I wonder if he got a bad processor or if this power supply is a lemon. Power supply was used like 3-4 months tops, though voltages might be off a little. I know there's some leeway to be given, is 11.5v on the 12v rail too low in HWMonitor?

    Also going to try replacing the 670 with my old 250 to see if it triggers with a slightly less power intensive card.
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    July 26, 2013 9:07:01 PM

    Just to follow up for anyone who finds this in the future, the problem turned out to be the power supply. The system is stable after replacement and I think it was the 12v rail. Thanks for the help!
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    July 27, 2013 7:41:12 AM

    Vollstrecker said:
    Just to follow up for anyone who finds this in the future, the problem turned out to be the power supply. The system is stable after replacement and I think it was the 12v rail. Thanks for the help!


    Glad you got it sorted out. PSU can be tricky to isolate sometimes, especially if you don't have a spare sitting around.
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