Gaming PC shuts down during high performance games

So I usually don't post on these forums, I can normally get by just by reading other threads; but machines vary so much I want to make sure I know exactly what the issue is.

Last September I built my first gaming PC. It's been working very well--I can virtually any game on the highest settings, have multiple programs running at once, etc. Anyway, everything was going fine until around early November. I was in the middle of playing Bioshock Infinite when the computer just shut down--no restart, no nothing; it was as if someone had just pulled the power cord

Generally, my computer works fine. Anything non-gaming related works perfectly, and even most games work with no trouble. However, when I play very high performance games (such as Bioshock Infinite, Rift, Witcher 2, etc.) problems start to arise. The time I can play the game before the PC crashes varies; and I've noticed that it depends how long the computer has been on. If I boot up the computer after being off the whole night and immediately launch one of these games, I might be able to get a good hour out of it. If the computer's been on all day, but no gaming, I might last 20 minutes. And if the computer crashes, I reboot, then immediately relaunch a game, it will usually only go for 5 minutes, tops.

From poking around the Internet I've begun to think this may be a heat issue, since I'm using the stock cooler that came with my CPU. But it's also crossed my mind that it could be a power issue, as they seem to have similar symptoms. Or maybe it's a GPU issue, or a defective motherboard, or any number of things that haven't crossed my mind.

Since I am on a budget, I don't want to sink money into a specific part until I'm certain that's the problem (or at least as certain as I can be). Thanks in advance for the help.

Oh, and of course, here are my system specs:

AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor
Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD3 ATX AM3+ Motherboard
Corsair 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3-1333 Memory
Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Asus Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card
Corsair Builder 600W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply

I think that's everything...
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  1. it's most likely there is somting with your power supply, can you plug in another one and see if that keeps running?

    somting else that might be happening is that your computer runs too hot, try to monitize that. just feel on your case of it's hot or even put an thermonitor in there if you want.

    another thing is that your amount of RAM is quite low, this might be an isue too. but if this is the case it would normaly give the so called "blue screen".

    Are you overclocking becouse maybe you have an unstable overclock?
  2. If no overclock, the best way is to run a battery of tests.
    For heat test prime95 with a monitor of the cpu temps. Make sure you close prime 95 if the CPU heats over 90C. Make Sure you "STOP ALL WORKS", not just press the X as that will only drop prime 95 to the task bar.

    If its not that you can almost certainly say its a power issue.

    In heat it can be also GPU or Motherboard heat issue (for that use HWMonitor and some GPU stress test).
  3. Hey Mate, It looks like there is increase in temperature of your PC Components while you are gaming only way to fix this problem is to buy a good Cooler from Cooler Master. Your PC turns off automatically so that it can prevent further damage by heat. So I would prefer to buy a CPU Cooler

    Here is a good one from Cooler Master (Recommended)

    Hope this helps.:bounce:
  4. Download prime 95 and OCCT & HWMOnitor. Run Prime 95 & HWMonitor for 20 mins keeping an eye on the CPU temps if there is no crash stop it and run the GPU stress test in OCCT keeping an eye on the GPU temps if there is no crash or overheating run prime 95 and the OCCT GPU stress test at the same time for half an hour. If both prime 95 and OCCT cause a crash or both together but neither individually it is likely a power supply problem. If none of this causes a crash or overheating its likely software related.
  5. So I tried what you said, simon12, and everything was going fine--at first. With prime95 running my CPU temperatures only went up to around 60C, and there was no crash. However, when I started a GPU test on OCCT, my computer crashed almost instantly. I rebooted and tried this a few more times to make certain any background programs weren't interfering, etc.

    I then left my computer on and left the room for a few minutes. But when I came back, the computer had seemed to have turned itself off! I tried pressing the power button, and the power supply fan whirred for about half a second, but that's it. Subsequent attempts didn't even do that. When I unplugged the power cord and put it back in, on the first press of the power button the power supply had the same reaction; and, again, every time after that yielded no response.

    I hope I'm describing the situation well enough. But yeah, I'm not sure what happened, did I overload the power supply and blow it out? I certainly hope not...
  6. your power suplly apears to be good enough, maybe your graphics card is broken (shortened circuit, overheat) ?
  7. So I left it for a few hours and now it's working fine... Not really sure what happened then, but it seems to be good now. Anyway, I still have the issue of the computer crashing during the GPU test. What does that mean?
  8. Its either a faulty power supply or graphics card I suspect most likely power supply. I don't know what country you are in or where you bought it but power supplies and graphics cards normally come with 2+ years warranty so check. If you got them from the same place contact them and ask what you should do if not just try returning the power supply. Before you do this visually check the card and the connector from the psu for signs of damage, melting or not connected properly (unlikely as that would normally cause a complete failure).
  9. So I opened up my computer and looked around at the parts, particularly the graphics card and power supply. I noticed that the former had quite a bit of dust gathered on top (the circuit board area). Not sure if all PC's are designed this way--I'm really clueless about a lot of these things--but my computer's graphics card lies flat, with the fans on the bottom. The circuits and such are on the top; and since my case has a lot of openings for air flow, dust had gathered on the circuit board (not so much on the fans). Does this affect performance / overheating, or is that just with the fans?
  10. Dust will affect heat but not by much unless its stopping a fan spinning. Have a look at the power connector that goes straight from the power supply to the card and try swapping it with the other one (I think your power supply has 2). Other than that I think you need a new power supply under warranty or not, it could still be the graphics card so if you can test 1 on another PC or borrow one 1st it would be ideal.
  11. Its more common to have a PSU issue since normally graphics cards give you blue screens or graphical artifacts if they are damaged and no image at all if broken.

    First thing thou, STOP TESTING MORE. If you keep getting those shutdowns you might kill more than just one component (I did that myself).

    Turnning off instantly with no warning is usually the power supply not beeing able to cope with what it is asked to do (for one reason or another) and shutting down.

    Normally either you connect the wrong cable to the wrong component (and the cable cant deliver the required power), or you overcharge the PSU itself, and it shuts down when temperatures get too high in a certain part.

    But if you keep pushing it you might kill your PSU and it might take something more with it to the grave.
  12. After tinkering around yesterday (and cleaning off that dust), when I ran OCCT it didn't crash; was that just a one-time stroke of luck? Or did I actually do something to make it better. (I also check all the connecting cables to / between the power supply and graphics card, and they all seemed to be fine.)
  13. Terakay said:
    After tinkering around yesterday (and cleaning off that dust), when I ran OCCT it didn't crash; was that just a one-time stroke of luck? Or did I actually do something to make it better. (I also check all the connecting cables to / between the power supply and graphics card, and they all seemed to be fine.)

    Who knows I used to repair laptops and sometimes (frequently) if you can't find a fault but its not working putting it in your car and driving it home when you get there it works. I suspected there was a small chance the cable from the PSU was no connected correctly as the 7850 does not use much more power than it can get from a PCIE slot and only under load..
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