Also, when I test the card at stock clocks, in the Catalyst overdrive utility, it fails.
Now, I have a few leads, but I really want to avoid sending it back.
-I am using a 500w PSU with 18A on the +12v rail. Could this be an issue of the card being underpowered? When working in 2D, everything is fine, but the second I open a game, everything is screwed up, 2D and 3D combined.. so techincally the first few seconds can't be working the card enough to cause anything, and artifacting doesn't seem the likely effect.
-The card heats up to 50C while idle in 2D. This would seem likely to be an overheating issue, but how could the card overheat at stock clocks?
So, what do you think is causing the problem?
I can't seem to find a way to underclock it, because ATI Tool seems to not work, and Riva Tuner doesn't show me the overclocking utility.
I'm really quite stuck. I only have a little time to enjoy it and I really don't want to have to send it back.
I think he just needs the hotfix drivers. Typically if he lacks the 12v power he would just have instability... crashing and not artifacts. But if it isn't the drivers, I still wouldn't rule the power supply out. Of course, it could be he has a bad card too.
But the lack amps wouldn't cause his card to artifact would it? I lack power would mean the card would simply underclock itself and draw the most power that it could from the PSU.
A lack of sufficient power is more likely to cause crashes than artifacts. Loads on the PSU are parallel to each other, so if the video card is being starved for power, so are all the other devices that share the voltage rail. Any or all devices being starved could malfunction and cause a system lockup or reboot.
Also, the card does not respond by underclocking itself. I'm not sure where you heard that, but it doesn't work that way.
Also, the HD2600XT is not a big power consuming card but I would want sure more than 18 amp on the 12v to power one. You don't need the 30 amp MSI mentions but I would have wanted 22-24 amp anyway.
Alright, so I think I managed to install the AGP hotfixed 8.1 drivers.
But I'm still getting horrible artifacts in games. And I remember that the last graphics card I put into this machine also had the exact same problem when I first put it in, and all I had to do was update the drivers.
Unfourtunetely, this doesn't seem to work here.