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PSU or faulty HD370?

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  • Power Supplies
  • Graphics Cards
  • Components
Last response: in Components
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June 2, 2008 6:10:02 PM

Dear All,

I am having problems with a new HD3870 graphics card. I play Colin Mcrae for anything between 1min and 90mins and I get a blank screen. The game carries on in the back ground; I can hear the music and engine responds to the throttle - but no visuals. I have VPU recover on so I guess this is catching it.

I have a 400W PSU with 20A on a single 12V rail. Could this be the issue or is the card faulty?

If it is the PSU, could someone reccomend a decent one that is not too expensive? I have looked at lots of guide but they predominantly describe USA models in USA shops.

Other components are a 4800+ 64x2 AMD processor, 2x2GB DDR2, a DVD/CD, standard floppy, 1x160GB HD and a X-FI sound card.

Thanks for your help,

Dan

More about : psu faulty hd370

a b U Graphics card
June 2, 2008 6:24:15 PM

Insufficient power supply:

ATI Radeon HD 3870 and ATI Radeon HD 3850 System Requirements
450 Watt or greater power supply with 75 Watt 6-pin PCI Express® power connector recommended (550 Watt and two 6-pin connectors for dual ATI CrossFireX™)

AMD Certified PSUs (Single+Crossfire):
http://ati.amd.com/online/certifiedpsu/index.html
June 2, 2008 6:25:45 PM

What make/model PSU? They are NOT all the same. Cheap no-name PSUs mean peak power, not max sustainable power. Some manufacturers tell porkies about what they can do. When Custom PC in UK tested PSUs, the generic models could not even provide 75% without shutting down or even blowing up!

Mike.
Related resources
June 2, 2008 6:39:51 PM

Man, you guys are quick! Thanks a million!

The PSU is a non brand (all i can see on it is: CB F(c) EN60950) so i'm guessing that I am underpowering it. Does the system behaviour sound like a PSU issue?

Best,

Dan.
a b U Graphics card
June 2, 2008 6:53:10 PM

You need to start by feeding the correct power.
After that we shall see.
If you have more problems, we will work with you further.
June 2, 2008 7:13:22 PM

Yes that could easily be the result of a garbage no name PSU with a total 12V of 20A. Not to mention that if you keep using it, then you may be buying a whole new computer.

So do yourself a favor, stop questioning it and buy a new PSU. By the way just because the PSU has a shiny box and pretty blue LEDs doesn't mean it's not crap.

Try posting some links to sites you can buy from and a budget. People will help you get a decent PSU. In case you don't, here are a few that are good and relatively cheap.

Corsair VX450, VX550

Antec Earthwatts EA500
June 2, 2008 7:39:15 PM

I agree with Zorg on this. Wasting time on a bad or underpowered PSU is looking for trouble. And some of the good PSUs look good because the companies both have pride in their produce and they are competitive in the marketplace.

Besides the PSus that Zorg listed, a place to check for specifics on what PSU to get would be jonnyguru.com. But most importantly, get a good quality PSU.
a b ) Power supply
a b U Graphics card
June 2, 2008 10:20:36 PM

Zorg said:
Yes that could easily be the result of a garbage no name PSU with a total 12V of 20A. Not to mention that if you keep using it, then you may be buying a whole new computer.

So do yourself a favor, stop questioning it and buy a new PSU. By the way just because the PSU has a shiny box and pretty blue LEDs doesn't mean it's not crap.

Try posting some links to sites you can buy from and a budget. People will help you get a decent PSU. In case you don't, here are a few that are good and relatively cheap.

Corsair VX450, VX550

Antec Earthwatts EA500

+1 (2?)

@OP: Be careful when buying PSUs from Ebay.
June 3, 2008 5:03:28 AM

Xilence used to be ok, but they suck anymore and that Thermaltake isn't nearly as good as the new ones, and the newer ones are basicaly average.
June 3, 2008 9:49:27 AM

Thanks everyone.

Ok, its down to the corsair 450w vx, or the 550w vx.

Bearing in mind I need to power an HD3870, an SB X-Fi, 2x1GB DDR2, a 4800+ 64x2, 1xHDD, CD/DVD writer and a floppy.....

1) is the 550w overkill
2) how comfortably would the 450w run this system

Thanks again,

Dan.
June 3, 2008 12:27:18 PM

Using the eXtreme Power Supply Calculator Lite v2.5 and adding 1 80mm and 2 120mm fans no OC and 100% load, the recommended PSU minimum is 316W. So the VX-450 will do you. The VX-550 will give you more headroom if you want to OC and add components. Only you know whether you will use it and if it is worth the extra dough.
a c 144 ) Power supply
a b U Graphics card
June 3, 2008 12:42:20 PM

1824918,4,330539 said:

The PSU is a non brand (all i can see on it is: CB F(c) EN60950) so i'm guessing that I am underpowering it. Does the system behaviour sound like a PSU issue?
quotemsg]

Yes. System seems to be running OK under light CPU or graphics load - especially graphics. Under heavy (gaming) load, the 12 volt rail drops below tolerance. This kills a control signal called "PWRGood" from the PSU. This will force a hardware reset. The system reboots. It looks like random resets and reboots.

Edit: And you're lucky the protection circuits are working as well as they are. Otherwise, the PSU could simply fail and stop working, or it could catastrophically fail and do something like explode caps (the smell is unmistakeable) or burst into flames.

There's a reason why most of the regulars say, "Do not use cheap PSU's."
June 3, 2008 11:22:33 PM

Just a quick question to add to this.. Do you get any strange artifacts or screen flicker/distortion before you lose picture? I've had one Sapphire HD3870 be bad out of the box, or slightly there after that did the same. It was the one with the blue single slot cooler. Thing doesn't handle heat sufficiently. And that happened on a 700w PSU.

Really if it were the PSU it would reboot the system or shut itself off when hitting it's current usage limits.
June 3, 2008 11:31:28 PM

Hi Mathos,

Different card, mine is the double slot heat sink version. Don't get any artifacts - it just freezes - then comes the blank screen - no signal to the monitor and then.... nothing. Sometimes you can hear the game behind the blank screen but no visuals. I think it sounds plausible for the HD3870 to loose power and cut as everything else keeps going on different rails.

Keep the ideas coming if you have any - all are appreciated!

Does this sound like a psu issue or graphics card issue to anyone else?
June 3, 2008 11:34:56 PM

1825154,16,125307 said:
1824918,4,330539 said:

The PSU is a non brand (all i can see on it is: CB F(c) EN60950) so i'm guessing that I am underpowering it. Does the system behaviour sound like a PSU issue?
quotemsg]

Yes. System seems to be running OK under light CPU or graphics load - especially graphics. Under heavy (gaming) load, the 12 volt rail drops below tolerance. This kills a control signal called "PWRGood" from the PSU. This will force a hardware reset. The system reboots. It looks like random resets and reboots.

It doesn't reboot - it just freezes - i have to reset it myself - does that still sound like a psu issue to you? I don't want to go buying a new one it it's not! Many thanks for your words of wisdom so far, Dan.
June 4, 2008 11:11:27 AM

I have gone for the 450W VX Corsair unit.

Let's hope that fixes the problem. At least my system won't fry in any case (pardon the pun).

The cheapest I found was www.awd-it.co.uk - they were helpful on the phone too.

Will post how it works out. Thanks a million for all your responses - they were very much appreciated.

Best,

Dan.
June 7, 2008 1:50:57 PM

Have installed the Corsiar 450W VX psu and i'm afraid to say that it hasn't made a blind bit of difference.

Dirt still crashes - screen goes black, you can still hear it in the background and engine still responds to the keyboard.

I am annoyed that it hasn't solved the problem but at least my system won't fry.

Any ideas as to the problem now?

Please be careful in your replies if you are only guessing as people can't waster a lot of money on things they don't really need if they consider your opinion to be trusted.

Best,

Dan.
June 7, 2008 9:33:42 PM

Run Memtest from boot CD to test your memory Run it overnight, should have no errors
June 8, 2008 9:31:56 AM

do you mean the mobo memory?

is it poss that hd3870 memory is bad?
June 8, 2008 8:49:33 PM

Quote:
is it poss that hd3870 memory is bad?

Yes, but that usually just gives artifacts or other display corruption. The video driver works in main memory.

Mike.
!