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Computer Shutting itself off randomly (Hot Video Card)

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January 5, 2009 1:37:53 PM

Right so my brother in law is having a problem and I'm hoping we can get some help while we work on it today. We recently built him a new system and it's been running fine however in the last few weeks he's noticed that at random it will shut off. Takes a few tries to get it to reboot, he hears a low whirring sound like a fan going slow and then it shuts off, no post screen. He tells me this morning when he checked the video card it seemed very hot. He plays CS and WOW normally and it runs fine for maybe and hour and shuts down or it's fine period, otherwise it will power off during normal random use outside of gaming.

My first though is the video card is overheating and the system is shutting down for that reason, alternatly I figure it could be a power fluctuation issue. System Specs as follows

Intel 9300
GigabyteGA-Ep45-Ds3r
OZC 2 pack 2 gig sticks, 6400 Vista kit
Vista 64bit
Gigabyte Odin GT 800W ATX PSU
WD 1 TB Caviar Black
ATI HD4870 512md

Onboard sound and network card, generic DVD burner drive.

Now the power supply and the motherboard both have monitering utilities which he has not been using so I was going to fire them up today individually and see what they read out. We do have the reciept for the hardware at least from the local Micro Center so if it is shot we can figure something out with them.

Thanks for any help you can think off.

January 5, 2009 1:54:02 PM

You can use Catalyst Control Panel to see the temp of your card (It's under the Overdrive page) or you could download the utility GPU-Z to check the temps that way.
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January 5, 2009 1:57:21 PM

Ya sounds like a heat problem to me. Probally a fan inside the case is dieing or is dead. Get us the tempature readouts and we can start going from there.
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January 5, 2009 2:32:32 PM

Alright, just got the utilities installed for the motherboard and the PSU, need to reboot to use them. Just got into the ATI overdrive page which I can say I have never used at all. Current temp is 80 in idle basically. Looks to me from this the card is overheating because the fan is dead. What can I check aside from the fan itself on it. be a few, will respond with results from direct visual check
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January 5, 2009 2:39:33 PM

80c at idle is to hot. Try adjusting the fan speeds to max settings and see if that helps. But it you heard the fans whining most likely they are already dead.
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January 5, 2009 2:41:06 PM

well, you can turn up the fan speed to make sure that the fan is or is not dead. i believe that the r870's fan is set to 35% default. try 50% or 60% first before you go out and get a replacement card
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January 5, 2009 2:43:05 PM

Yea I checked and the fan is going, just odd it would be going so slow, I mean, it's not fast by any means. Checking the control center now for the fan setting. Would be nice to have a fix with that then having to do an RMA on it. Shouldn't be damaged yet I would think.
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January 5, 2009 2:49:41 PM

Ya crank up the rpm's on the fan then. just use ati's software to do it. If this still doesn't bring down the tempatures make sure you have the most up-to-date drivers. Might be the tempature probe is reading inaccuratly.
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January 5, 2009 2:50:18 PM

Alrighty so the suck on this one is going good. Doing a search on how to set the fan speed and it's looking like a real pain overall. How is it I can change the memory speed and such on this thing but not the freaking fan speed. Killing me. So my assumption here is something changed the value recently as this just started a week or 2 ago. That or the fan is shot. Should I try changing the speed or go right to ATI and get them to sort this out. Ideas?

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a b B Homebuilt system
a b U Graphics card
January 5, 2009 3:13:10 PM

The latest Catalyst drivers have the fan control built in, there's nothing difficult about it. Like was mentioned above, download the latest drivers and use them to manually set the fan RPM.
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January 5, 2009 3:17:11 PM

so, that was my brother in law. he left to bring my sister lunch, and in 5 minutes i figured out how to up the fan speed and thus the temp has lowered significantly. the value was set to 22, i upped it to 45 and it has dropped roughly 40 degrees. thanks for all the help everyone!
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January 5, 2009 3:36:23 PM

glad we coudl help
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!