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System freezing up with lots of graphics

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March 28, 2009 5:15:56 PM

Hey People,

Long story short, I have had this system running for 2.5 years and has been running perfectly. In the past week, my G card has been freezing up whenever a graphics intensive program is running. Freeze up for 5 seconds, then runs for 20 seconds then freezes again. COD4, AoE:III, and videos. They all ran perfectly before and nothing has changed.

I cleaned the system and the card out with an air can: Didn't fix anything.

Updated my drivers: Nothing.

Boosted the fans to 100% during graphics programs: Nothing, still froze.

Keep in mind that everything was fine until a week ago.

The highest that the temps are getting up to is 71C. Is that high enough to cause this problem? Is there something else I can try to fix this, or should I say F this card and get a new one?

Thanks for the help ahead of time.


Nvidia GeForce 7600 GS
AMD 4400+
Asus MB
a c 177 U Graphics card
March 28, 2009 5:58:42 PM

Check the CPU temperatures as well, 71C is n`t too much under load for the graphics card but how did you measure it?
I`d suggest you use GPUZ for the graphics and Speedfan for the CPU temperatures.
March 28, 2009 6:10:40 PM

coozie7 said:
Check the CPU temperatures as well, 71C is n`t too much under load for the graphics card but how did you measure it?
I`d suggest you use GPUZ for the graphics and Speedfan for the CPU temperatures.


G card temp is tracked by EVGA Precision.

CPU is never above 45C and is tracked by Asus PC Probe. With the games that I have, the CPU is never under full load.
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March 28, 2009 6:14:47 PM

I installed GPUZ and it's highest reading when freezing was 64C.

March 28, 2009 6:28:01 PM

Also, when I drop down the resolution significantly it will still freeze up.
a c 177 U Graphics card
March 28, 2009 6:32:06 PM

Beginning to sound like the card`s on its way out but just a few more checks;
Does GPUZ show your card as being to spec? I.E. full memory quota and right PCI-E speed and number of lanes?
Could this be a virus of some sort?
Is everything at stock settings or are you overclocking? If so return everything to stock and retest.
Sometimes driver updates can fail or drivers become corrupted. Try a reinstall using a fresh download of the latest drivers from Nvidia and using Driver Sweeper or Driver Cleaner in safe Mode to clean out the residue from the uninstall.
a c 177 U Graphics card
March 28, 2009 6:33:29 PM

PS which PSU are you using?
March 28, 2009 6:43:32 PM

PSU: Antec Smart Power 500

No OC for the CPU or GPU

G Card info is showing up correctly in GPUz

I did update drivers, but did not do the uninstall method that you said. I will give it a shot now.

Thanks.
March 28, 2009 6:55:45 PM

Sounds to me like a classic symptom of your power supply not delivering enough power to your graphics card. your gpu will gulp twice (or more) power in graphics intensive applications than in normal mode (the best graphics cards will even throttle down at idle and be greenish). Based on your description, I'd bet a week's pay that your PSU is getting old and failing.

Oh, and 71C is high but probably fine, 80C is too high.

[your antec smart power 500 was a good choice in psu, i can see that you took time to pick out a good when when you built your system. It might just be it's time to go...]

The way to tell if it's your graphics card or psu is for you to try a game at lowest settings (resolution doesn't stress gpu as much as like aliasing and antroscopic filtering, crank those to 4x or 16x or whatever the highest is, along with enabling shadows and everything else). I'm still betting its your psu though... a graphics card failure is usually catastrophic -- no video at all. ... if you are still thinking it might be videocard heat-related, take the side panel off your case and get a room fan and point in... that should be good for a few celsius at the minimum.
March 28, 2009 7:47:06 PM

rkaye said:
Sounds to me like a classic symptom of your power supply not delivering enough power to your graphics card. your gpu will gulp twice (or more) power in graphics intensive applications than in normal mode (the best graphics cards will even throttle down at idle and be greenish). Based on your description, I'd bet a week's pay that your PSU is getting old and failing.

Oh, and 71C is high but probably fine, 80C is too high.

[your antec smart power 500 was a good choice in psu, i can see that you took time to pick out a good when when you built your system. It might just be it's time to go...]

The way to tell if it's your graphics card or psu is for you to try a game at lowest settings (resolution doesn't stress gpu as much as like aliasing and antroscopic filtering, crank those to 4x or 16x or whatever the highest is, along with enabling shadows and everything else). I'm still betting its your psu though... a graphics card failure is usually catastrophic -- no video at all. ... if you are still thinking it might be videocard heat-related, take the side panel off your case and get a room fan and point in... that should be good for a few celsius at the minimum.



Thanks for the reply.

Funny thing about your post is that I have been running with the side panel open and it has dropped the temps down significantly but I am still having the problems. When you say the card can be greenish, do you mean panels of the games/video will be a pixelated green texture? If so, yes I did start getting that today.

Here's a question though, wouldn't I notice other problems if the PSU was dieing? The G card is in the PCIexpress slot with no PSU cable coming to it separately, meaning it's drawing it's power through the Mobo. The Asus PC probe software I have gives me read outs on the PSU voltages.

+12v is 12.244
+5v is 4.945
+3.3v is 3.296
Vcore is 1.36


Does any of that seem off? I have no problem accepting that something is dieing. I know good components can live on forever. Hell, I didn't think it would last this long to be honest. I just don't want to run out and buy a new PSU and a week later the G card crap it's pants too.

Let me know what you think. Thanks.

-B

March 28, 2009 8:12:52 PM

*Go Green*
What I meant by 'greenish' was in reference to the newest top end graphics cards actually throttle down on idle so they use less wattage (kinda funny, since nvidia wants you to buy a 1200watt power supply to power a geforce295 - actual need on enthusiast sites is generally accepted to be 600-700watts on a decent psu for a 295 and i7 cpu)

RE: Other symptoms of PSU fail
Sure, you *might* notice other things too when a psu goes south -- although you perfectly described the classic sign; high graphics load causes freezing or stuttering. If you had a no-brand psu, you might expect to also have blue screens and other issues... But I think whats happening is your Antec is probably dying gracefully -- it's only failing on the taxing gpu rail, while still providing acceptable line loads to the other components. And thats why I mentioned you did great by picking the antec. [consider a no-brand psu getting taxxed and dropping power to your hard drive to feed the graphics card, and next thing you know your outlook pst file is nuked]

does your GeForce 7600GS not have a little four (six?) port power connector on the end or top of it? (i thought these started with the 6800series and are on all of them since...) Because that would be a cute little fix, to peek in there and notice it for the first time and simply connect it to your psu and you're fixed...

*options*
you could go to your local best buy or newegg or whatever and buy a new psu (or video card) with a standard 30day return policy and see if your problem is solved. that way you are covered as to returning it if you pick the wrong component.

in any case, let me/us know what was failing.
a c 259 U Graphics card
March 28, 2009 8:24:18 PM

Sounds like a vga card starting to fail. If it is from EVGA or XFX, it might have a lifetime warranty.

If not, I think it is time to upgrade it. A low level card does not cost much these days.
a EVGA 9500GT for $49.99 after rebate would be a big improvement:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
March 28, 2009 8:58:53 PM

Rkaye,

No, there aren't any connectors, though at this point I wish there were. I will look into a new PSU and see if that fixes the problems. Are the Antec "Green" PSU's any good? Specifically the 500W one?

-B
March 29, 2009 5:06:30 PM

I think you'll be fine sticking with any of the name brand PSUs. Antec used to have a TruePower series that was very well rated. 500w should be plenty for your current system. if the PSU is slated to move as you upgrade, and the plans include overclocking a quad core and moving to a two (or more) GPU rig, you might want more watts.


tom's most recent psu tests:
Part I http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/power-supply-review...
Part II http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/power-supply-roundu...
March 29, 2009 9:47:42 PM

Is your whole machine getting hot? I thought I was having the same problem with an ATI X600 card. My machine is about 3 years old. I had my machine in a cabinet. I moved it to the top of my desk. Just an idea?
March 29, 2009 9:51:29 PM

That card is very old. 70c is pretty hot for a 7600GS. You could always remove the heatsink, clean the grease and reapply.
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
November 26, 2009 12:10:12 AM

hay guys i'm have the same thing i have a BFG GTX285OCX and up to a week a go it worked fine and i've gon't a new card from RMA and still same thing at 64 and over i can not run a 3D game at all every thing else work ok meanning besktop now that is a card that first came out and now a new 1 that is a {B} v so i think i may have updated the drives to 191.70 i think but not shor .
i will hate to clear windows and put it all back on but i have 1 more RMA comeing next week like 12-2-09 tthis will mean 2 new 1's so if the 1 i'm gitting on 12-2 is doing the same thing it must be the new drivers 191.07 wich is bad and i'll have to wip it all out and start allover and save the old drive 190.62 and work from there and no i have a very good power and board but i'll tell you what i got


dou2 6600
asus striker exstream
850w sli cert thermaltake
corsair 8500 domanator x2 1024 2sticks
XP pro
BFG GTX285OCX
and yes i know xp only picks up 3mb's
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
November 26, 2009 12:13:36 AM

also looking at the temp. i see that if i don't up the fan speed to 100% it will go to 64c fast and above and i can play 4 a little bit but them it will take a *** agean
a b U Graphics card
November 26, 2009 12:15:44 AM

Are you only seeing it while playing online games? (this is an old thread btw, but I suppose there isn't any harm in asking the same question this time).
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