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Vertical pink lines and horrible artifacts in games

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 2, 2009 12:19:02 AM

Dear readers and potential helpers,

I've had my ATI Radeon X1950XT 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI E card for about two years, and I've been really satisfied with the card. However, recently I've been having a lot of problems. First, it's during games. I would see horrible artifacts all over the place. It would almost always crash when I'm playing NBA 2k9 for the pc like 30 minutes in. Ever since then, I have kind of stopped playing games, and even formatted my hard drive and installed all new drivers. But the problems don't end there. Even when I'm just browsing the internet, or listening to music, my system would still crash, at low CPU temperatures. And it's a hard freeze, where i can't do control alt delete, can't move the mouse, the sound would stutter and be stuck, and when i press the locks on the keyboard, the lights don't even toggle. More recently, I've noticed these pink dots that form on my screen against a white background(such as when i'm on the internet or using MS word), like dead pixels, that form a vertical line when I'm scrolling. But when I minimize, the pink dots/lines disappear when i restore the window. I've been reading online, and some people suggest that it could be the power supply. any other suggestions? it's hard to solve the problem if i don't even know if it's the driver of the gpu or somethin else... ='(

My system is:


Rosewill RP550-2 550W ATX12V v2.01 Power Supply
GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3R mobo
Crucial Ballistix (4 x 1GB) DDR2 SDRAM
Seagate 320GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
Intel Core 2 Duo e6750 @ 2.66GHz
April 2, 2009 3:39:54 AM

That sounds like your card is overheating. Download and run RivaTuner. It will show you what temps your card is running. That card is borderline ancient, it could be totally filled with dust over the years. I sugest taking the card out and blowing all the dust out of the heatsink and fan.

If your Temps are still above 85 or 90 C, then you may have to reseat the Heatsink. THis is an easy process and should only take a minute and some thermal compound.

CHeck your Temps first and post em. :) 

P.S. sorry for the late response, we try to be a little bit quicker on this board.


April 2, 2009 6:45:53 AM

customisbetter said:
That sounds like your card is overheating. Download and run RivaTuner. It will show you what temps your card is running. That card is borderline ancient, it could be totally filled with dust over the years. I sugest taking the card out and blowing all the dust out of the heatsink and fan.

If your Temps are still above 85 or 90 C, then you may have to reseat the Heatsink. THis is an easy process and should only take a minute and some thermal compound.

CHeck your Temps first and post em. :) 

P.S. sorry for the late response, we try to be a little bit quicker on this board.


actually i thought your response was pretty quick =)

anyways, i did take out my card a while ago, and there was a LOT of dust behind the other end of the card that went unnoticed, and i suspect that may have permanently damaged the card after playing games with it with that much dust?? i have been monitoring the temperature with atitools, the pink dots still appear on my screen even when the card is running at 55C (it's around that temp or lower when the system is idle). Would graphics cards crash the system like i described though, b/c it's freezing even when i'm just reading stuff online.
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April 2, 2009 3:28:18 PM

One thing at a time, I think...
Your PSU is not a quality one, and may, over time, have done the damage, if heat didn't, but isn't a smoking gun. It would not outright kill a card instantly, so testing with another GPU is a reasonable first step. Your X1950XT would be matched or bettered by even a 4650, which is only $70; a 4670, which is notably better, is only $80. The rest of your rig looks reasonably current, but replacing your GPU is probably necessary. If you can afford it, replacing your PSU is also a good idea. I would recommend one that is 80+ certified, from a company like Antec, Corsair, PC Power & Cooling, or Seasonic. Rosewill has one, but I could not find the UL# listed, so I would not trust it.
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