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New Build, XFX HD 4870 1GB, Getting Artifacts!?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 5, 2009 8:02:08 AM

Just put together a new build:

Intel i5-750
ASUS P7P55D Motherboard
Geil Ultra DDR3 PC3-17000 2x2GB
XFX HD 4870 1GB
Antec True 550W PS
Windows 7 x64 Professional

After getting it up and running following some memory issues (had to manually set voltage/timings to manuf. recommended, oops) everything seems to be working fine. I have everything set at standard/stock speeds.

I've read that the XFX 4870 runs pretty hot since it only has the ATI stock cooling HS/Fan, but my case has pretty good airflow so I figured I would be alright.

After 30-60 minutes of playing Dragon Age (settings maxed) I start to get some artifacts, they are pretty minor and limited to spikes and some dots or black flashes. Could my GFX card have some bad video ram? I've read that an inadequate PSU can also cause artifacts...the Antec True Power series isn't a cheapo PS, but it's rated about the bare minimum for my build (3 hard drives and the DVD drive being powered as well).

I'm also wondering if it could be caused by heat...I've gone into the Catalyst Control Center (CCC) and manually ramped up the fan to 60% (it didn't seem to ramp up by itself under a load). I will try to underclock my memory a little bit and see if this gets rid of the artifacts...if it does what does that tell me? Overheating? Not enough juice?

Is there any way that these artifacts are related to my system memory and not my video memory? I've never dealt with overheating problems or artifacts before...thanks for the help.

EDIT: I ran a Furmark Stability Test: Extreme Burning Mode and topped out at 80C. That doesn't seem to be unreasonable especially if Furmark is going to be stressing the board more than any game I would be running.

When running a Furmark Benchmark at default settings my max GPU temp is 76C. Idling at 51C - 55C.
a b U Graphics card
December 5, 2009 1:41:34 PM

The card will underclock to 600mhz at idle. It runs at 750 under load. Since you haven't told us what your maximum card temperatures are, we can't tell you if your card is overheating. It's possible. Your psu should be plenty to run your system. If you want to try to rule out overheating, then run your system with the side of the case off and the gpu fan set to 100%. If you don't get artifacts, then overheating is most likely the problem. Also, you can test your card with Furmark. This will stress it harder than any game will.
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December 5, 2009 5:28:21 PM

I am idling at about 52 C, I'll run Furmark and check to see what the temp is under load.
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December 5, 2009 5:52:18 PM

I ran a Furmark Stability Test: Extreme Burning Mode and topped out at 80C. That doesn't seem to be unreasonable especially if Furmark is going to be stressing the board more than any game I would be running.

When running a Furmark Benchmark at default settings my max GPU temp is 76C.
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December 5, 2009 7:58:20 PM

Getting artifacts in Fallout 3 as well...random flashes around the screen. I didn't see any artifacts when I ran Furmark...anyone have any idea what might be wrong? Should I RMA my card?
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a b U Graphics card
December 5, 2009 8:22:51 PM

Try reinstalling the drivers; also, does your card downclock itself on idle? That's been known to cause artifacts in some situations.

Try running Furmark again, but use gpuz to monitor your mem temps too.
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December 5, 2009 9:06:08 PM

Yes, my card does downclock itself on idle. I've found that underclocking my memory by 50mhz or so reduces the artifacts significantly...there is still one or two flashes now or then but it's not really noticable. Is this common or is it an indication that I might need to just RMA while I have the warranty?

I ran a stress test with GPU-Z active and these are the maximum temperatures logged:

GPU Temp: 84c
GPU Temp (DISPIO): 74c
GPU Temp (MEMIO): 83c
GPU Temp (SHADERCORE): 81c

EDIT: I also reinstalled drivers multiple times before posting here and still have the same issues
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December 5, 2009 9:49:14 PM

I used to have the xfx 4870 until I rma'd it, twice. The card ran hot for me too. First one hit 98celsius while the second reached 87celsius. Way too hot for my liking.

I too got some weird issues with the card. I fell asleep on accident and left my computer on with Dragon Age on Pause. Even though it was on pause I think the video card was still working to display the graphics. When I woke up in the morning the game was filled with artifacts even though it was paused. I bet it was a heat issue since it was on over night.
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December 5, 2009 10:38:12 PM

tuesday0180 said:
I used to have the xfx 4870 until I rma'd it, twice. The card ran hot for me too. First one hit 98celsius while the second reached 87celsius. Way too hot for my liking.

I too got some weird issues with the card. I fell asleep on accident and left my computer on with Dragon Age on Pause. Even though it was on pause I think the video card was still working to display the graphics. When I woke up in the morning the game was filled with artifacts even though it was paused. I bet it was a heat issue since it was on over night.



So you RMA'd it twice and the third XFX 4870 you got was good? Or did you end up going with another card?
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December 6, 2009 2:59:33 AM

v1pe said:
So you RMA'd it twice and the third XFX 4870 you got was good? Or did you end up going with another card?



I rma'd twice then third time I just got a EVGA Nvidia 260gtx 216shader sc. It's idling at 30c right now and I don't see it ever reach 60c during load. So far no heat issues or artifact issues.
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December 6, 2009 5:17:50 AM

Hmm, can't seem to figure out what is going wrong besides potentially bad memory...the board doesn't really seem to be "overheating", although 83 degrees isn't cool by any means.

I'm thinking of returning the board and going with a HD 5770 instead for DX11 and the lower power consumption. I realize that the performance is slightly worse, but in case I want to Crossfire down the road, a 5770 should be easier to find than a 4870.
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