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Crazy PC Crash 3 Monitors GTX 680 SLI x2

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October 11, 2012 9:57:53 PM

Hi, I am totally new here even though I tom's hardware has helped me a lot on many occasions.
My HUGE problem now is that I have upgraded my Alienware (and for all the trolls out there I know its way overpriced) and added 2x SLI GTX680. The problem that I get is just randomly my pc freezes and reboots or sometimes just freezes with a buzzing sound and i have to manually reboot it.

I have done few things to exclude some scenarios:
Changed:
1)Changed all the fans
2) CPU from i7 920 to i72600k
3)Motherboard : alienware r1 to r3
4)PC - toatally new alienware
now my system is: 3960x 3.3GHz 16GB ram Win7 64bit 2xGTX680 3xBENQ XL2420T Surround display PSU 875W

I have done the mem test and passed
I have loaded the temp up with graphics and fine

what i did notice is on evga precision if i put the power target to 176% the crashes are less
should i change the power supply???maybe go for 1000W or 1200W even though everyone seems to think the 875W should be fine?
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 10:08:09 PM

You are probably using a terrible no-name brand PSU. You should look for any identifying stickers on the PSU you have currently.
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 10:09:54 PM

What's the brand of the PSU? If it's decent, 875 is plenty.
You've got some weird, conflicting information there. You say you changed your CPU from a 920 to a 2600K, but then list it as a 3960X.
Is your RAM a matching set?
What are the graphics temperatures? How about the CPU temps?

Are you referring to raising the power target or lowering it?
Related resources
October 11, 2012 10:22:54 PM

azathoth said:
You are probably using a terrible no-name brand PSU. You should look for any identifying stickers on the PSU you have currently.


It is an official alienaware psu, same as my old pc which they say are supposed to be ok, I hope it is the psu because otherwise i will go nuts, if i do change it for the configuration which i have what should i change it to?
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 10:22:58 PM

kajabla said:
What's the brand of the PSU? If it's decent, 875 is plenty.
You've got some weird, conflicting information there. You say you changed your CPU from a 920 to a 2600K, but then list it as a 3960X.
Is your RAM a matching set?
What are the graphics temperatures? How about the CPU temps?

Are you referring to raising the power target or lowering it?
+1 to all these questions please answer them all it's very important in order to help you correctly
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 10:28:20 PM

nostromox said:
It is an official alienaware psu, same as my old pc which they say are supposed to be ok, I hope it is the psu because otherwise i will go nuts, if i do change it for the configuration which i have what should i change it to?
what is the power supply brand and model ?
October 11, 2012 10:28:23 PM

kajabla said:
What's the brand of the PSU? If it's decent, 875 is plenty.
You've got some weird, conflicting information there. You say you changed your CPU from a 920 to a 2600K, but then list it as a 3960X.
Is your RAM a matching set?
What are the graphics temperatures? How about the CPU temps?

Are you referring to raising the power target or lowering it?


sorry about the misunderstanding, explanation:

I had a 920 then i changed the fans, cpu to 2600k then bought a new pc altogether ----> the 3960x as a new desctop bundle. I had the crash problem on all 3 changes.
October 11, 2012 10:29:32 PM

kajabla said:
What's the brand of the PSU? If it's decent, 875 is plenty.
You've got some weird, conflicting information there. You say you changed your CPU from a 920 to a 2600K, but then list it as a 3960X.
Is your RAM a matching set?
What are the graphics temperatures? How about the CPU temps?

Are you referring to raising the power target or lowering it?


I have the 16 ram as a matching ram and the cpu temp is fine as well, i have a program checking it and even pushed everything to the limit without raising it above 75 C
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 10:31:07 PM

Do you have the current or latest drivers installed ?
October 11, 2012 11:01:31 PM

i have the nvidia 306.97 driver which came out yesturday, yep its not the drivers......

ok guys just to fill you in to help:

its not the drivers
its not the temp
its not the actual harware of the gtx cards
its not the mem

i rulled out these causes for sure
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 11:24:51 PM

It's possible it's the power supply if not that maybe the other members know something i don't that could be the problem
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 11:26:11 PM

Well, it's also definitely not the CPU, because three had the same issue.

How did you rule out the GPU hardware as a possible cause? Have you experienced the same problem with other cards?
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2012 11:53:05 PM

Have you tried it with one card to see if you ran into any issues? Also run a GPU stress test. If it freezes then it could be the PSU since you know you're stressing the GPU to their max power consumption.
October 12, 2012 5:47:37 AM

andrewcarr said:
Have you tried it with one card to see if you ran into any issues? Also run a GPU stress test. If it freezes then it could be the PSU since you know you're stressing the GPU to their max power consumption.


i tried it with one card same issue
i even tried it with non palit card, it was asus gtx680 which i sold same issue
funny enough when i do the stress test it passed
2-3 times it did it on the windows performance stress test but i just did it now and no problems
it seems to prefer certain things like:
starcraft 4x4 no problem but 3x3 and crash straight away as soon as the map loads up
i would think 4x4 would be the problem but so strange?
a b K Overclocking
October 12, 2012 11:11:17 AM

That's a coincidence, almost certainly.
4x4 would only be a specific problem if CPU load were the issue, and it's apparently not.

I'd say you haven't ruled out the RAM for sure. Try it with just one stick at a time and see if you can reproduce the problem with each one.
Speaking of which, how reliably can you reproduce this problem? How often does it happen? Does it happen in every game? How about just browsing the web or sitting idle?
October 12, 2012 6:25:30 PM

kajabla said:
That's a coincidence, almost certainly.
4x4 would only be a specific problem if CPU load were the issue, and it's apparently not.

I'd say you haven't ruled out the RAM for sure. Try it with just one stick at a time and see if you can reproduce the problem with each one.
Speaking of which, how reliably can you reproduce this problem? How often does it happen? Does it happen in every game? How about just browsing the web or sitting idle?


I've rulled out the ram since i bought gaming ram and had the same problem, i used single dual triple channel with the same outcome

thanks for the comment
October 12, 2012 7:08:54 PM

nostromox said:
It is an official alienaware psu, same as my old pc which they say are supposed to be ok, I hope it is the psu because otherwise i will go nuts, if i do change it for the configuration which i have what should i change it to?

Problem detected.

Its an Alienware PSU, they ship computers with low power PSU's, replace the PSU.
October 12, 2012 7:46:36 PM

Kiowa789 said:
Problem detected.

Its an Alienware PSU, they ship computers with low power PSU's, replace the PSU.


ok cool, even if the 875W psu is the problem which one should i get???
October 12, 2012 10:12:25 PM

Well, seeing on how Alienware supplied it, its low tier, and cannot support your system, even though its an 875w psu, I would go for a 1000w, alienware has a habit of sending computers with PSU's that can barely supply the system.
a b K Overclocking
October 13, 2012 12:15:39 AM

Kiowa, the OP had the same issue with just one card. That puts the PSU hypothesis in question.
October 14, 2012 9:37:29 AM

If you are overclocking the video you may want to back it down a bit iv seen my buds 680s not overclcok hardly 50 mhz from factory. ANd ive read other stories that state they done oc well..
October 14, 2012 11:53:31 AM

I have never oc the cards nor the system, i only allowed the power bar to be at 176% which reduced the reboots
October 15, 2012 4:31:14 PM

nostromox said:
bought this:
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/160880602274?ssPageName=STRK:...

GeIL Thortech Thunderbolt Plus 1200W Gold (PSU) Power Supply with iPower Meter

Hope it fixes the problem, what do you think?


Never owned that brand, but 1200w is more than enough to run (2) GTX 680s in SLI. The 600 series are very energy efficient and that PSU should give you room to add at least one more 680 in the future for 3-way SLI...if you choose to go that route. At least the PSU shouldn't be the problem anymore while troubleshooting.
!