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8600GT GPU problem... fan speed unresponsive?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 31, 2010 9:50:44 AM

First time poster here, hopefully i can get some help from you guys if possible... any tips or advice would be much appreciated

i have a few questions and problems with my GPU it seems like... I just downloaded a few games the other night (The Sims 3 and GTA IV) and both games run for about 15-20min straight and then my computer shuts down completely without any warning... this never happened to any of the other games i play (Call of Duty Modern Warfare2, NFS Shift and Prostreet) and i run some of those games on high res with the graphics near max quality...
ive downloaded RivaTuner and tried to adjust the fan speed and set it to 100% cycle duty... however i come across to things... 1. doesnt matter if i set it to 25% or 100% i cant hear any audible difference in fan noise, and i have the casing off on my computer.. i thought maybe with it off i could hear the change in fan speed but i cant... and 2. after i set it to 100% cycle duty it'll stay at that speed while my GPU idles at around 55c-56c... but as soon as i play The Sims or GTA IV the fan speed automatically adjusts itself anywhere from 30% to 70%... while my GPU temp keeps rising... i can set it to 100% and it will automatically lower itself... it seems to reach 91c+ before my comp justs down

also i cant seem to get Rivatuner to display my GPU's fan RPM... i went into Plug-ins and check marked it and it still doesnt show me the line graph... i can get the other misc. graphs to show, but not my GPU's fan speed...

any advice? i know theres alot to read but if anyone could help me out, that would be great... thanks in advanced
January 31, 2010 12:13:29 PM

try downloading a new driver. i had a similar issue with my GTS250,

my old 8600gts was passive cooled no fan.

gpu fans generally dont have fans speed meters, so that would explain that. (somebody correct me if im wrong)
January 31, 2010 6:27:55 PM

ive tried two different drivers and the same thing seems to be happening with both drivers.... PC shuts down within 20min of gaming because temps reach past 91c+ and the fan cycle duty is randomly somewhere between 30% and 70%... the only way i can play those specific games past 20min is if i Tab-Alt out of the game and wait for the temp. to drop back down to 61c

im currently on Forceware 196.34... i also tried 196.21...
as for the fan rpm monitoring, i think i found out my GPU doesnt have a sensor to monitor it, so i guess theres no way to see if my fan's actaully working, or if its stuck on one speed

i forgot to mention if this helps at all..
im running
Intel Pentium
E5300 @ 2.60Ghz (Stock)
3Gb of Ram
XFX 8600GT GPU

is there anyway to lock the cycle duty % down so that it can run @ 100% all the time?
or is it possible my GPU might be defective?
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February 1, 2010 4:04:17 AM

well yes your gpu could be defective, im suprised at it shutting down at 91 though. my old 8600gts went up to 113 C regurlarly without a problem. 91 is still quite hot though.

it might help if you get some airflow in your case. an intake fan pointed at the graphics card should help. what case do you have?

try also cleaning out all of the dust and make sure you have good airflow.

what you could try is using the nvidia control panel, and somewhere in there find a fan controller dial. i believe there is one there, but im not sure.

sorry if not too helpful, just try to get good airflow.
February 1, 2010 5:31:27 AM

its not shutting down at 91c, thats just the highest ive seen it get when i tab alt to take a look at the GPU's temp..

the case is just from HP.. i can only find pictures of the front, but it looks like this http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41G7Q2JKT1L._SL50...

ive already cleaned all the fans out and got rid of as much dust as possible but that didnt seem to help... im currently running the CPU with the side case off hoping that would help with bring the temp down at the very least, but that was unsuccessful as well
i dont believe there was a fan control dial on nvidia control panel, i was looking around for awhile but didnt find any adjustment sliders for the fan, thats when i turned to Rivatuner

ive opened a ticket to XFX in hopes they can repair or replace my card... i just wish that i was 100% certain my fan is no good.... i since my card doesnt seem to have a sensor to record the RPM of the fan
February 1, 2010 6:56:32 AM

yeah i guess that is the best idea then. just RMA it. XFX cards come with lifetime warranty anyways.

you did buy the card seperate from the rest of the computer right?

usually i do not tend to even consider RMA ing things, but i suppose its the easiest solution.

good luck!
February 1, 2010 7:01:39 AM

yeah i bought the card on tigerdirect.com
and i do think the card is starting to die on me... i just ran one of my old games like NFS Prostreet, which i never had a problem with, but it ended up shutting down on me like 10-15min into the game again...
its strange because i did a stability test with Furmark and i got the GPU to hit 107c on the stress test and it didnt shut down... but for some odd reason when i play gta iv, sims3 and prostreet my computer ends up shutting down on me with no warning... unfortunatly i cant see what temp the GPU is at before it shuts down since its always completely random
February 1, 2010 8:12:48 AM

hmmm, strange indeed.

maybe its not your GPU, i dont know.

could well be that your cpu or ram is dying. (try running a ram test)

I've had a situation where the ram had errors and the system would crash. at first it doestn't happen, and slowly it becomes more frequent, and eventually system wont start up.

have fun testing for a good 3 hours. if it comes out with errors, you know where your problem lies. otherwise, RMA time for card.

good luck
February 1, 2010 8:48:20 AM

would you recommend me a good program to do the RAM test?
id like to find out whats causing the shut downs.. thanks
February 1, 2010 1:22:11 PM

well i always used the one that came on the ubuntu discs. any program should work though. if you have a big internet connection i reccomend the ubuntu one because you just run the disc, and from there you choose test ram and it does it for you.

+ ubuntu is awesome
February 1, 2010 1:22:25 PM

sry no experience with other apps
February 1, 2010 1:56:49 PM

Those older entry/mid level Nvidia cards had tiny GPU fans that easily pack up with dust and die. No fan = High heat = burnt out GPU. Can you visually confirm that the fan is turning by taking the side of the case off and looking at it while the computer is running? Even at 2D idle, the fan should be turning if it is working.

Burnt out GPUs tend to fail and crash at much lower temp thresholds than fully functional GPUs. Having it fail at lower temps now might only mean, that at some point in the past while not being monitored, heat climbed to a damaging level. I have personally witnessed this with at least 3 8600GTs (and 1 8500gt) in friends computers.

Pointing a fan straight at the GPU in a closed case, only works IF you have a surplus of exhaust pressure. Otherwise it just moves warm air around inside the case, warming up the rest of the internals. Having a side mount fan pull air AWAY from the GPU is without fail, a good way to drop GPU temps, regardless of the total fan setup.
February 1, 2010 6:24:21 PM

yeah i can visually and physically feel the fan running at all times.... i can put my ear right next to the fan and set the fan speed at 25% or 100% and their is no difference of fan noise.. it seems like the fan is stuck on one speed reguardless of the GPU's temp...
i also can seem to get the fan to stay at a certain percentage, even if i control it manually... i made a fan profile of 100% cycle duty and set it up to launch whenever the temperature ranges from 55c to 999c which should mean it should be forced to run at full speed at all times... however it ignores the command and i can see that the fan speed would automatically jump around
!