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8800GT crashes whenever I try to run ANY game

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February 26, 2010 9:34:18 PM

This is a slightly long story, so bear with me please.

It all started with my power supply acting strangely. I originally had an Nvidia 8800GTX graphics card, and the power supply in my system was an OCZ850W GameXstream. The other components are 4 1GB sticks of OCZ 800Mhz ram, an ASUS SKT-775 P5B motherboard, and an Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 2.66Ghz Processor.

The 850W PSU was being oddly loud at times, and the top of my case was feeling warm. The voltages in the BIOS were very strange at times. When I saw the 12V rail had only 0.5V, I knew it was time to get a new PSU. (Smacking it would actually make the voltage OK for a while)

I replaced it with a Corsair 950TX 950W PSU. As far as I can tell the voltages are normal, and the power supply seems to work normally.

However, as soon as it was installed, the system developed a new problem. Shortly after booting into any operating system, it would either reset or freeze. Doing things like opening files seemed to make it happen quicker. I took the PC to a repair centre and they decided the problem was the graphics card. Apparantly they tested everything else and decided the rest of the system was fine.

The 8800GTX was replaced with an 8800GT from my friend. It was done at the repair place, so hopefully was installed correctly.

Upon getting the PC home, I tested it out. It seemed stable in Windows. No crashes occured.

However, a day later, I decided to try some games. All of the games I attempted to play had previously been working perfectly before the new PSU was installed.

With the 8800GT, the games all freeze up immediately as soon as actual gameplay is begun. S.T.A.L.K.E.R doesn't even get that far, and freezes the system before loading even the menu screen or intro videos.

I'm guessing it's a graphics card problem again since it's happening when I try to do relatively graphically intensive things. Watching videos on youtube etc is fine, however.

But the 8800GT should work fine! I have heard of problems with that particular type of card, but not instant crashes in every single game. For the record, I tried TES Oblivion. STALKER. Defence Alliance 2. Aliens vs Predator (The original PC game, not the new one).

Does anyone know what the problem is? Could it be fried PCI-E slot or something like that? Bear in mind I still don't know why my 8800GTX failed, considering that the new PSU is apparantly ok.

Or is the 8800GT just being a pain in the ass rather than it being a hardware problem? I never used a GT before. Still, I thought it would work as the drivers should be the same as my GTX...

Heeelppp!
a c 271 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 26, 2010 9:37:45 PM

I have a 939 SLi board here with a fried primary slot, so it is possible. Have you tried the cards in another PC to see whether they work?
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 26, 2010 9:50:00 PM

Just a quick question about the dead psu was the fan jammed? Take a little look into it and see if the board in there is it darkened? It is possible that it damaged more than just your 8800gtx but also your board and can only explain why a working card is acting the way it is unless the shop mishandled your hardware. Try and see if you can test the card in another pc (not at the shop they are ripoff) and if it acts properly then it is ruled out. The new psu should be good so that would leave the board. What brand and model is your board? The 8800gtx if you still got it still worth some cash so dump it on eBay as is and you might get an easy $50+ for it.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 26, 2010 9:52:43 PM

wow, 950watts is major major overkill for your system. You can use a Corsair 400watt and you'll be fine...while Corsair 500watts will run any high end quad system with a single GPU card.
February 26, 2010 10:32:35 PM

The 950W was for future proofing. I'll most likely be getting an ATI HD5970 for a graphics card. Along with, possibly, another GPU for a physX card if one is necessary. Also/instead I might get another 5970 later on for a Crossfire.

The fan on the psu was NOT jammed, no. I did check that. It made odd sounds sometimes, but it was turning.

The motherboard is an ASUS SKT-775 P5B 1066FSB. I have no idea if I can actually get a replacement for one of those these days. I'm tempted to just get a whole system upgrade, new Corei5 CPU and motherboard, etc. Then hopefully everything would be working. >_< I need an upgrade at some point anyway...

But it would be nice to know what the heck the problem is...

The 8800GT was fine when it was in my friend's computer relatively recently. If I open the PC case I void the repair warranty, so I think I'll have them look at it again first. Should be no extra charge, I would hope.

The 8800GTX has been tested in another PC and it showed the same problems in that one.

I couldn't see any damage to the motherboard, and apparantly the PC place couldn't either. Still, doesn't mean the PCI-e slot isn't buggered, right? I'm sure it's not always obvious.

How exactly is the GTX still worth money when it's broken? I had considered oven baking it to see if that will make it work again. I wouldn't think anyone would actually buy it though even if I did that. Do people buy busted GPUs?!
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 26, 2010 11:20:09 PM

dennisresevfan said:
The 950W was for future proofing. I'll most likely be getting an ATI HD5970 for a graphics card. Along with, possibly, another GPU for a physX card if one is necessary. Also/instead I might get another 5970 later on for a Crossfire.

The fan on the psu was NOT jammed, no. I did check that. It made odd sounds sometimes, but it was turning.

The motherboard is an ASUS SKT-775 P5B 1066FSB. I have no idea if I can actually get a replacement for one of those these days. I'm tempted to just get a whole system upgrade, new Corei5 CPU and motherboard, etc. Then hopefully everything would be working. >_< I need an upgrade at some point anyway...

But it would be nice to know what the heck the problem is...

The 8800GT was fine when it was in my friend's computer relatively recently. If I open the PC case I void the repair warranty, so I think I'll have them look at it again first. Should be no extra charge, I would hope.

The 8800GTX has been tested in another PC and it showed the same problems in that one.

I couldn't see any damage to the motherboard, and apparantly the PC place couldn't either. Still, doesn't mean the PCI-e slot isn't buggered, right? I'm sure it's not always obvious.

How exactly is the GTX still worth money when it's broken? I had considered oven baking it to see if that will make it work again. I wouldn't think anyone would actually buy it though even if I did that. Do people buy busted GPUs?!


They are collectors cards and the coolers on them are worth some change in them selves. Go ahead and oven the card but if it don't work you can still sell it. While at the pc shop have them open it up in front of you and let you instead your rig if they won't let you then they must have something to hide. I think your board isn't good or is in part of the problem. I never trust pc shops knowing the dirty tricks they some times pull even repair shops for apple do the same.
February 26, 2010 11:28:53 PM

I wouldn't be suprised if the motherboard was dodgy. I'll see if I can find out exactly how they "checked" it.
February 27, 2010 9:33:40 AM

Hm, the odd thing here is that they could have just told me everything was busted and then charged me a lot more for a major repair job.

Why claim it's just the GPU if they can charge for motherboard installation too?

I wonder if I should just RMA the power supply, demand a new one no matter if it seems to work or not, and get a full system upgrade?

Otherwise how do I avoid damaging components with whatever the dodgy part of the system is?

Anyway, as an update, I tried running games in Windows Vista. The same thing happened. So it's not the operating system or drivers (Vista automatically installed drivers somehow when it detected the 8800GT)
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 27, 2010 12:34:51 PM

It is very easy to handle parts safely. Never force or remove parts in an aggressive manor. Place them carefully on a flat surface ware they won't be in the way. Remember ware things go and make a diagram if needed.
February 27, 2010 7:18:39 PM

Eh? I didn't mean how do I handle the parts without breaking them. I've had the whole system apart before with no problems.

No, what I meant was... for example, if the power supply was somehow the cause of all this, and I kept the power supply because I didn't know it was the problem.

It might blow up my new processor, RAM, graphics card, everything. And that would be... expensive, to say the least.

It's only really the PSU that would have that issue, as if I replace the motherboard I'll be basically replacing everything else besides the hard drives.

So is there any fault that could avoid being noticed even during PSU testing?
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 27, 2010 8:01:52 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Eh? I didn't mean how do I handle the parts without breaking them. I've had the whole system apart before with no problems.

No, what I meant was... for example, if the power supply was somehow the cause of all this, and I kept the power supply because I didn't know it was the problem.

It might blow up my new processor, RAM, graphics card, everything. And that would be... expensive, to say the least.

It's only really the PSU that would have that issue, as if I replace the motherboard I'll be basically replacing everything else besides the hard drives.

So is there any fault that could avoid being noticed even during PSU testing?



Nothing in computers blows up except for bad caps unless you decided to put 120AC through it but that is dangerous. It is no ware near as hard as you are making it out to be about taking out parts. I am guessing you never worked with electronics or auto parts. Don't bother with the drives. Don't drop or jar any thing be careful not to damage any connectors. Set aside parts in an area ware they won't be in the the way. Don't stack any of them.
February 27, 2010 8:17:55 PM

Well, that's what I thought.

But considering that my problem was an 8800GTX suddenly and mysteriously ceasing to work normally, and considering that it only started when I changed PSUs, surely something MUST have been damaged?

I've heard using a dodgy power supply can damage motherboard etc over time. What form would that damage take? Surely burst capacitors could only result from too much current?

Otherwise, what's going on?

Besides electrical damage, all I can think of is that somehow the repair guy knocked the card hard enough to damage both it and the PCI-e slot.

What is the problem likely to be? Considering that a replacement GPU works without crashing up until I try to run a graphically intensive game? I tried some emulated PS1 games and they were ok, so presumably it's only when serious GPU processing power is required, or possibly 3D effects.
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 27, 2010 9:07:46 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Well, that's what I thought.

But considering that my problem was an 8800GTX suddenly and mysteriously ceasing to work normally, and considering that it only started when I changed PSUs, surely something MUST have been damaged?

I've heard using a dodgy power supply can damage motherboard etc over time. What form would that damage take? Surely burst capacitors could only result from too much current?

Otherwise, what's going on?

Besides electrical damage, all I can think of is that somehow the repair guy knocked the card hard enough to damage both it and the PCI-e slot.

What is the problem likely to be? Considering that a replacement GPU works without crashing up until I try to run a graphically intensive game? I tried some emulated PS1 games and they were ok, so presumably it's only when serious GPU processing power is required, or possibly 3D effects.


I am thinking it is your board knowing that you got a brand new psu and the card known to be working properly so this is the next thing to rule out. Look for any burn marks and any thing that is missing ir damaged.
February 27, 2010 11:34:00 PM

Well, both me and the repair guys checked out the motherboard. I for one couldn't see any damage. But I'm no expert. Maybe it's just not obvious damage. I guess my only choice is to tell them they didnt fix the problem and get them to check again.
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 28, 2010 12:45:47 AM

dennisresevfan said:
Well, both me and the repair guys checked out the motherboard. I for one couldn't see any damage. But I'm no expert. Maybe it's just not obvious damage. I guess my only choice is to tell them they didnt fix the problem and get them to check again.



Get them to get the job done at no extra cost they should have got it fixed the first time. If they are not helpful I can guide you through a few things. I believe it is the board since the psu is new, ram tested fine through memtest, and the card is a working pull from your friend. The best of luck and let me/us know how things go. :) 
February 28, 2010 10:46:15 AM

I've tried memtest on the RAM but I couldn't work out how to test more than 1GB at a time.

Windows did at one point randomly decide to do a ram test during the boot sequence. It went all the way through, made an odd beeping sound at one point, but then in the end didn't report any problems. It only ever did that ram test once.

Back when the GTX was still installed, I did try running the system with only one ram stick installed at a time, and it still crashed/froze.

Can we safely assume it's not the RAM, or did that series of beeps (something like 3 to 5 beeps, repeated over and over again, but then just stopped, and no error reported. In fact, no report was given at all.) mean the ram is also screwed?

How DO I get memtest to test all my ram at once? It gives an error about not being able to test more than a certain amount with one instance of memtest. Should I just run it 4 times at once and set each to 1GB of ram?

The trouble is, I don't know how to work out what those beeps meant and I don't know why it decided to go into a ram check on that occasion and that occasion only. So I can't record what the actual beep sequence was.
a c 271 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 28, 2010 10:55:14 AM

Pull the RAM sticks out and test them one at a time, if they all pass then it may be one of the slots so you will have to test with one stick then two then three etc.
March 4, 2010 2:37:23 PM

Already did that.

I believe I found the source of the problem, if not yet the full extent of it.

A pc repair guy put 4 pins of a PCI-e power connector into the motherboard's EPS12V socket.

NEVER DO THAT.

As I discovered after quite some extensive research on the internet, the two plugs are reversed in polarity. So I believe he caused a huge power surge that blew up my graphics card.

Presumably it's damaged my motherboard too.
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 4, 2010 2:45:02 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Already did that.

I believe I found the source of the problem, if not yet the full extent of it.

A pc repair guy put 4 pins of a PCI-e power connector into the motherboard's EPS12V socket.

NEVER DO THAT.

As I discovered after quite some extensive research on the internet, the two plugs are reversed in polarity. So I believe he caused a huge power surge that blew up my graphics card.

Presumably it's damaged my motherboard too.



OK you need to file a complaint with their corporate offices for damages or with the local courts if they refuse to refund you the total cost as well replacement parts. The tech has got to be a true moron to not know the difference.
March 5, 2010 10:46:38 AM

He owns his own company. Which is to say, himself.

I called him and basically took him through the problem.
The conversation went a bit like this:

"Hi, it's *insert my name here*, remember me?"
"Ah hi, yes."
"About 2 weeks ago you installed a power supply for me."
"Yes?"
"During the process you put a PCI-e power connector into the EPS12V socket."
"Yes..."
"Well, I did some research and found out that the two cables have opposite polarity. I think you blew up my GPU."
"Oh dear, well... I have to pay for my mistakes. I could get you a new graphics card or put some money towards a new one."

So basically he admitted the mistake and is willing to pay some form of compensation. We've not talked values yet. I'm going to have to see if the motherboard is damaged too. He's suggested he'll see if he can find me a cheaper source for the HD5970 graphics card I'm thinking of getting. Should be calling me on Monday.

I just hope he plans on paying more than the LOWEST price you can get an 8800GTX for, which is £90 on ebay (Buy It Now). I think the average price is more like £150 online.

Any suggestions what I should be asking for?
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 5, 2010 11:35:50 AM

dennisresevfan said:
He owns his own company. Which is to say, himself.

I called him and basically took him through the problem.
The conversation went a bit like this:

"Hi, it's *insert my name here*, remember me?"
"Ah hi, yes."
"About 2 weeks ago you installed a power supply for me."
"Yes?"
"During the process you put a PCI-e power connector into the EPS12V socket."
"Yes..."
"Well, I did some research and found out that the two cables have opposite polarity. I think you blew up my GPU."
"Oh dear, well... I have to pay for my mistakes. I could get you a new graphics card or put some money towards a new one."

So basically he admitted the mistake and is willing to pay some form of compensation. We've not talked values yet. I'm going to have to see if the motherboard is damaged too. He's suggested he'll see if he can find me a cheaper source for the HD5970 graphics card I'm thinking of getting. Should be calling me on Monday.

I just hope he plans on paying more than the LOWEST price you can get an 8800GTX for, which is £90 on ebay (Buy It Now). I think the average price is more like £150 online.

Any suggestions what I should be asking for?


Make him buy you a new card and have him replace the board as well. Same model board if possible as for the card a WORKING 8800gtx.
March 5, 2010 3:47:56 PM

Well, I could get a replacement motherboard, but I'm tempted to just upgrade to a better motherboard, ram, and processor while I have the chance. Maybe he'd be willing to pay something towards that.

My Core 2 Duo has struggled a bit with some games recently.
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 5, 2010 6:03:41 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Well, I could get a replacement motherboard, but I'm tempted to just upgrade to a better motherboard, ram, and processor while I have the chance. Maybe he'd be willing to pay something towards that.

My Core 2 Duo has struggled a bit with some games recently.



Its up to you, just don't let him rip you off I mean watch him like some buzzard over a dieing animal.
March 6, 2010 11:54:33 AM

Hey, as for selling my 8800GTX on ebay, is that possible?

I thought it was illegal to try to sell any kind of busted hardware on there?

Or is that only if I claim it's working? If I clearly state that it's damaged, say what the problem is, then say that the cooler is in perfect working order and may be useful to someone, then would it be alright?

And what kind of starting price should I set?
a c 271 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 6, 2010 3:06:24 PM

Selling it as damaged an or suitable for spares is legal so long as you describe as such.
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 6, 2010 3:53:04 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Hey, as for selling my 8800GTX on ebay, is that possible?

I thought it was illegal to try to sell any kind of busted hardware on there?

Or is that only if I claim it's working? If I clearly state that it's damaged, say what the problem is, then say that the cooler is in perfect working order and may be useful to someone, then would it be alright?

And what kind of starting price should I set?



As mousemonkey put it you can but you got to sell it as is no returns. I have sold hardware on eBay in the past and a regular shopper.
March 6, 2010 9:12:04 PM

Ah, ok. Well that's good news. That 8800GTX has quite a good heatsink and fan unit on it. Must be worth something at least.
a b U Graphics card
March 6, 2010 9:57:01 PM

Sell it as a piece of nVidia history of the good ole G80 core or a high-tech door-stop/paperweight.
March 6, 2010 11:08:51 PM

Its hard to know what starting price to set on it...
a c 172 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
March 6, 2010 11:51:57 PM

dennisresevfan said:
Its hard to know what starting price to set on it...



A good starting price is about $15-20 USD since the cooler, bracket, retaining shim, and capacitors are of value as well these are popular collectors items due to their past history. Plus they were the first mega chip to be produced with a die greater than 400mm2.
March 7, 2010 9:51:54 AM

Hm, so about £10-15 in the UK. Ok, well, sounds like it might be worth a try. I just hope I don't lose too much of whatever profit results to ebay.
!