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I need your help! Homebuilt computer is crashing during gaming

Last response: in Systems
April 8, 2010 12:08:06 PM

System Specs:
2.4GHz Quad Core AMD CPU
4 GB RAM (DDR2 800MHz)
ATI 4850 HD Radeon

My computer keeps randomly shutting down. Some backstory:

I have been playing the Lead and Gold beta recently. Ever since I started playing it, my computer has been shutting itself down randomly. The first night I got the game, I played it for several hours (around 4) perfectly. Ever since then, it has been consistently shutting down my comp.

These are the same kinds of shutdowns I got when my CPU overheated and when my PSU fried (I upgraded my PSU from a no-name 500w to an Antec 550w and reapplied the thermal grease on my CPU a month ago). In this case I can play the game anywhere from 2 hours to 30 minutes before the computer randomly shuts down (i.e. it has shut down after 30 minutes of play and it has shutdown after around 2 hours of play). The graphics (which are at maximum for my system, 1680x1050 res, x8 AF, etc.) pause for about 3 seconds, continue as if nothing had happened (nothing changes after the freeze, no artifacting, everythings looks perfect) and then the entire computer shuts down without a warning message popping up. First the monitors go off (I have two monitors, if that matters), and the computer stays on for approx. 30 seconds afterwards (judging by my CPU fan. I have a CPU fan with a giant green light that doesn't go off for a while after the shut down). I have been running Rivatuner and apparently the games uses 95-99% of my GPU, constantly.

So the weird part is it seems to only be this game. Since the recent crashes with Lead and Gold, I have since played Modern Warfare 2 (on max settings) for around six hours without a crash (this game uses approx 95-98% of my GPU) and other games (BFBC2, Left 4 Dead 2, Serious Sam HD) I have run for around 3 hours each, don't cause my computer to crash.

Due to the games running for a long time, I don't think it is a CPU overheating issue, due to the fact that nothing changes in my graphics before the shutdown I don't think it is a graphics card issue, and I don't think it is a PSU issue because my computer stays on for at least 30 seconds after the game shuts down (not to mention I just upgraded my PSU two months ago) so what could it be? I am open to any suggestions at this point so let me hear you craziest theories and resolutions.
a b B Homebuilt system
April 8, 2010 7:32:15 PM

Download PC Wizard and check your GPU temps.