I have been playing Mass Effect 2 for some time, and occasionally, it has caused the system to lock up, forcing a hard boot. I thought it was just some s/w incompatibility, and for the most part, the game worked great. However, yesterday, it locked up hard and every time I restarted the game, I got strange blue squiggles all over the screen. After a few reboots, the graphical damage started to show in Win7, even when I had not started the game. After a while, the computer would lock up. Tried updating drivers, etc...no joy. Problem kept getting worse. Booted to Ubuntu and after some time, the graphics went crazy and I had to force shut down. I ran memtests and safe mode, and it looked fine, but when I go to 1080 full graphics, it eventually gets the weird graphics and locks up. After some time, the same thing would happen even in safe mode - though the computer did not lock. This morning, even the mobo splash screen is corrupt and the basic VGA shows all sorts of weird characters...will not even boot.
I'm assuming that my EVGA 8800GT Superclocked card has died. Did ME2 push it too hard? What can I use to measure temps and write them to a file so I can see what is happening (for my next card...)? I'm going to go buy a new gfx card, but want to be sure that is the problem. I didn't know a game could destroy a gfx card. Next time, I want to monitor temps and such to be sure it isn't doing something it's not supposed to. System has plenty of cooling and has been rock solid for 2 years. But ME2 did seem to be pushing the CPU to the max.
System specs are:
Gigabyte GA-EP45-DS3L (BIOS F7)
E7200 Core2Duo 2.53Ghz 1066Mhz FSB 3MB L2 (OC to 3.2Ghz)
SuperTalent 2x2G DDR2-800 PC6400 CL 5-5-5-15 (T800UX4GC5)
Seagate 500GB SATA2 7200 32mb HD
EVGA 8800GT 512MB Superclocked Edition
Ultra X-connect X2 550-watt PSU
Windows 7 x64 and Ubuntu 9.01
Any guidance or insight would be appreciated. Anybody else had this experience?
Give eVGA tech support a call - 888.880.EVGA (3842). If you bothered to register the card when you purchased it, it's probably still under warranty. (As best I can recall, all eVGA 8800GT cards had -AR suffixes in their model numbers, and therefore carried lifetime warranties pending registration of the card within 30-days of purchase.)
As for what caused the problem, I can only speculate. It could have been heat-related, or the card may have just given out due to wear and tear on one or more of it's many components. eVGA has a program called Precision that's very simple to use for overclocking, underclocking, and monitoring video card temps. It works with all nVIDIA-based cards, not just eVGA cards. It's available on their website, but to download it, you must first login.
I own an eVGA 8800GT also, originally purchased about 2-1/2 years ago. Last spring, it died. Unfortunately, I didn't register mine. But, eVGA was kind enough to still offer me a one-time replacement. All I had to pay was $10 shipping. Their support department is excellent.
Yes, that's great advice. However, I couldn't wait for the whole RMA process to unfold, so I went out and got an ASUS HD 5770 today. That fixed it instantly! Apparently, my 8000GT just crapped out, though it did seem the game pushed it over the edge. The new board idles at 38C and runs up to 57C during ME2 - does not seem excessive. I got my air compressor and blew out every fan and duct inside the case to make sure airflow is ok.
Will still try the RMA on the old board...why not?
This is the downside of overclocking, it will shorten the life spam of a card. On the other hand, the quality of the components plays a major role as well.
So you should not blame the game under any circumstance.
As for the new VGA you got, it is a good choice but the improvements won't be so significant.
I didn't OC the card, just the CPU...not sure that is pushing the card any harder.
Yes, I believe that the gfx card was going, and the stress (temp) of ME2 just pushed it over the edge.
Well, the 5770 specs out quite a bit better on the comparison tables, but yeah, I pretty much played any game at near full settings with the 8800GT, so not expecting to be blown away by this one.