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Squealing/Whistling Noise + Crash at High FPS

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October 26, 2010 2:14:51 PM

So I've been having a problem for a while now, where my computer will make a high-pitched squealing/whistling noise (not too loud, just loud enough to hear over the fans) whenever the frame rates reach 1500+ fps (usually during pre-rendered videos or lightweight benchmarks), and in some cases the computer will just power off with no blue screen or errors of any kind.

- The two instances where this consistently occurs is during the 3D video benchmarks of a software called PC-Matic, and the intro video of Crysis (when you start a new game) - the logo videos that play when Crysis first starts cause the noise but no crash.

- Interestingly, when the computer is under load I experience no noise and no crashes. I have run 8 threads of Prime95 and FurMark at extreme burn-in settings SIMULTANEOUSLY with no noises or crashes. Additionally, I have played through the complete single player campaigns of Crysis, Bad Company 2, and Fallout New Vegas since I noticed the issue and they never once caused the noise or a crash.

- Originally, I thought the issue was with my OCZ GameXstream 850W PSU, so I went through tech support, did an RMA and got a new unit...with the same problem. I had tested the old unit with a PSU tester which showed that the +3.3V line voltage was too high, but it showed the new unit as having no issues.

- I have an older system with leftover parts that has an AMD Athlon X2 3800+, Asus M2A-VM mATX mobo, 4GB DDR2-800, eVGA GTS 250, and a Cooler Master 650W PSU. I took the GTS 250 and put it in my main system and put my HD 5870 in the old system and ran the same programs that caused the crashes and sounds before. BOTH systems made the whistling noise but neither crashed.

- I have found no evidence of burst capacitors, no strange smells, no burn marks, and my system has been very stable otherwise.

That's all I have at the moment, I'm hoping that one of you will have a genius idea I haven't thought of. I had an old thread that I closed in the PSU section that you might find helpful: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/291413-28-tomshardware (wasn't sure where to put this thread since I don't know what's causing the issue). All info on my current system is my sig, and nothing has been overclocked since I wanted to solve this issue before I did any overclocking.

EDIT: For some reason, I can't see my signature, maybe you guys can but just in case, here are the components of my main system:

MSI Big Bang XPower
Intel Core i7 950 @ 3.06 GHz (stock clock)
3x2GB Patriot Sector7 DDR3-1600 (8-8-8-24)
XFX Radeon HD 5870 XXX Edition (also @ stock settings)
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium
OCZ GameXstream 850W PSU
main HDD is Seagate 1TB 7200RPM SATA
October 26, 2010 3:47:07 PM

Have you tried dusting out 5870 with an air can?
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October 26, 2010 4:07:08 PM

Plumble said:
Have you tried dusting out 5870 with an air can?


Yeah, I dust it prolly about once a month or so.
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October 27, 2010 7:27:34 PM

are you able to locate where to noise is coming from by ear?
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October 27, 2010 8:17:11 PM

I would LOVE to see if someone can help on this. I had the same noises coming from my GTX 275 when I played games like Mass Effect 2 and The Witcher the second I plugged it into my computer. Now I am graphics card less. I hope someone can help with your situation. =(
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October 27, 2010 8:37:46 PM

Could be GPU fan issue.
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October 27, 2010 10:15:45 PM

Plumble said:
are you able to locate where to noise is coming from by ear?

Unofortunately, no. I've tried putting my head real close while the case is open but the components are just too close for me to tell the difference.
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October 28, 2010 9:01:40 AM

Do you have a spare graphics card to try instead? Just to eliminate the 5870.
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October 28, 2010 4:59:44 PM

Plumble said:
Do you have a spare graphics card to try instead? Just to eliminate the 5870.


Well, like I said in my first post, I swapped the 5870 and the GTS 250 and BOTH systems made the noise, but neither system crashed.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 28, 2010 5:18:05 PM

bikeracer4487 said:
Unofortunately, no. I've tried putting my head real close while the case is open but the components are just too close for me to tell the difference.

Open the case and try then.....
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October 28, 2010 6:58:28 PM

Then try disconnecting one case fan at a time. Then examine all the remaining fans but watch the temps on anything that has a disconnected fan (CPU etc..).
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October 28, 2010 7:16:56 PM

Atotalnoob said:
Open the case and try then.....


Sorry, when I said that I meant that I had opened the case and put my ear about as close to the parts as I could without risking getting my hair caught in a fan...
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October 31, 2010 2:36:23 PM

Did you find the problem?
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October 31, 2010 3:30:24 PM

Unfortunately no, but XFX did just approve an RMA on the 5870, so we'll see if THAT fixes anything...
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 31, 2010 4:30:42 PM

bikeracer4487 said:
Unfortunately no, but XFX did just approve an RMA on the 5870, so we'll see if THAT fixes anything...

Hope it does!
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October 31, 2010 4:37:53 PM

Good luck.
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January 20, 2011 8:03:09 PM

Best answer selected by bikeracer4487.
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January 21, 2011 7:21:54 AM

This topic has been closed by Maziar
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