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Strange video errors in select games

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 10, 2010 3:53:48 AM

Okay, so I just built a new system using a Sapphire 5850 card. The card seems to work wonders as far as frames go. I am having issues, but only with select games. It's really confusing because none of the errors seem to be traditional artifacting. One of the issues occurs in Darksiders. For some reason, most of the world is completely invisible. Only a select few textures, arrows above enemies heads and background effects are visible. So all I see are like flames which are supposed to be on some characters and shadows, but no ground. Strangely, there seems to be a circle around my character where I can actually see the ground just fine, but the circle only covers the very bottom of the screen. It just seems like such a random assortment of error. Another error occurs in Alpha Protocol. The game as a whole runs absolutely beautifully. I couldn't ask for better frames or detail quality during gameplay, but when you're in a conversation with someone, there should be 3-4 different response styles to choose from, but the words that tell you the style are invisible and you only see the left, right, up, down choices, just no words. This is also so random, and obviously not your average artifacting. The last error occurred in a demo that I downloaded for Arcania: Gothic 4. The detail quality, again, is beautiful and I get great frames, but there's a random field of blue through the middle of the picture and only the top and bottom of the picture are visible. The field of blue looks sort of like a low quality water effect.

All of these errors are select to this system which I just built for a friend. My system runs all of these games error free so I know it's not game error. I'm currently trying to eliminate sources of error by reinstalling everything, including steam, which is the platform I'm using for these games, and all of the games which are producing error. I've already tried updating drivers, blah blah blah, but all of them are now current and newly reinstalled. Still have the same issues. My next step is probably reinstalling windows to completely eliminate the possibility of software error. I'd also like to mention that other games seem to run fine. Metro 2033 seems to run perfectly. I haven't encountered any error. This is what makes it so strange.

I would show some screenshots of my errors, but I'm currently reinstalling the games so I can't play any of them yet.

This seems to be a really random assortment of error. I couldn't find any answers from other questions asked about video card errors so I need to ask for myself, I guess.

If I get a chance, I'll put up some screenshots of the errors assuming they're still occurring on the reinstall, but that won't be until tomorrow night. If anyone has any idea what's going on, help is much appreciated.

Best solution

December 10, 2010 5:09:29 PM

I also have the sapphire 5850 and Darksiders.I believe your friend's gpu is malfunctioning as I don't have the same problem and it sounds like artifacting.Stress test it with msi kombustor and 3dmark11 and see if it arifacts.If yes then you have a bad card.If not then it should be a driver issue,so use driversweeper to uninstall your current drivers and install the newer version again.Finally coud you post full specs specs as this could be a psu issue too. :) 
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December 10, 2010 5:35:03 PM

I'm not at that system right now. I'll post again later tonight and run the tests on it. Thanks for the guidance. You'll hear back as soon as I can get to it.
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December 11, 2010 1:59:32 AM

system specs are as follows:

CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7

AMD Phenom II X4 970 Black Edition Deneb 3.5GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Desktop Processor HDZ970FBGMBOX

AZZA Solano 1000 Black/Black Japanese SECC Steel/Metal mesh in front ATX Full Tower Computer Case

MSI 890FXA-GD70 AM3 AMD 890FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard

SAPPHIRE 100282-3SR Radeon HD 5850 (Cypress Pro) 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video

4G ddr3 ram
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December 11, 2010 3:44:28 AM

Success! Alright it was a driver issue. It turns out my friend used the drivers which came with the video card so they were of course a few months out of date. According to windows, which isn't always accurate, we had up to date drivers. It wouldn't allow us to update until we'd uninstalled the existing ones. Thanks for your help and thank God there will be no RMA.
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December 12, 2010 11:21:50 PM

Best answer selected by samtheham1.
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