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Downgradeed 9800 GT to 9500 GT, computer freezes/stutters

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  • Nvidia
  • Computer
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 31, 2010 3:53:37 AM

Thank you in advance for your time in reading this post.
It's a little long, but I'll be specific as possible.

A little back-story on this computer—
I bought it recently (October of '09) and it's has had a couple of problems beforehand. The first one occurred a couple of months ago when it was overheating. When I went to get it looked, the repairman diagnosed it incorrectly as a video card failure (it was just the fan.) In the end, he replaced my good video card with a horrible shoddy one I had to get replaced. In doing so, I bought a nVidia 9800 GT card, but my computer's power supply was too low (350w or so, if I remember right), so I bought a 500(or 550?) watt one to help compensate. Everything was working fine then.
Recently, it blue-screened on me one morning when I turned it on, and it wouldn't turn on again at all. (Not sure if this is related or not, but it happened the morning after my family replaced our home router because the old one died. The new one has been giving me a very hard time getting online, but I don't think it has anything to do with this...)
Anyway, when I went to get it repaired again (at a different place), the guy there told me that it was a video card issue (again), and replaced by 9800 GT card with a 9500 GT one of the same maker.
When I got home, it would constantly blue-screen on me after 10-15 minutes of use, so the repairman (Joe) told me to just leave it off for the night and see if it fixes itself in the morning, which it did.

That's the back-story up until now.
Now I'm having an issue that the computer freezes randomly when I'm playing a game (League of Legends, to be exact, but I think it would do that for any game.) To give you an idea (for those who don't know), a typical match in Leagues is about 35-45 minutes. When I say "randomly," it'll freeze sometimes 2-5 times during a single match, or none at all. When it does happen, the computer either loops the audio for a few moments, then freezes entirely, forcing me to hard reset it via power button, or it fixes itself after 10-15 seconds with some messed-up graphics (grass becomes complete patches of black, and so on) that fixes itself if I alt-tab in and out of it.
I'm also having a problem when watching live stream videos (like on JustinTV, not Youtube) that causes the video to "spike" (the image itself freezes, then catches up in a few minutes) but the audio is completely fine. I think this might be related to the freezing as well.

A bit about the computer itself:
This is my computer (I don't think it's on sale anymore, bought it last year for $500 as a cheap replacement to my ten-year-old tower.)
http://reviews.cnet.....-33847481.html

Motherboard: ASUSTeK (M3A76-CM)
CPU: AMD Athlon™ II X2 245 Processor
RAM: don't know the make/model of it, but I never replaced it.
GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 9500 GT (like I mentioned, I've gone through 3-4 different video cards since I got the computer last year)
PSU: Antec EarthWatts EA650 650W ( http://www.newegg.co....82E16817371015 )

More about : downgradeed 9800 9500 computer freezes stutters

December 31, 2010 4:06:42 AM

I would advise you to first check for issues with RAM using memtest.
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December 31, 2010 4:18:38 AM

Tamz_msc said:
I would advise you to first check for issues with RAM using memtest.


I googled it and tried to download it, but it said that it's not bootable from any OS or Windows,
and must be performed through a floppy drive? My computer doesn't have one.
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December 31, 2010 4:23:03 AM

If you're having Windows 7, it has a memory diagnostic tool.
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December 31, 2010 4:24:25 AM

I'm running Windows XP Home Professional at the moment.
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December 31, 2010 4:25:46 AM

Then try running the games with a single stick of RAM at a time.
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December 31, 2010 4:53:26 AM

Sorry to ask, but why would the RAM be the problem for my random freezes?
The only thing that was changed was my NVIDIA 9800 GT video card because it burned out,
and replaced by a lower 9500 GT card. I would think that it would be an issue with the card somehow,
software or hardware, or at least an issue of being overheated or something.
It's hard to reproduce the problem itself (since it happens randomly without cause, and during an online
game that would be griefing the team I was placed with...) too, so I don't want to take out the sticks and
have to try one at a time.

I was able to find a MemTest (here: http://hcidesign.com/memtest/download.html ) for Windows, and ran 6 instances of it, each scanning 620MB of RAM
to add up to my 3.25GB. None came back with any errors.
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December 31, 2010 4:54:23 AM

Run Memtest86+ and check your RAM first. You can make a bootable USB stick or a bootable CD from their download section and run it those ways. If your RAM checks out good, i'd look towards the video end of it then. And for gods sake, if you dont feel comfortable working on it yourself, find a reputable computer shop. Those ones you mention sound shady as hell.
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December 31, 2010 5:03:53 AM

mavroxur said:
And for gods sake, if you dont feel comfortable working on it yourself, find a reputable computer shop. Those ones you mention sound shady as hell.


Unfortunately, I live in New York City, so computer repair places around here are a dime a dozen, all with very expensive rates
and very snotty/arrogant employees. The one I went to recently was fairly nice and cheap, and he was able to fix my computer
(it turned on, but the screen didn't turn on at all), and although I'm having such a big problem now, it's still a step in the
right direction, right?
I'd love to be able to find a good, reputable shop I can go to only when I have issues, but it's just been hopping from shop to shop...
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