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Games freezing, is my diagnosis correct?

Last response: in Components
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November 22, 2011 10:30:34 PM

My computer is freezing only during games and occasionally high def video. Regardless whether I play on high or low settings it freezes after about 5 minutes play (Used to get more play time before it froze), with skyrim freezing more quickly than team fortress 2.

I believe it is the power supply failing so I am ready to order a new one, am I correct in this diagnosis?

And if it is the power supply, is there anyway for me to get my skyrim fix in the interim while it ships? I underclocked the video card to minimum settings and lowered the graphics with no success.

thanks in advance for any help!
a c 698 ) Power supply
November 23, 2011 12:25:16 AM

Could be PSU but more often would be sudden shut downs. Please post your full system specs.
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a b ) Power supply
November 23, 2011 12:30:36 AM

when you say skyrim shuts down faster than TF2 it sounds like a heat problem. either the processor or the video card. look for dust/dirt on heat sinks or lack of adequate air movement in the case.
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November 23, 2011 12:33:46 AM

In order of probability (in my opinion)

1. overheating GPU (clogged fan, shitty fan profile, etc)

2. overheating CPU (clogged fan)

3. power supply failing
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November 23, 2011 1:08:01 AM

full specs:

antec 900
1 tb western digital
I don't remember the mobo
intel quad core (i believe q9400) 2.66 ghz
bfg 280 gtx
8 gb ddr3
antec 850w psu

my computer is in a dusty room and is dusty inside the case. I removed surface dust when the problem started, with little effort and no luck. My temperatures appear to be okay. 25 celcius for cpu and 35 celcius gpu. I don't know what they are when it freezes but skyrim freezes within two minutes of start-up, so i would be surprised if they heated to failure in such a short period.
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a c 698 ) Power supply
November 23, 2011 1:43:37 AM

I would be surprised if it is a PSU issue. When you cleaned the dust did you get everything that is in between the cooling fins? Best way to clean a GPU would be taking it out and use compressed air. If it is not heat it could be a failing GPU.
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a b ) Power supply
November 23, 2011 2:11:10 AM

you should remove the heat sink and fan from the processor. remove all dirt/dust and remove the old thermal paste. Re-apply new thermal paste and re-install the heat sink and fan.

Pull the video card and do the same thing.

sounds like a heat problem and think it has more to do with the processor at this point than the video card. it only takes a fraction of a second for the processor to heat up and shut things down. Maybe the damage has already been done ?
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November 23, 2011 2:17:45 AM

okay i will clean the cpu and gpu first thing tomorrow. Considering that i kept trying and the computer froze in this manner some odd 50 times it's possible but I hope damage isn't permanent because the computer still runs perfectly except during games.

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November 23, 2011 6:52:30 AM

The games are putting the most stress on your system, so the CPU and GPU are working harder...stands to reason it's more likely an issue there. That doesn't discount the PSU of course, but if you have a dust-clogged machine I'd look elsewhere before I look at the PSU.

If it's in a dusty room, I'd also recommend a) filters for your fans (you can get them for buttons) and b) a positive pressure set up. That way dust can't enter your system. It's not ideal from other perspectives but in your situation I'd be most concerned with dust over my PC internals.
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