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HD6950 or PSU issues?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 6, 2011 10:11:21 PM

I have been having a problem that alot of others seem to be having with games crashing with the error message:
"the display driver has stopped responding and has fully recovered..."

I just uninstalled, ran driver sweeper, and reinstalled everything ( version 11.6), so I will see if that fixes the problem (I didnt run driversweeper the first time i installed them). So far it crashed while playing crysis and crysis warhead, and just recently my computer locked up while watching a youtube video and i had to do a hard restart. Temps seem ok, they maxed at 77, idle at 40 -45. I've adjusted the power settings in widows to performance and adjusted the the power control setting to + %20 in CCC. The card comes pre-overclocked to 830/1300.

MY specs are:
i7-930
Gigabyte X58A-UD3R mobo
XFX 1GB HD6950
6 GB GSKILL RAM
and 1000W Kingwin PSU

I was thinking that the problem could be my PSU, since some people fixed the problem by upgrading the PSU. 1000W is more than enough, but it doesn't mean sh** if it cant distribute the power right. It got good reviews when i bought it, but I'm only upgrading from a single 5770 so maybe i just never noticed before.

Is there any application that can test the PSU to see if its passing enough power to video card? Basically its my last hope before I RMA the card, or should I sit on it and wait for new drivers to come out? I'm thinking its not the card itself, since if it were, I would think it crash more consistently. I've played Metro 2033, TF2, and used VLC media player for extended periods of times without it crashing. The only time it actually locked up was when i was watching a youtube video; when it crashed during games it just brought me back to the desktop.

Any thoughts/suggestions would be appreciated....

More about : hd6950 psu issues

July 6, 2011 10:50:51 PM

You should try previous driver versions first. The psu could also be going bad cause reading reviews of the psu quality is not the 100% goal of the company.
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July 6, 2011 11:53:38 PM

Any idea what might be the most stable driver to roll back too?
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July 6, 2011 11:55:31 PM

RandomQuestion said:
Any idea what might be the most stable driver to roll back too?

11.5 should be fine just make sure to do a clean install with driver sweeper and give it a try.
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July 6, 2011 11:57:30 PM

There's no application that can test a PSU. PSU testing equipment can cost thousands of dollars, so unless you can find a technician who has such equipment, forget about "testing" the PSU.

If you search these forums, Catalyst 11.6 has some real problems. For every person who says it works well for them, it seems there's 3 or 4 others who claim it screwed something up, so they went back to 11.4 or 11.5. Others have also said that disabling Morphological AA has done wonders for performance and stability.

Personally, I'd roll-back to an older Catalyst version and see how that works out before questioning any hardware.
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July 7, 2011 1:13:34 AM

OK i just installed 11.5 and so far it seems more stable.... I'll try more testing tomorrow and check back with the results
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July 8, 2011 2:11:02 AM

Well turns out I was wrong... even with 11.5 i get through about 5 minutes of Crysis before it crashes. I'm out of ideas; I will try underclocking it and see if it helps and rolling back to 11.4. If that doesnt work I will go about RMAing it and if the new does the same thing I guess I'll have to upgrade my PSU.

Anybody else have any ideas? Is it possible its Windows thats causing the problem? I'm going to upgrade to windows 7 as soon as i get a external HD to back up my stuff. Anybody else have this issue with Vista?

EDIT: Underclocking didn't work.
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July 8, 2011 3:01:59 AM

Unfortunately, I don't own a 6950. But my 4890 w/ Catalyst 11.1 plays Crysis Warhead fine under Vista-64. Definitely not an apples to apples comparison, but that's as close as I can come.

Do any other games cause crashes, or just Crysis? If not, then that suggests an incorrect setting or driver error than it does a truly faulty card. Have you tried disabling Catalyst AI and Morphological Anti-Aliasing?
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July 8, 2011 4:20:54 AM

Its crashed during Crysis, Crysis warhead, and BF:BC2. Metro 2033, Witcher 2, NBA 2K11, TF2 all played fine. I don't know what the problem is. Usually it crashes within the first few minutes, but i just played Crysis and BF:BC2 for a hour or two each with no crash. I didn't change any settings or anything. It seems like if it doesn't crash within the first few minutes, it wont crash at all... I'm totally confused. I play everything maxed out (with Crysis at 1650 X1050, 8x AA) with consistent framerates, just these random crashes are buggin me. Morphological filtering is off, and everything else in CCC is set to use application settings. I haven't tried disabling the Catalyst A.I., I'll try that as well. If it was a hardware issue, I think it would be alot more consistent when it crashed.

It could be a problem with windows, I found something about Timeout Detection and Recovery (TDR) that i might try, but I've never had to play around with registry values before and it doesnt sound like it will exactly fix my problem. I will give it a shot tomorrow.

For future reference if anyone else is having these issues, the thing about TDR is:
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/hardware/gg4873...

and how to apply changes to it :
http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/window...

Like I said I will try these steps tomorrow and post back any success.
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July 9, 2011 9:53:44 PM

Well, still no luck. Its not a huge deal i guess. I figured out that if my game crashes twice, the third time I try it will play fine without crashing. Third times a charm I guess? Kind of a lazy way around my problem but I couldn't get anything else to work. My only hope now is upgrading to windows 7. Thanks anyways....
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July 10, 2011 12:05:07 AM

Upgrading to 7 isn't likely going to change anything... 7 isn't all that different from Vista at it's core. Sure, it has some definite improvements, but a majority of the base code is nearly identical to Vista's.

At this point, you've tried just about everything possible from a software-solution perspective. That pretty much leaves a hardware issue as the only possible culprit. So, either the card itself has an issue, or there's a power issue.

XFX's tech support is excellent and has always treated me well. If you were to contact them, I'm pretty certain they'd say exactly what I just said above. So if you can, just RMA or exchange the card with the vendor/merchant. If you can't, then start a support ticket with XFX at the link above and RMA it with them. If by any chance the replacement card also has the same issues, then I'd consider looking into issues with the PSU.
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July 12, 2011 1:45:36 PM

IMO, you should get a more reliable psu. my 4850's were crashing like hell but all was good until i got a new psu.
i had a fail spec psu which was 620w but failed for me but my new 750w OCZ is doing the job. a good brand like corsair would be more than sufficent
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July 12, 2011 1:46:01 PM

IMO, you should get a more reliable psu. my 4850's were crashing like hell but all was good until i got a new psu.
i had a fail spec psu which was 620w but failed for me but my new 750w OCZ is doing the job. a good brand like corsair would be more than sufficent
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July 12, 2011 3:03:34 PM

Quote:
suat: Have you updated your DX drivers from http://www.microsoft.com/download/ [...] aspx?id=35 ???


Yea, according to the installer i have an equivalent or newer version already installed.

Quote:
sadaman: IMO, you should get a more reliable psu. my 4850's were crashing like hell but all was good until i got a new psu.
i had a fail spec psu which was 620w but failed for me but my new 750w OCZ is doing the job. a good brand like corsair would be more than sufficent


I was thinking PSU, but it only crashes during DX10 games. I've played Witcher 2 with ubersampling enabled just to stress the card to make it crash while playing a DX9 game, but it didnt. If I force Crysis and BF:BC2 into DX9 mode they play fine the problem only occurs during DX10 games, with the exception being Metro 2033, which I have never experienced a crash with (according to the settings it runs in DX9 with DX10 shaders enabled).

I'm still waiting on a response from XFX, any other opinions?
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July 12, 2011 3:59:41 PM

According to the DirectX installer, an equal or newer version is already installed? I've never seen that message before... It just runs and finishes without any such prompting. And since there can't be a newer version than that which the newest installer would install, I'm a bit baffled.

Head here: http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=35
And just run it.

Also, did you update to Vista SP2 along w/ the Platform Update to enable DX11 in Vista? If not, you might want to look into that as well. No sense having a DX11 card and games and not being able to use it. More info can be found here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971644

Something you could try is one of Unigine's benchmark utilities. They feature "one-click" options to force different DirectX modes (9, 10, and 11). You could run a DX9 test for say an hour, stop it, then switch to DX10 and see if it can go an hour without crashing as well. If it crashes only in DX10 tests, then there's probably a DX instruction issue.
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July 12, 2011 4:36:06 PM

Still got the same message when I ran the DX installer:

DirectX setup has determined that a newer or equivalent version of DirectX has been installed already. No installation necessary.

And my only option after that is "Finish."

I just ran the Unigine DX10 and DX9 tests, and the DX10 one did crash right after the floating boat scene.

I'm hoping that I can fix it by updating Vista, I will try to update as soon as I get out of work. Thanks for the help
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July 15, 2011 1:00:13 AM

Alright I just updated everything, I'm running DX11 but still crashing while playing BC2 and Unigine DX10 and DX11 benchmark tests. I guess I'm out of options and I'll have to RMA. It just seems weird that it'll run everything in DX9 without crashing, but anything else will . Hopefully its just a faulty card, I don't want to have to spend more money on another PSU. Thanks everybody for all the help.
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July 15, 2011 3:11:51 AM

Wait a minute, WTF IS GOING ON!!! I just dont get it.... I haven't changed any settings or anything, but now it seems like everything is fine? Played Far Cry 2, no crash. Then I thought I'd try Crysis.... no crash. BF:BC2; no crash. Ran the Unigine DX11 benchmark (tessellation normal, Anisotropy x4, AA off, 1920 x 1080), got through the whole thing no crash avg 37 fps.... and I had just put in a request for RMA before this miracle. Why would it only work some of the time?? It is so inconsistent when it wants to work. Should I still RMA?



BTW, sorry for triple posting my own thread.
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July 15, 2011 3:52:24 AM

So you request an RMA and then it starts working correctly... Maybe it's alive and doesn't wanna die, so it got it's act together. :D 

As to why it's working correctly now, I dunno. Which model Kingwin PSU do you have? I'd guess it's one of their modular ones since it's 1000W. If it's modular, perhaps attaching the PCIe power cables to a different output port on the PSU would help balance the 12V load across it's multiple rails. (Most of their 1000W units divide(d) their 12V output across 4-6 different rails.)

Who are you RMA'ing through, a vendor or XFX? If it's XFX, you can always ignore the RMA and simply do it again at a later date. Just make sure the damn thing is registered properly so you get the full warranty period. (Double-Lifetime within the US.)
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July 15, 2011 3:56:26 PM

My power supply is modular this is the one I got:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I just requested a RMA through newegg, but it shouldn't be big deal to cancel it. Maybe I'll try moving the cables around to different ports. I have it registered through XFX already so I should be covered even if I cant get it to work. Do you have ay idea how the warranty works? Will they send me a new one or try to fix the old one? I've put in a couple of support tickets 5 days ago but they still haven't responded so maybe they'll be able to help me more once they get around to it.
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July 16, 2011 4:37:55 AM

No response from XFX support in 5 days is odd. I've dealt with their support many times, and I always received a response within 48 hours.

As for my suggestion to try changing PCIe cable ports on the PSU to try and find some load balance... don't bother. I just read JohhnyGuru's review of your PSU and it states at the bottom of page 1, "12V1 and 12V2 were combined to one big rail, as were 12V4 and 12V5. Yes, the PCI-E connectors get one big 70A monster rail, almost the whole 12V capacity of the unit." So, switching them around probably won't do a thing, unless by chance one of the connectors itself has a poor connection.

JG's review went on to find one issue that can arise with your PSU. He found that it has issues with crossload. Crossload is a load condition wherein there is far more 3.3V & 5V load than 12V load, or vice-versa. (3.3V is actually regulated 5V output, so they come from the same source within a PSU.) In the case of modern PC's, it's typically far more 12V load than 3.3V & 5V. Basically, crossload causes the voltage levels of the heavily loaded side to drop while the unloaded side rises. Without proper circuitry to deal with it, either could go out of spec. It seems that model PSU is actually missing such circuitry.

If the PSU is not maintaining the voltage level your card needs, and it's internal protection circuitry (if it has any) has a higher tolerance than the card is built to withstand, then there's a problem. To explain better, let's say the PSU has OCP/UCP (Over-Current/Under-Current Protection) tolerances of 12V (+/- 0.5V), but the card itself won't function properly outside 12V (+/- 0.3V), there's a 0.2V gap the PSU could reach that would cause a problem.

So, it's possible your system is suffering from crossload voltage imbalance, meaning it's not the card at all - it's the PSU. I really don't know, though. It's not possible to know for certain without actually testing the PSU. You could talk to Kingwin about it, but even if you had the PSU professionally tested and showed them test results, they may claim it's not a defect. And honestly, there's nothing inside it that's broken so it's not really a defect - it's a design flaw.
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July 17, 2011 1:02:55 AM

That actually makes alot of sense. I finally figured out how to make my video card run flawlessly. A couple of weeks ago before I bought the card we moved my router downstairs. I had to buy a USB Wireless adapter because my Ethernet cable no longer reached. Turns out, every time I have the adapter enabled, my games would crash. Disabling it made everything run fine. It took me forever to make the connection since I usually just left the adapter connected to the internet. I only rarely turn it off. I never would have guessed that it was a little USB antenna that was causing all these problems. Many thanks dude, seriously. I was starting to pull my hair out thinking I'd never get to the bottom of this. I had never heard of cross loading before.

Again man thanks alot. Now I gotta figure out what I'm gonna do. I bought this video card in prep for BF3, but if I cant play online it looks like I might be in the market for a new PSU as well...
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July 17, 2011 1:03:46 AM

Best answer selected by RandomQuestion.
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July 17, 2011 8:42:20 AM

I'm just glad to hear it's working again. As to why a USB wireless network adapter would cause your games to crash, I can't even begin to guess... Good luck figuring that one out.
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July 17, 2011 9:45:58 AM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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