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Freezing problem / new graphics card

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July 18, 2011 5:33:34 PM

Hi, i just wondered if anybody can help me. I'm having problems with my PC freezing quite alot mainly when converting/encoding video. It also sometimes freezes when i watch videos on the net, and every now and then just freezes for no reason. Could it sort the problem if i put in a new graphics card like a friend has told me? I have been looking at the Nvidia Geforce GT 240 as i dont think i'll need a top end one. The setup i have at the moment is as follows:
Packard Bell Model: IMEDIA X2416
Windows 7 home premium 64-bit (upgraded from 32-bit vista)
Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q8200 @ 2.33GHz
4GB DDR2 PC2 6400 800MHZ
Nvidia Geforce 7100 / Nvidia nForce 630i Intergrated RAMDAC

My power supply has +3.3v & +5v = 115w max written on it, would this be ok for the new graphics card?

Also if anybody could recommend any other decent/cheap graphic cards if the GT 240 isnt very good then that would be great. And if you think the problem may lie elsewhere then i would appreciate any comments to try and solve my problem.

Thanks

Andy

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a b U Graphics card
July 19, 2011 12:04:10 AM

The 12v rating on the power supply is the important one.

And the GT240 is a good card for what it costs (40 bucks or so), it's a heck of a lot better than the integrated you are using now, no way to know if that is going to fix your problem though. Heat is often a source of freezing that doesn't result in an error screen. Make sure and clean all the dust out of your power supply and CPU cooler and use coretemp or something similar to see if you are having any heat issues.

You should go ahead and get a graphics card whether thats causing your crashes or not, if the GT 240 is all your budget allows then get it. You will need to know the 12v rating on your PSU before ordering anything though.

a b U Graphics card
July 19, 2011 12:27:28 AM

I agree with benski that the problem most likely will not be solved by adding a new graphics card. Heat, memory, and/or a power supply problem are the most likely culprits.

Check for a heat problem by downloading CPUID's Hardware Monitor, run it when you boot up, and watch temps. I hesitate to give you specific temp numbers, but if they continally rise until the PC freezes . . .

There are a couple of ways to test for a memory problem . . . and for heat issues at the same time. You could download prime95 and run it along with Hardware Monitor. This will drive all 4 cores at 100% utilization maxing cpu heat, and thoroughly exercise memory in 30 minutes or so. Watch the temps and shut the program down if they climb above 85C. If Prime95 reports an error in its calculations, you have a memory problem.


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July 19, 2011 5:54:15 AM

Thanks for replys, I will download the programs you both have suggested and give them a try and will post back with results.

I had a look inside the PC and there is quite alot of dust inside (i recently moved house and have been doing quite a bit of DIY so there has been more dust around than usual so i'll clean that all out before i run the programs.

I'll have a look for the 12V rating, if i'm not sure what it is i'll post all the info that is on the sticker which is on the power supply i'm sure you guys will know. (as you can probably tell im quite new to "upgrading PC's" i usually just buy a new one.

I could afford slightly more expensive graphic cards, but all i really do is watch, convert/encode video, play around with photos browse the net etc, i dont play any games on the PC so i think the GT 240 will be a nice little/cheap upgrade, but like i said on my 1st post i'd consider different graphic cards if they are worth it but i'd still like them to be below 100$/£

Many thanks

Andy

July 19, 2011 5:29:08 PM

I ran prime95 along with hardware monitor and ran them for about 1 hr and 15 mins.

The highest temps were

Intel core 2 quad q8200
Core #0 64c
Core #1 60c
Core #2 59c
Core #3 59c

Nothing else went above 57c

I cleaned inside the PC before running the programs and it was really messy inside so I think this may have been the problem.

The PC didn't crash during the tests and i tried a couple of things that make it crash usually and it still didn't crash. So fingers crossed it might just of been the dust. I have ordered the gt240 so as soon as it arrives and I've installed it I will post back and let you know how I get on. Thanks for your help

Andy.
July 25, 2011 4:11:06 PM

Hi all,

I have now installed the new graphics card (GeForce GT 240) which replaced my intergrated one.

Before i installed the new GPU my system was as follows:

Packard Bell Model: IMEDIA X2416
Windows 7 home premium 64-bit (upgraded from 32-bit vista)
Motherboard Denver 11
Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q8200 @ 2.33GHz
4GB DDR2 PC2 6400 800MHZ (standard samsung memory)
Nvidia Geforce 7100 / Nvidia nForce 630i Intergrated RAMDAC
PSU 250w

The freezing problem i orignally had is now sorted, turned out that the PC just needed a good clean (dust free).

As my new graphics card needed a minimum of 300w i also upgraded the PSU to a CWT 405w.

So i 1st installed the new CWT PSU, i turned on the PC (before installing the GPU GT 240) and everything was working fine.

Next i installed the new GPU (GT 240) and this is where my problems started.

Basically if i boot up with 4gb ram i always get a BSOD and the PC restarts itself, and then i may get the same BSOD again or i just get a black screen in which i have to turn the power off to get rid of.

If i boot up with 2gb ram i have no problems at all and the PC works great?

I have tried both 2gb sticks seperatly and they both work. My motherboard has 2 DDR2 slots and aslong as i only have 2gb ram installed it doesnt matter which slot i use (i have tested them both) I have run memtest on both sticks and both came back with no errors.

I have searched the net for an answer and the only one i can find doesnt work for me as i cannot even get into safe mode when i have 4gb installed, the following link is what i found:

http://www.pallab.net/2009/11/15/how-fix-windows-7-bsod...

As the 4GB DDR2 PC2 6400 800MHZ was oem samsung memory, i have also brought (& awaiting delivery of) OCZ2G8004GK gold series. Do you think i will have the same problem when i install this memory? I think i will so i would like to get this problem fixed before they arrive. A few other websites say try and reinstall windows, but i would like to save that as last resort.

Any comments apreciated

Thanks

Andy
July 25, 2011 5:03:01 PM

are u able to go to bios if yes then go see if your PC is detecting both of the rams

btw
both of the sticks are from the same manufaturer and of same speeds
July 25, 2011 5:18:37 PM

The PC does detect both the rams

And they are identical, they have been in the PC for about 2 years its just when the new GPU is installed i can only have 1 in?

The PC boots up fine with 4gb when i take the GT 240 out and just run with the intergrated graphics.

Somebody else on another website says that the 405w PSU should be a 550w minimum and that is what is causing me problems, but the GT 240 box says 300w minimum?
a b U Graphics card
July 25, 2011 6:58:01 PM

Have you tried booting off the windows disk and doing a repair installation?
July 25, 2011 7:49:18 PM

I have posted this question on a couple of other sites and there are quite a few saying that it could be the PSU and that i should have a PSU that is 550w minimum

I only brought the PSU from a local PC shop on friday so i'll take it back and get a 600w one and see if that sorts the problem before trying anything else.

I'll post back with results.
a b U Graphics card
July 25, 2011 9:01:53 PM

Frankly, either your old or your new CWT psu - if working properly - should have enough power to drive the 240.

It doesn't sound like a driver issue, since the 240 et al works when using (either stick of) 2GB memory and the 7100. It doesn't sound like an OS compatibility issue, since Win7 can access 4GB memory when using the 7100.

I suppose one possibility is that the mobo can handle the electrical load of two memory sticks when using the 7100, but not when trying to run the 240 which requires more power via the mobo. Normally I'd try to raise memory voltage a bit to see if I could compensate for any sag that might be taking place, but I'm not sure your mobo gives you those kind of options in BIOS.

Which brings me to this . . . does your 240 require supplementary power via a 6-pin connector? If so, have you plugged it in? Sorry, had to ask :) 
July 25, 2011 10:46:52 PM

Twoboxer said:
Frankly, either your old or your new CWT psu - if working properly - should have enough power to drive the 240.

It doesn't sound like a driver issue, since the 240 et al works when using (either stick of) 2GB memory and the 7100. It doesn't sound like an OS compatibility issue, since Win7 can access 4GB memory when using the 7100.

I suppose one possibility is that the mobo can handle the electrical load of two memory sticks when using the 7100, but not when trying to run the 240 which requires more power via the mobo. Normally I'd try to raise memory voltage a bit to see if I could compensate for any sag that might be taking place, but I'm not sure your mobo gives you those kind of options in BIOS.

Which brings me to this . . . does your 240 require supplementary power via a 6-pin connector? If so, have you plugged it in? Sorry, had to ask :) 


No the gt 240 doesn't need a extra connector.

I had a look at raising the memory voltage but I don't think I can do it.

I'll change my psu for a 600w one tomorrow and see if it helps and I'll also be installing my new memory this week so I'll be able to rule out under watt PSU and faulty memory.
July 26, 2011 11:31:22 AM

well dont forget to check how how much amperes are required by your card on per 12 volt rail

btw 600 would be an overkill i guess

i m using a 500 watt psu and everything works likes a charm
!