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Opinions Plz..GPU/Driver Issue!

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 28, 2011 4:08:59 PM

System: Gateway FX7026
GPU: 8800GT

Here is the run down.
1. About 2 years ago lightening hit outside my house and fried my MBs internal Net Card. I added a PCI/Net card to the motherboard. Fixed.

2. A few weeks ago my PC started shutting down at times and refusing to start. I noticed due to the inside of the GPU being very dirty, it had been over heating quite a bit. I cleaned it up. Seemed problem was solved.

3. A week ago, my graphics started crashing and recovering from black-screen. And the PC would at times shut down while I was out and wouldn't turn back on again. When I set the graphics settings to the bare minimum, and it was cooled off, it would go without a graphics crash for some time. But then would keep crashing and upon restart go to Blue-screen. Deciding to closely give a visual inspection, I seen some chips that had heat damage (melted in the center) on the Motherboard.

4. Figuring my issue was only my Motherboard I ordered a new one and put it in today. Now, the crashes did not happen until I updated my GPU drivers. I reinstalled again, updated everything (except NVIDIA Drivers), no issue..but then updated NVIDIA driver and BAMM! when I started back up it goes right to black-screen at Windows Sign-on.

When I started in Safe-mode and rolled back the GPU driver to just the 'Standard VGA Graphics Adapter' it would again be able to restart and no black-screen.

Note: My 'Windows Experience Index Score' for my Graphics used to be either 5.8 o 5.9. Now it is 1.0. (wo NVIDIA drivers installed) And 1.0 at the rare times I was able to see it (when they were installed) right before it crashed.

**Question: So is this a bad 8800GT GPU? I figured that maybe since the MB had an issue, like a car part that didn't get fixed fast enough, I messed my GPU up. I am a PC novice so please, any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! **
a c 171 Î Nvidia
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July 28, 2011 4:17:56 PM

It sounds like the dust build up has cooked your graphic card.
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July 28, 2011 4:49:19 PM

Mousemonkey said:
It sounds like the dust build up has cooked your graphic card.


Yeh, someone told me they leaned to a bad PSU the all I know is my fan on my graphic card works but that wouldn't tell me if the memory was fried I'm sure.
Because of what they said I was going to buy a 'Antec EarthWatts EA-500D Green 500W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply'.

I would just buy a replacement 8800GT but the ones I've seen sold are used and I'd like to update to a 'EVGA GeForce GTX460 1024 MB DDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card with Lifetime Warranty'. It calls for 450w, which is why I decided on that PSU. I'm a bit worried though, not knowing much, if my OEM Gateway will be fine with both products being added.
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
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July 28, 2011 4:52:51 PM

It should be OK so long as your current PSU is OK.
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July 28, 2011 5:04:14 PM

Mousemonkey said:
It should be OK so long as your current PSU is OK.


Well, my current PSU is only 400w, and the 'GTX460' calls for 450w. So I figured it might not cut it and I'd have to get the PSU (450w+) before getting the new GPU.

*It's just that I am fairly poor so I can only purchase one or the other tomorrow. :s
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July 28, 2011 5:31:03 PM

Sidus said:
Well, my current PSU is only 400w, and the 'GTX460' calls for 450w. So I figured it might not cut it and I'd have to get the PSU (450w+) before getting the new GPU.

*It's just that I am fairly poor so I can only purchase one or the other tomorrow. :s

The GTX460 only uses about 160w itself the requirement advised is for the complete system so as long as the rest of the system isn't a power hog you might just get away with it for a while, that's not a recommendation by the way just a thought you may want to consider.
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July 28, 2011 5:32:01 PM

My guess is the gpu is overheating. You might try using a program like EVGA precision or MSI Afterburner to turn the fan on the graphics card to 100%, or even under clock it for trouble shooting. These tools/apps will also tell you the temp of the card. It is not uncommon for an 8800GTto idle in the 60s and reach 70-80-90s while gaming. Especially in the summer with no AC.

If one of those tools puts the temp in the high 90s-100s, the issue may be the cooler or the thermal compound. Remove the cooler clean the gpu and ram with a little alcohol. Clean the heat sink with compressed air, if you’re a smoker or the computer is in a kitchen you may need to clean the air passages with hot water, try to keep the water out of the fan motor, and be extra carful not to damage the thermal transfer pads on the heat sink that contact the ram. Maybe even a tiny sprits of wd40 on the fan motor, then use new thermal compound to put it back together.
I have personally done this procedure on 4 Nvidia cards in the past 3 months and every one began to work normally again.

One idea might be a GTX550ti, it is an 115w part where the 8800gt is a 105w part. That should work with your current PSU while giving you a pretty good upgrade. It is a little less expensive and less powerful than the GTX460 1gb which is a 160w part.

Just a thought.

If that does not work you can always bake your 8800gt. For some laughs check out youtube videos of 8800gt in oven. I personally tried it on 2 cards, and added a youtube video about it, one worked again but only for 4 months, one is still working today 7 months later.
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July 28, 2011 7:14:50 PM

Best answer selected by Sidus.
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July 28, 2011 7:18:30 PM

bucknutty said:
My guess is the gpu is overheating. You might try using a program like EVGA precision or MSI Afterburner to turn the fan on the graphics card to 100%, or even under clock it for trouble shooting. These tools/apps will also tell you the temp of the card. It is not uncommon for an 8800GTto idle in the 60s and reach 70-80-90s while gaming. Especially in the summer with no AC.

If one of those tools puts the temp in the high 90s-100s, the issue may be the cooler or the thermal compound. Remove the cooler clean the gpu and ram with a little alcohol. Clean the heat sink with compressed air, if you’re a smoker or the computer is in a kitchen you may need to clean the air passages with hot water, try to keep the water out of the fan motor, and be extra carful not to damage the thermal transfer pads on the heat sink that contact the ram. Maybe even a tiny sprits of wd40 on the fan motor, then use new thermal compound to put it back together.
I have personally done this procedure on 4 Nvidia cards in the past 3 months and every one began to work normally again.

One idea might be a GTX550ti, it is an 115w part where the 8800gt is a 105w part. That should work with your current PSU while giving you a pretty good upgrade. It is a little less expensive and less powerful than the GTX460 1gb which is a 160w part.

Just a thought.

If that does not work you can always bake your 8800gt. For some laughs check out youtube videos of 8800gt in oven. I personally tried it on 2 cards, and added a youtube video about it, one worked again but only for 4 months, one is still working today 7 months later.



Thanks for replying.
I am going to go with getting a new GPU first and from what my research shows is the GTX460 is a better, faster card. And it is only slightly more expensive as reg it is $245 but currently on sale for $165. Not to mention the Lifetime Warranty is so awesome.
Going to order it tomorrow (1-day shipping) so I'll drop back in and state if it solved my issue or not.
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
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July 28, 2011 7:21:56 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
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July 29, 2011 12:52:54 PM

This topic has been reopen by Mousemonkey
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July 29, 2011 12:57:33 PM

Thanks Mousemonkey,

Well, seems it was not the GPU or PSU thankfully. I ended up initiating a HD scan/repair, then removed the twin HD that was bad but still hooked up, restarted the PC and after the repair and DLn of NVIDIA Driver Updates.. good as freaking new! I can't be happier.

Seems that with the bad drive (of the same Model) hooked up it was stopping my fixing of the one that actually works, but must have developed an issue. God I am so happy. :wahoo:  Thank you.

*And since having applied Artic Silver5 in place of the ceramic/silicone looking crud on the GPU and CPU that was added at the factory, my PC is running WAY cooler. ;) 
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
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July 29, 2011 1:04:28 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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