So yesterday I got a new PC in the mail. It was built by a friend in California using parts I bought from Newegg.
Gigabyte Z68X-UD4-B3 motherboard
Intel Core i5 2300 @ 2800MHz
2 x 4096 DDR3-SDRAM
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti
SAMSUNG HD103SJ ATA Device
Windows 7 Home Premium Home Edition Media Center 6.01.7601 Service Pack 1 (64-bit)
Cooler Master 600w PSU
I got the whole thing set up, spent a few hours moving files, et cetera. Decided to play my new game- Deus Ex HR.
Worked fine for about 20 minutes, until the screen did a black flash, came back an instant later, and suddenly there was this weird banding for half an in along the top of the screen that seemed to have trouble syncing with the rest of the screen, and a strange black line across the middle of the screen but only if I look in a certain direction, like a shadow had gone all sideways.
Checked the GPU temps with PC Wizard 2010, running at 34c- well within reason, really. This thing's supposed to crap out around 90 or so. It's running the latest driver- 280.26, a clean install.
Closed the game, talked to a friend over Steam for a bit. Then my screen went black for a few seconds, came back, and I saw a message saying the driver had crashed and recovered.
CPU cores were holding around 36c.
Screen went blooey again, got the same error message. Friend and I flopped around the internet looking for answers but nothing definitive.
At this point I started seeing weird fluctuations in the temperatures. The CPU went up to around 40 or so- idle- and have stayed there ever since. The graphics card, however, liked to jump around between 30 and going as high as 41 for a bit before coming back down- all while idle. Fan speed is around 30%.
It's not that hot in the room, and I have a big fan going really loud that I never turn off- I often have it going even in the winter.
And, a good half hour after the 2nd blackout, it happened again- that was about 15 minutes ago. Temperature check: 32c. What?
Eventually I shut the PC off and went to bed. Today I woke up, cancelled my 3:00 appointment, and double-checked the inside of the PC. Other than the rear fan's little plastic speed switch touching an empty corner of the card, which I moved, everything seemed to be in order. Fired the beast up again, been running fine, mostly- the card holds around 34 but at one point went as high as 44 or so.
Suggestions I've gotten so far have been that there's something faulty with the card.
The monitor's an old Gateway LE500 14" CRT I've hooked into the card through an adapter that came with said card. Before you laugh, I've been holding out on getting an LCD because I find most LCDs to be not worth the material they're made of. There is one I saw on Amazon that looks spiffy and is only $250, and I'm planning on picking it up soon- right after I get things sorted with this.
The PSU is a Silent Pro M600- I don't have a serial number handy right now.
I found a thread on the nvidia forums with a lot of condemnation of the 280.xx series drivers; I'm debating on rolling back to 275.xx and seeing if that fixes the problem.
I've not had a blackout the entire time the PC's been online today, by the way.
I have been gaming hard core on Samsung Syncmaster monitors for a decade now. I have only had to replace two and only because they got old. Just ensure you are getting 1 or 2ms response times and you will be fine. 14 inches is laptop territory. Eyestrain anyone?