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XFX radeon HD4850 grey screen ... solution found

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 28, 2011 6:15:37 PM

Hi guys
before i begin i must thank all the guys on the forum who helped me with the problems i experienced with the above card..... these were much appreciated and all were very helpful
the background is i was experiencing grey screen/vertical line crashes that would occur when running games and certain programs.... i tried other drivers and replaced my psu... however to no avail
anyway after all the research on this forum and others i managed to get the HD4850 running ok,and all games seem to be running ok ..... and heres how i did it
1) uninstalled the 11.6 release drivers using the ati software utility..... rebooted the pc
2) manually deleted all ati related files... including
c/program files/ati
c/program files(x86)/ati
c/program data
c/users/app data/local
c/users/app data/roaming
3) manually deleted the following registry keys ...
local machine > software > ati
current user > software > ati
4) shut down pc and installed the HD4850... connecting the required 6pin connector ( note : i am now using a 500w OCZ stealthstream psu ..... much better psu and more stable )
5) booted up pc and pressed F8 to enter safe mode..... in safe mode i ran "driver sweeper" and selected amd,nvidia display and nvidia chipset ( i have previously used the XFX GTS250 )
6) after driver sweeper finished i restarted
7) back on desktop i installed the 10.2 ati release ( this was the first driver that patched the issue "grey screen/vertical line corruption" ...... upon completion i rebooted the pc
8) back on desktop i pressed "reset to factory defaults" .... then restarted pc again
9) driver installation is complete
obviously end users shouldnt have to carry out this when installing drivers,however with the amount of cards previously installed on my pc this was required,and from initial testing it looks good
ive ran all games including the ones that caused problems and they ran without any problems.... and 3dmark03 scored a mammoth 40,137 marks.... this is a record for my pc so im pretty happy
ive done this post so others can try this..... from the hundreds of posts ive read over the last fortnight this is a common problem and not only with the HD4850..... other cards experiencing grey screen/vertical line corruption include the HD5770,HD5870 and other 5 series cards..... ive also read problems with HD4870,s and also HD4890,s....
as i mentioned in the above guide i used the 10.2 drivers.... and as i mentioned this was because these were the first to include a fix for the grey screen problem.... obviously the fix must be included in all future releases however the 11.6 drivers i previouly tried were probally the worse..... and thats why i settled with 10.2

finally and since this is the first time ive managed to run any games with this card i must say how well it performs.... ok its not the latest in hardware however the only other card i have which i can compare it against is the XFX GTS250...and allthough on paper the GTS250 is more powerful the HD4850 performs better... well in my opinion anyway
so there you have it..... another problem sorted.....
i hope this helps someone....
cheers guys
a b U Graphics card
August 28, 2011 7:08:33 PM

Thanks for the detailed information. I have a 4850 on my sons' computer, so hopefully I won't have to go through what you did, but at least there is some info on how to fix it if he runs into issues :) 
a c 272 U Graphics card
August 28, 2011 7:43:05 PM

Did you have to jump through that many hoops to get the GTS250 to work properly?
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August 29, 2011 2:04:46 PM

UPDATE
: crashed again last night...... this was very dissapointing as it ran fine for 18 hrs without any problems.... however i shall now have to rma the card and look for a replacement
i have put my XFX HD5670 back in the pc... and to be perfectly honest the HD5670 is a capable card..... i dont play many games however i do play half life 2 mods and for these games the HD5670 is ideal... i can run them at 1920x1080 and high settings without any problems and acheive circa 60fps
its a 512mb version however would a 1gb version yeild any performance improvements..... taking into consideration i like to run games at 1920x1080.....
in regards to the gts250 this was fine..... however i have allways found nvidia drivers to be more stable..... i still have the GTS250 however it needs a replacement cooler.... the stock cooler is rubbish
thanks guys
a b U Graphics card
August 29, 2011 3:06:38 PM

Sorry to hear your continued issues. My son's 4850 512mb GPU has been nothing but stellar <knocks on wood>. I hope your replacement comes without any issues. I think you might've got a temper-mental GPU.
August 30, 2011 2:18:48 AM

After ten years of installing and maintaining graphics cards through every product cycle and slot configuration there has been, I have one bit of advice for you and anyone else on this forum:

If you have a graphics card that regularly crashes, generates regular driver error messages, freezes the system, reboots the system, produces artifacts, produces funny coloured screens, produces BSOD, or anything else it shouldn't be doing... and you're confident that everything else is up-to-date and fine with your system...

SEND IT BACK. IMMEDIATELY.

There are, unfortunately, plenty of driver issues that can create instability or BIOS compatibility issues that crop up from time-to-time with different vendors and the variety of system configurations out there.

It is not your job to fix them, and years ago after I spent hours and hours and hours gutting my system to discover ultimately that the problems with my treasured Radeon 9700 Pro were a BIOS issue that it took my motherboard vendor months to admit to - I now refuse to jump through those hoops. I swapped it out for the slightly less powerful nvidia fx5900xt and was infinitely happier.

I'm glad you RMA'd the card. I'd have done it straight away if the latest drivers hadn't worked.
a b U Graphics card
August 30, 2011 2:23:57 AM

DaveUK said:
After ten years of installing and maintaining graphics cards through every product cycle and slot configuration there has been, I have one bit of advice for you and anyone else on this forum:

If you have a graphics card that regularly crashes, generates regular driver error messages, freezes the system, reboots the system, produces artifacts, produces funny coloured screens, produces BSOD, or anything else it shouldn't be doing... and you're confident that everything else is up-to-date and fine with your system...

SEND IT BACK. IMMEDIATELY.

There are, unfortunately, plenty of driver issues that can create instability or BIOS compatibility issues that crop up from time-to-time with different vendors and the variety of system configurations out there.

It is not your job to fix them, and years ago after I spent hours and hours and hours gutting my system to discover ultimately that the problems with my treasured Radeon 9700 Pro were a BIOS issue that it took my motherboard vendor months to admit to - I now refuse to jump through those hoops.

I'm glad you RMA'd the card. I'd have done it straight away if the latest drivers hadn't worked.

It's good to troubleshoot it down to the initial problem. That way you know that you did everything in your abilities to rule out something else. I wouldn't spend more than a few days (tops) to troubleshoot any other issue. I've had people replace their GPU and it ends up being the PSU. So it's good to do the initial troubleshooting to verify that other parts aren't the culprit.
August 30, 2011 3:09:37 AM

Of course... I did say if you're confident everything else is fine with your system :) 
!