9800GX2 cards-- Ruined or.....? Help!

They are almost 3 years old now, have never Overclocked them but do game a fair bit.. I monitor the temps with EVGAPrecision and keep them usually around 75-80degrees gaming but they've obviously poked high if my fans turned back down on themselves. Never got any wierd artificats or anything, just major drops in FPS until i cooled them down.

I've been experiencing computer freezing up recently, wont boot to windows after the loading bar unless I keep it off for a certain period and after formatting my drive and reinstalling everything the problems only come back when I instal the drivers for my nVidia cards... black screen during instal and have to reboot/wipe drivers and use VGA mode. Would also get wierd red lines during instal of drivers.

Are my cards cooked/is one of them cooked? I will be installing older drivers in a second to try again, but even the driver CD that came with the cards causes black screen.

Any help on this issue would be appreciated. Thanks a lot!

Intel Q9550 Quad Core 2.83
Asus Striker II NSE MB
4gb DDR3 RAM
2 nVidia 9800GX2 in SLi
850 Antec PSU
Vista x64
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  1. will update with what I have accomplished so far

    I removed my #1 card all together and put the #2 card in where the #1 card was, thinking that the main card I was using was fried. I then updated drivers and for the first time the drivers installed succesfully.

    I then restarted to make the drivers take effect and it booted up to desktop fine. leads me to think my card#2 is still okay and maybe just card#1 was toast (its the one that was used most often?)

    I then did nothing but put the computer into "sleep mode" only to have it not wake up upon resume, a problem that I was having before this all started too.

    Got the screen "delete resoration data and continume with system resume" and tried to start.

    Now I am getting a black screen every time after the windows loading bar/just before the circular windows logo would pop up.

    Confused as the drivers seemed to install okay, computer restarted and booted up okay and brought me to desktop okay but now it seems Im right back where I started. Booting into safe mode now to uninsatl the drivers AGAIN. Doesnt seem to matter what drivers I use either.

    I have searched and searched for weeks about this problem, finally took the plunge to wipe my HD and start fresh after backing everything up. Everything works okay until I get my GPU drivers involved. Seemed to work fine after uninstalling my #1 card and got to desktop with the drivers working but after putting to sleep I havn't been able to reach the desktop since.
  2. update:

    I flashed my bios to the latest version and am using default settings. My graphics cards not working has been solved as I have booted into windows and even tested it out playing a game. once i finally got the drivers updated and managed to boot into windows they have worked okay. Problems that Im having now however:

    - Random crashing, sometimes not even during activity. Never get a blue screen of death?, any errors or anything, it just freezes and display turns off with frozen/repeat audio.
    - Windows will not start after one of these freeze events, unless I wait for perhaps an hour and try to boot up again. It will remain at a black screen after the loading bar before the windows icon/welcome splash screen comes up for Vista.

    System restore, startup repair do not solve this, only thing that has worked is just waiting

    have tried: New PSU, Bios is at latest version, Vista64 SP2, reset CMOS

    It sounds temperature related as it works after I wait a while but I am constantly monitoring temps for my CPU, MB and GPUs

    CPU: 30-40
    MB 20-25
    GPUs: 40-50

    Any help is greatly appreciated!
  3. Same problem here.

    I am convinced the card is working fine. If I do a system restore to a point where it was working everything works fine, but then if I do a windows update or even just restart the computer a few times the freeze and repeating audio shows up again.

    The fact I can play skyrim for 4 hours straight after a system restore tells me the card works fine. I think something funny is going on somewhere between Microsoft/Nvidia/Asus(my card manufacturer).

    Lots of people are struggling with this so I doubt it will be resolved, the company's will want you to fork out a whole bunch more cash for a new card.
  4. Hey guys I used to run Quad SLI with the 9800GX2 but upgraded recently.
    For the latest games the 512 MB vram on them gets eaten up if you try to max games out like Skyrim or BF3 for example. Once you vram gets eaten up its starts to chew on your system ram and you will encounter lag/stuttering and random freezes with a sound loop.
    Upgrade your system memory, 8GB preferably. I had the same problems at 4GB, once I bumped up my ram I never had a freeze up.
    I can't guarantee you that this is your problem but its worth looking at, this set up needs attention to anything that may bottleneck its performance.
    Make sure you do a clean install on the drivers and make sure you update your mobo/chipset drivers to the latest versions. Overclock that Q9550 to give it more juice.
    Also test your ram and check if any of the sticks are sketchy.
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