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System crash

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February 9, 2013 11:12:41 AM

Since I have no idea where my problem lies I have no idea exactly where to post this issue for help. I can certainly start here and maybe move to another forum if need be.

Just recently purchased a new MSI NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 graphics card and i am experinecing a persistent system shutdown.
Let me start with system info:
MB:GIGABYTE Z77X-UD5H
CPU: Intel Core i5-3550 3.30 GHz LGA1155
OS: Win 7 64bit
PSU: Ultra X3 1000W
RAM: Patriot DDR3 32 GB
gpu:MSI NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 2GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 Graphics Card N660 TF 2GD5/OC
BIOS: F14 (since this post I have updated the BIOS)

So here is what happens. I originally had two smaller video cards (XFX GeForce 9600 x 2). I removed these cards and installed the single MSI NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 into the 16x slot. I let Win 7 install the drivers and then installed the drivers that came with the disk. Subsequently I downloaded the GeForce experience and updated the drivers to the 310.90 drivers. The first install I accidentaly installed the audio drivers (I uninstalled them later). Everything worked fine. I was surfing without events. I was watching streaming video and movies from my HD without any problems. I turned to skyrim (the reason I bought the damn card) and within a minute of running the game the entire computer shuts down. It automatically reboots to the windows prompt for safe mode. Let me clarify...this is NOT a blue screen crash or just a crash to the desktop...this is a full shutdown and restart to the windows "safe mode" screen. I figure... maybe just first run issues... no chance. Everytime I try to run skyrim, fail! I get online and read for hours about how skyrim has this issue. Maybe it is skyrim. I run tests. I start by running Furmark...no problems. I run intel burntest...no problems. Memtest...for hours....no problems, no errors. I run Heaven dx11....crash..the same as skyrim (I assume now that this is NOT a skyrim issue)
Not sure what is happening so i uninstall drivers for card and reinstall them (without the audio drivers this time)..same issue. I unplug everything that draws power from the PSU except the 660, a few small fans and the HD...it still crashes. I change the PCie cable wondering if there is a short...no luck. Change PCie ports on the PSU...crash. I change the power to the card to a dual molex to 6 pin PCie...crash
I wonder if this is temperature...I run GPU temp and real tempGT... GPU never gets above 30 degrees, the CPU never gets over 45 degrees before the crash.
I have tweaked down the audio drivers to see if that was the issue and no change.
I have been reading forums for the last several days to weeks and have tried everything I can think. I have a 1000 watt PSU and I have to think there is NO WAY I need more power. I start checking voltages: 5.03, 12.53, 3.38.
I have manually set the grapiics card to run the fan at 100% even though the temps register normal, it crashed. I dial down the voltage to the card, crashed.
Under normal circumstances I would say that it must be the card and I need to return it...except that this is the second card. I had a new EVGA GeForce GTX 660 SUPERCLOCKED that I installed before this with EXACTLY THE SAME PROBLEM. It would be fine for everyday issues but once I tried to run Heaven or skyrim it would crash. I did all the same stuff with that card as well (reinstall drivers, measure voltages, etc)
I do have a few things attached to the power including several hard drives, 2 optical drives and fans but as I mentioned, even with just about everything disconnected from the PSU except the HD with windows and the graphics card, is still crashes. I calculated my power requirements...should only need about 450W, I have 1000W. I had originally attached power to the ATX4P PCIe power connector (SATA) thinking I would give it more power and that was not helping. Subsequently I disconnected that extra power (since I only have one video card) thinking that might help, but it did not.
I reverted all of the motherboard BIOS settings back to stock settings - no help. I am about out of ideas at this point and could use some input.

I had updated my BIOS and made a bunch of changes in the BIOS but to no avail. It really seems like a problem with power somehow but I dont know how. I rechecked my voltages again, this time while running Skyrim, a game notorious for making my system crash. All the voltages during the game...well within normal limits. After that I uninstalled the audio drivers and reinstalled several other drivers as well without any luck. I have used the afterburner program to set profiles which limit the voltage and have dropped as low as 80% withou luck.
Its getting to the point where I would not even know where to go next.

Specs again:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Motherboard Model Name : GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB WIFI
--------------------------
M/B Rev : 1.0
BIOS Ver : F14
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
VGA Brand : MSI Model : N660 TF 2GD5/OC
CPU Brand : Intel Model : i5 Speed : 3.30 ghz
Operation System : Win 7 64-bit SP : 1
Memory Brand : Patriot Type : ddr3
Memory Size : 32GB Speed : 1333MHZ
Power Supply : 1000 W


More about : system crash

a c 235 V Motherboard
February 9, 2013 6:01:40 PM

Did you run memory diagnostics (memtest86 or Windows)? Have you tried a different PSU?
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2013 12:12:14 AM

The motherboard requires not only the 24-pin cpower connector but also an additional 8-pin power connector (located next to CPU). Sometimes the 8-pin connector has four connections covered by a plastic lid so make sure you do actually have all 8 connections (uses an 8-pin connection cable).

The video card requires 2 x 6-pin connectors. Using only one set connected means that one of the fans will not work and you also only get about half of the video ram usage. Your video card may also become faulty (burn out) if it is used for gaming with only one set of connectors, connected. Your PSU, if it is a good brand will have 2 separate 6-pin connectors.


Skyrim doesn't have high requirements, per se, but many people do recommend the best that money can buy and even then you can still expect crashes. Perhaps only play it ifor a few hours but who really only plays PC games for a few hours, anyway?

The highest Bios update for your version is F13 and not F14 so unless you are having other problems with other software, games, or apps, you might want to consider rechecking the specifications of your model and version and re-flashing with the lower version, F13.
http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=...
http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/cpu-support-p...

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Best solution

a c 235 V Motherboard
February 10, 2013 1:03:29 AM

TenPc said:
The motherboard requires not only the 24-pin cpower connector but also an additional 8-pin power connector (located next to CPU). Sometimes the 8-pin connector has four connections covered by a plastic lid so make sure you do actually have all 8 connections (uses an 8-pin connection cable).

The video card requires 2 x 6-pin connectors. Using only one set connected means that one of the fans will not work and you also only get about half of the video ram usage. Your video card may also become faulty (burn out) if it is used for gaming with only one set of connectors, connected. Your PSU, if it is a good brand will have 2 separate 6-pin connectors.


Skyrim doesn't have high requirements, per se, but many people do recommend the best that money can buy and even then you can still expect crashes. Perhaps only play it ifor a few hours but who really only plays PC games for a few hours, anyway?

The highest Bios update for your version is F13 and not F14 so unless you are having other problems with other software, games, or apps, you might want to consider rechecking the specifications of your model and version and re-flashing with the lower version, F13.
http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=...
http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/cpu-support-p...

The motherboard would not work without the 4-pin or 8-pin CPU cable (4-pin is enough for that CPU).

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681... shows a single 6-pin connector, not two.

You picked the wrong motherboard. The latest BIOS for the Z77X-UD5H motherboard version 1.0 or 1.1 is F14 and beta BIOS F15o and F15q are available. No need to go back to F13.
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