Radeon HD 6870 cu frame drops, gpu or flash issues?

Hello, thanks for reading!

I recently upgraded my Radeon HD 4650 to a HD 6870 cu on my Athlon II X4 620. My old card ran fantastic, best buy (Perfomance/Price) ever. However, to get BF3 running over 35fps I had to reduce graphic quality considerabily.

The HD 6870 runs BF3 amazingly fast at 1280x1024/high graphics, However the game crashes at the end of almost every match (in the menu screen). Also, in one of my favorite older games (Track Mania Nations Forvever, demo version) The game runs much worst then before, sometimes it runs great 60++fps, but in the same match i'll get stuttering, frame drops and various irritating inconsistencies.

I noticed using the GPU-Z log option that my gpu during gameplay stays constant at 915mhz and then drops to idle @ 300mhz at the end of the match before crashing.

With TM-Nations-Forever the gpu clock speed is all over the place (775,300,326,915 etc..)

My gpu stays constant at 300mhz during normal windows 7 operations.

My questions:
Is my card faulty? (I got 3 days left on return policy)
How can I fix it?

My best guess is that it has someting to do with ATI-PowerPlay not recongnizing the higher graphic demmands of TMNF. And maybe its the same issue with BF3 when the game returns to the menu after the match. I've read that a flash reset might solve the issue...

I wish I could manually set the minimum GPU usage in catalyst or something, that way I could test my deductions.

Please Help :)
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More about radeon 6870 frame drops flash issues
  1. Quote:
    My gpu stays constant at 300mhz during normal windows 7 operations.

    that's normal for current gpu. they reduce the clock speed when not running gpu intensive application to save the power usage. my GTX460 core will be downclocked to 51mhz if i did not open any application that needs gpu.

    With TM-Nations-Forever the gpu clock speed is all over the place (775,300,326,915 etc..)

    its not weird. sometimes it happens when the game load the next level and sometimes it happen during the gameplay. as long as the game work just fine there is nothing to worry about. i don't know about radeons but for nvidia cards you can force the clock to run at it's full speed at all time from nvidia control panel. maybe you can look for something similar in CCC.

    have you tried clean driver installation using driver sweeper? and you might want to overclock your processor as well to see if the performance will be better. for example my GTX460 does not play well with my E7500 at it's stock clock. in batman AA my frame rates will jumping around 30+ to 60 FPS all the time. when overclocked to 3.6Ghz the frame rates is steady between 50-60 fps.
  2. what make & model of power supply do you have? sounds like your overloading your PSU. The 6870 consumes a fair amount more power than your old 4650. a good quality 450w+ unit with at least 35a+ on the 12v rail(s) would be recommended.
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