Lets start off with specs first
Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
Emachines ET1331G-03W
AMD Athlon II x2 235e @2.7ghz
Cooler Master 650w PSU
Cooler Master CPU cooler (not oem)
750GB 7500 RPM HDD + 350GB 7500 RPM HDD + Dvd/Disc drive
(I am aware of the bottle neck, my plans are to upgrade mobo and case and overclock until i can afford another cpu)

Lately I have been getting artifacts when I put some load on the machine. Soon Ill be upgrading to a new case and mobo but need to know if I am also going to need a new psu or GPU. Artifacts in windows 7 consist of brown taskbars and windows, youtube videos being just green boxes and occasional blacked out screens (display driver fails and recovers) mainly when playing a game like mw3.

In game is starts off fine until the frames start to drop real low and eventually black screens again. (Two screens)

So far all i was able to do was check the voltages, the +12v is fine steady at 12.096V but the -12v fluctuates from -11.584 V to -11.648 V. While gaming it can get to -11.520V. I checked the bios which read a steady 11.776 V.

Im worried that my psu might be unhealthy, probably should have went with an 80+ psu instead of the newegg sales... However, could my gpu being damaged or dying as well? Ive decided not to game until i upgrade or figure this out. Just went to the evga forums and applied the firmware update for my card, havent tried to game yet though.

Edit Going to run some benchmarks and watch voltages to see what happens. Also going to try to get the screens to blackout again to see if it logs in the event viewer.
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More about tomshardware
  1. +12 is your important voltage, I would suspect the card first, can you try it in a different computer?
  2. Not now, the only other boxes i have are outdated and dont have any pcie slots sadly.

    Sucks cause i got the card second hand so there is no way to rma it or anything like that.
  3. Although eVGA has pretty good quality control, a subpar card might have slipped through.

    But I'd take a closer look at your PSU before I returned any components. CM PSU's are not especially good. Try to borrow a known good PSU of similar capacity.

    The problem with checking the voltages in the BIOS is that that is about as close to an idle condition as you can get.

    Don't worry about the -12 volt output. It isn't used for anything critical. And it generally uses a simple three terminal device for a regulator.
  4. Maybe ill go hunting for a 750 or 800 this weekend on payday. Im really tight on cash so i cant go with the full over haul of parts that id like to. Maybe i should look for a psu tester?

    Was looking on the forums, alot of people are actually having problems with 5 series cards and mw3, but im having problems all over the place. And still sad i cant return it, id just have to buy a new one. i traded my xbox with a tun of games and accessories for this card. Worked great up until the last month.
  5. Quick question, could there be an issue with my back ups power unit? A little while ago i had a really weird error that shut down power to my computer and now the battery wont hold a charge. Should plugging directly to the wall make a difference?
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