Ordered a new rig from cyberpowerpc.com which runs an ATI 6870 HD.
First few days of playing SWTOR I was getting artifacts in the game and BSODs following a select few of those times I got artifacts. The BSODs would complain about a driver failure to recover and reference atikmpag.sys.
I upgraded to the latest Catalyst (11.12), they still occurred. Upgraded again to the preview version (12.1), still happened, even more frequently. Soon after I got a really bad BSOD, which killed my card, I think. Rebooting into safe mode and even in the BIOS I get artifacts and vertical stripes (red). Booting into Windows normally gives a BSOD. Safe mode is full of artifacts and fun stripes.
Cyberpower has an RMA out for me and is sending me a new card. When it arrives, I want to avoid this mishap best I can, so I'm here to ask advice about my rig, and if I should do anything from a hardware or software level to keep this from happening again.
Windows 7 Professional x64
Xtreme Gear 800W PSU
AMD Radeon HD6870 1GB DDR5
Intel i7-960 3.2GHz
Corsair Force 60GB SATA3 SSD
Corsair Force GT 120GB SATA3 SSD
Hitatchi 500GB 7200RPM SATA2
Kingston Hyper X DDR3/1600MHz 2GBx6 (total 12GB)
Nothing was overclocked. Only things I changed in the BIOS was to switch from IDE to AHCI for better SSD performance (which should not affect the GPU). Everything else is assumed to be at factory spec (the GPU definitely was, checked this in CCC).
Cards have a lot of failsafes to prevent them from being damaged. If you're using the card without overvolting (sounds like you're not OC'ing it at all), you should be good. If it dies it should be replaced under warranty, period.
Sounds like it was just a hardware failure. Good luck with the replacement and with TOR!
Get this. I just baked my card in the oven for 15-20 mins and it seems to have fixed itself. I still have the RMA on the way and who knows how long this will last, so in the interest of preservation here's my GPU-Z output:
This is simply sitting at the desktop with little more than Google Chrome running. I will post numbers after running SWTOR for a bit. Does anything need adjusting?