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Crashing Issues with BF3 and Other Minor Issues

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January 9, 2013 3:05:50 AM

I have built a gaming rig in the middle of August, 2012 with the following specifications.

ASUS P8 Z77-V Pro Motherboard
Intel 128GB SSD Hard Drive
Barracuda 2TB 7200RPM SATA III
8GB x2 Kingston RAM DDR3 1333
Blu-Ray readable Disc Drive
Gigabyte GTX560 Ti 1GB GDDR5 (Model: GV-N560OC-1GI), Non OC'd but apparently a OC edition.
Intel i7 – 3770 @ 3.4 Ghz, Non OC edition.
My OS is Windows 7, installed on the 128GB SSD.
Power Supply is 550w I think... I've forgotten. I'll find the box packaging for it later. This isn't the cause for the problem described below, because if it was my setup would probably have fried a while ago. I am aware that the recommended supply for a GTX560Ti is 550w, but as I mentioned already, it hasn't fried.

I have played and tested various games on this rig.
Sleeping Dogs, Fallout NV and Starcraft II work fine. However, BF3 and Bioshock 2 will crash after 20mins-6hrs into the session, and give a "______ has encountered an error." and white screen, and force me to restart the application. A few times windows crashed completely, and forced me to restart my computer. I have also had a few cases where I got a BSOD, with the error DRIVER_LESS_OR_NOT_EQUAL (or something like that). I play Battlefield on High settings, but Ultra seems to be weird- all the smoke goes all dark and everything gets a sienna tint or something. There isn't any artifacting or any other visual glitches. I have tried playing on Low graphics setting but the same result occurs- I crash after a while.

My desktop normally runs at 40-50 degrees Celsius with no load and runs at 70 degrees Celsius while on load.
I am not too sure if these are the readings for the graphics card or the processor or even just the general temperature inside the case. It might be the motherboard sensor, as I use the factory installed AI Suite which monitors temperature for me.

All these parts were bought in Taiwan, Chiayi in a store called 3C. I cannot RMA or refund/return as I currently live in Hong Kong, and I only go to Taiwan on vacation or to visit relatives.
I have relatively low expertise on these problems but hey, I built the computer, so I know some pretty basic stuff. If anyone figures this out and I am given instructions I will know what to do without too much difficulty. Thanks!
January 9, 2013 5:05:41 AM

Can you tell us the brand name of the PSU please.

2 most likely possiblities;

1. Your PSU isnt supplying enough power in some cases where it needs to supply a stable powerload to the GPU/CPU and mainboard, causing crashes in some games and not others (BF3 but not less intensive games)

2. One of your RAM sticks is faulty, and you should try removing one and leaving on in the first socket. Run BF3/do your day to day work on it and see if it crashes.
January 9, 2013 8:54:40 PM

My PSU is a Seventeam E Force Series, 550w, Model ST-550PWL.
I'll get around to doing the RAM once I get home from school today and see if that works out.
I also think the first one actually just might be the issue... I wasn't aware that graphics cards consumed more power above their minimum suggested value when under load.
Related resources
January 10, 2013 4:09:06 AM

faikwansuen said:
My PSU is a Seventeam E Force Series, 550w, Model ST-550PWL.
I'll get around to doing the RAM once I get home from school today and see if that works out.
I also think the first one actually just might be the issue... I wasn't aware that graphics cards consumed more power above their minimum suggested value when under load.


Honestly, those requirements don't mean alot when the wattage is fairly low and the efficiency isnt great. From what i can see from the Seventeam website for that particular power supply, its rated at a 80 percent efficiency. So its not running at 550 watts on full load.

When the PSU requirements are at 500 or so, it means that it needs a solid 500w with atleast a bronze rating (Alot of Corsair power supplies are good for this) and would usually force you, if you wanted to use a 500w buy a reliable fairly expensive one.

And not to sound preachy, but for future reference when building a solid machine like that; get a good reliable PSU that has good reviews on it for that particular setup. :) 
January 10, 2013 9:36:49 PM

So since the minimum requirement is 500w for the nVidia GTX560Ti, and I'm using a 550w PSU at only 80% capacity, which means its only giving out 440w...

So.. essentially the PSU is the cause of my problems and I need to get a reliable, minimum bronze rating power supply system, like Corsair?
January 11, 2013 5:35:54 AM

faikwansuen said:
So since the minimum requirement is 500w for the nVidia GTX560Ti, and I'm using a 550w PSU at only 80% capacity, which means its only giving out 440w...

So.. essentially the PSU is the cause of my problems and I need to get a reliable, minimum bronze rating power supply system, like Corsair?


Correct.
Honestly for your build i would recommend either a 650w or a 700w bronze certified power supply for a i7 build like that. Corsair make very reliable products so if you went with them, it would have no problems powering your build.
January 13, 2013 12:49:14 PM

Recently got an error message after BF3 crashed. Is there anything anyone can determine with this information to assist in helping me solve the problem?
Does it mean anything?
January 13, 2013 10:35:14 PM

@faikwansuren - Could you please tell me, did replacing the PSU resolve your issue?

I am having the same issue, with Coolmaster 550w with EVGA GTX 570. But, I was told by a reputable guru that power supply faults would crash completely (i.e. BSOD) out of windows - not just the application. He said that Windows can't make the decision just to close one app with power issues and it would instead fully crash.

I would really like to know if you had any success before spending dosh and effort replacing my PSU.

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Intel DX38BT extreme series motherboard
PSU - Coolmaster 550w. (12v rail 1 = 16A, 12v rail 2 = 16A).
EVGA GTX 570 (nb. specs say it needs 38A on the 12v rail).
4GB Gskill RAM 1066Mhz
January 14, 2013 9:46:49 PM

I don't think I will be replacing my PSU anytime soon due to limited resources, maybe in a month or two.
What the guru says seems relatively logical though, a BSOD makes sense. Then again the error that I linked earlier might be also the cause. The lack of power supplied to the graphics card might be the cause for the kernel driver to crash BF3. Then again, I don't know. I got a very similar error when I used to push my ATI HD3400 series too hard after playing hours of MW2.

I also tried the RAM stick idea, doesn't work. I removed them both and placed only one in the first slot. I then swapped the RAM stick out, and tried again. Same results with BF3 crashing after a few hours.

I've also noticed something. For example, I can play BF3 for a few hours without crashing. After the first crash, it duration before it crashes again shortens (ie. to 1-2 hours) then it continually gets worse and worse, until where it will crash every 5 minutes and is practically unplayable.
!