I wouldn't bother except I have exhausted almost all my options and I still sort of think that this issue can be resolved. About a week ago I started having trouble with my Nvidia Geforce GT 120 where I received a series of errors while working in Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects. I can't say for sure at what moment but right around that time my card seems to have lost some of its quality and color depth. It almost looks like it is stuck somewhere between 16 bit and 32 bit, even though it is set to the highest (32 bit). There is noticeable banding and color separation, and pictures/video generally look lower in quality. That's it though. No artifacts, no loud fan noises, etc.
I've tried reinstalling the card, drivers, etc., yet the color depth still looks low. My friend brought his Radeon card over to try it out and we installed it, and the colors looked much better, but then the screen went black a couple times then on a restart the screen was full of artifacts, almost like an old Nintendo game when it craps out. My friend says that it shut down automatically because there is no cooling source built into his card and it simply got too hot.
So I put my card back in and I'm using it right now, even with Adobe AE and PP, but the color depth issue remains. I just want to be sure it's the card and only the card before I go out and get another one. It just seems more like a setting is wrong or a color file is corrupted, or something similar.
Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
P.S. I should also mention that I run dual monitors and the issue is on both, and I ran some stress tests with Afterburner/Kombuster and FurMark, and there were no artifacts, black screens, BSOD, etc. One thing I noticed though is that my GPU temps are really high - between 83-105ºC, the lower temp on idle and the higher on increased load. Also I should add that I use Vista basic theme most of the time, and that the errors occurred when I switched over to Aero. I had to do a couple hard restarts in the last couple days because my PC completely froze, which I'm assuming is GPU-related.
But still no artifacts, loud noises, etc. It really just looks like the color depth is set too low. Could Vista have possibly changed my hardware acceleration settings?
Sorry for the long explanation. Just trying to give as much info about the problem as possible.