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El cheapo GT610 card problems ...

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 26, 2013 5:56:43 AM

Hi All, noob here, please be gentle.

Added a Gigabyte branded Nvidia GT610 PCI-e card to my aging Core-2 4GB desktop. Dual booted XP and Win8. Ran a new touch 22.5" monitor from the HDMI and an older (Viewsonic VX2025wm) from the DVI port. All seemed pretty nice for a few weeks, (not gaming here, just business, plus audio and the usual browsing). Both Win8 and XP working equally well.

Booted up after having all shut down for a weekend and got the 1920x1080 on the new touch monitor but VGA on the Viewsonic. The Viewsonic was also recognized as a Plug and Play monitor by the Nvidia control panel as opposed to a VX2025w_ prior. Similar in both OS's. Tried to reset the Viewsonic resolution and the Nvidia control panel seemed to take the 1680x1050 but only displayed VGA. Messed with trying to update the monitor driver for the Viewsonic but no help. Updated the Nividia driver, no help either.

Troubleshot by swapping the hdmi and dvi ports, same thing. Ran the Viewsonic from a laptop, worked just fine at 1280x1024. Then tried a 2 yr old 20" LG monitor in place of the Viewsonic. Got mixed results such that it seemed my maximum total resolution was being limited ie was able to set something like 1600x1080 on the touch monitor and 1024x768 on the LG (sorry can't recall the real numbers). Then messed with that and got the Nvidia control panel to accept 1920x1080 on each monitor but DEFINITELY was NOT displaying this. Was spending too much time so went back to single monitor on the touch display at 1920x1080 and am currently not running dual display.

Sorry for being long winded and thank you if you are still reading this.

Did my GT610 suffer a failure? Reinstalling it didn't help. The only thing I could think of, other than a hardware failure was Windows updated something that partially killed my graphics drivers but there is no indicator of that.

Along the way I realized I really didn't know sh*t about graphics cards and could not answer for myself what maximum resolution I should be able to get. Should this card be able to provide consistent maximum resolution in full colour to both these monitors? it sure seemd to for a few weeks. When looking for a replacement if that is to be the solution, what specs do I look for? And realize this is an old desktop that still runs well enough and owes me very little so I don't want to put a $300 GPU in it.

You folks are saints if you are still reading all this and not calling me too many names. Thanks. Any and all comments, suggestions and help would be most welcome and you will have my gratitude.

cheers, Jake
February 26, 2013 11:20:19 AM

Try doing a driver update once again and use the custom install option and also tick the clean install option. That should clear any settings that may be giving problems after playing around with the NVidia control panel.

Get the latest generic driver update (version 9.18.13.1407 I believe) from the NVidia site, not from the (outdated) Gigabyte site.

It should not be problem but check is the PSU to see if it meets the Giagabyte spec of 300W. It is a older low end rig, right? So maybe you have other hardware installed and not enough juice left for the graphics card.

And when you (re)installed the card did you also throughly clean PCI-e slot and pins on the card?
February 26, 2013 11:24:21 AM

Forgot, your max resolution
Maximum Digital Resolution = 2048x1536
Maximum VGA Resolution = 2048x1536
And the card uses about 30W
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February 26, 2013 5:20:49 PM

Thanks for the tips LukeSanders. I will do all this when I can take this computer offline, and yes it is an older low end rig but it has been very stable.

The power supply is rated at 300W and I am using ethernet and optical out sound from the motherboard, only a modem pci card in the bus (can't remember the last time that was used for anything) along with the Gigabyte Nvidia card, a DVD burner, hard drive and multimedia card slots and little power demand from the various USB slots, so power demands are pretty low. 30W from the GPU should not make a bit of difference to the system.

I have version 314.07 as a driver from the Nvidia site so that must be the same as the generic driver to which you refer? Will post back as to how this all goes ...
February 27, 2013 1:54:18 AM

So ... removed drivers and uinstalled Nvidia card. Re-enabled motherboard video and used vga to old Viewsonic monitor for next reboot. Did so and took system back to where it was about a month ago. Old monitor looked awfully drab compared to new with GPU I have to say ...

Took system down again, cleaned Nvidia slots, compressed air in PCI-e slots, plugged Nvidia back in, booted. took a good 10 minutes before system booted, found new hardware, I pointed it to CDROM with original drivers, let that install and rebooted. System came up in what appeared to be VGA on new monitor (old was turned off). Set properties to 1920x1080 and all seemed OK. Ran newest Nvidia driver, let that complete, rebooted. Booted to monitor as single monitor 1920x1080, touch worked fine etc. Tried to set up 2nd monitor and reverted back to the problems in the original post.

At this point I am really thinking this graphics card has a failure of some sort.

Anyone else care to comment? Really appreciate it.

cheers, Jake
February 27, 2013 7:58:46 AM

I can't really think of anything else that is obviously wrong so you may be right about a h/w conflict or failure.

Just to be sure, are you staying within the resolution/refresh limits of the monitors?
Both monitors don't need to be the same. You can have different settings for each monitor.
Personally I would only use the HDMI and DVI connectors and skip the VGA all together.
The Viewsonic has recommended settings and supported settings, I would stick to the recommended values.

Your Viewsonic maxs out at 1680 x 1050 @ 60Hz.
Did you reset the Viewsonic to the factory defaults, usually an option in the OSD?
I read that the Viewsonic OSD menu has something called a "resolution notice", does it say anything useful?
I also noticed there is a EDID 'driver" fore the Viewsonic, it tells the graphics card what is at the other end of the video cable, did you use it?
Get all the spec's at http://www.viewsoniceurope.com/uk/products/archive/vx20...

I erred when I specified the resolution for the Giagabyte card
Maximum Digital Resolution = 2560x1600 (I gave the wrong value)
Maximum VGA Resolution = 2048x1536
So you are well within the card's range.
Get all the spec's of the GPU at http://www.geforce.com/hardware/desktop-gpus/geforce-gt...
Get all the spec's of the card at http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=...

February 28, 2013 2:43:09 AM

LukeSanders said:
I can't really think of anything else that is obviously wrong so you may be right about a h/w conflict or failure.

Just to be sure, are you staying within the resolution/refresh limits of the monitors?
[jake] Yes
Both monitors don't need to be the same. You can have different settings for each monitor.
[jake] Affirmative, both are being set differently to their optimum (maximum) resolution.
Personally I would only use the HDMI and DVI connectors and skip the VGA all together.
[jake] Yes
The Viewsonic has recommended settings and supported settings, I would stick to the recommended values.
[jake] Yes
Your Viewsonic maxs out at 1680 x 1050 @ 60Hz.
Did you reset the Viewsonic to the factory defaults, usually an option in the OSD?
[jake] Yes, setting for 1680x1050x60Hz
I read that the Viewsonic OSD menu has something called a "resolution notice", does it say anything useful?
[jake] more annoying than anything but yes it told me to set the monitor to 1680x1050 so the monitor was not getting a 1680x1050 signal.
I also noticed there is a EDID 'driver" fore the Viewsonic, it tells the graphics card what is at the other end of the video cable, did you use it?
[jake] I found that as well, and decided if it had to putz around with something as arcane as that I would rather buck up for a new graphics card.
Get all the spec's at http://www.viewsoniceurope.com/uk/products/archive/vx20...

I erred when I specified the resolution for the Giagabyte card
Maximum Digital Resolution = 2560x1600 (I gave the wrong value)
Maximum VGA Resolution = 2048x1536
So you are well within the card's range.
Get all the spec's of the GPU at http://www.geforce.com/hardware/desktop-gpus/geforce-gt...
Get all the spec's of the card at http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=...


The puzzling thing is I had the system working almost on the first try and it worked very well for 3 weeks and change. Then the weekend with the hardware off and the reboot and that was that.

I figure I'll replace this card but not with the same one or similar. Any suggestions? Something in the $75 range is fine.

Thanks again and cheers, Jake

February 28, 2013 9:03:15 AM

One last idea and then I'll call it quits. But this one is really easy and cheap.
Run the msconfig program (or task manger in Win8) and disable all your programs that run at startup.
I actually doubt if this will have any result because if the problem occurs with XP and Win8 it probably is a hardware conflict/failure.

I also have n aging low-end PC and my GT610 definitely had a bug in the Win7 driver software I downloaded from GigaByte (which is just and old version from the NVidia site). I had all kinds of artifacts when the card updated the screen eg if I moved a window around some parts of overlapping windows where not redrawn correctly. I could correct it by pressing F5 several times to redraw the screen. This problem was gone after a driver update I grabbed from the NVidia site. But even with the latest driver update I now have issues with the mouse, the pointer doesn't always follow my movements but jumps around. I have some other GigaByte stuff I'm really happy with but the GT610 seems to be a clunker.

March 12, 2013 2:37:57 PM

Posting to close this ... not sure how to close the thread ...
Removed the Gigabyte card and uninstalled the driver. Actually did a Windows clean up removing old drivers from Device Manager | View Hidden devices | uninstall. Discovered that Windows was identifying the Gigabyte card as a GT210 even though it was labeled and packaged as a GT610. I did not do anything else with that card. but have another old computer that I will put that into - when I get around to it .... and see if I was sold a POS wrongly presented etc etc etc.
Replaced it with a Galaxy Branded GT610, installed the drivers from the CD.
Upon reboot, and after setting the nVidia control panel both monitors came to life at their full resolution.
Back to where I was 6 weeks ago with a lot of hours now chalked up to experiences I never wanted to have.
cheers, Jake
!