Game crash, Windows 7 glitches out

System Information:
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate (6.1.7601, SP1 Build 7601)
Data Type: x64
DirectX Version: DX11

Tower: Corsair Carbide Series 300R
(http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11180AC3384&vpn=CC-9011014-WW&manufacture=CORSAIR)

PSU: Corsair TX650 V2
(http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11180AC7339&vpn=CMPSU-650TXV%20/%20CP-9020038-NA&manufacture=CORSAIR), (http://thetechsource.tv/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/66a.jpg)

CPU: AMD Phenom(tm) II X4 945 Processor, 3000MHz, 4 Cores
(no link)

GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti 1Gb
(http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=10530BD5034&vpn=GTX650-DC-1GD5&manufacture=ASUS)

SSD (Solid State Drive): KINGSTON SVP200S3120G ATA Device
512 B/sector, 111.79 GB

RAM: 8192MB Kingston HyperX (2x 4GB)

... man, these prices have really dropped.
-------------------------

I built this computer myself, I have upgraded the Video card about 3 times since I bought my motherboard. When I bought the motherboard, I also bought the CPU, SSD, RAMs, and Power supply. I haven't changed any hardware, except for the graphics cards. The follow problem has happened ever since I first bought the motherboard and all of the hardware, it's been quite an annoyance:

My problem is that an almost random set of games crash for no reason, even if the game specs aren't as high as others I play flawlessly. For instance, Dragon age origins (not a big performance issue), Batman arkham assylum, Bioshock 2, and Assassins creed Revelations- they all crash to desktop after about 5-15 minutes. Other games I play relatively fine are, Assassins creed 3, Planetside 2, Starcraft 2, Borderlands 2, Mirrors edge, all with max settings they work. All of these vary in system requirements, but as you can see, there seems to be no pattern.

This would be fine if I could read any temperature meters, but it's impossible when it crashes. What it looks like when I'm playing is nice clean FPS as usually, then by suprise it overloads with sound (only some games), the polygons stretch, and I hit the desktop. When I hit the desktop, things are glitchy, certain areas are black squares (ie. random menu buttons, temperature readings, some, but not all buttons are black, but all readings are black). Any games I try to start up after this just don't start up. I am forced to reset, and my computer acts like nothing happened.

It rarely happens on my favourite games, it seems like whenever I buy a game, it's a lottery if it will crash within 15 minutes. If it doesn't crash within 15 minutes, it will rarely crash ever. My computer has a good taste in games though, I like that, but it lashes out on me if I try something new and it doesn't like it.

I keep thinking it's my CPU, because my graphics can set themselves amazingly high, and I've changed it so many times, I think my graphics card is ruled out. Do I have to reapply the thermal paste onto the CPU? I might find some additional readings and post it here, when I get some time.

Additional Non-Essential Questions:
Is 650W high enough for a PSU?
Are these crashes damaging anything but the part that is causing it?
Are there any updates I've missed?
How do I know if my computer has good enough airflow?

What kind of adapter do I have to get to connect my USB 3.0 cable to my motherboard? My motherboard has 3 blue (3.0) 9pin slots, but my case has a 19pin 3.0 usb cable. It would be nice to find one, I gave up after searching for weeks- got too complicated (too many weird terms).
15 answers Last reply
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  1. Oh, wow, noob mistake, forgot to mention my motherboard stats.
    (http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=10530BD2677&vpn=M5A97&manufacture=ASUS#customerreviews)
    Scroll down that link for stats.
    Could also be the motherboard, 1 person claims his was defective.
  2. Have you tring the latest BIOS version? I had that happen to me once. The graphics would crash out for no reason. Next BIOS version release notes included "improved GPU compatability" and "improved PCI-Express stability."
    Aside from that, when was the last time you did a clean install?
    The PSU should have enough Wattage to handle the load, but cap aging reduces the effective output, so it could be a factor (in theory).
  3. How do I install a new BIOS?
    I went to the official site (http://www.asus.com/Motherboard/M5A97_R20/#support_Download_30)
    It gave me a .cap file. I don't want to mess this up since I've never done it before, and I've heard failing could make the Mobo destroyed with flashing unsuccessfully.

    There is a subheading called BIOS Utilities, the BIOS renamer says:
    "Bios Renamer for USB BIOS Flashback
    1.Put Bios file and Bios renamer in same folder
    2.Execute the Utility
    3.Use new Bios file for USB BIOS Flashback."

    Does this update my BIOS? Or is this unrelated?
  4. ASUS has BIOS flashing down pretty easy. You download the new BIOS file (not the renamer). Put it on a USB flash drive. Reboot and go into the BIOS. In the BIOS should be a place where it says USB flashback. Pick that, point it to the file on the flash drive and that should do the trick.
  5. I placed the .cap file into the flash drive, then reset my computer, and went into BIOS. I opened EZ Flash 2, there was 1 flash drive and 2 partitions of my SSD. I selected my flash drive and after waiting for a while, nothing appeared.
  6. Hi :)

    Simple question first....

    DOES IT only happen in games, never Windows ?

    All the best Brett :)
  7. I don't recall any times it has crashed outside of games.
  8. j4m35151337 said:
    I don't recall any times it has crashed outside of games.


    Hi :)

    Then its one of 4 things...

    Graphics card ...30% CHANCE

    Graphics drivers ...30% CHANCE

    PSU ...30% CHANCE

    RAM ...10% CHANCE

    IMHO...

    All the best Brett :)
  9. Brett928S2 said:
    Hi :)

    Then its one of 4 things...

    Graphics card ...30% CHANCE

    Graphics drivers ...30% CHANCE

    PSU ...30% CHANCE

    RAM ...10% CHANCE

    IMHO...

    All the best Brett :)


    I think I'd go more:

    Video Card = 40%
    Video Driver = 40%
    Power Supply = 10%
    RAM = 10%

    But that's just me ;)
  10. So take the CPU out of the equation?
    I just don't get it though, I have been through 3 graphics cards, all of them have the same crash, glitched-up windows problem. Drivers seem less likely too, because I have switched from AMD to NVidia, both fully updated.
    Would my PSU cause this kind of crash?
  11. Well, I wonder if updating my BIOS would fix any of it. Can you help me with my BIOS problem? EZ Flash 2 has not detected my .cap file within my flash drive.
  12. Hi :)

    I doubt its the psu, which is why 10% , but it could be....

    Two questions though...

    Is that Ultimate a legal one ?

    Are you running the card with the setting too high..i.e turn it down and see what happens...

    All the best Brett :)
  13. Windows 7 Ultimate: legal
    Game graphics settings: No FPS drop, rarely below 40. Temperatures seem fine (I have a notifier that tells me if the GPU gets too hot, which it has never). I have never overclocked, never really had the need to. The computer is never loud (fans).

    I took your advice on the drivers, I went to the 'official' Asus drivers (http://www.asus.com/supportonly/GTX650TI1GD5/#support_Download_30)
    Install was successful, but one of my windows got glitchy, quick refresh fixed it (is that normal?). I will reset and try a crash-inducing game.

    [edit] Still not working...
  14. Ok, so I updated my BIOS to 1503 instead of 1605 (1503 was a rom, not a cap). It doesn't make the weird clicky initializing noise on my headphones anymore, and it seems a bit cleaner. I'll check out if it crashes still.
  15. Yeah, i think it's my PSU, it only makes noise when i start up. I did a test with Prime95 and Furmark, still makes no noise. Yeah, not a doubt in my mind, i tested air flow with my hand, airflow on startup, no airflow thereafter
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