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Author Topic: Strange problem... PSU, video card (6600 gt), or heat?  (Read 1408 times)
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greeneggsnham
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« on: January 09, 2005, 10:31:48 PM »

The relevent info first:

DFI Lanparty 250 gb nf3 MB
AMD 64 2.8 GHZ
512 megs 3200  ram (corsiar XMS)
MSI 6600  gt AGP
DVD drive, 3 HDD, AMD retail CPU fan/HS, 2x 80mm case fans
Antec 350 Smartblue PSU

All settings normal, no overclocking or funny stuff.

The system works fine, for the most part, but I'm getting a weird lockup. So far, it's happened in Half Life 2, and the Tribes vengeance demo. My monitor will loose the video signal, no input, KB lockup, machine is kaput. Manually power down the system, and upon starting back up, the machine won't post or boot. No boot beep code. I'll have to manually unseat the video card, boot the machine with no card (getting the bios beep code), power down, THEN reinsert the card and the system will post and boot as normal.

The problems only started last week, with the installation of the 6600 gt. Am I pushing the PSU too hard? Anyone else had a similar problem, or running a similar system and want to share what PSU you're using?

I really doubt this is a heat issue. The same rig worked fine with my old card (nvidia Ti 4400, which is basically a 4x agp 4600) and I'm really curious if the new card is just drawing too much voltage. The card seems to display fine, when it's working..... I'm figuring, either I have a flakey card (hopefully not) or an inadequate PSU. I'm kinda prefer the later, as it's easier to fix, but.....

As a side note, the situation really sucks, as the new card has mucho grande performance in both Dawn of War and Homeworld 2. Dawn of War looks like a totally different game; it's that much improved. Sucks that I can't play any of them without worrying if I'm killing the system.
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« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2005, 11:01:25 PM »

It's hard to imagine you're overheating.  I'd bet on the power supply.  Antec's are good ones but with the processor, the mega video card and 3 hard drives you may be pushing it too hard.
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drifter
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« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2005, 05:13:50 PM »

I had this very same issue when I had a TI4200 installed.  My monitor would go black the powersave light would come on and I would have to hard reboot the PC.  I replaced the video card with a Radeon 9600 and problem went away.

Recently I bought the Albatron 6600GT AGP card from newegg and the problem came right back.  I also noticed a sound stutter at the time of lockup.  I removed my sound card (turtle beach santa cruz) and the problem went away.  I am now using the built in sound on the motherboard (realtek).

After a day and a half of use the 6600 GT card started showing issues clipping, 3-5 second lockups and purple/green bars woudl show in the terrain in WoW.  I RMA'd the card back to newegg and got a refund.

I think there is an issue with Turtle Beach sound cards and possibly the Nvidia drivers si the only thing I can think of.  I was running the latest drivers on both sound and video and no overclocking anything.

WinXP Pro (fully updated)
AMD 2500 Barton CPU

Drifter
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« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2005, 07:39:34 AM »

I had that problem a few times.  Once it was a loose memory chip (have no idea how it came loose), but it could also be caused by bad RAM.

The second time it happened after I purchased a new video card.  I tried replacing the PSU, but that didnt fix anything.  One day the video card wouldnt work again no matter what I tried, so it was a bad card.  

My suggestion is to make positive everything in your computer is secure.  If it is, (or isnt, but the problem persists) then RMA the card.
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greeneggsnham
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« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2005, 02:45:07 PM »

Wanted to update with the progress so far.

Just upgraded to a 485 Enermax PSU. 36 amps on the 12v rail, so plenty of power for the system. Motherboard utility reports better voltages on all the rails, so I'm happy about that (my old Antec 350 Smartblue reported around 11.77v average on the 12v rail, but the Enermax hovers between 12.03 and 11.97.)

I'm still getting hardlocks after about ~25 minutes of sustained usage. At least now, the system will come back up and post after a lockup (don't have to take the card out), but it seems to be iffy if xp will startup correctly or crash out after the initial crash.

It should not be a heat issue, unless it's local to the card itself, as I've got 2 80mm case fans, in addition to the 2 fans internal to the PSU, and my case is wide open right now. IMO, the card shouldn't be overheating.

Card is getting RMA'd. I'll give it another shot. If I have the same experience with the 2nd card....

I don't know. Right at this point, I would recommend that anyone looking at a 6600 gt agp as an upgrade might want to hold off. I've read a lot of posts on various forums related to problems with them. My personal feel is that the bridge chip on the card is overheating (it has a passive cooler that gets very hot to the touch) and since this is a feature straight from the nvidia design....

Based on the performance of the card when it works, though, if you have PCIe support, and are looking for a value card with good performance, the 6600 gt is nice. (The bridge chip in question is only on the AGP verstion. The AGP 6600 gts are PCIe parts that the bridge chip converts over to AGP) Not so for AGP. But I'll hold off on a finial opinion until I get a 2nd card to test.
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leo8877
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« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2005, 02:57:53 AM »

Hey man, just replied to your PM.  Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, I didn't even know about that feature.
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