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1401  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 30, 2007, 04:51:35 AM
I just found something in the product manual...

Pre-configured ports to accommodate up to 256 policies for games and applications

Now, don't ask me why they call them 'pre-configured', because they're not, unless they're referring to the gamefuel stuff, which is packet prioritizing.

But even if that's referring to gamefuel... where the limit is 256 in one area... good odds they'll use the same limit in other areas as well... again, you might email dlink themselves with the question.

1402  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 30, 2007, 04:45:28 AM
There's no indication of a limit built into the webgui. I've never had to use a ton. You might email dlink themselves.

Here's the support page... I must apologize, the model number is 4300, not 5300. My absolute bad for not double checking before posting. the DGL-4300 to be exact.

I can't find a mention of a limit in the faq, nor in the product manual... I'm sure there is one though, they just don't bother to mention it.

I also just checked the device itself... onboard help file does not mention a maximum number of ports forwarded... it just builds a list at the bottom of the screen as you add entires.


PS: As soon as they start building digital tuners into everything, for unencoded public channels (current cable boxes normally dont digitize public channels, they just pass the analog signal through (ie: channel 1-125 or so) which is why you can still tune those with no cable box.... the problem will be solved again anyways. Perhaps someone will get a clue before we're 'stuck' with 5 billion cable tv boxes just to get basic functionality... then again, the cable companies are gonna resist that tooth and nail.. they charge for those boxes, and it's an easy way to prevent casual cable theft.
1403  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 30, 2007, 01:54:39 AM
Ouch. Gonna suck to be you when everything goes completely digital in about 3 more years, assuming they stay on schedule this time.

Once again I'll chime in for the dlink 5300 (or the 5100 if you dont want the wireless). It's definitely done a standup job for me, although if you want to explore the custom firmwares, you're probably better off going with something like the linksys.

Another alternative would be to dedicate a box and run something like ... I'm thinking this would be the ultimate in control for your network, but the most difficult to setup. I have no experience here, your mileage may very biggrin

1404  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Computer keeps freezing and it's driving me mad... on: March 30, 2007, 01:36:37 AM
Well, you said the computer has been puttering along fine, but....

tis possible you had a power surge or somesuch when you werent looking. You did say 'up until a couple of weeks ago'... so SOMETHING has changed.

Try borrowing a video card and swapping that out, see if your problem goes away.

If not, try borrowing another psu with enough horsepower to run the system, and swap that in, and see if it makes any difference.

The fact that you're only having issues when you enter 3d mode on the video, is an indicator there's something wrong in the power... the cards draw a LOT more power when they start running the 3d portion of the chips. Now this something that's wrong, could be on the card, or it could be wrong in the psu... but it's not very likely to be a driver issue, etc. It's possible, but not likely.

The sound stuttering is pretty typical.. but you could take that out of the loop by removing the sound card while you proceed with your testing...

Actually, given that it's an agp system and you'll have issues finding a replacement agp card to borrow that can do the 3d mode equivalent to your current card, I'd go with trying to borrow a psu first.

And yeah, it's annoying. HULK SMASH is definitely dangerously high on the list of possible responses some days.

I wish you luck.. the last time I ate a power surge, it burned its way through the UPS I had attached at the time, took out a motherboard, possibly a cpu (no way to test, loaned the cpu to a friend but he never got around to it), video card, my lcd panel at the time... all slow failures... they slowly exhibited more and more issues over the course of a year. Artifacts in the video, fuzziness from the lcd panel that would slowly go away as it warmed up (finally it refused to show a picture at all, just fuzz), a motherboard with 'issues'.. failure to boot, failure to recognize devices from time to time, etc.

It ended up being a rather large pile of dead equipment. ... may be of service to you.


1405  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 29, 2007, 10:20:40 PM
PS: Why'd you have to give up FIOS? I'd been considering it at one point.

1406  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 29, 2007, 10:19:41 PM
How are your options with multiple ip's from your cable modem? one possibility might be to simply use a switch with no NAT/firewall, and give each computer a software firewall instead. I know I personally wouldnt feel as comfortable, but it might suffice for your purposes?

1407  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Router help on: March 29, 2007, 12:43:02 PM
I've been really pleased with my dlink gamerlounge 5300s's options and performance. Handles bittorrent like a champ, priority packeting for games, etc. Works very nicely.

1408  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Tell Me About WD Raptors on: March 28, 2007, 09:30:02 PM

Quote from: Destructor on March 28, 2007, 05:26:14 PM much faster are these seriously compared to the 'current' SATA technology? Aren't the Raptor drives just based on PATA, but have 10k rpm speeds?

The initial raptors were indeed using a pata circuitboard, with a pata-sata bridge chip involved. It basically didn't matter. All modern raptors are based on native sata designs. I use a 74 gig for boot, and a second 74 for my games drive, and it certainly makes a noticeable difference vs my older setups. The seek time on the raptors is where they have most of their advantage right now.

Btw, I'd avoid raid0 for anything that doesnt need massive throughput, like video editing. It's relatively pointless. any failure on either drive, and you'll have problems. I recommend a 2 disk setup like I just mentioned. Boot, and games... and if you can swing a third drive (don't have to be raptors, this is just general advice)... if you can swing a third drive, put your swap space on the outter  edge of the drive (by formatting it and forcing the swap space to a fixed size on the drive while nothing else has been copied over)... that allows you to access system files, game data files, and you swap space simultaneously, and it makes for a very pleasant gaming experience. And putting the swap on the outer edge, maximizes throughput through the swap... although putting it dead in the middle of the drive would minimize seek time if you also use the drive for other things during gaming. But if the drive idles except for swap activity during games, the heads on most drives usually park... closest to the outer edge if they're needed.

Note that if you're using pata drives, unless you have three channels, you wont get the full effect, since the master/slave setups share bandwidth when 2 drives are attached to a channel. I definitely recommend sata anyways, for the additional signal integrity and smaller cables... sata drives do crc checking on both the command signalling and the data... pata drives don't. They only check either command signalling, or data... (I'm sorry, I cannot remember which at this moment, someone feel free to pop in and correct/update me here, I dont have time right now, heading to work)... and the smaller cables are much better for airflow anyways.

All this said, I'm holding off buying any more drives if I can.. I may cave and buy one additional 400 gig for additional storage, but I'm trying not to. Solid state drives are starting to appear on the laptop market, and they'll be trickling down to us in various formats soon.

Alternatively, if you must have raid.. I'd recommend raid1... you do lose half the space, but you get nice reliability in return.... and if you have a fairly smart raid controller ( I think the nvidia controllers are capable of this), it will split the read operations up between the drives... which will let the raid match a raid0 in terms of read bandwidth.. which for gaming, is what you need.. you rarely write large amounts of data during gaming.

The idea with the usb hubs is an interesting one. If you check around, you can get some nice ones (I've seen industrial grade metal chassis, etc). Not sure how one would go about replacing one... would that require reloading the entire 'drive'  ?


oh yeah. check out for tons and tons of good solid info on drives of all kinds.

edit: of course you can run it single... am I reading that question wrong?
1409  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: My Vista Experience on: March 20, 2007, 12:58:11 PM
All this is just reinforcing my determination to forge the stream over to the linux side, rather than be forced to shell out even more cash for microsoft OS upgrades. I'll admit, win xp has been a really good experience for me, and I'll probably use it for a while longer, but I'm getting tired of shelling out the smackers every couple of years for a brand new buggy product. Which XP was as well, at release.. I waited until SP2 was out to make the switch from win2000.

It also irks me that they've yanked a lot of the promised features from vista, like the new windows file system, in order to push it out the door.

The only thing really holding me back at this point, is games, and general laziness in not wanting to go through all the work of swapping over.

Also, the idea of product activation, and 'software lease' in general, make me want to puke. It's the longest running excuse for pushing bugged product out the door I've ever seen. Think how bad life would be if auto-manufacturers were allowed to put cars on the street with the same quality level at release. Yeah, the new 2007 xxx is an awesome car... and we're working to get the airbag's functioning.. hopefully we can include it in the first service pack...


Sad to hear about ASUS not wanting to support a 1 year old product. That's shameful. How hard could it be to write  a vista driver for an nvidia chipset based motherboard? And a recent one at that? To be honest I wonder whether the lack of support is even legal? Definitely making note of this, as I had a great deal of respect for Asus as a company, until I read this...

I know the complete package (hardware + software) is an incredibly complicated beast to balance and tweak and get running correctly, from a manufacturing/programming standpoint, but it's getting beyond ridiculous what a company will let slide in order to get product on the shelves.


Severe problems under XP? My motherboard is at least as old as that (an msi k8n neo4 platinum (nforce 4 ultra based)), and runs flawlessly under XP... that's strange.
1410  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Whoops! Looks like I need a new monitor. (funny story) on: March 20, 2007, 12:29:56 PM
Just for clarity here, the DVI-I connector, includes both the digital video interface, as well as some pins that carry analog vga signal... the 'converter' simply connects the analog pins to a normal vga connector, at which point you simply attach a vga cable and you're good to go. There's also a "DVI-D" which is digital only. Far less common. But if you get one, there won't be any converting going on biggrin

All this is assuming the antibiotics and the bacteria havent gotten into an escalated argument inside my brainpan, with me being the temporary loser. Everything's a little fuzzy right now, so be gentle if I've made an error in terminology here biggrin

1411  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 18, 2007, 12:22:49 AM
Mushkin is a good name for memory. Patriot I dont know. I tend to buy 'name' ram, but you dont necessarily gotta buy the most expensive stuff available. For instance, lately, Corsair 'value select' ram has been looking mighty tastey. Basically, figure out what you need the ram to run at optimally, timings and total capacity, and then find something you're comfy with. For instance, can you fill all four slots on the board without degrading performance? I think you can, with the core2 chipsets and/or ddr2, but I'm not sure. What timings are best? 4-4-4-12? 5-5-5-12? If you were buying an athlon64 with ddr ram, I could tell you to shoot for something like 2-2-2-7 for optimal ram performance, and only use 2 sticks in a dual channel setup.. but with core2, I dont have the numbers.

Can anyone chime in on this? Will he be able to use all four dimms without issues? What timings are optimal and with which chipsets?

1412  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 17, 2007, 11:58:11 PM

displays the differences between the different nvidia 680/650 chipsets, if you're insterested.

1413  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 17, 2007, 11:53:51 PM
The motherboard looks like a good choice. I'm big on passively cooling the board these days, and MSI makes solid hardware. the 650i chipset looks like a good compromise... you get a full 16x slot for single card video, and 8x8 (minimal performance hit) if you decide to buy a second card and enable SLI... if not you get to use the second 16x slot in 4x mode... there are some nice raid controllers that will fit that... or possibly a physics processor... etc.

outta curiousity on the ram... what OS will you be running? should you be considering 4 gigs instead of 2?


PS: If you haven't already read it (I'm going through it thoroughly as I write this), anandtech covered this board...  ... so you'll probably be interested in checking that out.
1414  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 08:17:16 PM
On that note, I'm out of the house. Errands, etc.

Good luck with your choices!

1415  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 08:11:29 PM
Here's an idea.

If you're not going to reuse your old setup, you could consider one of the remaining socket 939 boards on the market. Pop in a nice dual core chip, and you could reuse your memory, which would save you some money. An higher end s939 cpu will give you approx the same performance as a slower speed core2 duo cpu... not sure how the prices would compare, but you'd get off without having to buy new memory.

The new ddr-2 based systems arent really that much faster because of the ram, they're faster because of the new cpu's... although memory performance is slowly increasing the gap as ddr-2 gets faster and the cpu's start needing more ram bandwidth.

Just an idea... I'd been considering upgrading to a dual core s939 chip myself as a sort of 'get me by' upgrade. You'd need a motherboard too, but the s939 boards are getting pretty cheap. *goes to check newegg*

1416  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 07:55:44 PM
Well... intel is already cutting prices in prep for barcelona... so I guess that's a judgement call to buy now vs buying later.

The market is like the sea... stuff washes up on shore over time, at high prices... then slowly gets sucked back out to sea (with the price dropping over time), until it disappears later on.

The core2 duo stuffs are coming down nicely in price... because of time, and because barcelona is coming soon. If they can encourage people to buy core2 duo now, those people will be less likely to buy barcelona later this year, so to speak. A double win.

For 500$, you got a reasonable upgrade, I'd think.  Solid basics. Decent chip, 2 gigs of ram. And in all likelyhood, barcelona wont actually outperform core2 (quad)... it might achieve parity...

Right now, quad core cpu setups are too expensive for my blood. I personally want to see what barcelona looks like when it lands.. it's a single chip native quad core solution, with a new L3 cache shared between the cores... but the architecture for the chip isn't changing, so the performance per core per clockcycle wont change much.

in your case, you're looking at a dual core cpu setup.. and right now, the core2 duo is the best performer on the market. You've got a reasonable 500$ upgrade there.. so the question is, do you want to wait for a while longer, and see what washes up on shore later, or do you want to push that button now?


PS: You already got the graphics card.. that makes things easier.. me, I 'need' a new card too biggrin
1417  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 07:27:15 PM
See my edit above. If you're currently using a socket 754 athlon64 3000+ based system, that core2 duo will be nice upgrade.


PS: My current ugprade plan is to 'wait and see' on the new barcelona cpu's from AMD
1418  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 07:20:23 PM

Quote from: TheAtomicKid on March 15, 2007, 06:55:12 PM

Foxconn makes decent stuffs, but there's a biostar unit that caught my attention a while back. Anandtech had a good opinion of it, and... not having used it... I'd tend to agree with them...


(the foxconn board looks solid... 100$ is about right for a basic 965 board, from what I can tell... it's a case of which one you like better.. I tend to pass on stuff like say, the asus commando... that lcd module readout is WAAAAAAY overpriced)

In terms of price/performance, you're doing good. Right now, core2 duo is the way to go. Intel did a good job with the architecture. Pound for pound, and clock for clock, it outruns everything else on the retail market right now, because it's more efficient per clock cycle.

A hundred smackers is pretty average for a 965 board. You got the basics. It's a question of do you want a couple extra sata ports, or does it have enough usb ports, etc. Just compare the boards vs features, lop off the super expensive ones like the commando unless you just really gotta have something like that lcd, and decide what's important to you.

If I were upgrading now, the foxconn would be on the consideration list. It might or might not be my final selection, but it'd be on the list.

Does that help?

1419  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 07:04:11 PM
For the record, you old setup is nearly an exact match for mine...

athlon64 3500+
msi k8n neo4 platinum mb (modded to passive cool the northbridge.. god that 40mm fan howled)
corsair XL3200PRO ram (2-2-2-5 timings, woot!), but only 1 gig.. boo hiss.

current video is an ati x800-xl built by sapphire, and modded by me with a zalman cooler. even wired it to the onboard fan controller so the card still controls the fanspeed biggrin
* TheAtomicKid has been seriously considering upgrading the old video lately


(edit):I think I have to take this back... if he's using a 3000+, he's using a socket 754 board, unless I'm mistaken
1420  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 06:55:12 PM
Foxconn makes decent stuffs, but there's a biostar unit that caught my attention a while back. Anandtech had a good opinion of it, and... not having used it... I'd tend to agree with them...

Notice the slot layout on the board. Even with a doubleslot cooling solution on the vid... no other slots are blocked. This may or may not be relevant.

However, look at the entire board specs... it uses the ICH8 southbridge, instead of the ICH8R, so no onboard raid. Not sure what your needs are in that area. The foxconn can use a few more sata drives without needing an adapter.


(the foxconn board looks solid... 100$ is about right for a basic 965 board, from what I can tell... it's a case of which one you like better.. I tend to pass on stuff like say, the asus commando... that lcd module readout is WAAAAAAY overpriced)
1421  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 06:27:11 PM
I take it back. I've thought of one situation where having two cards would be preferable. If you're running a silent/quiet pc with minimal active cooling, and want more graphics firepower, then running a pair of passive gpu's (which usually can't be had in top end configurations), would indeed be a reasonable use of SLI.

1422  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Need Advice on this CPU/MOBO/RAM Combo ASAP on: March 15, 2007, 06:15:50 PM
Note (in response to ceekay): the P965 is not an sli oriented chip. If you look closely, all the boards with 2 pci-e slots, are running them at 16 and 4 lanes each, respectively, unless I missed one. Also, whilst I know the 975 will do crossfire (but not normal SLI, unless they've somehow added support for it), I have no idea whether the 965 can actually support it, once you mount the cards.

All that said, my opinion on SLI is that it's fairly useless. Sure, you can mount two big honkin cards and gods own cpu, and run everything at wtfpwn speeds... but your average user cant afford that. Buy an SLI board with the thought for upgrading to a second video card later? By the time you purchase that vid card, the 6 month product cycle has likely caught you, and there's better stuff available on the market. God help you if they've stopped selling your card and you can no longer get a compatible product.

Much better off getting a single vid card, at the best speed you can afford, than trying to finagle two lesser units, and then fuss with SLI (and the headaches that sometimes go with it), as well.

Not saying SLI has no place in the world.. but basically, my opinion is that it's fairly irrelevant unless you're building a top end gaming beast, and buying both cards NOW. Otherwise, just get a single, faster, card, than the two you were planning to purchase.

If I were buying a rig tomorrow, I'd look hard at a p965 (or 975, though I dont need SLI), mboard, cpu, memory, and a single vid... probably a plain jane 8800GTX, to keep the cost down... Read an anandtech comparison of several factory overclocked 8800's, and for the GTX series, the performance advantage isn't more than 10-20%... and whilst the advantage for the GTS units is better, even the best one of the lot, didnt match a baseline GTX (though admittedly it came fairly close)

Hope this helps.


PS: Save money on memory. You're better off with more gigs of  slightly lesser 'performance' memory, then half the gigs, but a few % faster. I love my corsair ram, but I could have had 2 gigs instead of 1 at the price I paid, and would have been better off. Note that your mileage will vary on this one. Figure out where the performance break is for the memory, and pick up some decent ram that gives you enough performance to match that. Then go for quantity.
1423  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Recommend a good free cdr/dvd burning app? on: March 05, 2007, 07:08:28 PM
I'll admit I don't burn on a regular basis, but I've never had a lick of trouble out of cdburnerxp. It does everything I need, and it doesnt install a bunch of bloat into the system. Nothing runs in the background, etc, which was one of the reasons I tried it in the first place. may give you some more ideas to run with.

1424  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe - "I'm not the biggest fan... on: March 02, 2007, 10:51:45 PM
Looks to me like your rear exhaust and your psu exhaust will handle it. You wont have direct fan flow from the front of the case, but the air will still be moving. As long as you've got circulation, that should be enough. If it bothers you, you could get a quiet 60mm and ziptie it to the cooler. (use some sort of pad to dampen vibration) I understand there's going to be a fan header free on the mb biggrin

1425  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Even More Series Computer/Vista problems on: March 02, 2007, 02:20:39 AM
for serious hardware problems, start with the basics. pull hardware until you're left with a minimum bootable config. aka motherboard, graphics, cpu and memory. will it post? yes? go in, clean the bios. load optimized defaults, etc. Then start adding hardware back in once piece at a time.

If you cant get it to post with just the board, graphics, cpu, and memory... then start experimenting. cmos reset, pull/reseat the ram, etc.

Good luck.


PS: You can remove power from devices instead of physically uninstalling them. 99.99% of the time, that will be enough, if you dont want to physically dismantle the unit. The other .01%, is sometimes finicky/incompatible hardware, but it's pretty rare.

PSS: Raid is generally un-needed, but it's up to you. In particular, Raid0 is just asking for trouble.
1426  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe - "I'm not the biggest fan... on: March 02, 2007, 01:56:09 AM
I've replaced the northbridge on my MSI motherboard with a passive zalman, and it worked quite well. However, due to the positioning of the northbridge, I had to modify the heatsink by trimming some of the 'fins' from one side, so there was enough room for my graphics solution. After eyeballing the positioning of the northbridge on the asus mb, I suspect you to will have similar issues, unless your graphics solution is very 'slender'. Mine is an ati x800-xl with a zalman 700 cooler on it... with some trimming it fits just right, and has the added benefit of the 'wash' from the cooler, directly flowing over the northbridge.

After an extended period of time, and with upgrades on the horizon, I ordered the sli version of these, though I havent installed it yet.

Depending on how you fit it, it looks like either one could work for your setup... though I think I'd go with the SLI variant. If you check the website for the installation instructions, you'll see that you can mount it so that the radiator sits above the top video card, as long as there's nothing already in that space (custom video cooler, for instance). This also has the advantage of positioning the heatpipes above your heat source, if you're in a normal tower case.. which optimizes heatflow along the unit. (heat rises)

Good luck.


PS: The comment about case airflow above is correct... and critical. You must have decent airflow through your case, in order for 'passive' cooling such as this, to work well. Eyeball your airflow and apply common sense, etc. Too much? wrong direction? etc. Also be sure cabling etc is minimal and tucked neatly where possible. In particular, IDE and large SCSI cables are your main enemy.
1427  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Why is my system so slow?[Help] on: February 01, 2007, 05:29:20 AM
So, not a new build.

The memory setting in question might not be settable through your bios, it kinda depends. If it's showing 1T, though, that's what it's running at. Sounds like you got a case of 'too much crap'... you said you've reformatted the system several times?

All core2 duo systems I know of, use ddr-2 type ram... so yes, you'd need new ram. You'd also need ddr-2 for the new socket am2 athlon64 systems.

1428  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Why is my system so slow?[Help] on: January 31, 2007, 10:34:05 PM
PS: Check your memory timings in the bios and make sure it's running at 1T timing... assuming your memory can run at that speed ... do you have both mem slots full? if so, that could be causing it. I'm not sure if filling both slots on s754 has the same issues as filling all four slots on s939 with the total capacitance on the circuits being to high to run the memory at 1T timings... but it's a good bet that it is.

Assuming what I posted here isn't totally off the wall (someone please pipe in and correct me if they think I'm wrong), try pulling one dimm (assuming you're running two), and run your benchmarks (after checking the memory timings in bios... x x x 7 should be about optimal, if your memory can do it.)

Please note, that x x x 5 isn't actually optimal, even though it seems it would be, due to the way the athlon64 memory controllers work... the memory actually needs the slightly longer timing to perform optimally.

For instance, my memory in this system runs at 2-2-2-7 timings, with a 1T command rate.

Dropping that to a 2T command rate, with no other changes, will make about a 30% performance difference. Which is what I suspect your board might be doing.

1429  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Why is my system so slow?[Help] on: January 31, 2007, 10:27:05 PM
All the K8T Neo boards (not neo2), are socket 754, thus single channel memory only.

The OP is correct that this system should not be 'slow'... was it running 'up to speed' before, and now it's slowed down? Or is this a new build?

1430  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Upgrading advice on: January 27, 2007, 05:31:19 AM
My situation is similar to yours. I'm considering an 8800GTS for an upgrade. To justify a full 8800GTX, I'd need to upgrade to a very high end cpu for that socket, which I've also been pondering... but then there's core 2 duo as well.

If I were just swapping up the vid card (and that may be what happens), it's probably gonna be an 8800GTS, unless then new ati R600 based cards offer something better.

Time marches on smile

1431  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 25, 2007, 05:08:45 AM
Any updates on this? I'm curious, cause a friend is pondering one of these, or one similar to it.

1432  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 18, 2007, 11:47:48 PM
Aye, Enermax should be ok. It might be a 350, but if it can push 200 watts to the computer, it should be ok, unless the 12v rail is coming in too weak.

All that said.. though my x800xl ran hot.. it did NOT artifact on me... however, my psu was never in question.

Methink I'd go ahead and swap it. Perhaps the card was repackaged from a previous user (who damaged it) and reshelved. You never know. I've gotten 'new' products before, that turned out not to be. Worked ok, but it ticks me off everytime I catch some place doing it to me. Last time was the computer case I ordered... I noticed on the paperwork 6 months later that it had come from one of neweggs' refurb centers... I paid for a brand new one. Mind you it was in premium condition (apparently, as I didnt even notice until I happened to read some paperwork later on and caught it)..

Anyways, you never know. If the new one runs good without artifacting, but hot, then you're ok and can simply look for a replacement cooler.

Got a question on the psu.. how are you powering the card? molex connectors? anything else on the chain with those connectors? hard drives, fans, etc? ANYTHING else on the chain, can be a source of electrical interference (which can cause artifacts)...

In theory, it'd be easy to test this, assuming you can rearrange your power connectors so the card is on a chain by itself.

Also.. you said your corruption continued on the desktop after you shut off the game... but didnt start until you fired up the game, and got worse over time. Is it still corrupting, even after cold boot + time to cool, while showing the desktop? Such is likely a sign the card is permanently damaged.

Upon re-reading all this, it does sound like a heat issue for the most part. I don't know your setup or anything, dunno how your cooling is rigged, etc.
* TheAtomicKid frowns

oh, and turn off fast writes, if you didnt already. often a source of problems with agp setups... and it wont make a difference on your performance.


If it were me... I'd try and redo the computer to isolate the gpu on a power chain by itself, if possible. If not possible, as close as you can come. Feel free to temporarily disconnect stuff like the cd and floppy to get this done. After that, you could try either using some canned air to cool the card during testing by spraying the interface between the heatink and the gpu to keep it cool, and see if your artifacting goes away. (and your temps drop)... spraying the heatsink wont necessarily work if the thermal path is screwed.. the heats still in the gpu.

If you feel risky, you could try disassembly/reassembly to see if you can improve the thermal path with the crappy cooler. If that 'fixes' it, all you'd need to do at that point, is, if you wanted, look for an aftermarket cooler. I dont know how good your skills are in this area. If you dont feel you can do it without damaging the card, dont, cause it may cause problems returning it if you try this and fail biggrin

I had wonderful luck with my x800xl, but... two different cards.

It may be that sapphire simply looked at the total thermal power of the gpu from ati, and simply designed a cooler with 'x' surface area and 'y' fan, to supposedly meet specs. The chips are supposedly rated to like 80c, but mine experienced problems at that range of temps. (it's based on a slightly different process than the normal x800 and x850 chips were)

I dunno. /me mumbles
1433  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 18, 2007, 08:06:32 PM
btw, I looked at the card on newegg last night... assuming it's the same card (agp x1950 pro 512 mb sapphire), it does indeed look to be one of sapphires typical coolers, instead of a 'nice' one.

basically a flat piece of coopper, and another piece that's been 'folded' to make 'fins', and then bonded together somehow. fan on one end, and then either another copper layer to form the top surface, or plastic, or somesuch (not looking at it right now).

If so, this is the same type of solution my x800xl came with, and mine, at least, was barely sufficient, especially when combined with a crappy assembly job.

Sapphire... hardware good, assembly, hideous. You'd think ATI would put some smack on them, since it makes ATI look like their chips run too hot in general.

1434  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 18, 2007, 08:01:27 PM
I cant see how not receiving enough power could cause overheating issues on the card. It might indeed simply be a crappy thermal design in the end. The artifacting could be a result of 'dirty' power though... insufficient, outside of spec, etc. A good psu is becoming a necessity these days, for any rig that includes a high end gpu. Motherboards would seem to me to be slightly less vulnerable due to their beefier power circuitry... 8 phase power designs, anyone? GPU's don't really have that, dont think... they dont have room on the card for it... which was ok when they received all their power straight from the motherboard, nice and filtered.

Instant overheat really does sound like an assembly problem though. Even with a piss poor cooling solution, it should take a little while to go nuclear on you.

Simply put, you may have a combination of problems going here.

Fortron, Sparkle, Seasonic (my recommendation due to a combination of quality, silence, and money), pc power and cooling.

A psu from that list will do you well... do you need it? Possibly. And other than breaking out a multimeter and some creative testing, I know of no way to be absolutely certain. 350 watts _should_ be enough to run a system (most systems dont pull over 200-250, until you start looking at SLI rigs), but depending on the psu, it could be weak in some areas, or dirty power, etc.

The card... if your window is shrinking and you have doubts, get a refund, bide your time, and do some thinking. You've got a valid cause, unless they wanna be stinkers about it and claim there's 'nothing wrong with it' because they put it in a machine and it boots windows.

Which, btw, is not a good indicator the card is ok... running the 3d circuitry on the chip is much more taxing than just showing a desktop. Desktop is basically just idling the card.


1435  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 18, 2007, 07:37:30 AM
my x800xl runs nice and cool once I swapped out the crappy cooler for a much nicer zalman 700. Now it never breaks 55c, even under full load. Idle is 39c. Mind you, I haven't tried any of the new x1k series yet. Up to you, but I really think you ought to check your thermal path on the card. Like I said, sapphire doesnt have the best assembly in the world. Hardware is good though, they make all of ATI's cards for them.

1436  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: FYI: Video Codecs on: January 17, 2007, 06:13:02 AM
I have used the CCCP with great success for years now. It's really not intended to be used with windows media player, but instead with one of the included installations of either media player classic, or the other, included player in the install, which I cant remember off the top of my head because I dont use it. In fact, they customize the settings for the players, in the installation, to work best with the CCCP package without any user tweaking needed... because the entire idea of the package, is install it, and go. No muss, no fuss, nothing else needed.

If you had playback issues after installing the pack, something was wrong with the installation, probably a conflict with your existing codecs, etc. The installation instructions specifically recommend removing existing codecs and packs, before installing the CCCP, just for this reason. They even supply a utility they wrote, to help identify what is listed as installed on your system.

My playback is flawless, for the record, and the guys do a wonderful job of keeping the pack up to date, with new releases every few months, including tweaks and tuning.

My only problem with the CCCP, is they only code it for windows... if they'd port the package to linux.... well, that'd be one less barrier on my road to a microsoft free computing environment.

1437  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Is this a Vid Card or Software Problem? on: January 15, 2007, 03:12:44 AM
If it can run Oblivion (one of the more intensive games available currently), it should be able to run pretty much anything. I suspect a software issue. You _could_ check the games forums and see if there's a problem with the nvidia cards and/or drivers... always a possibility, although they'd usually be pretty quick to get a fix in. I think my first action would be either to hit their forums and check for issues, or else try the driver reinstall.... but if it's running oblivion smoothly, it's most likely something else.

Did HOMM V work smoothly with your previous card, or is this a new game?

1438  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems with new AGP X1950 Vid Card on: January 14, 2007, 08:07:43 AM
I'd definitely check the thermal path on the card before splurging on a new psu. depending on how the temperature is actually measured, your reading could be off by quite a bit (or it might be dead on.. my x800xl seemed to be spot on... and it's a sapphire too)

However, I noticed after I got it that the temps ran pretty high... disturbingly so. I pulled the card and disassembled it, cleaned, redid the paste, etc. Card dropped 15c idle and loaded, from that by itself. Even with the pos stock cooler. The cooler on the 1950's is much nicer, but I'd still check the construction.

After all, it's free, and it doesnt take even an hour. Just be careful on the disassembly/reassembly, and be aware it'll most likely void any warranty you might have. (try holding the card up in front of a lightsource, edge on, and see if you can see the cpu/heatsink interface, look for gaps, etc.

Sapphire makes good cards, but their product assembly may lack. My experience is based on one unit. Your mileage may vary.

Also, be aware of the changing nature of psu's, before you upgrade. If you're on an older agp motherboard, the psu requirements may be slightly different from newer stuff. For instance, the latest atx spec ditched the -5 volt line, iirc.... that used to be in use, but no longer is.

Also, newer  cpu's run on the 12 volt rail, instead of the... was it the 3.3 volt rail before? Cant remember. In any case, what this means is that the load balance on an older system, was different from newer stuff, so if your motherboard is fairly old, you might keep that in mind when looking for a new psu.

All that said, Seasonic makes some wonderful, QUIET, psu's.

1439  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Daily Tech says R600 kicks 8800's arse on: January 03, 2007, 10:08:44 PM
Daehawk, I used to have issues with the omegas too, but recent releases (in the last year or two), have been rock solid. And the integrated extras make for a very nice package. Might wanna give them another shot. I'm using the latest right now with zero issues.


(edit) assuming you still have any radeons laying around, that is. All that said, I'm probably switching back to nvidia going forward from here. my x800xl has been nice, but I think nvidia 'has it' for awhile. we shall see. It'll be interesting to see what amd-ati does, in the future.
1440  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Memory Dilema on: January 03, 2007, 10:05:57 PM
The speedup you get from the extra gig, might be worth it in some applications, however. Your mileage will vary biggrin

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