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81  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: New rig on: January 27, 2014, 12:48:30 PM
Things to remember

1: cpu paste... a little goes a long way. you should use a pea-sized bit at the center of the _clean_ cpu heatspreader, and you can use the pressure-spread technique. the clamping pressure of the heatsink will spread the paste where it needs to go. there are OTHER techniques, such as trying to make a line along the row of cores, spreading it with a credit card or some other very clean implement before installing the heatsink, but for a rookie, this is easiest, and works extremely well.

you do NOT want an 'oreo cookie' with your cpu and the heatsink as the two outside bits. the paste should spread out so thin you can see through it in most areas... remember, it's basically there to fill the microscopic gaps in the supposedly smooth surfaces... not to become the heat transport itself.... enough paste will actually insulate your cpu.

2: dont forget your pci-e cable(s), and your cpu 12v cable(s).

3: fans. remember to plug in the fans.

4: if you have the necessary bits, installing windows from a usb stick is a lot faster than an optical drive. a LOT faster.

5: if you're using the crappy default intel cooler... that thing in #1 doesnt really apply... however, when you overclock it with this cooler installed, don't come whining here about how the nasty smoke got out and ruined your carpet biggrin
82  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Good pre-built system for under $1,000? on: January 01, 2014, 08:00:20 AM

So'z. Who's up for the NSA 'value added' lottery?

83  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Home network connection dropout issues on: January 01, 2014, 07:58:52 AM
Progress... we're making progress?

84  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Home network connection dropout issues on: December 13, 2013, 12:37:04 PM
Did you restrict the IP address range the network can offer? If it's running out of IP's it might do something like that.

85  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Home network connection dropout issues on: December 13, 2013, 04:03:58 AM
Something you didnt explicitly state in your first post...

Before you got the almond, you would simply be stuck in the loop? What was the solution... reboot the router?

86  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Using a flatscreen tv as monitor... on: December 02, 2013, 07:57:55 AM
Given that I'm currently enjoying an opportunity to do this, I thought I'd share some of what I know, and am discovering, with you guys.

Circumstances left us with an extra flatscreen tv in the house. No you can't have it, and it' only 'decent' quality anyways. smile

It's a 40 inch sanyo, and I have it sitting on my desk, about 2 feet? or so from my eyes. Just over arms length... I can't quite reach it sticking my arm out without leaning. It sorta feels like I need it to be just a little further away, but I'm running low on room. Thankfully I have a corner desk so I actually have SOME ability to set the thing back from me.

At this distance, it's just barely far enough out. To see the top of the screen, I don't _quite_ have to actually look up, though I'm still wanting to... another few inches of setback would probably be about perfect.

At this distance, 1920x1080p is serviceable, though you can see the 'graininess' in the desktop. It's because I'm too close to the pixels. another few inches probably wont solve this one. I'd probably need at least 6 feet, and maybe as much as 10. Aka, television viewing distance. You gotta have enough range to let the eye start blending the pixels together to get rid of the effect. What's causing it, is the pixels are physically bigger, and the space between them, called dot pitch, is larger.

Reading text isn't really a problem. It's not 'blurry'... again, the 'grain' is noticeable, though it doesnt really interfere with reading.

As far as using the tv is concerned, so far its working. Some tv's end up with excessive 'input lag' between the time the gpu feeds the signal, and the time the tv actually displays it.... This will make itself known as you missing what you thought was a sure shot, say, in battlefield.... because they're actually 50ms ahead of where your tv is displaying them.

Units with a 'pc mode' or dedicated circuity that bypasses all the stuff that makes the tv work properly, will do better.... they can be as fast as a regular monitor if done properly. I also recommend a unit with an LED backlight that can be properly dialed down. TV's are _bright_...

Now, if I could just get this sucker with a 3840x2160 resolution... that... would be nice. Except my GPU would cry and beg me not to play as many games.

87  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Windows Media Player keeps crashing. Any good alternatives? on: November 26, 2013, 02:00:49 AM
Bah. VLC trash! CCCP ftmfw!

(actually VLC is pretty good these days, but I've been using CCCP forever, and in spite of the text on the home page, it does NOT install a ton of codecs to get the job done)

no muss, no fuss.

Originally built because of all the different containers and codecs in use from the anime fansub community.... mission successful.

88  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Configuring a PC on: November 08, 2013, 05:40:37 AM
Btw. In case you didnt catch it in all the news about the new radeon cards. the 270x IS crossfire compatible with your 7870.

Just thought I'd mention that.

89  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: October 30, 2013, 07:35:45 AM

* TheAtomicKid whimpers a little bit...
90  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: October 24, 2013, 08:38:21 AM
* TheAtomicKid screams and faints...

The stock cooler is a little loud... but the performance is there. _really_ there.

And a hundred bucks cheaper than a 780gtx at that.

91  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: October 19, 2013, 07:17:18 AM
92  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: New Router on: October 02, 2013, 06:26:02 AM
Ok, new router arrived this evening and installed.

Between rather extensive testing of the old router, and the ease of setup of the new router, I am affirming that Something Bad (tm) happened to my D-Link. Symptoms included coming home to an unresponsive router. Rebooting it to have it die again within a few minutes. Inability to provision it correctly, either static or dhcp... it would either flag an error if provisioned improperly, or crash, if provisioned correctly.

And the damned thing would be fine, unless, and until, I actually hooked it up to my dsl modem, at which point the router would fail. Didn't even have to pull up a web browser, it would fail or start failing, as soon as the connection went active. And it would otherwise be happy as a clam, up until that point.

Not really sure what happened, but factory reset, etc, nothing fixes it.

Anyways, the asus I listed before is running like a serious contender. It setup, no muss, no fuss. It even arrived with the latest firmware on board. Sadly it's not DD-WRT compatible, but what we have out of the box, is pretty decent, especially at the price.

93  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Maybe I should have stuck with 7. Windows 8.1 - can't install ANY drivers on: September 30, 2013, 03:47:58 AM
Just a thought, but you could install win7 for now without activating.


94  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / New Router on: September 27, 2013, 12:36:25 PM
Sadly, my D-Link Gamerlounge 4300 appears to be going on the fritz on me.

Now, I've already selected a replacement, since I'm under some time constraints and need to get this resolved before the lack of wireless access in the house results in a homicide, but.

I thought I'd start a thread on it so people could discuss, recommend, diss, etc.

My replacement router choice ended up being...

Mostly due to a combination of maximum simultaneous connections, overall router throughput, and pricetag. I didn't need the new 802.11AC spec, as I don't normally stream movies, etc. I do use bittorrent frequently, thus my appreciation for max simultaneous connections. (bittorrent tends to overwhelm lesser routers when it gets really going... the thousand of connections flood the cpu, and overflow the routing tables)

So if anyone wants to chime in, I'd love to hear some opinions. Good, bad. Indifferent wouldnt really help in this case. biggrin

95  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Guess it's going around - CPU/Mobo problems on: September 23, 2013, 03:27:26 AM
Still nothing?

96  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Have I screwed up my SD card? on: September 23, 2013, 03:25:27 AM
Not sure which Win 7 format tool you mean by your description.

Open up control panel, administrative tools, computer management, go to the disk management section, and then plug your drive in.

It should show up there, even if unformatted.


PS: Try FAT32 instead of NTFS. The partition is small enough, unless you need a file > 4GB, you're better off. Especially if you use it to transfer files to other devices.
97  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Guess it's going around - CPU/Mobo problems on: September 06, 2013, 04:15:56 AM
So, what was the verdict?

98  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 30, 2013, 04:15:59 AM
Been poking at my card and reading around a bit. According to nvidia here...

... the maximum gpu temperature rolls in at 95c. This, I believe, is the point at which the card says 'screw you, we are shutting you down before you hurt us'.

According to the anandtech gtx 780 review here...  (down on page 19, though the link should place you there)

... the point at which the card starts throttling is at 80c. Although I've read at least once somewhere that there may be more than one throttle point, starting at 70c? (progressive throttling certainly sounds effective. maybe there is something to it)

Anyways, after digesting that a bit, I've decided to alter my settings on evga precision, which I now use instead of msi's afterburner software, mostly for the framerate targeting function. I was setting my fan to max out 100% once the card hit 77c, but I've actually lowered that to 69c. The reasoning is that, if the card is working that much, whatever I'm doing, I'm pretty heavily involved in, and the fan noise doesn't bother me. It's also not actually that loud, even AT 100% fans.

This also maxes the fan out BEFORE it hits any throttle points.. if there IS one at 70c, the fans will max out before the card gets there... and even if the card doesnt throttle til it hits 80c, that gives me a full 10c of wiggle room for the fans to keep the card from hitting the throttle point.
And, of course, sitting at the desktop, etc, the card is pleasantly quiet. Inaudible over the rest of the already quiet box, which is three feet from my head near the back of my desk.

Testing ensues. I don't expect to pick up much, from this. But every little bit helps, and it's better for the card in the long run. Hopefully this info and my thoughts on it will be of value to you guys.

99  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 15, 2013, 04:03:27 AM
Oooh! I just had a thought. EVGA's Precision X utility has a 'framerate target' function available in it. You could leave vsync disabled, or enable triple buffering as I suggested to reduce tearing, and set your framerate target to whatever you like, for the best of all worlds.

100  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 14, 2013, 05:51:45 AM
Try enabling triple-buffering instead. You can do it in the nvidia options, not sure about the game options since I don't have that one.

Article is from before nvidia adding adaptive vsync to its feature set, notably.

101  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / 32 vs 64 bit... this is why you should make the switch... on: August 05, 2013, 02:50:54 AM   The first post should be fairly obviously the relevant bit...

Now, the addressing limits I knew about.
The gpu sucking up gigantic amounts of the addressing I knew about.
I did NOT know that dx9 etc also replicated the gpu memory into system memory, further depleting the pool. Ugh, and no damned wonder.

102  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Guess it's going around - CPU/Mobo problems on: August 03, 2013, 11:08:32 PM

Unplugging the optical drive(s)... see if your hang goes away.
  :if it does, try a different cable
Repeat with the rest of your hard drives.

Unplug all the hardware as I've mentioned in another thread, until you're down to mobo/cpu/ram, and at that point, with the board unplugged (which it would be of course, but _actually_ unplugged and not just powered down), clear the cmos (which resets all the pci-e data to the minimum config possible because you've pulled all the hardware)
  :and start adding stuff back in. Your problem may or may not go away, and it may or may not come back.

How quality/new is your PSU? Got a backup?

I know the feeling. It's a shame to have to push good hardware because one piece goes flaky and they no longer make replacements. I have a i7-750 laying around with the same type of problems, although I need to spend more time investigating.

Not sure as to your intended usage, but if the purpose of the setup is just gaming, and normally just a single gpu, you're better off with a straight Haswell replacement. The only real benefit to LGA2011 is the extra pci-e lanes... which you don't need if you're not actually putting them to use.

In fact, for single gpu gaming, an argument can be made to switch to the AMD side of things, unless you're specifically playing games like Starcraft II, which are cpu hogs due to all the AI processing. I like my x79 setup, but for the money I spent, I could have simply gotten a core i7/2600 at the time and used the leftover for something else. If I had it to do over, I'd probably follow my own advice here, and either go Haswell or AMD.

If you do go with LGA2011, the new Ivy Bridge E cpu's have soldered heat spreaders, so they run cooler than normal Ivy Bridge processors... (which intel used thermal paste on instead of solder to save costs... but they run hotter)

You could always look into one of those new AMD firebreathers for us.... the FX-9590 pushes _146_ amps through the cpu socket during normal operation biggrin  (220 watt thermal envelope at 1.5 volts!!!)

103  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 03, 2013, 10:45:56 PM
I've never heard of them not working in an x8 slot....after all, that's all that's required for SLI. Are you _certain_ the slot you're plugging it into is x8? What you described... the furthest one from the main gpu... makes it sound like it's the extra x4 slot they like to tag on... which is fine as far as AMD is concerned, but nvidia has a tendency to turn their nose up at.

Anyone else want to chime in here? I have limited experience with multiple gpu's in a box. Anyone know if x8 is the minimum required even for just physx processing? (which would be insane, as it actually takes very little.... apparently an 8800gt is more than enough to fill any physx requirements... at least the last time I looked into it.

104  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 02, 2013, 05:03:38 AM
actually it appears the program is reading the gpu speed incorrectly, I'm sad to say.

I've monitored my speeds with several programs... none of the go over my rated 1006 mhz.... valley reads my card in the 1200's.

105  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 02, 2013, 04:10:45 AM
btw. nvidia control panel has an entry for telling the driver how to decide what physx hardware to use. It may be defaulting to the cpu, though I don't see why it would. Try forcing it to the 580, assuming it can see it.

106  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: August 02, 2013, 04:07:33 AM
Decided to futz with my card a bit this evening. Used a combination of gpu-z and afterburner to test it a bit using their windowed render test to keep the gpu at its top power strap while I futzed with afterburner, bumping the clock speed.

It's perfectly stable in windows, even up to +216 mhz (at 103% power budget for Boost 2.0 btw, don't forget that... free performance there)... however, it fails when trying to run the valley benchmark after locking in the upgraded speed.

It is, however, stable with no visible artifacts at +108 mhz, all the way through the run.

Albeit with NO interim testing to where exactly between 108 and 216 it becomes unstable, we can take away that the card can take a 10% overclock... which means the card is running roughly 90% of its actual capability in terms of gpu clockspeed.

Which, in fact, puts it smack in my personal comfort zone at the default settings. (If I overclock things, I tend to run them at about 90% of what they max out at, in order to boost longevity of the parts)

I could probably run it at the elevated settings, but there doesnt seem to be any real need for it anyways. I just bump the power budget to 103%, grant it my manual fan profile rather than letting the card bios do it, and everything else .

When you ran your valley run at 'max settings' did that include 8x AA, etc?

And did you remember to go into the nvidia control center and tweak the settings there? In particular the power management mode, tweaking from 'auto' to 'prefer maximum performance' will give you some free fps. There's also an optimization for single display vs multiple displays, though not sure how much difference that one makes.

107  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: July 30, 2013, 12:50:05 AM
Basically yeah, just keep an eye on the temps.

Btw... '80c or under during load' doesn't really mean anything. The silicon starts throttling at 80c, so in fact it WONT go over 80c unless something breaks. Ideally you want everything to max out just before 80c.. thus maximizing on the capabilities of Boost 2.0


edit: reading comprehension ftw. 'Below 80c' does not equal '80c or below'
108  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: GeForce GTX TITAN announced -GTX 780/770 on: July 29, 2013, 06:13:31 PM
Oh I forgot to mention!

I... uhh... caved in and pulled the trigger...

Reasons were due to a combination of reviews, expectations from the way the cooler is built, price, and clockspeeds....

The stock coolers are really good, but some of the aftermarkets cool better, even if they're not as snazzy. I was torn trying to decide between this model and the gigabyte windforce 3 model... went with this one because two large fans will have a tendency to run more quietly than three smaller ones, assuming similar amounts of airflow. Also, the black die in the fan blades will have a tendency to make the blades quieter... apparently clear plastic is more brittle? And to be honest the blades on the gigabyte unit don't look clear... more smoke, which indicates there is SOME kind of die in there... just not enough to make the plastic opaque. (which may or may not matter, and the GB unit may or may not be noisier in the end... I just went with the MSI)

Final results? Happy, though admittedly expensive. Thankfully, I've been saving up spare cash on the side of everything else to pay for computer upgrades... and it covered about 2/3rds of the cost of this card, so it's only partial misbehavior. Card runs very quiet as a matter of course. MSI has done an interesting thing with this card. It's a normal card in all aspects... but they've got an app released, which allows you to dumbset silent, gaming, and overclock modes. TBH, I haven't used it.

Card is advertised at 954/1006, and I've no doubts it can do that. It defaults, however, to 902mhz... which would be enough to annoy people, but not me... because Boost 2.0 has me covered. Card is boosting without help to 1006 when put to the test, so the app is completely unnecessary in my case. According to GPU-Z, my ASIC is judged as 'average', which is a little dissappointing, but it bodes well for anyone else picking up one of these, if average results in 'dont really need anything else to make it perform'

I'd have been happier if the card had been a little cheaper? But lets put this in perspective. At one time I had a gtx 680 lightning in this machine build. (intel 3820, x79 mobo, etc).... I happen to have run a copy of the Heaven 1.0 benchmark at the time and saved it... and Heaven 1.0 was still installed to the machine. This card is benching heaven at 25% better speeds. And it's a LOT faster than the GTX 260 I had in place. (the 680 failed, had to return it)

I thought about waiting for the '780 Lightning' from MSI, but it's another month away or so, and at a price premium to boot. I decided it wouldn't be worth it, especially with Boost 2.0 on the job.... it will tend to make up the difference for people automagically.

The only caveat I have for people... gpu's have a tendency not to max out their fans, and especially for the 780/titan this is a bad thing. At 80c, the nvidia firmware starts slowing the cards down in order to keep temps under control... but sadly, most of the firmwares don't use all of the fan available to help keep it cool... resulting in a card that runs slower and/or hotter than it otherwise might. If this bothers you, you can use a copy of MSI's Afterburner software, to manually alter your fan profile... you have to keep afterburner running for it to work, but it has a setting to tell it to start with windows, so it just sits in the tray with 5 million other things biggrin

(I set mine to slowly ram up, peaking at 100% fan when the card hits 77c... you can hear it when the card starts getting hot... but the only time it does this, is when you're stressing the card.... aka, heavy gaming... which means you're not really noticing the card... and THIS card is not particularly loud when you reach that point... the gtx260 before, by comparison, was a howler)

All in all? Satisfied. And the card is not exhibiting any bad behavior at all, so it's a keeper.

9/10 (based solely on 'personal feeling' rather than any technical measurements).

109  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Buying a new gaming rig on: July 19, 2013, 02:39:11 AM
You ever get any further with this? Hopefully I didn't put a damper on your project with my posts.

110  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Star Citizen, space combat simulation game (Chris Roberts' latest) on: July 16, 2013, 07:06:09 AM
Ahh ok I'm seeing it work now. I couldnt figure out why I could no longer purchase LTI ships, being that I would consider myself an original backer, if not by much. (I picked up the 35? $ aurora LX package when it was on sale.... LTI, alpha/beta access, etc.)

The trick of course being... you have to be logged into the site to see ships with LTI available.

111  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Buying a new gaming rig on: July 12, 2013, 09:00:42 AM
Having said all that, I'm going through some of the retailers. Actually kinda hard to find upgraded air-cooling on them. It's either stock air coolers, or water so far. Not really good.

112  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Buying a new gaming rig on: July 12, 2013, 08:47:16 AM
After conferring with a friend, I'd like to add something, because I didn't make it clear in my post.

The custom liquid cooled cpu setups and custom cases linked in those four builds, will NOT make the wimpy underpowered vs the cpu graphics cards go any faster. They also involve actual water inside your case, so if you have trouble with them... you have water inside your case. This does not mean watercooling doesnt work. But it also DOES mean it's not necessarily for the casual gamer.

More money towards the gpu's. Less money towards the bling, relatively useless watercooling setups, and unneeded platform expenses.

You SHOULD be able to hit at least a 770 on a 2000$ budget. If not a 780.

113  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Buying a new gaming rig on: July 12, 2013, 08:38:16 AM
Given my experiences with the x79 platform...

If you do not intend to use it for a multi-gpu setup of 3 or more gpu's, it's not worth it. It is NOT worth it. For two or fewer gpu's, a z68 or newer mobo with the ability to run dual x8 pci-e slots is plenty. You'd just be wasting your money on the platform. I went this route, and I'm still using my gtx 260. (single) :/ Theoretically I can use two gpu's, and give them a full x16 slot each to play with. Theoretically. And it will make MAYBE 5% difference in the end. If I ever manage to upgrade my gpu. :/

Admittedly I like my 3820 chip. It's a real trooper.

You also will face shortcomings if you try to setup ssd's and raid. the x79 platform uses the enterprise driver set, and it doesnt support trim on raid. (yet)

go with the z68,z77, or z87 (makes sense to go with the latest, but you could save some money there if you wanted) platform, or even look to the amd side of things.

spend more money on the gpu(s) and less money on the cpu. In all but a few games, the gpu is the deciding factor. Going with Team Red, will definitely shave you a few bucks here.

8GB's of ram. Just do it. It doesnt cost that much. And remember x64 on the operating system. Your software will thank you for not having to swap as much. Or at all.

Try looking at a build based on either a bulldozer/piledriver build (am3+), or one of the trinity chips (fm2), with a higher powered gpu making up the difference on cash. You might like what you see.

For two grand, I'd think you could do a lot better than what you've linked so far. Gtx 760? 650? Meh. (the 760's hold their own, about gtx 670 levels). But 2 grand? It's a 250$ card.


PS: The case does not make it go faster biggrin

114  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems installing Radeon 2400pro on: July 02, 2013, 08:47:26 AM
Not sure.

Is this the driver you're trying to use?

115  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Problems installing Radeon 2400pro on: July 01, 2013, 01:37:59 AM
I wanted to say they might have dropped support for the card. But the 2400 is actually newer than the 9600. Damn these people and their confusing numbering/advertising schemes!

Recognizes original card.

Does not recognize new card, unless you install the omega drivers, in which case it works just dandy.

So it's not a hardware issue specifically, but for some reason the new cat drivers are not recognizing the card, yet the old ones are (since that's where the omega driver came from)...

Test: Find a copy of the driver version your omega's were created from, and see if THAT recognizes the driver.

I'm not sure what it would tell us, but it's at least something to test. You could, in theory, work your way along the driver series until you hit a step where it stops recognizing the card. Then figure out what changed.

116  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Star Citizen, space combat simulation game (Chris Roberts' latest) on: July 01, 2013, 01:32:19 AM
Who said no mining? Pretty sure mining was mentioned in the 24 hr livestream they just finished up.

For those who haven't pledged, you get a reprieve. Until I think it's Nov 26th, you still have opportunity to sign up for ships with lifetime insurance on them, and/or packages that allow you access to alpha/beta testing, if that is your desire.

I'm in for 30 so far from the Aurora sale... or was it 35? can't remember.

Btw, they just updated the website design as well.

117  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: What the Sam Hill... cpu / mobo problems on: June 27, 2013, 04:08:59 AM
Speaking of the video card...
118  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: PC component upgrade options? on: June 25, 2013, 11:15:45 AM
Definitely the GPU

For _only_ 150$ to upgrade with, however, options are somewhat limited. Even the 660ti still comes in ahead at around the 300$ mark. The rest of your machine is solid.

My suggestion: hold for more cash. Look for something around the 660ti level to match to the machine. (as a single gpu system, your real factor holding you back is the gpu)

My advice for futureproofing. 660ti, 3GB of ram, or better, along the curve. You can get by with 2GB atm, but the games are getting bigger and bigger. And it looks like you hold onto hardware for a while.
On the AMD side of the line, the rough equivalent is the 7950, give or take. An argument can be made for the 7870 GHz edition if you want to try and get by with 'only' 2GB of vram.

Good job on that 860 build... that was the sweet spot on the cpu for a while. (the amount of cache provided, the speed, etc... not the fastest on the block, but one step removed, and much more economical biggrin )

119  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: What the Sam Hill... cpu / mobo problems on: June 24, 2013, 03:47:59 PM
Thinking through the logic on it. With new intel boards, chips, the gpu is connected directly to the cpu via the pci-e lanes these days. When you inserted the new gpu initially... you mentioned being careful in the vacuuming, but did you have everything unplugged etc? (and even so, it could have been static discharge at this point from your hand through the gpu, and into the board/pci-e lanes)... all you need is to have more negative charge than the motherboard, and it will happen, even if nothing is grounded. (which folks, is why those static straps you wear are grounded through a big resistor... the ground is to drain the static so everything has the same charge level as your local ground, and the big resistor is so you don't fry yourself accidentally, since _you are grounded_) smile )

120  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: What the Sam Hill... cpu / mobo problems on: June 24, 2013, 03:37:59 PM
Yes, the circumstances/details are not looking good for your cpu, although I too am a little confused as to how you might have slain the beast. But given that it's the only common thread... (question, have you ever plugged the new video card into the new motherboard?), it pretty much _has_ to be the answer, unless you can come up with another commonality.

After that perhaps a cheap cpu replacement is in order which would verify that it's the cpu causing your headache, although it's yet more money out of pocket.

If the cpu _has_ gone south, do you have a plan?

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