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Author Topic: New vid card constantly crashes  (Read 2390 times)
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Xylune
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« on: April 29, 2007, 09:14:25 am »

Okay, I spent almost 300 dollars on a graphic card upgrade, which would have replaced my ATI Radeon x300 sapphire with an ATI Radeon x1650 pro.  I made sure that all system specs met or exceeded requirements, removed all old Radeon drivers/files, installed the latest driver for the new card, updated my sound driver, chipset and directx, and reseated my RAM.  

Regardless of all these steps, I cannot run ANY games with this new card.  I thought the card was faulty after doing everything possible on my end, so I sent it back and they replaced it with another of the same kind.  I'm still unable to run game applications with the new card.  The computer shuts down with no error message, or else it blue-screens with the "driver stuck in an infinite loop" message.  I've tried running TS2 (all ep's and stuff packs included), World of Warcraft and Horizons.

I'm at the end of my rope, here.  The only thing left that I can think of is that the card runs too hot and my case isn't airy enough or big enough to keep it cool, or I have bad RAM.  

The problem with the RAM theory is that when I put my old card back in, everything runs fine except for my sims2 problem with crashes and red flashing lots/white boxes sometimes in neighborhood view (which did not start until I installed Seasons and was why I bought the new card in the first place).  It shouldn't be the power supply, because it's brand new and 450w, which is what is recommended (but advertised as not required) to run the card.

Does anyone have any suggestions?  I have done everything I can think of except update my BIOS, because I'm terrified of doing that and destroying my computer, and the tech support for my system manufacturer said I shouldn't do it unless the bios is not recognizing hardware.

Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!
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kim
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« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2007, 09:29:34 am »

I suggest you take it in and have a professional install it
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kinneer
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« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2007, 11:11:17 am »

Have you tried the dxdiag ? Go to the start menu. Select run and type dxdiag. This displays some diagnostic info and also runs some basic test. You could try that. Does this happens for all your games ?

Secondly, did the X300 use shared memory ? You could go into the bios and check the settings. Your PSU is more than sufficient.

Did you connect a power lead from the PSU to the graphics card ? Midrange and up graphics cards requiring external power supply will behave oddly if the external power is not connected. By external power supply I mean the molex connecter for the card. This should be connected to the PSU like a hard drive. The necessary cables should be supplied. Low end cards like the X300 draws their power from the PCIe slot. The X1650Pro may have an additional power connector.

Why did you have to reseat the RAM ?
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Xylune
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« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2007, 07:59:17 pm »

I've done dxdiag.  It happens with any game application I try to run, though some run for longer than others before the computer shuts off or bluescreens.  I also tried disabling anti-aliasing in the Catalyst control center, because I've heard that sometimes it can cause problems.  That didn't work, either.

I'm not sure about the shared memory.  What would that be under in bios settings and what changes would I need to make if that is the case?  

I didn't connect a power lead from the psu to the graphics card, I just inserted it into the slot as per the instructions.  Molex connector?  I'm really unfamiliar with that.  The instructions just say to insert the card in the PCI express slot.  It says nothing about connecting to an external power source, and I don't see a connection space on the card for such a thing.  Here's what came with the card:

15 pin VGA connector for CRT monitor,
Dual-link DVI connector for Digital Flat Panel,
S-Video or Composite connector for TV/VCR

System specs:

NEC Computers International
Powermate series
Intel
Pentium 4 CPU 3.00 GHz
1 gig RAM
450w power supply

I reseated the RAM because I thought that might help...it was just one of the many things I tried just on the off-chance that it would solve the problem.

Thank you for responding.  I'd really like to get this card working for me and I can't see why my system wouldn't support it. Sad
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kinneer
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« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2007, 10:19:19 am »

A molex, I believe that is what they called, is a power connector. It is for connecting to the PSU for additional power. Similar to connecting an internal HD to the computer PSU. If you do not have one, then the card does not need one.

The shared memory setting can be found under the BIOS setting. For internal and low end graphics cards, some of the main memory is reserved for the graphic chips since they do not have any dedicated ram. You can change the almount to reserve, freeing more ram. You could have a look to see if there is setting there related to the PCIe.

If the games do run fine for a while, then it could be heat related, although that would seem unlikely. You migh try to look for something that would report the temperature on the card. The nVidia driver can do that so maybe ATI might have something similar.
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jspang51
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« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2007, 08:29:47 pm »

I had a similar problem and replaced my vid card only to find it doing the same thing.  I have to CNTRL-ALT-DEL      click processes    click user name and close all applications except explorer and task manager.  It seems that ANYTHING running in the back ground goosed my vid card and crashed my game.  Hope this helps.  It did the trick for me.

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Xylune
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« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2007, 11:59:06 pm »

Hmm, maybe I'll try that.  I don't like the idea of leaving my antivirus and firewall turned off, though.  It's not an issue with the sims, but I also play online games that crash with the new vid card.

I'm really beginning to suspect that it's running too hot and has a crappy cooling system (despite the ads saying it was state of the art).  My case is small and there isn't room to install another fan, so I'm probably SOL until we can afford to put together a brand new computer.  Thanks for trying to help, everyone.
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caffeinated.joy
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« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2007, 12:46:53 am »

The higher end ATI cards do have a good cooling system, but they're only effective in better circulating the air already in your case. If your case doesn't have sufficient fans pulling in enough cool air into the system, then all it's really doing is circulating the warm air already in your case.
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daytonaraceway
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« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2007, 03:56:12 pm »

Just saw your post and had a question... If the air that the fan pulls in is warm, would that cause a problem? Sorry but I think that mey be the problem I'm having as well.
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caffeinated.joy
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2007, 02:21:25 pm »

That depends. It will cool the exterior air it pulls in to a degree, but it's just like how a fan works in your house. It will cool the air down a certain amount, but only as much as it's capable of. After that, it's just pushing around warm air. So, if you have strategically placed multiple fans creating a cross-breeze, it creates more effective cooling and air circulation.

It works the same in your case. I have a front fan placed at the bottom, a side fan a little higher up and closer to the back, and two rear fans. These work together with the powersupply fan at the rear top and the cooling fans on my ATI cards.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2007, 06:25:54 pm by caffeinated.joy » Logged

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jase439
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« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2007, 11:01:36 am »

If x1600 series are notorious for heat output (> 70-80C!).  Sapphire's ATI x1950 Pro and x1950 GT are based on a redesign with lower thermal output.  Mine idles with the stock cooler around 41C and ramps to about 55-60C under load.

The problem with the hotter cards is that they jack the internal case temperature through the roof, diminishing the cooling effectiveness of the entire system.  I don't recall the exact math, but the effectiveness of air moving over a heat sink is inversely proportional to the square of the temperature or some such thing.  That is, if you double the ambient temperature, your cooling ability is cut to a fourth.  This is why its critical you have a good source of cool air where your computer sits and good air flow (air should usually be drawn in through the front of the case and vented out the side or in the back) so you can vent the heat as soon as its dissipated.  I've seen some goofy setups before where people have all of their fans blowing inward or outward.

Anyway, I just upgraded my ATI to a x1950 Pro, and marveled at just how cool it runs.  If you can return the x1650, you might think about the x1950 instead.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2007, 11:04:46 am by jase439 » Logged

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caffeinated.joy
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« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2007, 05:37:15 pm »

Yes, the x1950 is awesome. I have the dual card set-up and it's loooovely.
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aerisangel
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« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2007, 04:01:16 am »

It's one of two things, computer is overheating, motherboard overheats or graphics card gets too hot or the power supply is getting interrupted.  I had this problem so frequently, and it was clear mine was a power supply issue due to living in post Katrina New Orleans with a temporary power line hooked up for us right now.  But, I had a rough three months of my game crashing, the whole computer crashing only when I played my game.  The computer went to a black screen and had to be manually powered off and restarted only to have it happen again, soon, once the game was up.  I was restarting my game, sometimes 6 times a day due to crashes.  I purchased a power supply regulator and it solved the problem.  My game is huge, I have an Alienware computer two years old with a seriously sweet motherboard, excellent $650 ATI graphics card, extra fans inside, don't even have to run the cooling system that came with my computer, so it was a power problem.  Try a regulator, get it from somewhere you can take it back if it doesn't solve the problem, but your problem sounds exactly like what I was experiencing.  I play with a power grid that sucks, and the power regulator keeps it from crashing and going to the black screen where all you can do is power off.  The power regulator I got was around $200, but they have them cheaper, mine was worth every penny, couldn't even create a sim without it crashing the computer.
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