Unusal graphics card problem

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Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:47 am

This is odd, but I wonder if anyone else has seen this? I run a amd 6950 standard. If im quick enough to load a game its completly stable, plays for hours. But during windows enviroment, after 5 mins, fails, shows funny colors and locksup. Somtimes even shifting the screen image halfway across the monitor. Odd? Changed all my hardware parts, even fresh install of windows on new hdd etc. Used my 6950 in another computer even and same problem. So its the graphics card for sure. Yet, if im quick enough to load a game, its fine.

Any ideas? :o
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:53 am

It would be most helpful to everyone here if you could provide the following details.
OS:
OS Theme: (Aero, Classic, etc..)
Motherboard Model:
GFX Card Model: Radeon 6950 (Filled that in for ya)
GFX Driver Version:
What game(s) were you loading?:

The problem you describe "funny colors and locks up" is generally indicative of artifacting AKA bad overclock/too hot.
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:22 am

Fair enough,

I7 2500k
Windows 7.64, Areo classic
Gigabyte Z68MA-D2H-B3
Mushkin 8GB 1333
OCZ vertex3 240
6950 Drivers 12.1, not over clocked, never been overclocked, huge case, plenty of airflow.

All games, BF3, Wargame EC, SupCom2, dosnt matter, any game worked fine and stable aslong as I loaded the game before it happend.

Artifacts arnt that of typical overheating. Screen would freeze on a blue screen, but not the typical bsod. There no crash dump text etc, just a blank light blue screen.

Like I said, I have moved just the graphics card into a entire new system, and still the 5 min issue. But only in a windows enviroment, eg surfing the web, multimedia etc. If I boot, and dont touch a thing, its stable. As soon as I touch it, if im not already loaded into a game. Its freezes.

You would think if its a graphics card, its working hardest during a game?
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:30 am

jeffz6 wrote:Fair enough,

I7 2500k
Windows 7.64, Areo classic
Gigabyte Z68MA-D2H-B3
Mushkin 8GB 1333
OCZ vertex3 240
6950 Drivers 12.1, not over clocked, never been overclocked, huge case, plenty of airflow.

All games, BF3, Wargame EC, SupCom2, dosnt matter, any game worked fine and stable aslong as I loaded the game before it happend.

Artifacts arnt that of typical overheating. Screen would freeze on a blue screen, but not the typical bsod. There no crash dump text etc, just a blank light blue screen.

Like I said, I have moved just the graphics card into a entire new system, and still the 5 min issue. But only in a windows enviroment, eg surfing the web, multimedia etc. If I boot, and dont touch a thing, its stable. As soon as I touch it, if im not already loaded into a game. Its freezes.

You would think if its a graphics card, its working hardest during a game?


Maybe bad driver making the idle fan speed not detect the gpu overheating at minimal load.... ??? Hence games OK, but on windows screen = after a while bad?

Load up your driver thing that shows you the gpu temps and sit for 5 mins sipping a cup of tea in windows while you wait for the artifacting to begin. If it gradually heats up then there's your problem.

Monitoring fan speeds is also advisable.
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:51 am

The 6850 I have runs at 300/300 when at the windows desktop, ramping up to 820/1100 at load.
I think the 6950 has even lower idle clocks than the 6850.

It's possible you've got some dicky memory that doesn't like running at the lower speed timings. If it's a repeatable problem, RMA it.
It sounds like it worked fine in an earlier machine, is it possible you frazzled a RAM chip with static, or knocked off a tiny component?
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:08 am

Sounds like a wonky card. Could be anything from bad fan speed controls causing overheating when the card is idling, to flaky power management causing the GPU to crash when it is in power save (2D) mode, to a marginal solder joint that happens to be OK when the card heats up (thermal expansion). I'd RMA it...
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:14 am

All good thoughts, this is why I came here. I'm not too bothered returning the card, my 5970 will last untill the resaults of Nvida new offering come out. However, for the sake of tinkering, how can I stop it from idle and keep full blast?
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Re: Unusal graphics card problem

Postposted on Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:32 am

One method is to actually overclock the card in the Radeon Catalyst Control Panel. This would prevent it from getting into "power save".
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