Dream PC is a real nightmare... Help Required!


A

Andrew Bailey

Hi,

I'm having a few problems with a new homebuild PC...

PROCESSOR 1× AMD AM2 FX 62 Windsor Core, Dual Core 2.8GHz, 2x 1MB Cache,
Retail
MOTHERBOARD 1× ASUS Crosshair R.O.G NF590 SLI, S AM2, PCI-E (x16), DDR2
533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX
MEMORY 1× 2GB (2x1GB) CorsairTwinX XMS2 Dominator,DDR2 PC2-6400,240 Pins,
NonECC Unbuffered, CAS 4-4-4-12, EPP
POWER SUPPLY 1× 850W Coolermaster Real Power Pro RS-850-EMBA 85% Eff' ATX12V
V2.2 SSI EPS12V v2.91 4xPCI-E/8xSATA
CPU COOLER 1× Zalman CNPS9500-AM2 AMD Aero Flower Cooler, AM2/939/754
GRAPHICS CARDS 2× 768Mb Asus 8800GTX PCI-E (x16), Mem 1800 MHz, GPU 575 MHz,
128 Streams, 2 x Dual Link DVI-I HDTV
SOUND CARD 1× Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Music Sound Card OEM
RAID STRIPE 2× 150 Gb Western Digital WD1500ADFD Raptor Enterprise, SATA150,
10000 rpm, 16MB Cache, 4.6 ms, NCQ

DISC DRIVE 1× Sony AW-G170AB2 Black 18x DVD±RW x12 Ram Dual Layer DVD-Writer
OEM
STORAGE DRIVE 1× 300 Gb Western Digital WD3000JB Caviar SE, IDE (PATA), 7200
rpm, 8MB Cache, 8.9 ms
FLOPPY DRIVE 1× 1.44Mb Sony Black Floppy Disk Drive OEM

CASE 1× Coolermaster WaveMaster Black TAC-T01EK Aluminium Case (w/o PSU)
DISPLAY (Using just 1 for now) 3× 22" Iiyama PLE2200WS-B, Widescreen VGA/DVI
1680x1050, 5 ms, 1000:1, 300 cd/m2, Speakers, Black
VGA (Not yet used) 1× Matrox TripleHead2Go x3 Monitor from x1 PC (1x
Analogue input splits to x3 Analogue Output)
USB CARD READER 1× Icy Box IB801B Black Removable-Portable Internal/External
16 in 1 Card Reader

MEDIA (Not yet installed) 1× Hauppauge WinTV HVR1300 Analog & Digital MCE
PCI Kit c/w Remote and nVidia *Gold* DVD Decoder

OS Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition SP2b OEM Single Pack
OS Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium 32Bit 1Pk OEM (DVD)

I flashed the bios to the latest version 0502, set up the raptors using the
NVidia Raid drivers in stripe mode using optimal bandwidth setting. In order
to test the hardware without having to wrestle with a new operating system I
installed WindowsXP Home on a 50GB C: partition. I then ran through the
install discs for the graphics cards, sound and motherboard and then updated
them with the latest Creative, Forceware and NForce drivers. Next I
installed all available updates via Windows Update (Is there any way to do
this within the grace period without activating Windows?).

The system was completely unstable and would even BSOD while performing
mundane file copy tasks. This surprised me so I rechecked the bios to make
sure that apart from the Raid options everything else was set to default
which didn't improve the situation. Thinking it may be a heat problem I have
been running the rig with the side panel removed, again to no avail.

I decided to abandon the WindowsXP Home OS and install Vista instead,
afterall the system is intended to end up as a Vista based pc, there was the
possibility that the hardware was too new for XP and it had served it's
purpose of confirming a boot in to (an unstable) Windows.

With the C: drive wiped I installed Vista. Didn't use the manufacturer's
drivers as Vista rejected their setup applications and went straight to
NVidia for the latest (100.59 then 100.64) Forceware and nForce 590 SLI AMD
NForce version 15.00 drivers. The Creative drivers were tricky but I tracked
down a beta driver that worked. Installed all updates from Windows Update.

Vista is up and stable but every time the pc switches to 3D rendering I get
BSOD. If I open the (slow opening) NVidia control panel the 3D preview
spinning logo works but if I try to play Titan Chess it crashes. 3Dmark06
crashes just after the Return to Proxicom loading progress bar completes and
the display tries to switch to 3D. Flight Simulator X has occasionally
worked (in game cockpit) for a couple of seconds before BSOD. BF2142 has on
ONE occasion worked (in game) for about 15 seconds (at least it proves the
graphics cards do work) but usually crashes at 3D initialisation.

The best success I've had so far is the Cascades demo from NVidia which ran
beautifully for about a minute before BSOD with the same nvlddmkm.sys
causing 0x00000116 stop code.

It seems that core drivers for this type of system are still beta and
requires a bit of patience but I'm still concerned that I can't run
anything, yet there does seem to be dual-core, 8800 SLI rigs out there
(hardware review sites and we've all seen DX10 game videos) which are up and
running.

Ultimately I guess I need to know if it's just a matter of getting the
software right or do I have a fundamental hardware issue?

Thanks for any help you can offer.

Andy
 
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M

Mike T.

Andrew Bailey said:
Hi,

I'm having a few problems with a new homebuild PC...

PROCESSOR 1× AMD AM2 FX 62 Windsor Core, Dual Core 2.8GHz, 2x 1MB Cache,
Retail
MOTHERBOARD 1× ASUS Crosshair R.O.G NF590 SLI, S AM2, PCI-E (x16), DDR2
533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX
MEMORY 1× 2GB (2x1GB) CorsairTwinX XMS2 Dominator,DDR2 PC2-6400,240 Pins,
NonECC Unbuffered, CAS 4-4-4-12, EPP
POWER SUPPLY 1× 850W Coolermaster Real Power Pro RS-850-EMBA 85% Eff'
ATX12V V2.2 SSI EPS12V v2.91 4xPCI-E/8xSATA
CPU COOLER 1× Zalman CNPS9500-AM2 AMD Aero Flower Cooler, AM2/939/754
GRAPHICS CARDS 2× 768Mb Asus 8800GTX PCI-E (x16), Mem 1800 MHz, GPU 575
MHz, 128 Streams, 2 x Dual Link DVI-I HDTV
SOUND CARD 1× Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Music Sound Card OEM
RAID STRIPE 2× 150 Gb Western Digital WD1500ADFD Raptor Enterprise,
SATA150, 10000 rpm, 16MB Cache, 4.6 ms, NCQ

DISC DRIVE 1× Sony AW-G170AB2 Black 18x DVD±RW x12 Ram Dual Layer
DVD-Writer OEM
STORAGE DRIVE 1× 300 Gb Western Digital WD3000JB Caviar SE, IDE (PATA),
7200 rpm, 8MB Cache, 8.9 ms
FLOPPY DRIVE 1× 1.44Mb Sony Black Floppy Disk Drive OEM

CASE 1× Coolermaster WaveMaster Black TAC-T01EK Aluminium Case (w/o PSU)
DISPLAY (Using just 1 for now) 3× 22" Iiyama PLE2200WS-B, Widescreen
VGA/DVI 1680x1050, 5 ms, 1000:1, 300 cd/m2, Speakers, Black
VGA (Not yet used) 1× Matrox TripleHead2Go x3 Monitor from x1 PC (1x
Analogue input splits to x3 Analogue Output)
USB CARD READER 1× Icy Box IB801B Black Removable-Portable
Internal/External 16 in 1 Card Reader

MEDIA (Not yet installed) 1× Hauppauge WinTV HVR1300 Analog & Digital MCE
PCI Kit c/w Remote and nVidia *Gold* DVD Decoder

OS Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition SP2b OEM Single Pack
OS Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium 32Bit 1Pk OEM (DVD)

I flashed the bios to the latest version 0502, set up the raptors using
the NVidia Raid drivers in stripe mode using optimal bandwidth setting. In
order to test the hardware without having to wrestle with a new operating
system I installed WindowsXP Home on a 50GB C: partition. I then ran
through the install discs for the graphics cards, sound and motherboard
and then updated them with the latest Creative, Forceware and NForce
drivers. Next I installed all available updates via Windows Update (Is
there any way to do this within the grace period without activating
Windows?).

The system was completely unstable and would even BSOD while performing
mundane file copy tasks. This surprised me so I rechecked the bios to make
sure that apart from the Raid options everything else was set to default
which didn't improve the situation. Thinking it may be a heat problem I
have been running the rig with the side panel removed, again to no avail.

I decided to abandon the WindowsXP Home OS and install Vista instead,
afterall the system is intended to end up as a Vista based pc, there was
the possibility that the hardware was too new for XP and it had served
it's purpose of confirming a boot in to (an unstable) Windows.

With the C: drive wiped I installed Vista. Didn't use the manufacturer's
drivers as Vista rejected their setup applications and went straight to
NVidia for the latest (100.59 then 100.64) Forceware and nForce 590 SLI
AMD NForce version 15.00 drivers. The Creative drivers were tricky but I
tracked down a beta driver that worked. Installed all updates from Windows
Update.

Vista is up and stable but every time the pc switches to 3D rendering I
get BSOD. If I open the (slow opening) NVidia control panel the 3D preview
spinning logo works but if I try to play Titan Chess it crashes. 3Dmark06
crashes just after the Return to Proxicom loading progress bar completes
and the display tries to switch to 3D. Flight Simulator X has occasionally
worked (in game cockpit) for a couple of seconds before BSOD. BF2142 has
on ONE occasion worked (in game) for about 15 seconds (at least it proves
the graphics cards do work) but usually crashes at 3D initialisation.

The best success I've had so far is the Cascades demo from NVidia which
ran beautifully for about a minute before BSOD with the same nvlddmkm.sys
causing 0x00000116 stop code.

It seems that core drivers for this type of system are still beta and
requires a bit of patience but I'm still concerned that I can't run
anything, yet there does seem to be dual-core, 8800 SLI rigs out there
(hardware review sites and we've all seen DX10 game videos) which are up
and running.

Ultimately I guess I need to know if it's just a matter of getting the
software right or do I have a fundamental hardware issue?

Thanks for any help you can offer.

Andy

I ran some google searches for your video chipset and the errors you are
seeing. From what I could determine, nvidia has not released STABLE drivers
for your video card, yet. The only suggestion I would make is, try running
just one video card with the other one physically removed. If that helps,
then you'll know it's an SLI issue. But from my research, other users of
your video card were complaining of faulty nvidia drivers as late as 2/1/07,
so nvidia probably has not come out with good drivers for your video cards,
yet.

There's a slim possibility one of your video cards could have a hardware
issue, as well. But I'm betting this is just a screwed-up driver issue.
Blame nvidia. -Dave
 
A

Andrew Bailey

Mike T. said:
I ran some google searches for your video chipset and the errors you are
seeing. From what I could determine, nvidia has not released STABLE
drivers for your video card, yet. The only suggestion I would make is,
try running just one video card with the other one physically removed. If
that helps, then you'll know it's an SLI issue. But from my research,
other users of your video card were complaining of faulty nvidia drivers
as late as 2/1/07, so nvidia probably has not come out with good drivers
for your video cards, yet.

There's a slim possibility one of your video cards could have a hardware
issue, as well. But I'm betting this is just a screwed-up driver issue.
Blame nvidia. -Dave

Thanks for the info Dave, I'm hoping it is a driver issue (lesser of two
evils) so will do more research before resorting to removing one of the gfx
cards.

Cheers

Andy
 
C

Chris Hill

Hi,

I'm having a few problems with a new homebuild PC...


Tale of woe snipped.

Your problem is that you're trying to do to much and you can't narrow
it down. Simplify. One video card, put the sound card far away and
use onboard sound, check your psu voltages before and after just in
case it is at fault. I'd go with one hard drive as a test as well.
 
A

Andrew Bailey

Chris Hill said:
Tale of woe snipped.

Your problem is that you're trying to do to much and you can't narrow
it down. Simplify. One video card, put the sound card far away and
use onboard sound, check your psu voltages before and after just in
case it is at fault. I'd go with one hard drive as a test as well.

Thanks for your post, I'm going to do a bit more research but I suspect
you're right and a minimum-build is required.

I was thinking about removing one of the 8800GTXs, resetting the bios back
to default, unplugging the two raptor's sata data leads and installing
WindowsXP Home onto the IDE 300G Hard Drive (The DVD R/W is master on the
one and only IDE channel, the HDD is slave but should still be made
bootable).

I'm starting to think that XP will be my best bet in the short term given
that all of my software runs on it so any issues SHOULD only relate to
hardware making it easy to fault find.

Cheers

Andy
 
C

Chris Hill

Thanks for your post, I'm going to do a bit more research but I suspect
you're right and a minimum-build is required.

I was thinking about removing one of the 8800GTXs, resetting the bios back
to default, unplugging the two raptor's sata data leads and installing
WindowsXP Home onto the IDE 300G Hard Drive (The DVD R/W is master on the
one and only IDE channel, the HDD is slave but should still be made
bootable).

I'm starting to think that XP will be my best bet in the short term given
that all of my software runs on it so any issues SHOULD only relate to
hardware making it easy to fault find.

Cheers

That's what I'd do. Much easier to test with fewer components. I'd
also run memtest86 overnight just to make sure everything is fine with
the ram.
 
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A

Andrew Bailey

Chris Hill said:
That's what I'd do. Much easier to test with fewer components. I'd
also run memtest86 overnight just to make sure everything is fine with
the ram.

Hi,

I ran MemTest86+ overnight and it was all clear, no errors.
I have now removed one 8800, disconnected the sata drives, defaulted the
bios and installed XP Home.

Updated all drivers, DX9c and Windows updates.

Have just run 3DMark06 three times... first run lasted about 40 seconds, 2nd
and 3rd run froze after a few seconds.

The good news is that this is farther than I got with Vista and again it
proves that the current 8800 does work in 3D, as an aside whilst the first
test was running the fps was 70.

The bad news is that it is randomly freezing (not BSOD). My next step is to
install MS Flight Sim X to see if a different rendering engine will run. I'm
also gonna power down, let the system cool and then re-run the 3Dmark06 to
test for the effects of heat.

Cheers

Carbon
 
C

Chris Hill

Hi,

I ran MemTest86+ overnight and it was all clear, no errors.
I have now removed one 8800, disconnected the sata drives, defaulted the
bios and installed XP Home.

Updated all drivers, DX9c and Windows updates.

Have just run 3DMark06 three times... first run lasted about 40 seconds, 2nd
and 3rd run froze after a few seconds.

The good news is that this is farther than I got with Vista and again it
proves that the current 8800 does work in 3D, as an aside whilst the first
test was running the fps was 70.

The bad news is that it is randomly freezing (not BSOD). My next step is to
install MS Flight Sim X to see if a different rendering engine will run. I'm
also gonna power down, let the system cool and then re-run the 3Dmark06 to
test for the effects of heat.

Cheers

Carbon


Ugly. I'd check voltages on that psu, and I might even swap video
cards just to see if anything different happens.
 
D

Dave

Chris Hill said:
Ugly. I'd check voltages on that psu, and I might even swap video
cards just to see if anything different happens.

Damn, ya beat me to it. I'm starting to suspect a bad PSU or bad
ainboard. -Dave
 
A

Andrew Bailey

Dave said:
Damn, ya beat me to it. I'm starting to suspect a bad PSU or bad
ainboard. -Dave

Hi Guys,

I'm running a similar thread in the NVidia SLI Zone forums, here's a
cut&paste of the latest attempt...

QUOTE(dpellio @ Feb 17 2007, 02:03 PM)

Okay, let's get back to basics. I ran a very similar setup to yours with no
hassles (in fact I am still running it only with one 8800 now instead of 2).
It sounds as though your system is unstable due to hardware, not software.
Some questions:

1. CPU multiplier and HT speed

Multiplier is set to AUTO (from memory I think it's 14). CPU<->NB HT speed
is set to AUTO, sorry I don't know what this should be but Windows reports
2.8GHz CPU speed so I'm 99% sure that all settings are default in bios.

2. Memory voltage and timings

DDR2 Voltage is 1.88V, timmings are all default AUTO and gives the relaxed
settings of 800MHz 5-5-5-18-2T

3. Have you reset the CMOS and removed the battery just to be sure? Also
note on the Crosshair that there is a jumper which must be set correctly to
enable the onboard clear CMOS button.

YES, the bios has been reset (I keep the jumper on the switch enabled pins).

4. Have you run Memtest to be sure your memory is good.

Ran MemTest86+ overnight lastnight (8 passes NO errors).

5. Are you using any of the stupid ASUS stuff to overclock? Disable the NOS
overclocking stuff in BIOS. IT SUCKS!

YES, AI Tuning is set to AUTO which then disables all of the overclocking
options, likewise SLI-Ready Memory, AMD Live!, Cool'n'Quiet and NVidia GPU
Ex are all disabled. BIOS is untouched after a hard reset.

6. Disable GPU EX, and linkboost.

Have just disabled it (will do a 3Dmark06 retest within this reply).

7. Have you doublechecked that your CPU cooler is seated properly and CPU is
not overheating?

I do have a small concern about this. When I was installing the cpu cooler,
I only managed to get half of the thermal paste out of the tube (which was
quite small) so the layer applied to the cpu heatsink was quite thin but
smoothly spread using a business card to within 10% of the edge of the cpu
heatsink. As I understand it, the idea is to increase the contact area
between cooler and cpu (in an ideal world the sufaces would be perfectly
flat and paste would not be required) so the ideal ammount of thermal paste
to apply would be an amount that has the most amount of surface contact and
that increased depth would be counter-productive if it's true that the
heatsink and the cooler are better thermal conducters. Anyhoo, I'm confident
that the cpu install and the cooler used should be able to cope, plus I'm
running with the side panel off.

8. Did you install the Nvidia Network Access Manager? I got BSOD's until I
uninstalled it. It does not play well with the Crosshair.

I will uninstall it now and retest.

I don't know your experience level, so please don't be offended by some of
my questions. Anyway, I would definitely look at getting everything stable
in the BIOS and making sure all your hardware is good.



Hi Depellio,

As an update, prior to following your suggestions I had run MS Flight Sim X
for 20 mins before freezing.

OK... imagine the passage of time while I retest after the above changes...

....no joy, 3DMark06 managed 4.87 seconds at 71fps in the Reurn to Proxicom
test. A couple of extra settings in the bios I changed was to disable the
onboard audio (creative xfi installed) and the silicon image raid controller
as they were appearing in the device driver list with driver issues.

I'm going to do the heat test now so will have to power down for a couple of
hours to see if 3Dmark runs longer from cold then I guess I'll have to
consider swapping the cards to rule out the gfx hardware.

Any further suggestions will be tried and I'll let you know if they work.

Cheers

Andy
 
A

Andrew Bailey

Hi,

I've just finished booting the system from cold and imediately running the
3DMark06 default benchmark. This time it ran for 1 minute and 17 seconds...
a personal best ;)

I'm now starting to think that maybe my application of the thermal paste was
thick and wide enough to keep the cpu stable under idle but insufficient for
3D which could be causing the cpu to crash/shutdown.

What I need now is a recommended application that accurately monitors the
cpu's temperature and a good idea of what it should be.

I don't trust the temp readout for the cpu in the bios (generally around 45)
plus the cpu is at idle in the bios.

Cheers

Carbon
 
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S

spodosaurus

Andrew said:
Hi,

I've just finished booting the system from cold and imediately running the
3DMark06 default benchmark. This time it ran for 1 minute and 17 seconds...
a personal best ;)

I'm now starting to think that maybe my application of the thermal paste was
thick and wide enough to keep the cpu stable under idle but insufficient for
3D which could be causing the cpu to crash/shutdown.

What I need now is a recommended application that accurately monitors the
cpu's temperature and a good idea of what it should be.

I don't trust the temp readout for the cpu in the bios (generally around 45)
plus the cpu is at idle in the bios.

Cheers

Carbon

what're the GPU temps? I'd look there first based on symptoms...or try
turning down the acceleration

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J

johns

This one is easy. You can't do what you are doing.
You have no doubt put that IDE drive on the primary
IDE port, and then tacked a RAID beside it. Your
OS doesn't have a clue where the primary drive
is. You are getting conflicts all over the place. I also
see several pieces of hardware that I simply will
not ever touch again ... Western Digital anything
.... Corsair anything ... and you just may be the
proud owner of an ASUS restocker some kid sent
back. Regards the heat sink compound, your
idle temp should be around 33C ... if it is in the
40s, then either the fan is underrated, or, like
you say, you did not have enough paste. I apply
it a bit thick, so the heat and pressure will spread
it properly. The new nVidia drivers have known
bugs is scaling. If your games are not using the
desktop 1680x1050, then you are activating the
scaling bug ... BSOD. That goes away in the 8xx
series drivers from last year. I don't know if the
88s will tolerate them or not. Toss the RAID.
Toss the IDE. Use one of the "caviars" Toss the
sound card. Prowl through the ASUS and find
every single hacker-jumper, and make sure
some kid did not restock your mobo. Get more
paste and put a thin layer on the cpu, and then
put a round dollop in the center of the cpu, so
pressure and heat can spread it. Pull the ram,
and make sure you have documentation as to
which slots it actually goes in. Get that up
and running. I suspect it will. If it doesn't, then
the ASUS is 90% the likely problem. If it comes
up and runs Aquamark, you are OK. 3DMark06
is weird. I do not believe one thing it tells me.
I think it is broke. If you get that far, add the
2nd caviar, and the 2nd 88. If that breaks, then
your psupply is not very good .. or not fast
enough on one of the rails ... it needs to charge
the mobo electrolytics and maintain them
for quick current spikes. After that, I would
put that IDE drive in a USB box, and use it
that way for backups. Creative seems to be
going through a crappy product phase. Add
it back last, and suspect the worse from it.
Forget the RAID totally.

johns
 
A

Andrew Bailey

johns said:
This one is easy. You can't do what you are doing.
You have no doubt put that IDE drive on the primary
IDE port, and then tacked a RAID beside it. Your
OS doesn't have a clue where the primary drive
is. You are getting conflicts all over the place. I also
see several pieces of hardware that I simply will
not ever touch again ... Western Digital anything
... Corsair anything ... and you just may be the
proud owner of an ASUS restocker some kid sent
back. Regards the heat sink compound, your
idle temp should be around 33C ... if it is in the
40s, then either the fan is underrated, or, like
you say, you did not have enough paste. I apply
it a bit thick, so the heat and pressure will spread
it properly. The new nVidia drivers have known
bugs is scaling. If your games are not using the
desktop 1680x1050, then you are activating the
scaling bug ... BSOD. That goes away in the 8xx
series drivers from last year. I don't know if the
88s will tolerate them or not. Toss the RAID.
Toss the IDE. Use one of the "caviars" Toss the
sound card. Prowl through the ASUS and find
every single hacker-jumper, and make sure
some kid did not restock your mobo. Get more
paste and put a thin layer on the cpu, and then
put a round dollop in the center of the cpu, so
pressure and heat can spread it. Pull the ram,
and make sure you have documentation as to
which slots it actually goes in. Get that up
and running. I suspect it will. If it doesn't, then
the ASUS is 90% the likely problem. If it comes
up and runs Aquamark, you are OK. 3DMark06
is weird. I do not believe one thing it tells me.
I think it is broke. If you get that far, add the
2nd caviar, and the 2nd 88. If that breaks, then
your psupply is not very good .. or not fast
enough on one of the rails ... it needs to charge
the mobo electrolytics and maintain them
for quick current spikes. After that, I would
put that IDE drive in a USB box, and use it
that way for backups. Creative seems to be
going through a crappy product phase. Add
it back last, and suspect the worse from it.
Forget the RAID totally.

johns

Hi Johns,

Currently I'm testing the system with one 8800 and no raid, just XP Home on
a single IDE drive.
This morning I managed to run the first test in 3DMark06 for 1 min 42 secs
(best so far) from cold, so there definitely is a relation between heat and
stability so on Monday I'll get some thermal paste and re-seat the cooler.
Of course I still have the retail cooler that came with the cpu but the
zalman aero flower is "supposed" to be superior.

Using the software that came with the motherboard shows the cpu at 33
degrees at idle. Of course this is with the side panel off and at idle, what
I need is for some software that actually writes a log in the background so
that when the system crashes I can read what the last temperature was prior
to failure, as it is I have to reboot and by then the cpu could of cooled
down.

Cheers

Andy

PS: I'm inclined to agree with you reference raid arrays... I noticed no
speed gains.
 
A

Andrew Bailey

UPDATE:

I have removed the onboard sound card and the case top panel (usb, firewire
and audio) and re-applied the thermal paste.

After re-testing I can confirm that it is NOT a heat problem.

So either it's a software or hardware issue. I'm guessing that the hardware
must be okay otherwise I wouldn't be able to boot to Windows and run any
sort of 3D so that leaves software. Unfortunately I'm fast running out of
ideas and all I've got to show for over three grand is a web browser!

Any help most welcome.

Carbon
 
C

Chris Hill

UPDATE:

I have removed the onboard sound card and the case top panel (usb, firewire
and audio) and re-applied the thermal paste.

After re-testing I can confirm that it is NOT a heat problem.

So either it's a software or hardware issue. I'm guessing that the hardware
must be okay otherwise I wouldn't be able to boot to Windows and run any
sort of 3D so that leaves software. Unfortunately I'm fast running out of
ideas and all I've got to show for over three grand is a web browser!

Any help most welcome.


Probably a flaky driver, bad psu, bad vid card, bad mainboard, etc.
Have you checked to see if there might be a new bios for your
mainboard? What voltages are you getting from the psu? How are the
temps under load?
 
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S

spodosaurus

Andrew said:
UPDATE:

I have removed the onboard sound card and the case top panel (usb, firewire
and audio) and re-applied the thermal paste.

After re-testing I can confirm that it is NOT a heat problem.

What are your GPU (not CPU) temps? (for the second time)
So either it's a software

Look at basic acceleration options under display properties -> settings
-> advanced and see what kinds of acceleration are available. I've seen
similar problems with 8x AGP cards that would only play nice when run at
4x. What basic options such as that does your card have available?
or hardware issue. I'm guessing that the hardware
must be okay otherwise I wouldn't be able to boot to Windows and run any
sort of 3D so that leaves software.

Wrong if it's the GPU overheating.
Unfortunately I'm fast running out of
ideas and all I've got to show for over three grand is a web browser!

Any help most welcome.

Carbon


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spammage trappage: remove the underscores to reply
Many people around the world are waiting for a marrow transplant. Please
volunteer to be a marrow donor and literally save someone's life:
http://www.abmdr.org.au/
http://www.marrow.org/
 
A

Andrew Bailey

Chris Hill said:
Probably a flaky driver, bad psu, bad vid card, bad mainboard, etc.
Have you checked to see if there might be a new bios for your
mainboard? What voltages are you getting from the psu? How are the
temps under load?

Hi Chris,

One of the first things I did was to flash the bios to the latest (0502)
version. The Asus install disc includes a program called PCProbe2 which
reports a whole host of voltages and all are green apart from CPU - NB HT
(CPU to Northbridge Hypertheading?) which is 1.38v... what should this be?

The CPU temps are fine but I don't know how to measure under load because
when it crashes I have to reboot to monitor the temp which has cooled by
then. I have run Flight Sim X in windowed mode (so I can see the cpu temp)
and it hovered around 40 (33 at idle) but do bear in mind that I have redone
the thermal paste, the cooler is a zalman aero flower (which I guess is
better than the stock AMD one although the heat pipes never seem to get hot)
and the case side panel is off... so with as much certainty as I can muster
I'm pretty sure the cpu is not overheating although if you check out the
next post I think we may have a winner...

Andy
 
A

Andrew Bailey

spodosaurus said:
What are your GPU (not CPU) temps? (for the second time)


Look at basic acceleration options under display properties -> settings ->
advanced and see what kinds of acceleration are available. I've seen
similar problems with 8x AGP cards that would only play nice when run at
4x. What basic options such as that does your card have available?


Wrong if it's the GPU overheating.



--
spammage trappage: remove the underscores to reply
Many people around the world are waiting for a marrow transplant. Please
volunteer to be a marrow donor and literally save someone's life:
http://www.abmdr.org.au/
http://www.marrow.org/

Hi Spodosaurus,

I think you could be on to something here m8... all of the symptom point to
an overheating GPU... OS stable, able to run 3D for longer from cold and the
BSOD when I was testing under Vista was always gfx related.

You got me thinking and I noticed that the 880 fan doesn't spin up like my
trusty FX5950Ultra (this PC) so I installed NTune (coz NVTweak can't seem to
add the temp page to the new style NVidia control panel). I've only just
started testing so I'll report back but so far I can tell you...

1: GPU has an idle temp of 62
2: I can set manual fan to 99% and that does reduce temp (no figs yet but
first short test suggests 50)
3: The fan on the 8800 (even at 99%) doesn't feel that windy (sorry) when
you place your fingers near the exhaust vent (you almost have to lick your
fingers to tell)
4: At 99% forced fan speed 3DMark06 for the first time made it all the way
through test 1 (Return to Proxycom) (unfortunately crashed 1 sec into second
test)... never the less a real landmark... and the sys was already up to
temp rather than from cold ;)

I will continue to research and monitor then latter today I will swap the
8800 with the other one to see if results are consistent with each card and
with what others are reporting.

As a note, the NVidia control panel forgets the manual fan override on
reboot so IF NTune is the cure there needs to be a fix for this.

Anyhoo, I'll get back to ya soon...

Thanks for getting me onto (possibly/probably) the right track

Andy
 
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J

johns

1: GPU has an idle temp of 62

My 7900 GPU temp is 34C. That 62 looks suspicious
for sure. As for 3DMark06, I simply don't believe in it.
I have seen it crash over and over because it was
incompatible with the machine running it. Switch to
Aquamark, and see if you get a bench of 62000 or
better.

johns
 

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