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Sapphire 6950 driver, bios or hardware problem? please help!

Discussion in 'AMD / ATI' started by dash_barzane, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. dash_barzane New Member

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    Hi all,

    first of all thank you in advance for any assistance you can provide on this, and also mucho thanks to you all for all the help, info and tools I have receive prior to registering today...awesome resource and community :toast:
    anyhoo...

    Asus Premium PK5 premium - Black Perl edition
    Q6600 @ stock
    4GB DDR2 ram @ stock
    850W PSU (20A/rail iirc)
    Win 7 64bit
    Sapphire HD6950 2 GB - bios 2 flashed to Sapphire 6970 -no additonal o/c.

    running rock solid for ~10months previously.

    'bout a week ago my system started misbehaving - (crashes to a black screen and fan @ 100%) - during 3d or HD video.

    I'd recently repaired the heating the box room where the box lives, so the temp in there has increased significantly (scotland winter atm) - I thought my system might need a bit of a clean / de-oose so this was done - including removing the hd6950 from the case to get at the 'ring of dust' on the fan...

    put everything back together and tried to reboot - same issue except everytime now.. black screen and 100% fan after the widows logo but before the windows logon screen (assuming this is when the ATI drivers are loaded)

    VGA (safe) mode is fine so after many unsucessful driver reinstall attempts (including sweeping drivers each time) I decided to revert to the default bios (non flashed) and try again.

    Eventually I managed to get it to boot up using older drivers, default bios and using the HDMI port instead of the DVI port.. but as soon as I switched it to the DVI port the screen flickered with a horizontal green line and then went black screen and fan 100% again...

    As one final attempt I tried my other os (Vista 32) on the same machine - same issue once the non VGA drivers were installed, black screen and 100% fan.. :banghead:

    at a bit of a loss, hoping the card's not fried but not sure what else i can try beyond putting the card in the other PCIe slot...

    is the part of the card used by VGA drivers different to that which is used by the full ATI drivers?

    cheers
    dash
     
  2. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    I'd try the card in a different PCIe slot first. Dusting-out a case can make dust particles settle inside the PCIe slot and/or GPU (the latter is more uncommon with closed cards).

    If not dust, then slight static can make a PCIe slot go haywire, so, as I said, first try the card in a different slot ;)
     
  3. dash_barzane New Member

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    thanks for the response - will report back after trying the other PCIe slot
     
  4. heky

    heky

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    You probably damaged the ram chips on the card. When you say you unlocked the card to 6970, did you also use the 6970 ram speed? If yes, that is probably your problem.
     
  5. H82LUZ73

    H82LUZ73

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    2 x PCIe x16 (blue @ x16 mode, black @ x4 or x1 mode) supports CrossFire

    That is off the ASUS website,Uhmm try re seating the card in the x16 blue slot?Or try taking some Alcohol between 90-100% and clean off the gold pcie connecters,Sapphire is famous for the thermal pad (tims) they use to leak out and go on the gold fingers.
     
  6. dash_barzane New Member

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    thanks

    I didn't change any settings in the bios i flashed with..

    would damaged ram chips still allow the card to operate without the ATI drivers?
     
  7. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    Unlockable 6950ies have the same RAM chips as the 6970ies since they are in fact downgraded 6970ies. Only difference is that the 8-pins PCIe power connector was replaced by a six-pins version -and since the cables which are missing are two black ones, there's even no power issue either, except that you can't get higher than 75w instead of 150w with an 8-pins connector.

    So, flashing/unlocking a flashable/unlockable 6950 is no more than setting a 6970 to its original state, i.e. going from the downgraded 800MHz/1200MHz/1408 Shader Processors to the original 880MHz/1375MHz/1536 shader processors.

    I've got two Sapphire 6950ies unlocked/flashed to 6970ies -going to 880MHz/1375MHz/1536 SP automatically- and they have been performing nice for just a year now set to 900MHz/1400MHz...

    There have been brands known to use cheaper RAM chips on some unlockable 6950ies, but Dash also has a Sapphire reference card, so I would be amazed that the chips were altered on his card...
     
  8. m1dg3t

    m1dg3t

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    Have you tried reseating the HSF? It's possible you tweaked it a bit while removing/dusting/reinstalling, has happened to me before.
     
  9. heky

    heky

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    This is not true!!! Dont spread fud if you have no idea what you are talking about. The 6950 dont have the same chips as the 6970, thats why a lot of the first unlocked cards got burned(damaged ram chips), before the unlock shaders only option became available!
    Only some 6950 use the same chips, and you have to phisicaly check if the chips are the same, since its the same manufacturer, but a different model!
     
  10. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    You can safely remove the CCC/ATI drivers, but win7 will instantly install its equivalent of those drivers to make tha card work.

    You also say your problems started about a week ago... did the problems coincide with a windows 7 update?

    I myself started using the AMD 12.1 beta drivers about a week ago, because of ongoing crossfire issues in Skyrim. Had to tinker a bit afterwards since the new drivers don't agree so much with MSI Afterburner which I use to monitor GPU temps and fan speeds...
     
  11. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    Hey, I could say the same thing about you... but I won't ;)
     
  12. heky

    heky

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    Dont mean to sound rude, but you are spreading fud. What you said simply isn`t true. Ask W1zzard if you dont believe me! All unlockable 6950s dont have the same ram chips as 6970s, and you can damage the chips by running 6970 ram clocks on them! Period!
     
  13. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    The first batch of the 6950ies (manufactured between september and november 2010) were ALL 6970 reference cards. No fud but fact.
    Those cards were all flashable to a full 6970 since they were downgraded 6970ies...

    Since Dash has the same card as I have and that he bought the card around the same time I bought mine, I surmised he has one of those downgraded 6970ies.

    I also am aware that later cards (as of the second batch, manufactured between December 2010 and February 2011) have different chips -that's why I usually add "cards from the first batch" to anything referring flashed 6950ies...

    I furthermore deeply regret to have upset you. Now I'm off to have a cup of coffee.
     
  14. heky

    heky

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    Seriously, are you smoking something or what? Take a look at ANY first review of the 6950. I will provide you with a link to a great one:
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/HIS/Radeon_HD_6950/5.html

    This is a refference model review, and the first batch, since it was reviewed when the 6950 was launched. And w1zzard clearly states:

    "The GDDR5 memory chips are made by Hynix, and carry the model number H5GQ2H24MFR-T2C. They are specified to run at 1250 MHz (5000 MHz GDDR5 effective)."

    You clearly dont know what reference design, unlockable and same ram chips means!

    The ram on the 6970:

    "The GDDR5 memory chips are made by Hynix, and carry the model number H5GQ2H24MFR-R0C. They are specified to run at 1500 MHz (6000 MHz GDDR5 effective)."

    There is not one 6950 card, reviewed on Techpowerup, that has the same chips as the 6970. Case closed!
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  15. dash_barzane New Member

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    so is it logical to conclude that if the Win 7 drivers work, then its software and not hardware?

    i dont specifically recall if there were any windows updates which coincided with the start of the problems.. but that's possible i guess.

    thanks
     
  16. dash_barzane New Member

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    so would i need to take the casing off to identify the memory, or can this be done with gpu-z or similar? in safe mode atm so gpu-z wont work, but i could uninstall the ati drivers and boot into fulll windows..

    thanks
     
  17. heky

    heky

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    No, the card can work in vga mode even if it is damaged, but cant work if any real drivers are used(downloaded from AMD or the drivers installed by Windows 7).

    What happens if you go back to stock 6950 settings, do you still get a black screen?
     
  18. heky

    heky

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    When you say full windows, you mean normal boot? Does windows install drivers for the card?
     
  19. dash_barzane New Member

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    i can get it to boot into full windows, but its not stable.. i was able to use ccc to change fan speeds and stuff - until it crashed when i switched from hdmi to dvi..

    how do i tell if the card is using vga or windows generic drivers (when in full windows?)

    thanks
     
  20. dash_barzane New Member

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    yes windows installs its drivers and says ready to use.

    thanks

    don't know if this will help any

    [​IMG]
     
  21. heky

    heky

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    Your gpu-z screenshot shows only 704 shaders and 4 rops. Can you provide a screenshot of device manager, display adapter column open? It should state AMD Radeon HD6900 Series.
     
  22. JimmyJump

    JimmyJump New Member

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    Well, then I stand corrected, now don't I? I had my info from folk working at/on ATI cards at the time, so, forgive me for the error of my ways.

    Furthermore, I'm not the one having problems (as opposed to a lot of other flashers/unlockers) so, if you want to get all high and mighty, do it against those people, please... :)

    Shaders are but half of the original 1408... strange...
    Maybe because the card is working in a 1.1 bus mode?
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  23. H82LUZ73

    H82LUZ73

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    and i say again

    Or try taking some Alcohol between 90-100% and clean off the gold pcie connecters,Sapphire is famous for the thermal pad (tims) they use to leak out and go on the gold fingers.

    Say did you try booting on bios 1 and does it read normal in GPUZ?
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  24. dash_barzane New Member

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    [​IMG]

    this is my current gpuz


    after my last post i realised the ati drivers had just been reloaded by windows after the next restart, so went back and uninstallled again.. this time deleting the drivers.

    it started up and installed drivers... rebooted (device mngr says AMD Radeon HD6900 Series) worked for a few minutes on normal (1920*1080) res then black screen but no odd fan behaviour.

    several restarts later and different crashes (so behaviour has changed) and i've managed to type this in normal windows with the driver in gpz above.

    oh, i also took the card out and had a good look at the slot and edge (used a air puffer) reseated the whole thing... I dont have anything more than 70% by vol to clean it with.. will that do?

    thanks
     
  25. dash_barzane New Member

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    switch is currently set toward the 'cable end' position which i think is the standard bios..

    typically.. it crashed just after i saved the above .. black screen no odd fan behaviour.

    I reset and this time i got a bsod report.. is this likely to relate to the problem or the reset?

    thanks
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012

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