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X1900XT - ARTIFACTS! Stupid, random, annoying artifacts!

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Huxley2k7, May 7, 2007.

  1. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Hey guys,

    I have made a thread about this before but it was pretty dead and my problem hadn't occured for a while since so i thought it was okay. But, i was wrong, and up until recently i have been putting up with this annoying problem.

    The Image:

    [​IMG]

    The Problem:

    RANDOMLY, occuring anytime between 1-2 weeks, every 1 or 2 days or once a month, just randomly, i will get artifacts in-game. Little artifcats like little squares and black gaps in-game. This is when i know the problem occurs. So i leave the game before it crashes and the artifacts get worse. I then go to ATi Tool and scan for artifacts, the image above is what i get. If i leave it scanning for longer than 10 seconds or so it freezes my system and i have to hard reboot.

    .... The thing is, upon that hard reboot, my computer runs fine and a 'scan for artifacts' finds nothing and the card runs okay. OR, i could simply wait 10 minutes and run 'scan for artifacts' again without rebooting and the artifacts will be gone and i can carry on playing again. It is totally random.

    What i've tried:

    Well, i've never overclocked this card or fiddled with it like that in anyway for a start.

    I have adjusted the fan speeds with ATi Tool, it runs at like 100% on full load but never gets hotter than 60-70*C.

    I've cleaned out the card multiple times in the months i've been having this problem, it has an odd heat sync which likes to attract a lot of dust which i found ABSOLUTELY CAKED in dust the other day, im talking 1CM thick. So i cleaned that out and card ran 10*C cooler.

    re-fitted the card onto the motherboard.

    The Whine:
    Meh, admittedly i haven't done much since it works 80% of the time which leaves me even more cluelous as to what the problem may be. I have ordered this (Along with a nice new system recommended by Bruins, excluding the GFX card) in a vein attempt to perhaps fix the card as it may be the heat but the temps i run at aren't dangerous at all and shouldn't be giving me artifacts?

    Help Me:

    Pleeeeease? :confused:

    Thanks a lot my friends!

    SPECS:
    Operating System: Windows XP Pro - Service Pack 2
    Motherboard: Nforce 4 Gigabyte GA-K8NS Ultra SKT 939 6.70 nForce drivers.
    Graphics Card: SAPPHIRE_Radeon X1900XT 512MB
    DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c
    Processor: AMD Athlon 64 Processor 3700+ San Diego Chip - 2.26GHZ
    RAM: Corsair 2048MB - 2X512 Sticks 1X1GB Stick - DDR400 - PC3200 - DIMM - 2X184Pinn - Unbuffered.
    Hard Drive: 80 Gigabyte MAXTOR 6L080M0 (SATA)
    Power Supply: Hiper Technology Type R(Blue) - 580 Continuous Wattage.
     
  2. pt

    pt not a suicide-bomber

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    can you take a pic of in-game artifacts?
     
  3. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Next time it occurs i will make sure i get a pic.

    After receiving the artifacts in-game and on ATi Tool, i have not rebooted, yet i can go back into the game with no artifacts and its running fine. Same with the 'scan for artifacts' feature, its finding nothing. It just seems to randomly come back then disappear. I've also noticed now that when i scan for artifacts, my fan speed is NOT responding, meaning it isn't increasing its speed as the heat rises, just remains at desktop speeds of 27% while temp rises higher and higher? But if i restart, the speeds will begin to respond again. Odd.
     
  4. supraman

    supraman New Member

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    First things first. Thank you. You’ve taken the time and effort to explain the problem clearly and fully. That’s so refreshing as so many people seem to think “omfg my gaph crad is artifeacting rlly crzy wtf is wrong!!!!1111” is enough for us to diagnose the problem.

    To me, your problem sounds exactly like an overheating card. But, as you say, your temperatures are fine. They’re actually rather good, assuming they’re accurate.

    Does the card look like this one? If so, you might want to try setting up a fan blowing towards the rear of the card, towards the long, thin red heatsink. That part of the card is the power handling circuitry and can get insanely hot.

    Some people will probably tell you the power supply is insufficient/failing. I really, really doubt it is because that’s a nice PSU, but it is still a possibility.

    You could try completely removing and re-installing the drivers while you’re waiting for your cooler. Driver Cleaner Pro is a great tool for totally removing old drivers. That probably won’t help but it can’t hurt and doesn’t cost anything to try.

    If you know somebody with a PCI-E motherboard, you could try swapping cards. That would tell for sure whether it’s a faulty card or not.

    I suppose the best advice I can give is to find the box, CDs and cables and get ready to RMA the card. Sorry I wasn’t much use :(
     
  5. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Hey Supraman,

    I did think it was some sort of overheating problem, that heat sink gets SO hot and collects insane amounts of dust really fast. I have ordered a special cooler for the card, its this one. Do you think that would help the heat sink / rear end of the card?

    I have tried the drivers with driver cleaner pro to no avail, many times.

    My PSU is just fine, it was quite expensive brand new and its still used today for SLI builds and such so i don't think there should be any problems with it.

    Anyway, it does sound like some sort of heating problem, Systool reports roughly the same temps as ATi Tool so it must be accurate yet as we have both said the temps are fine to be honest.

    I would LOVE to RMA the card but i herd it takes like a month?! I can't go that long without a computer, i really cant. :(

    How long does an RMA actually take usually?

    Thanks for taking the time to help me mate,

    Hux.
     
  6. supraman

    supraman New Member

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    Having not owned that cooler, I’m not too familiar with it. I always stayed away from it because to me it seems like a truly crap design. It blows the hot air straight into the motherboard for the main case exhaust fans to eventually deal with. The stock ATI one you have exhausts the air straight out of the case which is a much better way, especially considering the colossal amount of heat these cards produce. The description says it does cool the voltage circuitry because of a little vent on the side. I don’t see that being at all effective, another reason why I intensely dislike the design. If you have a spare case fan lying around, give my idea a go. I have an X1950XT with the same cooler as yours and it made a massive difference. However, mine seems to naturally run quite a lot warmer than yours.

    I own one as well. However, Hiper are an English brand and haven’t reached the rest of the world yet so a lot of people from other counties assume it’s a generic brand. Believe me, somebody would have mentioned it at some point. I’ve got the black one :cool:

    Depends on where you bought it. Most retailers accept returns directly so it’s quite quick. Overclockers.co.uk tend not to accept direct returns but when they do it’s about a 2-week turnaround. Ebuyer are generally a bit quicker. Dabs are normally horrendous. Komplett ship everything aboard to test, so the average turnaround time is a month or (much) longer. Tekheads are amazing; I’ve always received a new (or upgraded) replacement on my doorstep 2-3 days after posting the original. Scan.co.uk are supposed to be amazing too but I’ve never bought from them before.
     
  7. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Meh, just my luck, i got it from Overclockers for £212 fairly new, it was on some sorta bargain.

    About applying a fan directly at the back of the card - how would i go about doing this exactly? My case has no where to screw a fan on around that area.

    Cheers mate,

    Hux.
     
  8. supraman

    supraman New Member

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    Ah, I see. Well, I’ve just had a look and it seems Overclockers do accept direct returns for Sapphire cards, so maybe your luck isn’t quite so bad.

    I bought a Leadtek 6800GT from them that was on special offer. It died catastrophically from memory failure and I returned it to them; it was a painless and relatively quick process. They had no arguments but replaced it with an XFX “equivalent” as they didn’t have any Leadtek cards left. Turns out it the XFX wasn’t a genuine 6800GT, but that wasn’t Overclocker’s fault. XFX had used the wrong set of boxes for a batch of cards :shadedshu

    I’ll post a pic soon of what I did with the fan. It’s a bit ghetto :D
     
  9. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Sure dude, sounds great! I'll take a deeper look into how OC'ers will handle my RMA.

    Cheers,

    Hux.
     
  10. supraman

    supraman New Member

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  11. newtekie1

    newtekie1 Semi-Retired Folder

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    I been having a problem pretty much identical to yours Huxley2k7 with the system in my system specs and as you can see our systems are very different with the exception of one thing, the PSU. I have tried everything I can think of to fix the problem, it even did it in my old setup which was the Athlon X2 rig but with the 7900GTs, hard drives, and Hiper PSU, and have concluded it is the power supply and here is why.

    Both cards work perfectly fine by themselves when used as single cards, I have tested both for months on end this way. The problem only shows it's head when I use them in SLI, when the power draw is at the highest, this leads me to believe the PSU is at fault.

    I have had this power supply simply fail in the middle of the night(under no load) once already, and when I recieved the new one the problem went away for a about 3 months, but eventually came back. I am pretty confident that there is something in these power supplies that is faulty or not up to what Hiper says they should be able to do.

    Hiper is supposed to make decent power supplies, but is seems to be that the 580w Type-R power supplies have a design flaw in them that makes them bobble if they are constantly run at close to max load(400w or greater is my guess).

    As soon as I have the cash I am going to be upgrading, probably to a ~700w Thermaltake modular power supply, I'll let you know if my problems go away.
     
    Crunching for Team TPU 50 Million points folded for TPU
  12. theonetruewill New Member

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    Shows some initiative. And actually I don't think it looks that bad. If cases were supplied with slightly cleaner looking mechanism they might catch on!
     
  13. Garb3

    Garb3 New Member

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    is it just me or wont the fan cooling the voltage things stop the air exiting the cooler??:confused:
     
  14. supraman

    supraman New Member

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    Thanks :cool: I just hope the vibration from the fan doesn't undo the nuts and bolts.


    Nope, the air is exhausted out the back of the case. I was a bit surprised when I found that out because the cooler design gives the opposite impression.
     
  15. Frogger

    Frogger

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    looks like the card is not recieving enough power but prob not the PSU
    prob the vid bios not ajusting the volts for 3D mode ...leaving them at 2D
    try see pic ;)
     

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  16. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    That looks so awesome haha, nice one dude, i might give that a try sometime! Now where's that mecanno!?

    My friend has the same PSU on the 7950 1GB card yet he has no problems with his. I think these PSU's are fine, but, you could be right? I dont really wanna have to buy a new PSU to find out though!

    Sorry i didn't really understand what you meant by that Frogger? Do you want me to adjust my voltage with ATi tool to match the attached picture? Isn't messing with voltages deadly? Do you wanna see a screenshot of my voltages in ATi tool? :confused:

    Thanks guys for all the help and insight.

    Hux.
     
  17. DOM

    DOM

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    What are your voltages in 3D Clocks ? Post a Pic
     
  18. Frogger

    Frogger

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    just for intrest what are the idle/load temps with the fan ??
     
  19. Frogger

    Frogger

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    I assume that you have read this thread http://forums.techpowerup.com/showthread.php?t=8385
    & yes try setting to the voltages seen... IF I'm right the 'arts' should be gone
     
  20. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    I haven't read that yet no! However, i haven't overclocked my X1900XT nor do i intend to, does this still apply?

    Thanks for your help mate!

    Hux.
     
  21. DOM

    DOM

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    Yes Cuz its still needs the volts to run it at 3D Clocks if it dosnt it well start to artifact.

    And this should be your volts look at the pic

    And if you want to make Profiles to have 2d/3d mode switching so you only run 3D clocks/volts when you need them let me know if you need some help.

    Cuz are you always running at 3D speeds ??
     

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  22. Frogger

    Frogger

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    the read is just for info ...you should look at the v's applyed to your card 2D&3D modes ..
    if your art prob only starts when gaming then try the volt ajust with the Tool ...I found that some x1900 cards have prob and the v ajust will fix in most cases
     
  23. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    I am really not sure, how do i check? How do i know if im always running at 3D Clock speeds?

    Also, will fiddling with the voltages damage my cards?

    Sorry guys i'm a bit rusty on all this.

    EDIT: Here is what it shows compared to your attachment (Forgger) when i go into Voltage Control via ATi Tool:
    [​IMG]

    Is this wrong? Should they be different? How should i setup my ATi Tool to prevent these artifacts?

    I appreciate all your help dudes! With your help i may finally get this problem fixed!

    Hux.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2007
  24. DOM

    DOM

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    To see what your clocks are when you have atitool open on the screen what the core and mem show below them

    No it wont damage your card.

    And if you want to find you 2D you have to uncheck the box in the pic thats outlined in yellow and close atitool then open it back up let me know if the clocks change

    Edit: Well IDK about his "Forgger" but yours are or should be stock 3D volts for ATITool So how long have you had your card and been using ATITool ?
     

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    Last edited: May 8, 2007
  25. Huxley2k7

    Huxley2k7

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    Oh my god, it was CHECKED and must have been checked since i've had this card and installed ATi Tool... since August, oh dear... :confused:

    I unchecked it and closed ATi Tool then re-opened it and here is how it looks, the same as it looked before might i add.

    [​IMG]

    Should i adjust the voltages in voltage control to match Froggers and/or your recommendations? What should i do?

    Thanks a lot!
     

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