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FX530 Intermittent No Signal and 3D Game Crash Problem

 
 
Ikaros
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-10-2009, 05:20 PM
I have a 2 1/4 year old FX530. My system specs are below. Sometimes
while playing the 3D game Unreal Tournament 3, the game will blank out
and I get a No Signal message on my LCD monitor. I have to turn the
computer off and back on to get video back. It is connected to my
video card via a digital signal cable. Also sometimes I get either a
BSOD or game freeze that I have to end via Task Manager. I've tried
various upgrades like replacing the memory and added a slot cooler for
the video card to lower temperature. I'm reading on the web I could
have a faulty video card or power supply? My computer only has this
problem running Unreal Engine 3 based games, which are stressful to a
system. All other 3D games play fine with no symptoms. What do you
think? Is it just caused by Unreal Tournament 3 based games or is
something wrong with my system. I thought it was relatively high end
when I bought it and it had the best video card out at the time.

System Specs:

Gateway FX530 - Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit SP2, Intel Q6600 2.4ghz
Core 2 Quad CPU, 4gb (4x1gb) Patriot PDC22G5300LLK RAM, 500gb
(2x250gb) RAID-0 HD, Dual DVD/RW, Vantec ATA133 Rounded IDE Cable,
Delta 700w Power Supply, Nvidia 8800GTX 768mb GPU (Factory OC), Antec
VCool Slot VGA Cooler, Gateway 22" Widescreen LCD, Asus/ViXS
Combo-210E TV Tuner, Creative SoundBlaster X-FI Audio, Logitech X-230
Speaker System, Logitech Precision PC Gaming Headset, Logitech G15
Gaming Keyboard, Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse, Rocketfish Gaming Mouse
Pad, Iomega Prestige 500gb USB HD, Line-6 TonePort GX, APC Back-UPS ES
BE550G

Steve
 
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SC Tom
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-11-2009, 11:40 AM

"Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>I have a 2 1/4 year old FX530. My system specs are below. Sometimes
> while playing the 3D game Unreal Tournament 3, the game will blank out
> and I get a No Signal message on my LCD monitor. I have to turn the
> computer off and back on to get video back. It is connected to my
> video card via a digital signal cable. Also sometimes I get either a
> BSOD or game freeze that I have to end via Task Manager. I've tried
> various upgrades like replacing the memory and added a slot cooler for
> the video card to lower temperature. I'm reading on the web I could
> have a faulty video card or power supply? My computer only has this
> problem running Unreal Engine 3 based games, which are stressful to a
> system. All other 3D games play fine with no symptoms. What do you
> think? Is it just caused by Unreal Tournament 3 based games or is
> something wrong with my system. I thought it was relatively high end
> when I bought it and it had the best video card out at the time.
>
> System Specs:
>
> Gateway FX530 - Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit SP2, Intel Q6600 2.4ghz
> Core 2 Quad CPU, 4gb (4x1gb) Patriot PDC22G5300LLK RAM, 500gb
> (2x250gb) RAID-0 HD, Dual DVD/RW, Vantec ATA133 Rounded IDE Cable,
> Delta 700w Power Supply, Nvidia 8800GTX 768mb GPU (Factory OC), Antec
> VCool Slot VGA Cooler, Gateway 22" Widescreen LCD, Asus/ViXS
> Combo-210E TV Tuner, Creative SoundBlaster X-FI Audio, Logitech X-230
> Speaker System, Logitech Precision PC Gaming Headset, Logitech G15
> Gaming Keyboard, Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse, Rocketfish Gaming Mouse
> Pad, Iomega Prestige 500gb USB HD, Line-6 TonePort GX, APC Back-UPS ES
> BE550G
>
> Steve


Clean the inside of the case really well, paying particular attention to
vents and fans. Check your CPU heatsink and fan for dust build-up. Pull your
video card and make sure there is no dust on its heatsink and fan (unless
it's an on-board GPU. Kinda hard to pull then). Make sure there is a clear
airflow path around the front and back of the case, and that it's not too
close to the wall. It definitely sounds more of an overheating problem than
a power supply one. And the fact that the GPU is OC'd means it's going to
run hotter than if it wasn't.

I had a similar problem running Bioshock on my 9600GT. I ended up pulling
the heatsink, cleaning all the old heatsink goop off it and the chips, and
using Arctic Silver. The 9600GT has the GPU and 9 other chips (probably RAM)
that the heatsink contacts and cools. After doing that, I've had no problems
at all with it.

SC Tom

 
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Ikaros
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-13-2009, 06:35 PM
Funny you mention Bioshock, which is another UT3 engine game. They
apparently load a heck of a stress test on a system!

I do regular dust cleaning and even added the rounded IDE cable
(replaced the flat ribbon cable) to improve air flow from front to
back, and my replacement Patriot memory has ribbed aluminum shields to
evenly dissipate heat from the modules, plus I added a slot cooler
located (the only place you can) underneath the 8800GTX which did
lower GPU temperature 10 degrees centigrade while playing Unreal
Tournament 3. I'll try pulling the 8800GTX next to clean any other
areas on the card that may be clogged with dust, plus you never know
if reseating it into the slot will fix any dust/connection issues too.

My only gripe is that the EVGA 8800GTX uses a special custom cooler
housing molded to fit next to the large CPU heat sink. Because the CPU
heat sink is basically in the way of the upper 8x faster GPU slot, it
makes it impossible to replace my GPU with an updated model which now
seem to have larger full length fan coolers installed
 
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SC Tom
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 01:06 AM

"Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> Funny you mention Bioshock, which is another UT3 engine game. They
> apparently load a heck of a stress test on a system!
>
> I do regular dust cleaning and even added the rounded IDE cable
> (replaced the flat ribbon cable) to improve air flow from front to
> back, and my replacement Patriot memory has ribbed aluminum shields to
> evenly dissipate heat from the modules, plus I added a slot cooler
> located (the only place you can) underneath the 8800GTX which did
> lower GPU temperature 10 degrees centigrade while playing Unreal
> Tournament 3. I'll try pulling the 8800GTX next to clean any other
> areas on the card that may be clogged with dust, plus you never know
> if reseating it into the slot will fix any dust/connection issues too.
>
> My only gripe is that the EVGA 8800GTX uses a special custom cooler
> housing molded to fit next to the large CPU heat sink. Because the CPU
> heat sink is basically in the way of the upper 8x faster GPU slot, it
> makes it impossible to replace my GPU with an updated model which now
> seem to have larger full length fan coolers installed


Is that the motherboard with the CPU at an angle? Maybe one of the shorter
8x cards might fit?

Hopefully cleaning out the one you have will take care of it. Does the slot
cooler pull air out, or does it blow fresh air onto the 8800?

SC Tom

 
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Ikaros
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 12:25 PM
On Oct 13, 9:06*pm, "SC Tom" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> "Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>
>
>
>
>
> > Funny you mention Bioshock, which is another UT3 engine game. They
> > apparently load a heck of a stress test on a system!

>
> > I do regular dust cleaning and even added the rounded IDE cable
> > (replaced the flat ribbon cable) to improve air flow from front to
> > back, and my replacement Patriot memory has ribbed aluminum shields to
> > evenly dissipate heat from the modules, plus I added a slot cooler
> > located (the only place you can) underneath the 8800GTX which did
> > lower GPU temperature 10 degrees centigrade while playing Unreal
> > Tournament 3. I'll try pulling the 8800GTX next to clean any other
> > areas on the card that may be clogged with dust, plus you never know
> > if reseating it into the slot will fix any dust/connection issues too.

>
> > My only gripe is that the EVGA 8800GTX uses a special custom cooler
> > housing molded to fit next to the large CPU heat sink. Because the CPU
> > heat sink is basically in the way of the upper 8x faster GPU slot, it
> > makes it impossible to replace my GPU with an updated model which now
> > seem to have larger full length fan coolers installed

>
> Is that the motherboard with the CPU at an angle? Maybe one of the shorter
> 8x cards might fit?
>
> Hopefully cleaning out the one you have will take care of it. Does the slot
> cooler pull air out, or does it blow fresh air onto the 8800?
>
> SC Tom- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -


Well here is a picture of the inside of my Gateway FX530 computer:
http://www.evga.com/community/ModsRi...2_10609_05.jpg

The blue Antec slot cooler pulls cool air in from the outside and is
blowing onto the bottom of the card circuit board. Technically it is
supposed to be positioned over the top of the GPU fan opening but
there is no way to do it in this case configurarion. But it does still
helps to lower the GPU temps by 10 degrees centigrade than without it.

You can see the silver CPU heat sink invades the GPU cooler housing,
so much so that EVGA must have partnered with Gateway to make then a
specially molded housing that includes a notched out area for it. The
EVGA part number is 768-P2-N833-BR (EVGA site photo -
http://www.evga.com/products/images/...768-P2-N833-BR)
and even includes an EVGA/Gateway logo on the cooler.

This is why I'll probably never be able to replace the card with
something else unless I know the exact clearance dimensions first or
replace that block of a CPU heatsink!

Steve
 
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Ikaros
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 12:40 PM
On Oct 14, 8:25*am, Ikaros <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On Oct 13, 9:06*pm, "SC Tom" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>
>
>
>
> > "Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message

>
> >news:(E-Mail Removed)....

>
> > > Funny you mention Bioshock, which is another UT3 engine game. They
> > > apparently load a heck of a stress test on a system!

>
> > > I do regular dust cleaning and even added the rounded IDE cable
> > > (replaced the flat ribbon cable) to improve air flow from front to
> > > back, and my replacement Patriot memory has ribbed aluminum shields to
> > > evenly dissipate heat from the modules, plus I added a slot cooler
> > > located (the only place you can) underneath the 8800GTX which did
> > > lower GPU temperature 10 degrees centigrade while playing Unreal
> > > Tournament 3. I'll try pulling the 8800GTX next to clean any other
> > > areas on the card that may be clogged with dust, plus you never know
> > > if reseating it into the slot will fix any dust/connection issues too..

>
> > > My only gripe is that the EVGA 8800GTX uses a special custom cooler
> > > housing molded to fit next to the large CPU heat sink. Because the CPU
> > > heat sink is basically in the way of the upper 8x faster GPU slot, it
> > > makes it impossible to replace my GPU with an updated model which now
> > > seem to have larger full length fan coolers installed

>
> > Is that the motherboard with the CPU at an angle? Maybe one of the shorter
> > 8x cards might fit?

>
> > Hopefully cleaning out the one you have will take care of it. Does the slot
> > cooler pull air out, or does it blow fresh air onto the 8800?

>
> > SC Tom- Hide quoted text -

>
> > - Show quoted text -

>
> Well here is a picture of the inside of my Gateway FX530 computer:http://www.evga.com/community/ModsRi...2_10609_05.jpg
>
> The blue Antec slot cooler pulls cool air in from the outside and is
> blowing onto the bottom of the card circuit board. Technically it is
> supposed to be positioned over the top of the GPU fan opening but
> there is no way to do it in this case configurarion. But it does still
> helps to lower the GPU temps by 10 degrees centigrade than without it.
>
> You can see the silver CPU heat sink invades the GPU cooler housing,
> so much so that EVGA must have partnered with Gateway to make then a
> specially molded housing that includes a notched out area for it. The
> EVGA part number is 768-P2-N833-BR (EVGA site photo -http://www.evga.com/products/images/products/resizeImage.asp?PRODID=7...)
> and even includes an EVGA/Gateway logo on the cooler.
>
> This is why I'll probably never be able to replace the card with
> something else unless I know the exact clearance dimensions first or
> replace that block of a CPU heatsink!
>
> Steve- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -


Hmm, you mentioned shorter 8x cards. I just got an EVGA email about a
GeForce GT 220 which does look shorter than my current card and
especially those other newer cards that look like a long box! I'll try
to get the deminsions....
 
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Ben Myers
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 01:28 PM
Ikaros wrote:
> I have a 2 1/4 year old FX530. My system specs are below. Sometimes
> while playing the 3D game Unreal Tournament 3, the game will blank out
> and I get a No Signal message on my LCD monitor. I have to turn the
> computer off and back on to get video back. It is connected to my
> video card via a digital signal cable. Also sometimes I get either a
> BSOD or game freeze that I have to end via Task Manager. I've tried
> various upgrades like replacing the memory and added a slot cooler for
> the video card to lower temperature. I'm reading on the web I could
> have a faulty video card or power supply? My computer only has this
> problem running Unreal Engine 3 based games, which are stressful to a
> system. All other 3D games play fine with no symptoms. What do you
> think? Is it just caused by Unreal Tournament 3 based games or is
> something wrong with my system. I thought it was relatively high end
> when I bought it and it had the best video card out at the time.
>
> System Specs:
>
> Gateway FX530 - Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit SP2, Intel Q6600 2.4ghz
> Core 2 Quad CPU, 4gb (4x1gb) Patriot PDC22G5300LLK RAM, 500gb
> (2x250gb) RAID-0 HD, Dual DVD/RW, Vantec ATA133 Rounded IDE Cable,
> Delta 700w Power Supply, Nvidia 8800GTX 768mb GPU (Factory OC), Antec
> VCool Slot VGA Cooler, Gateway 22" Widescreen LCD, Asus/ViXS
> Combo-210E TV Tuner, Creative SoundBlaster X-FI Audio, Logitech X-230
> Speaker System, Logitech Precision PC Gaming Headset, Logitech G15
> Gaming Keyboard, Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse, Rocketfish Gaming Mouse
> Pad, Iomega Prestige 500gb USB HD, Line-6 TonePort GX, APC Back-UPS ES
> BE550G
>
> Steve


I've been following this thread, and now I'll chime in.

Graphics cards with nVidia GPUs have a long and storied history of
failing completely or giving flaky symptoms due to thermal problems, in
both desktop and laptop computers. I have replaced lots of them, when
possible. With some laptops, the GPU is integrated onto the
motherboard, so if it fails, you are screwed.

The power supply would be the only other likely villain in this piece,
but a Delta 700w should be way more than enough to support the hardware
configuration you've got.

Note also that your system has 4GB of memory, but the 32-bit version of
Windows can only address about 3GB of memory. This is a hardware
limitation of the 32-bit Intel CPU, and the same limitation exists for
32-bit Linux and 32-bit Apple OS X. I doubt that the extra memory is
having an effect on your system, except that it draws a little bit more
power.

I suspect that it would still be pretty expensive to replace the 8800GTX
card, but that is something to consider if you want to continue to play
Unreal Engine 3 badly enough... Ben Myers
 
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Ikaros
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 02:40 PM
On Oct 14, 9:28*am, Ben Myers <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> I've been following this thread, and now I'll chime in.
>
> Graphics cards with nVidia GPUs have a long and storied history of
> failing completely or giving flaky symptoms due to thermal problems, in
> both desktop and laptop computers. *I have replaced lots of them, when
> possible. *With some laptops, the GPU is integrated onto the
> motherboard, so if it fails, you are screwed.
>
> The power supply would be the only other likely villain in this piece,
> but a Delta 700w should be way more than enough to support the hardware
> configuration you've got.
>
> Note also that your system has 4GB of memory, but the 32-bit version of
> Windows can only address about 3GB of memory. *This is a hardware
> limitation of the 32-bit Intel CPU, and the same limitation exists for
> 32-bit Linux and 32-bit Apple OS X. *I doubt that the extra memory is
> having an effect on your system, except that it draws a little bit more
> power.
>
> I suspect that it would still be pretty expensive to replace the 8800GTX
> card, but that is something to consider if you want to continue to play
> Unreal Engine 3 badly enough... Ben Myers- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -


Yeah I kind of goofed upgrading my 2gb (2x1gb Samsung/Kingston
modules) memory. I wanted to try gamer overclockable memory and went
with 2 kits of 2x1gb Patriot extreme performance memory with the
aluminum heat shields, which were on sale at NewEgg for 24.99 per 2gb
kit. They didn't have the 2x2gb version that seems to ne very elusive
to find. That may have helped my power usage at least with 2 modules
installed instead of 4 modules filling all the slots.

I was aware of that 32-bit limitation but mathematically it can
theoretically address up to 4gb of memory. But I think the system
hardware is grabbing the extra gb making you lose avaliable memory
from software and the OS. Either way even if I'm wrong here, 3gb is
better than 2gb and the online price was nice with free shipping too
so it wasn't a loss.

The memory like I said overclocks nicely from 667mhz to 800mhz giving
me a slight memory bandwidth boost. was sucks is that the BIOS is
locked so that memory is the only thing you can overclock. I can't get
to the FSB or CPU timing screens. I hear the Q6600 CPU overclocks
nicely too. What a shame.

At the moment I put the memory back to 667mhz defaults just to see if
the intermittent freezes in UT3 go away, and unfortunately they don't.
As far as the random no signal issue, it's like something in the UT3
game code accidentally triggers my 8800GTX to output an out of range
frequency from the digital port that the 22" LCD monitor can't handle
or something? Just for comparision, I ran the previous Unreal
Tournament 2004 version for 3 months after getting my FX530 (until UT3
was released in November 2007) and UT2004 never locked up my system
ever.

Steve
 
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SC Tom
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 03:26 PM

"Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
On Oct 14, 8:25 am, Ikaros <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On Oct 13, 9:06 pm, "SC Tom" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>
>
>
>
> > "Ikaros" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message

>
> >news:(E-Mail Removed)...

>
> > > Funny you mention Bioshock, which is another UT3 engine game. They
> > > apparently load a heck of a stress test on a system!

>
> > > I do regular dust cleaning and even added the rounded IDE cable
> > > (replaced the flat ribbon cable) to improve air flow from front to
> > > back, and my replacement Patriot memory has ribbed aluminum shields to
> > > evenly dissipate heat from the modules, plus I added a slot cooler
> > > located (the only place you can) underneath the 8800GTX which did
> > > lower GPU temperature 10 degrees centigrade while playing Unreal
> > > Tournament 3. I'll try pulling the 8800GTX next to clean any other
> > > areas on the card that may be clogged with dust, plus you never know
> > > if reseating it into the slot will fix any dust/connection issues too.

>
> > > My only gripe is that the EVGA 8800GTX uses a special custom cooler
> > > housing molded to fit next to the large CPU heat sink. Because the CPU
> > > heat sink is basically in the way of the upper 8x faster GPU slot, it
> > > makes it impossible to replace my GPU with an updated model which now
> > > seem to have larger full length fan coolers installed

>
> > Is that the motherboard with the CPU at an angle? Maybe one of the
> > shorter
> > 8x cards might fit?

>
> > Hopefully cleaning out the one you have will take care of it. Does the
> > slot
> > cooler pull air out, or does it blow fresh air onto the 8800?

>
> > SC Tom- Hide quoted text -

>
> > - Show quoted text -

>
> Well here is a picture of the inside of my Gateway FX530
> computer:http://www.evga.com/community/ModsRi...2_10609_05.jpg
>
> The blue Antec slot cooler pulls cool air in from the outside and is
> blowing onto the bottom of the card circuit board. Technically it is
> supposed to be positioned over the top of the GPU fan opening but
> there is no way to do it in this case configurarion. But it does still
> helps to lower the GPU temps by 10 degrees centigrade than without it.
>
> You can see the silver CPU heat sink invades the GPU cooler housing,
> so much so that EVGA must have partnered with Gateway to make then a
> specially molded housing that includes a notched out area for it. The
> EVGA part number is 768-P2-N833-BR (EVGA site
> photo -http://www.evga.com/products/images/products/resizeImage.asp?PRODID=7...)
> and even includes an EVGA/Gateway logo on the cooler.
>
> This is why I'll probably never be able to replace the card with
> something else unless I know the exact clearance dimensions first or
> replace that block of a CPU heatsink!
>
> Steve- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -


Hmm, you mentioned shorter 8x cards. I just got an EVGA email about a
GeForce GT 220 which does look shorter than my current card and
especially those other newer cards that look like a long box! I'll try
to get the deminsions....
============

Look here: http://tinyurl.com/yllgtyf

The Palit brands look like they stop at the end of the back edge of the lock
tab. That should be short enough, you think?

SC Tom

 
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Ben Myers
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      10-14-2009, 05:38 PM
Ikaros wrote:
> On Oct 14, 9:28 am, Ben Myers <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> I've been following this thread, and now I'll chime in.
>>
>> Graphics cards with nVidia GPUs have a long and storied history of
>> failing completely or giving flaky symptoms due to thermal problems, in
>> both desktop and laptop computers. I have replaced lots of them, when
>> possible. With some laptops, the GPU is integrated onto the
>> motherboard, so if it fails, you are screwed.
>>
>> The power supply would be the only other likely villain in this piece,
>> but a Delta 700w should be way more than enough to support the hardware
>> configuration you've got.
>>
>> Note also that your system has 4GB of memory, but the 32-bit version of
>> Windows can only address about 3GB of memory. This is a hardware
>> limitation of the 32-bit Intel CPU, and the same limitation exists for
>> 32-bit Linux and 32-bit Apple OS X. I doubt that the extra memory is
>> having an effect on your system, except that it draws a little bit more
>> power.
>>
>> I suspect that it would still be pretty expensive to replace the 8800GTX
>> card, but that is something to consider if you want to continue to play
>> Unreal Engine 3 badly enough... Ben Myers- Hide quoted text -
>>
>> - Show quoted text -

>
> Yeah I kind of goofed upgrading my 2gb (2x1gb Samsung/Kingston
> modules) memory. I wanted to try gamer overclockable memory and went
> with 2 kits of 2x1gb Patriot extreme performance memory with the
> aluminum heat shields, which were on sale at NewEgg for 24.99 per 2gb
> kit. They didn't have the 2x2gb version that seems to ne very elusive
> to find. That may have helped my power usage at least with 2 modules
> installed instead of 4 modules filling all the slots.
>
> I was aware of that 32-bit limitation but mathematically it can
> theoretically address up to 4gb of memory. But I think the system
> hardware is grabbing the extra gb making you lose avaliable memory
> from software and the OS. Either way even if I'm wrong here, 3gb is
> better than 2gb and the online price was nice with free shipping too
> so it wasn't a loss.
>
> The memory like I said overclocks nicely from 667mhz to 800mhz giving
> me a slight memory bandwidth boost. was sucks is that the BIOS is
> locked so that memory is the only thing you can overclock. I can't get
> to the FSB or CPU timing screens. I hear the Q6600 CPU overclocks
> nicely too. What a shame.
>
> At the moment I put the memory back to 667mhz defaults just to see if
> the intermittent freezes in UT3 go away, and unfortunately they don't.
> As far as the random no signal issue, it's like something in the UT3
> game code accidentally triggers my 8800GTX to output an out of range
> frequency from the digital port that the 22" LCD monitor can't handle
> or something? Just for comparision, I ran the previous Unreal
> Tournament 2004 version for 3 months after getting my FX530 (until UT3
> was released in November 2007) and UT2004 never locked up my system
> ever.
>
> Steve


The system hardware imposes itself over the memory space above 3GB. It
does not actually use the 1GB. Instead, a lot of the hardware elements
get mapped into high memory. And, to be accurate, depending on how this
mapping is done by the motherboard chipset and the peripheral devices,
more than 3GB may be available for use. I have seen the System icon
show 3.2GB or so on a 4GB system.

It also sounds like the real problem here is the game, not the hardware,
because the system runs fine with everything else. Maybe the game
manufacturer has an update? Maybe a different graphics card will not
crap out? At this point, any other possibilities are beyond my
imagination... Ben Myers
 
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