FX530 Intermittent No Signal and 3D Game Crash Problem

Discussion in 'Gateway' started by Ikaros, Oct 10, 2009.

  1. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    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
    Ikaros, Oct 10, 2009
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Ikaros

    SC Tom Guest

    "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >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
    SC Tom, Oct 11, 2009
    #2
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  3. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    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 :(
    Ikaros, Oct 13, 2009
    #3
  4. Ikaros

    SC Tom Guest

    "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > 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
    SC Tom, Oct 14, 2009
    #4
  5. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    On Oct 13, 9:06 pm, "SC Tom" <> wrote:
    > "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    >
    > news:...
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > > 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/ModsRigs/uploadImages/334302_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=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
    Ikaros, Oct 14, 2009
    #5
  6. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    On Oct 14, 8:25 am, Ikaros <> wrote:
    > On Oct 13, 9:06 pm, "SC Tom" <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > > "Ikaros" <> wrote in message

    >
    > >news:....

    >
    > > > 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/ModsRigs/uploadImages/334302_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....
    Ikaros, Oct 14, 2009
    #6
  7. Ikaros

    Ben Myers Guest

    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
    Ben Myers, Oct 14, 2009
    #7
  8. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    On Oct 14, 9:28 am, Ben Myers <> 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
    Ikaros, Oct 14, 2009
    #8
  9. Ikaros

    SC Tom Guest

    "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    On Oct 14, 8:25 am, Ikaros <> wrote:
    > On Oct 13, 9:06 pm, "SC Tom" <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > > "Ikaros" <> wrote in message

    >
    > >news:...

    >
    > > > 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/ModsRigs/uploadImages/334302_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
    SC Tom, Oct 14, 2009
    #9
  10. Ikaros

    Ben Myers Guest

    Ikaros wrote:
    > On Oct 14, 9:28 am, Ben Myers <> 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
    Ben Myers, Oct 14, 2009
    #10
  11. Ikaros

    Ikaros Guest

    On Oct 14, 1:38 pm, Ben Myers <> wrote:
    > 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- Hide quoted text -
    >
    > - Show quoted text -


    Thanks for the high memory explanation and other suggestions by those
    replying to help me. I agree that the most likely culprit here is the
    game itself. There are a lot of other players of UT3 engine based
    games with similar lockups and freezes. Epic who makes the Unreal
    series games has had many updates and patches but non address this
    issue, which is a shame. They seem to point the blame at hardware,
    Nvidia's drivers, or Vista, but all I know is all other games not
    using their engine works fine with no ill effects. For example the
    older 3D shooter game Doom 3 and it's expansion pack sequel have no
    issues, although it uses OpenGL whereas UT3 uses DirectX to render
    graphics.

    Anyway, I need to just accept I'll always get random lockups with UT3
    while I wait for the next non-UT3 based game out that grabs by
    attention so I can move on and not question my hardware as faulty. At
    least I got to upgrade my box with a few better components along the
    way.

    As far as when it's time to get another PC to replace this one in
    another year or so; I think that I will build my own custom box
    instead of getting an OEM restricted machine that have certain BIOS
    features locked out and non-standard reverse case opening BTX
    motherboard formats.

    Thanks all,

    Steve
    Ikaros, Oct 14, 2009
    #11
  12. Ikaros

    Ben Myers Guest

    Ikaros wrote:
    > On Oct 14, 1:38 pm, Ben Myers <> wrote:
    >> 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- Hide quoted text -
    >>
    >> - Show quoted text -

    >
    > Thanks for the high memory explanation and other suggestions by those
    > replying to help me. I agree that the most likely culprit here is the
    > game itself. There are a lot of other players of UT3 engine based
    > games with similar lockups and freezes. Epic who makes the Unreal
    > series games has had many updates and patches but non address this
    > issue, which is a shame. They seem to point the blame at hardware,
    > Nvidia's drivers, or Vista, but all I know is all other games not
    > using their engine works fine with no ill effects. For example the
    > older 3D shooter game Doom 3 and it's expansion pack sequel have no
    > issues, although it uses OpenGL whereas UT3 uses DirectX to render
    > graphics.
    >
    > Anyway, I need to just accept I'll always get random lockups with UT3
    > while I wait for the next non-UT3 based game out that grabs by
    > attention so I can move on and not question my hardware as faulty. At
    > least I got to upgrade my box with a few better components along the
    > way.
    >
    > As far as when it's time to get another PC to replace this one in
    > another year or so; I think that I will build my own custom box
    > instead of getting an OEM restricted machine that have certain BIOS
    > features locked out and non-standard reverse case opening BTX
    > motherboard formats.
    >
    > Thanks all,
    >
    > Steve


    If and when you build your own computer, use an Asus motherboard. Their
    boards still have reasonable quality and offer options for tweaking
    performance.

    Name brand computers will almost never offer tweaking options, because
    they do not want the calls and emails to customer service when a naive
    customer screws up a computer... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Oct 15, 2009
    #12
  13. Ikaros

    SC Tom Guest

    *** Reply in line

    "Ben Myers" <> wrote in message
    news:hb4jmi$brd$-september.org...
    > 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.


    ***
    In all fairness, the 9600GT that I was having problems with is the only
    nVidia-based card I've ever had a problem with, and I've been using them
    since the ISA days. I had the same overheating problem with the dedicated
    ATI video in my notebook, and used the same method to fix it that I used for
    the nVidia, and now it works fine, too. I had a few other brands thrown in
    there now and then, but the nVidia's have always been the most stable for
    me. By far, the most troublesome and unstable were the old Diamond Stealth
    cards. ATI cards were pretty stable, but were slower than comparable but
    less expensive cards.
    Of course, that's just my experience with them. Other's experiences may
    vary.

    SC Tom

    >
    > 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
    SC Tom, Oct 15, 2009
    #13
  14. Ikaros

    Ben Myers Guest

    SC Tom wrote:
    > *** Reply in line
    >
    > "Ben Myers" <> wrote in message
    > news:hb4jmi$brd$-september.org...
    >> 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.

    >
    > ***
    > In all fairness, the 9600GT that I was having problems with is the only
    > nVidia-based card I've ever had a problem with, and I've been using them
    > since the ISA days. I had the same overheating problem with the
    > dedicated ATI video in my notebook, and used the same method to fix it
    > that I used for the nVidia, and now it works fine, too. I had a few
    > other brands thrown in there now and then, but the nVidia's have always
    > been the most stable for me. By far, the most troublesome and unstable
    > were the old Diamond Stealth cards. ATI cards were pretty stable, but
    > were slower than comparable but less expensive cards.
    > Of course, that's just my experience with them. Other's experiences may
    > vary.
    >
    > SC Tom
    >
    >>
    >> 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

    >


    Ya been lucky with nVidia. I see lots of them because I see lots of
    computers. Though the failure rate of nVidia cards is low
    percentagewise, IMHO their cards still present a significant risk.

    Diamond pushed the envelope, running chips outside the specifications,
    clocking memory faster thna rated speed and doing the same with
    whichever GPU they were using. Unfortunately, I unwittingly contributed
    to their motivation to push chips beyond spec by writing a glowing
    review of one of their early cards for PC Magazine. I was much more
    naive at the time, and did not have the hardware smarts to figure out
    that their card was faster than the competition because they pushed the
    spec. Back in the mid-90's, everyone was playing games with graphics
    chips, cards, and benchmarks, because there were far more competitors
    then, both chip makers and brand-names of cards. If a card was 0.0001%
    faster than the competition, they made big news of it.

    On the other hand, I have been running a Diamond AGP card in this system
    for several years without incident. It's a very standard design with
    ATI Radeon chip and 128MB... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Oct 15, 2009
    #14
  15. Ikaros

    Wettlesheim Guest

    "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    On Oct 13, 9:06 pm, "SC Tom" <> wrote:
    > "Ikaros" <> wrote in message
    >
    > news:...

    <Snipped for clarity>

    Well here is a picture of the inside of my Gateway FX530 computer:
    http://www.evga.com/community/ModsRigs/uploadImages/334302_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 configuration. 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=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

    I added this hdd cooler on my computer that I bought from my local computer
    shop http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000HVHCKS I didn't attached my
    hard drive to it. I came up with an idea to put it into an unused slot to
    draw air into the front of the computer and the slot cooler in the rear
    would draw air out.increasing air flow. Would it be possible to add a
    exhaust fan on the side of your case to draw air out while a hdd cooler fans
    and your slot cooler is pulling air in?
    Good Luck,
    Ron
    Wettlesheim, Oct 15, 2009
    #15
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