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BFG Tech GeForce 7950 GTOC - PC Shutting Off - Temperature Problem?

Discussion in 'Nvidia' started by Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Sorry, this is kind of long, but I'm trying to be thorough:

    First of all, I recently (within the last week) got a new 27" Acer S271HL
    monitor that'll run 1920 x 1080. I love that. For the first couple or
    three days, all I did was desktop stuff and Facebook games like Chefville,
    Farmville 2, Total Domination: Nuclear Strategy, and Cityville 2. At
    first everything was fine. But now there's a problem that has surfaced.
    My PC will sometimes shut down with no warning, and here are the three
    instances (and only three) in which it has happened so far:

    The first time, I decided to see what Age of Empires III would be like in
    widescreen glory. I got through the title screen and whatnot and started
    a skirmish. Before I could even get my first town center built, my PC
    powered off all at once.

    The second and third times, it happened when going full-screen with
    Farmville 2. Farmville 2, in case you don't know, has gone to "3D" and
    the animation is smooth and silky. The first time the PC switched off in
    Farmville 2, it happened about five seconds after I went full-screen. The
    second time, it happen immediately. Like I didn't even see the
    full-screen manifest before I was staring at a black screen that said "No
    input signal" or something like that. I also want to point out that
    Farmville 2 is not as CPU intensive as even something like Cafe World,
    which is a sluggish, crappy game. Cafe World loads the CPU at around 50%,
    give or take five, and Farmville seems happy with about a 30-32% load.

    HWMonitor has my idling GPU as Core #0 28-29+ALo-C, Core #1 32-34+ALo-C. I tried
    Farmville 2 again in full-screen before posting here and the temperature
    there for Core #1 rose to about 40-42+ALo-C. But my idle temperature for the
    GPU is showing 60+ALo-C. HWMonitor shows the GPU temperature went as high as
    69+ALo-C. Switching to 1280 x 720 didn't cause the temperature to drop, but
    the display looks fuzzy at that resolution so I hate that.

    I don't think it's good for a computer or a file system to just shut off
    all at once so I don't really like "testing" it because if something blows
    out, I can't afford to replace it right now. I'm just wondering if this
    60+ALo-C idle speed is a bit too hot. It sure seems hot to me. It dipped to
    59+ALo-C, according to HWMonitor, but no lower than that.

    I'm thinking about underclocking this graphics card since it's overclocked
    from the factory -- not by much, but if it's running too hot, I don't mind
    losing a few cycles since I don't even have any recent games. I don't
    even have any games that were "recent" when I built this rig in November
    of 2006. The only game I really play that's a real video game is Final
    Fantasy XI Online and it's limited to 30 frames per second. So far the
    computer hasn't shut down playing that game, but I haven't played it much
    since getting this new monitor, and I haven't checked the temperatures
    when playing FFXI, either.

    I used to run 1600 x 1200 on my old 22" CRT that was killed by a bad power
    supply. It died before Farmville 2 came out, so the only comparison I
    have with that game is with the 15" LCD monitor (1024 x 768) I borrowed
    from a friend until I could get this new one.

    Sorry for being so long-winded. Here's the hardware I'm running:

    | Abit Fatal1ty AN9 32x | |
    | AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 4200+- | |
    | 2 GB DDR2 800 SDRAM | |
    | Western Digital 320GB HD (NTFS) | EAT AT JOE'S |
    | BFG Tech GeForce 7950 GTOC 512MB | |
    | Acer S271HL - 1920 x 1080 | |
    | PSU: Thermaltake SP-850AH3CCB 850w | |
    | (Less than a year old) | |
    | OS: MS Windows XP Home Edition - SP2 (5.1.2600) |
    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
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  2. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    In Damaeus
    From what I've been able to find out, factory nVidia 7950GT cards have a
    GPU clock speed of 550. Afterburner shows it running at 565. If I lower
    the GPU clock speed to 550, what should I set the memory clock to? It's
    currently set at 715, according to Afterburner.

    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
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  3. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    In Damaeus
    Okay, add a fourth instance...it just shut down when I tried to play Final
    Fantasy XI! Nooooo!!! It happened right at the instant when I was
    expecting the screen to come up to have me accept the terms of playing the
    game. This is the same instant (going full-screen) when Farmville 2 would
    cause a shutdown, but only one of the times. The other time, I got about
    ten seconds of play time in Farmville 2 and Age of Empires III before I
    got a shut-down. There was not enough time for FFXI to drive the GPU
    temperature up at all. I had HWMonitor running always-on-top to monitor
    the temperatures while playing the game, but I didn't even get that far.
    The GPU was reading 61+ALo-C when everything went black.

    This is going to drive me insane!

    I guess next, it'll start shutting down when I'm reading web pages. :'(

    I'm going to run a full virus scan, assuming that won't cause my system to
    shut down, too.

    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
  4. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    Do you have a copy of Prime95, or CPUBurn, or a similar loading
    program ? Try running the PC at 100+ACU- CPU load first.

    The thing is, I think you have a +ACo-CPU+ACo- temperature issue.
    Use your hardware monitoring programs, to watch the CPU temperature
    and see if it is going too high.

    Modern PCs are protected by THERMTRIP. It triggers
    when the PC gets too hot, and shuts off the power.
    I think your CPU gets too hot, and THERMTRIP is
    turning off the PC.

    Check the clip that holds the CPU cooler to the CPU socket.
    One of the tabs on the CPU socket may have snapped off,
    and your cooler is hanging on by just one tab. That's
    the easiest explanation for your problem. You
    probably have an Arctic Cooling after-market
    cooler, that has snapped off a tab.

    It's not the fault of the video card.

    Paul, Nov 11, 2012
  5. Damaeus

    Buffalo Guest

    Try upgrading to SP 3 and also uninstall and reinstall the vid card drivers.
    Perhaps even use Driver Cleaner to get all the old remnants of the vid
    drivers out before reinstalling the new ones.
    Ck cpu temp as Paul suggested.
    Check vid card and cpu fan and cooling fins.
    Is the computer actually shutting down, or just a lack of video signal?
    PS: Does your monitor require any drivers?
    Buffalo, Nov 11, 2012
  6. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    I did a virus scan of the system files and program files. No viruses were
    found. (Avast! 7.0.1474 with latest database updates.)
    I'll try that.
    Yes, I did that already and accidentally referred to the CPU as a GPU in
    the original post.

    Idle temperatures for the CPU, according to HWMonitor, are these idle
    speeds. Core #1 gets as high as 40+ALo-C running Farmville 2:

    Core #0 - 26+ALo-C - 31+ALo-C (Idle)
    Core #1 - 30+ALo-C - 35+ALo-C (Idle)

    Hard drive air flow is steady at 30+ALo-C.

    GPU idle 58+ALo-C - 60+ALo-C
    GPU Fan shows 20% Max/Min and that seems to never change since I
    started monitoring it in the last couple of days.
    Woops, in my original post, I accidentally said "GPU" instead of "CPU". I
    monitored the CPU temperatures before posting originally. The correct
    ranges are shown above.
    The heatsink and fan are the ones that came with the AMD processor in a
    retail package. The assembly is fine and looks tight to me.
    60+ALo-C does seem to be a bit hot for a GPU idle speed when just displaying a
    desktop, though. I've seen others on the web posting idle temperatures of
    50+ALo-C. I'm not sure if an overheating GPU will cause a computer to turn
    itself off.

    I'm going to do as Buffalo suggested and upgrade to WinXP SP-3. I thought
    I had done that already. Surprise, surprise!

    If nothing else, I may do a clean install of WinXP. I've been running
    this install since 2006, but it's been really stable until now. I'm able
    to keep it up and running for over a month at a time and even then, I
    often just reboot to stabilize an animation paging problem in PlayOnline
    (the entry program for Final Fantasy XI); after Windows has been up and
    running for a couple of days, the pages of animation for PlayOnline are
    all out of order and very jittery, but it's been doing that since the day
    I built this thing. It plays the Final Fantasy game itself just fine, but
    some other games, like the old Deus Ex game, also exhibit animation frames
    out of order. Maybe I've had a faulty video card all along? Yet even so,
    the PC has never turned itself off until after hooking up this new
    monitor. And this is the first week I've ever run it at 1920 x 1080. The
    maximum resolution I'd been running with my old CRT was 1600 x 1200 at an
    85Hz refresh rate. The higher resolution is only another 153,600 pixels,
    and this is only at a 60Hz refresh rate.

    Thanks for all this. I'll get to work on the other suggestions later

    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
  7. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    I'll do that tonight after 1am Central so it won't impact the "Fair Access
    Policy" of the satellite internet service we (try) to use.
    Yeah, CPU temperatures run 29+ALo-C to 40+ALo-C. GPU temperature idles at 60+ALo-C
    and has been as high as 69+ALo-C in Farmville 2. I was going to check the GPU
    temperature in Final Fantasy XI, but when I last tried to run that game,
    the computer turned itself off again.
    Yes, those had little dust in them, but I blew them out anyway before
    posting. It didn't make a difference in temperature.
    The computer completely goes off in one instant+IBQ-no shutdown process even
    tries to happen. It's just OFF totally.
    I don't know that they're required, but I do have them installed. It was
    one of the first things I did after hooking up the new monitor. I
    downloaded them from the Acer website, so they're the most recent version.

    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
  8. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    What amazes me is that I just got a response from Acer technical support
    Damaeus, Nov 11, 2012
  9. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    If the computer internal cooling fans stayed spinning, then
    the computer is not shutting off on an overheat.

    60C is no big deal for a video card. Running at 95C is
    getting close to the limit. The chip can take a bit more
    than that, but you wouldn't want the video card running that
    hot for years on end.

    The video card is *not* wired into THERMTRIP. It is easy
    for a video card to overheat, and melt any plastic bits
    mounted near the GPU. All it takes is a fan failure,
    and you won't even get a whimper out of it. It'll just
    overheat, until you see lines on the screen (too late),
    or smell plastic burning (too late). When NVidia released
    a driver where they didn't set the fan speed properly
    in the driver, some cards were damaged by that. Because
    there wasn't an effective thermal control method for the

    If the screen just goes black, but there are no other symptoms,
    yes, that can be the monitor. Some monitors have a 120V power
    supply inside, and the capacitors in the power section go bad
    and leak. There are a fair number of defective models out
    there. That could be why they're recommending a repair.

    Just to be clear, a computer shutting off and the fans stopping...
    is a different set of symptoms from the monitor going black
    in mid session (and the computer fans are still running).

    Paul, Nov 11, 2012
  10. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Well, the monitor only goes black because the computer shuts off, which
    also shuts down the video signal. The monitor still works, however,
    because it displays "no video signal", then goes into standby mode (the
    blue power illumination turns to amber).

    Maybe technical support thinks I'm one of those people who thinks the
    monitor is the computer. I know someone who "turns off the computer" by
    pushing the power switch on the monitor, which, of course, still leaves
    the actual computer running.

    I'm saying the tower shuts down and the monitor remains on long enough to
    tell me there's no video signal, then the monitor goes into standby mode.

    Damaeus, Nov 12, 2012
  11. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    That would normally be happening on a CPU overheat (computer switches
    off, fans stop). I don't think the GPU driver has any say about
    protecting the video card. At least, I run into enough reports
    of "melted fans", to think that video cards lack effective

    Some modern video cards, do have the ability to gate the clocks
    or reduce power dissipation to such an extent, that they could
    ease an overtemperature situation. But a lot of the older
    silicon, has a high enough power dissipation, that just
    leaving the main core power running on the video card,
    is enough to cook it if the fan fails or the heatsink is loose.
    I would not personally, be relying on clock gating, to
    save my video card. While it might prevent a disaster,
    I might just as likely find a melted fan some day, as
    evidence my card is dead.

    When the power connector burned on my ATI video card,
    the first warning I got was when the ATI "you didn't
    plug in my power cable" warning appeared on the screen.
    On opening the case, I could see the burned connector,
    as proof it wasn't getting power any more.

    Paul, Nov 12, 2012
  12. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Yes, but another thing is that I was actually watching HWMonitor when the
    tower switched off and when that happened, the CPU core was reading about
    46+ALo-C, which is not hot enough to cause it to shut down. That's why I'm so
    baffled. I do understand and have understood for a long time that
    computers shut down to protect the CPU from overheating, but I just don't
    see any overheating going on unless the temperature suddenly skyrockets
    before HWMonitor can detect it.

    I'm still waiting for the electricity to go out here to see what kind of
    load there is on my battery backup (APC 1500XS). It was able to keep my
    tower and 22" CRT up and running for about 20 minutes when the electricity
    went out before. We just haven't had a power failure in the last week.

    I'm going to start downloading the WindowsXP SP-3 updates in about three

    Damaeus, Nov 12, 2012
  13. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    OK, now we can move onto the next topic.

    Your power supply.

    1) A power supply can shut off if an internal fault is detected.
    Move the supply to another computer, and see if the problem
    follows the power supply.

    2) The +ACs-5VSB rail has a relatively low current rating. The motherboard
    uses perhaps +ACs-5VSB +AEA- 1 amps for things like Wake On LAN or other
    things needing standby current. The USB ports on modern motherboards,
    are also permanently wired to +ACs-5VSB. (A one time, jumper blocks gave
    you a choice of power source, but now all the ports are hard-wired
    to +ACs-5VSB. If you have 2.5" USB hard drives connected to the computer,
    the current demands from those can add up.)

    If the +ACs-5VSB rail is overloaded, the regulator might disconnect
    the load. Loss of +ACs-5VSB can cause PS-ON+ACM- to deassert, and rather than
    just one electrical output being affected, the power supply now
    shuts off. The motherboard design is such, that the slightest
    glitch in +ACs-5VSB, causes the computer to shut off, and requires
    pressing the button again.

    So +ACs-5VSB is a weak source of power, that when overloaded,
    causes the supply to go off. And part of the path for that,
    goes through the motherboard logic for PS-ON+ACM-.

    I would take a look at your +ACs-5VSB loading.

    Depending on the age of the power supply, and the remaining warranty,
    you can also visually inspect the inside of the power supply. There
    are four screws that hold the top on. One screw will be covered with
    a "warranty void" sticker, preventing the screw from being removed.
    If there is no warranty time remaining, then removing all the screws and
    taking off the top plate, won't matter with respect to warranty.

    Disconnect the power cord from the wall. Do +ACo-not+ACo- touch anything
    inside. You're only supposed to look inside.

    What you're looking for in there, is leaking capacitors, which can
    cause the supply to be weak or shut off spontaneously. In this photo,
    you can see rust colored deposits on four caps, and a fifth cap is
    bulging on top. Sometimes, a faint "sizzling" sound comes
    from the rusty caps, just at turn-on of the power supply.
    When my Antec failed like this, there was a tiny puff of
    smoke (special effects :) ) to announce imminent failure.


    If your supply is in that shape, replace it.

    Paul, Nov 12, 2012
  14. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    In Damaeus
    Ah! A storm just knocked the power out for about three seconds. I see
    that the load on my battery backup is less than it was running the 15"
    LCD. The power went out and the battery meter showed that I still had 33
    minutes of uptime left. With the 15" LCD, it was only showing about 20-22
    minutes of remaining uptime.

    Damaeus, Nov 12, 2012
  15. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Well, the power supply will still be well within its warranty. I just
    bought it in July of 2012 to replace one that did go bad. I got an
    850-watt Thermaltake SP-850AH3CCB. I wanted a good one.

    Now here's a question. The lead from the power supply has two plugs on it
    for those who have two video cards. I only have one video card (while I
    lust for two). I have the FIRST connector connected to the card, while
    the one on the end is not connected to anything. Does this sound right?

    Damaeus, Nov 12, 2012
  16. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    I can't tell from the cables, exactly how that unit works. I get
    the impression the PCI Express cables are 1:1. I don't see
    a modular cable connector on one end and two PCI Express
    on the other end of the same cable.


    With some of the cabling, you have to be careful not to mix up
    ATX12V 2x4 connector, with a PCI Express. I haven't compared the
    shapes of the plastic shells on the connectors, to see if the
    keying is different. Molex shrouds have weird shapes, to encourage
    only the correct cables can mate.

    In any case, if the power cables were wired in parallel

    Modular --------+---------+
    End | |
    #1 #2

    it should not matter which one or both are connected. As long
    as pin amperages have not been violated, wire is proper gauge,
    the cable can take anything.

    I've seen some adapter cables, that go from a couple 1x4 connectors,
    to a PCI-E 2x3, that I wouldn't touch with a barge pole. Sometimes,
    you can tell just from the picture, that there isn't due attention
    to details.

    PCI Express come in 2x3 and 2x4, on the video card end. On the
    power supply end, they make 2x4 connectors, where a 2x1 section
    detaches, to make a 2x3 connector. That would be one way to verify
    you're working with a PCI Express cable.

    The ATX12V comes in a couple formats. Some supplies have separate
    2x2 and 2x4 connectors. Some, use a 2x4 that a 2x2 section detaches
    to make a 2x2 to fit to the motherboard, and a left-over 2x2
    you don't use for anything.

    Sample pictures are available here, if you need things to point at
    in a posting.


    For example, this is a PCI-Express 2x4 with detachable 2x1.


    Paul, Nov 12, 2012
  17. Damaeus

    Paul Guest


    s/power supply end/video card end/

    Paul, Nov 12, 2012
  18. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Mine looks like this, and it even has a factory label on it that says
    PCI-E: The one labeled "PCI-E" is the one plugged into the video card.


    My video card only has a 2x3 connection so the 2x1 is left hanging off to
    the side.

    Acer support has been no help at all. It's like they don't even read the
    complete message. I told them in the first message I sent all the things
    I had already done. One of those was updating to the latest driver from
    nVidia. After first suggesting I send the monitor in to be repaired (a
    suggestion I thought was too hasty since the monitor, itself, works
    flawlessly), they then suggested upgrading to the latest driver for the
    video card, and they suggested trying a different monitor to see if the
    problem persists. I replied to tell them I already upgraded the graphics
    driver before contacting them, and that I had been using a different
    monitor right before connecting this one. Their reply to that was to
    upgrade to the latest VGA driver. They are hopeless. I cannot wait to
    fill out their survey. I remember seeing one somewhere on their website.
    I hope they include some essay questions.

    Now I've downloaded CPU Burn-in to "torture" the CPU. Apparently my CPU
    is a masochist, or I didn't run the test long enough. Instructions about
    how long of a test I should run I have not been able to find yet. I tried
    for 30 minutes. The computer did not turn itself off in that time and
    HWMonitor shows that the temperature for Core #0 peaked at 42+ALo-C and Core
    #1 peaked at 47+ALo-C.

    Prime95 users have been running tests for 24 hours.

    What do you suggest for CPU Burn-in? Or maybe I should just run Prime95
    for 24 hours and see what happens? I have to admit that I was expecting
    something like a stress test that raises the temperature more quickly, but
    I suppose I need to be patient.

    And I think I mentioned in previous posts that I was looking directly at
    HWMonitor and the temperature was fine when the PC switched off.

    Also, after installing all the Windows updates (it took me two nights to
    do it between 1am and 6am) the PC still turned off, and this time, it did
    it when Farmville 2 was not in full-screen mode. It was just running
    within a full-screen browser, but not when the only thing you could see
    through the whole screen was the game. Before, that was the only time the
    computer ever switched off in that particular game.

    Damaeus, Nov 13, 2012
  19. Damaeus

    Paul Guest

    You would run the CPU load test, for about as long as it would normally
    have taken for the computer to shut itself off. The test would have
    tested two things, CPU cooling properties, and to some extent,
    power supply ability to deliver +ACs-12V to the processor.

    The 7950 GTOC doesn't draw enough power to shut off your power
    supply. It shouldn't even be close. The card draws 61.1W in this test.
    Depending on your processor, it might draw a bit more than that during


    The only mechanisms I know of are:

    1) THERMTRIP on CPU overheat (turns off PS+AF8-ON+ACM- signal)
    2) overloading of +ACs-5VSB, such as too many USB devices, charging
    several iPads, leaving multiple 2.5" USB hard drives connected, or
    so on. With +ACs-5VSB overloaded, the PS+AF8-ON+ACM- signal gets deasserted and
    the supply goes off.
    3) VCore overcurrent detection (CPU onboard regulator) can turn off
    VCore to the processor. But that doesn't cause the computer fans to
    stop. And recovery requires toggling the power switch on the back of
    the PC. Typically, pressing reset doesn't help.
    4) Power supply internal problem, causes supply to go off.
    With proper design, again, the rear switch should need to be
    toggled for it to recover. If pressing the power button on the
    front, gets it to start again, it probably wasn't a power supply
    internal fault detector.

    If the power supply just has a problem with the PS+AF8-ON+ACM- signal
    (unreliably reading the level of the signal), then just about
    anything could happen. But then, you might not get a nice clean

    So far, I'm not seeing any symptoms I can match to known design

    I'm unaware of any software path, that shuts off the computer
    on a video card overheat.

    If your CPU crashes and runs code at random from memory,
    I suppose it could run into a call to the BIOS to shut off
    the computer. But what are the odds of that happening. And
    your clean Prime95 results, don't suggest any kind of

    Would a virus or malware trigger a shutoff ? It could, if
    an essential software subsystem is killed (security subsystem).
    But then, there should be a dialog box on the screen, with
    a threat to "turn off in 60 seconds". So again, no symptom
    match there. Your machine just switches off.

    You might want to go back and review the symptoms before
    you replaced the power supply. Is there anything of
    interest symptom-wise, there ?

    Paul, Nov 13, 2012
  20. Damaeus

    Damaeus Guest

    Okay, I ran a Prime95 test for 2 hours and 34 minutes while I took a nap.
    It reported no errors and my PC was still running the test when I woke up.
    The highest temperatures reported by HDMonitor were: 48+ALo-C and 49+ALo-C for
    each core:

    With Final Fantasy, once I played for about 30 minutes with no problems.
    The next time, as soon as I started the game, the PC turned off. With
    Farmville 2, it happened within 10 minutes or instantly when going
    full-screen, but earlier today, it happened even without going
    full-screen, and after about five minutes of playing with Facebook junk
    surrounding the play area. Age of Empires shut me down within about a
    minute or two, including the time it takes to get past the menus to get a
    skirmish started.

    I'm thinking it might be a 3D issue. I've read that video cards have a 2D
    mode and a 3D mode. So far, I've only gotten a shut-down when playing 3D
    games. Farmville 2 is a Flash game, but it's also full 3D and runs pretty
    smoothly except for short bursts of sluggishness, maybe lasting slightly
    less than one second at a time, but happening about every five or six
    seconds. I haven't tried any other 3D games so far aside from the three I
    mentioned above.

    Chefville, for example, is a 2D Flash game, and Farmville 2 is a 3D Flash
    game. In the past, I've checked CPU usage for Chefville and it runs about
    50% on average. Farmville 2 only runs the CPU at about 30%, but I have so
    far not gotten a shut-down in Chefville. Chefville does not run as
    smoothly as Farmville 2. I have also played CityVille 2 a few times in
    full-screen without a problem, but I have not tried to play it again since
    encountering this power-off issue in other games.

    In Chrome, I'm currently running a 2.5D game called Total Domination:
    Nuclear Strategy, and it's running my CPU fluctuating between 30% and 59%,
    mostly staying above 50% and my CPU temperature is only 39+ALo-C and 43+ALo- on
    the two cores. No shut-downs, no stability problems, no errors, no
    crashes. Occasionally Flash does crash on its own, but typically only
    after I've been running a game for a very long time, like more than three
    hours or so. I have not considered CPU problems as the culprit, but some
    kind of flaw in the programming of the game itself. Those games get a lot
    of updates, so bugs are more likely to creep in.

    Also, I think I mentioned in an earlier post that something about this
    system has been "off" since the day I built it. Trouble with animation
    pages displaying out of order was the first problem I had, and it was
    within the first day or two of using this build back in November of 2006.
    But since it only happened in games I could live without, I didn't try
    having the card put through any kind of warranty process. I guess I
    should have. I highly doubt nVidia would help me at this point, but I'm
    desperate enough to call them and just tell them about the history of this
    card to see if I could at least get a swap for some refurbished 7950GT in
    exchange for my 7950GTOC and maybe $50 or something. This will leave me
    without a computer until I can get the swap, but I've been religious about
    my choice to use nVidia cards. I've had GeForce 2 Ultra, GeForce 5600XT,
    GeForce 6800GT, and now this 7950GTOC. This is the first one that I've
    had problems with. It's definitely a lemon. But when I get a new
    graphics card, I always try to get something near the top end of the
    current generation so I won't be unhappy with it or find something it just
    won't do.

    I'm going to try 1024 x 768 mode in a problem-game because I never had a
    crash in that resolution with the 15" LCD. However, I was running Final
    Fantasy XI in 1280 x 1024 on a 22" CRT with no problems, and occasionally
    1600 x 1200 on the same CRT. I read on the web where others have had a
    problem with their computer powering off after changing the video card. If
    the video card has some kind of problem, maybe it's trying to draw more
    power than it should. I'll try that next, watching GPU voltages instead
    of temperature, but I really would rather not push it with this thing. I
    don't like for the computer to just go off all by itself like that unless
    it's caused by ThermTrip.

    The only things drawing power through USB are the keyboard and mouse. The
    image scanner and printer both have their own power cords. I do have
    other USB cables plugged in for my camera, cell phone and an iRiver MP3
    player, but I don't keep those devices connected all the time. I almost
    never use the iRiver player or the digital camera, but the cell phone is
    connected sometimes to get a charge or offload any pictures I might have
    Yes, I don't have to cycle the power switch on the power supply. I just
    push the tower's power button, though I did cycle the PSU switch once when
    pressing the button on the tower wouldn't turn it back on, but then I
    noticed that I might not have been pushing the button hard enough. I just
    "kind of" pressed it once and it didn't come on, but pressing it harder a
    second time did the trick. I don't have to actually put a lot of effort
    in it, but it takes slightly more than a gentle tap. It's kind of an old
    tower, but it's big and charcoal grey and I like that.

    Yes, and a virus scan of the system files and program files reveal no
    viruses. I never run executable attachments and nobody I know ever sends
    me any. I use Forte Agent 6.0 to read email and usenet messages, and you
    might know about their inherent protection from viruses and other forms of
    malware. You actually have to make a choice to run something to hose your
    own system. Nothing happens automatically and Agent doesn't even process
    ActiveX inclusions.
    Well, I never had any random shut-downs with my old power supply, but like
    you mentioned above, if the electricity ever went off, I had to cycle the
    switch on the power supply to get the computer to come back on. If that's
    a symptom of a power supply going out, then it was having that problem for
    quite a while before I replaced it. Sometimes even cycling the switch on
    the back wouldn't get me back up and running. I'm glad to be rid of it.

    In its last few days of operation, when viewing dark backgrounds with
    light text, for example, the display would become darker and darker and
    I'd get gently flickering fluctuations in brightness. Switching to
    something with a light background would display everything normally. That
    had me thinking at first that the video card was going out. I leave my PC
    and monitor running when I go to bed or leave the house or anything. It
    just stays on 24/7, no matter what. So one morning I woke up, the CRT was
    dark, the computer was going beep...beep...beep...beep...and I could not
    turn it on anymore. Definite diagnosis at that point was the power
    supply. I replaced it and got the PC back on, but the CRT no longer
    worked. I figured the fluctuation in the video delivery from the graphics
    card ruined the CRT monitor. In a way, I'm glad it did because it led me
    to get this beautiful 27"er. I just love it, except for the fact that it
    has no tilt adjustment on the base. I have to prop a book under the back
    of the base since my chair is kind of low.

    Thanks a whole bunch for all the time you're spending with me on this. I'm
    glad to have the experience because I do the same with others in other
    newsgroups or forums when I know how to help a person fix a problem. :)

    Damaeus, Nov 14, 2012
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