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Screen freezes without BSD in graphics intensive applications with high pitched whine from speakers

Posted on 2004-03-26
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
After a few hours of running either Call of Duty or Battlefield Vietnam, my screen freezes without a blue screen of death and a high pitched but low volume whine emits from the speakers.  My video card is an eVGA GeForce FX 5900SE and my sound card is an Audigy 2.  I've paired the sound card with a PNY GeForce 4 Ti4400 without encountering this problem.

In troubleshooting, I've eliminated any IRQ sharing with the video card and have disabled AGP fast writes.  Still, I have the same problem.  I have not overclocked anything on my system.  I have plenty of air circulation with 2 exhaust fans and 1 intake fan on the side panel blowing directly on the video card.  Also, I have the latest official drivers from Creative and nVidia installed.

If I can remember correctly, when I set the graphic details to medium instead of high, the problem doesn't occur.  Does this sound like some bad memory on the video card?  
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Question by:wadegiles
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by:buckeyes33
ID: 10690160
Can you put the BSOD error here?  We will be able to quickly diagnoses the problem then.

also list your whole system for me.
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10690543
i would say either a memory or gpu issue on the card.  while overclocking my video card i ran across a similar problem so i would downclock it and everything was groovy.  also...
have you tried using a different sound card with the fx5900 to see if it's the cards that are conflicting?
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by:wadegiles
ID: 10693372
I removed my Audigy 2 soundcard and uninstalled the software that came with it.  After rebooting, I fired up Battlefield Vietnam.  After 3 hours, the system froze again.  I've proven to myself that the card is bad.  Time to RMA.

Please read questions carefully before commenting.  I stated explicitely that the system locked without a BSD.
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10695760
i figured it would come down to that.  that's one of the reasons i buy locally.  if something goes wrong i can take it back the same day and get another one.

at least you have the geforce4 to hold you over
:)
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Author Comment

by:wadegiles
ID: 10696405
Well, unfortunately I was premature in my diagnosis.  I removed the video card from my system and switched it with a trouble free GeForce 4 Ti4400.  To my dismay, my system locked up without a BSD once again.  To my eyes, this looks like a symptom of too much overclocking.  The sad part is that I haven't overclocked anything on this system ... ever.  

Any ideas what else might be causing this?

System specs:
P4 3 GHz 800 MHz FSB
ASUS P4S800D-E Deluxe
2 * 512 MB Corsair TWINX1024-3200L
eVGA GeForce FX 5900SE w/ 128 MB RAM
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3v1lj1m earned 300 total points
ID: 10697333
can you monitor the temperatures in the case?  your processor may be getting hot and shutting itself off as a safety measure.  if they're high try remounting the hsf with fresh thermal paste and making sure the fan is good.  did you assemble this system or did someone else? dell? hp? a hobo on a lamppost?
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by:wadegiles
ID: 10698511
Yes I can monitor the ambient and the processor temperatures.  Neither read very high.  The processor peaks at 54 degrees C whereas the ambient temp never gets higher than 40 degrees C.  And I assembled this system myself...I couldn't find a hobo on a lamppost.  

Last night, in desperation to find out where the problem lies, I ran Sysoft Sandra's processor benchmarks in a loop for a few hours.  Again, peak temp is 54.  Next I ran the RAM benchmarks in a loop while I slept.  No lock ups and the system seems to be performing normally.

Other discoveries ... After finding that my old video card behaved the same way, I decided to bite the bullet and reinstall Windows XP Pro SP1.  I then installed the minimum amount of drivers and software.  I swapped the GeForce FX back into my system and ran Battlefield Vietnam.  After about an hour and a half ... FREEZE!!!  So my Windows reinstall didn't fix anything.  

My current hypothesis is that the newest nVidia drivers are introducing an incompatibility with the SiS Northbridge chipset.  More thoughts?  
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by:buckeyes33
ID: 10698535
I think that you have went through enough steps to see that your FX card is either bad, or it gets really hot and freezes.  This is considering it takes a while for it to freeze.  

Can you try a friend FX card to see if it works.  


BTW:    Are you having any lag while playing BFV?   Lag that would be associated with your computer rather than the server.
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10699871
have you tried using Microsoft's drivers?  no opengl support but most games use DX anyway.
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Author Comment

by:wadegiles
ID: 10704241
I don't think the card is bad though.  Like I said, I switched video cards and still got the freeze.

Microsoft drivers for the video card?  I am unfamiliar with those.
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by:wadegiles
ID: 10704265
Oh and no lag in BFV.  Everything looks terrific right up until the system freezes.
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10704312
when you do a windows update, microsoft will suggest driver updates (the second group below critical updates).
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10704740
btw... are you using the 56.64's?
apparently some people here have had issues with it:
http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?s=a38fa9d1b80f5c373f0fd4add41b0a35&t=26534
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Author Comment

by:wadegiles
ID: 10707866
Yes, I'm familiar with Windows Update.  This whole mess started in a fully up-to-date system.  I have only up to SP1 installed and will eventually update fully.

I have used various driver versions including 56.64, 56.56, and some beta 56.82s all with the same freeze-ups.  I even went back to the 53.03 drivers...same thing happens.

In the mean time, I have reinstalled my CPU and reseated the RAM.  I'm running CPU Burn-In while I'm at work to see if the CPU is overheating.  Any suggestions for a better CPU stress tester?  This one doesn't seem to push my CPU utilization above 50%.  (Hyper-threading maybe?)
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by:wadegiles
ID: 10707939
Increasing the points since this issue has become more complicated.
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by:buckeyes33
buckeyes33 earned 100 total points
ID: 10707978
have you made sure that you have the up to date chipset drivers.
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Author Comment

by:wadegiles
ID: 10718780
Yes...I checked both the ASUS and SiS sites for the latest chipset drivers.

Ok, I've shipped the motherboard off for an RMA replacement.  Since I want give these points away, I will split them between buckeyes33 and 3v1lj1m.
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by:3v1lj1m
ID: 10719228
thanks wadegiles, i hope the board gets it.  the main thing making me think it was video was when you stated that setting everything to medium details will keep it from freezing.

good luck
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