PC crashing when playing games

By Dowz ยท 43 replies
Mar 12, 2011
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  1. Hey guys recently my computer has decided to stop playing games. I get about 10 mins max then my pc crashes. The screen turns off and sound produces and stutering type noise.

    I thought it would be a driver issiue so updated my drivers with no succes. Done a full system scan for viruses pcs clean. Tried disc defrag. Cleared some more space but nothing i have tried helps.

    operating system: Windows 7 home premium 64-bit
    system manufacturer : packard bell
    system model : ixtreme m5722
    processor : intel core 2 quad cpu q8300 @2.50GHz (4cpus)
    memory : 6244mb ram
    running direct x 11
    video card : Nvdia geforce gt220

    Hope i have enough info for some help in this matter. Use to play games like a dream come true no issiues ever. stopped playing pc for like 6 months now i come back to this crashing problem. Really do not want to restore. Hopefully you guys can help so i can get back to pc gaming :D
  2. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Posts: 789   +16

    What kind of games do you play btw? I'll leave the solution of this problem to other experienced members.. :)
  3. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    Elder scrolls oblivion, Sniper 2, Battlefield 2, Half life 2, Counterstrike, Crysis. Tried some my older games like rollercoaster tycoon 3, black and white 2. All them crash after like 10 mins. Even with crysis 2 demo it crashes :(
  4. RayRay

    RayRay TS Booster Posts: 76

    It may be overheating.
    Open the case and see if you're pc needs some dust cleaning.
  5. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,379   +16

    I second RayRay's advice, this could be an overheating issue. Best thing to do is open your case and make sure it's clean (use compressed air dust remover). Once clean, give it another try but this time monitor your temperatures with something like CPUID's Hardware Monitor. Also give FurMark a try for stressing your GPU and system. However do not overdo it, just watch and see where your temperatures are at.

    If you are still having crashes with a clean PC and no abnormal temperatures, it might be a power supply issue.

    By the way, the GT220 is DX10.1 video card.
  6. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    Hey guys some more info on my pc.

    Idle test
    CPU usage: 0.5%
    GPU: 65c shows flame
    Temp1: 38c Blue arrow pointing down
    Temp2: 41c green tick
    Temp3: 17c Blue arrow pointing down
    Core 0: 34c Blue arrow pointing down
    Core 1: 34c Blue arrow pointing down
    Core 2: 39c Blue arrow pointing down
    Core 3: 33c Blue arrow pointing down

    Game test (Just after the start up video to Crysis 2 demo which lasts like 3 mins)

    CPU usage: 50.9%
    GPU : 76C Shows flame
    Temp1: 54c shows flame
    Temp2: 49c Green tick
    Temp3: 36c Blue arrow pointing down
    Core 0: 53c shows flame
    Core 1: 46c Red arrow pointing up
    Core 2: 46c Green tick
    Core 3: 47c Red arrow pointing up

    Assuming this is the information you were looking for. This is not good right?

    Plug is samsung model AD-4512L
    input: 100v-240v ~ 1.0A-0.5A 50Hz/60Hz
    output: 12V . 3.75A

    Not checked inside it yet. If it does need cleaned. Where would i get a compressed air dust remover?
  7. RayRay

    RayRay TS Booster Posts: 76

    OOOooo..... I smell burned dust, that's for sure.

    Don't know where to get compressed air, but this is how I do it:

    First, turn of the PC, then unplug everything out. Once every cable is out/off, press the On-Off button on the case 2-3 times in case there are some electricity left.

    Open the case (do not touch anything yet), get some wire(a few feet's) and attach the end of the wire to some metal ON the case with a clothes-pin. The other end, twist it around your arm-wrist.
    Now you are grounded.

    Now the scary part, mohahaha:

    You need a small soft brush(if it got some metal on it, cover it with some electro-tape),
    and a vacuum cleaner(if you got a thin end you can put on the hose, that's even better)

    Now set you vacuum cleaner on low, and use the brush to get the dust loose on narrow places. Beware of lots of small parts, so do it with the care.
  8. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    here is the power supply details

    Delta electronics Model DPS -250 AB-220
    Input 220-230 ~/3.15a 50hz
    output 250w max

    have been inside was not that bad. had a lair of dust tho. cleaned what i could with what i had still some in he fan but not much. Still not having much success playing games. Any other ideas guys?
  9. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    I agree with the others about dust build up because it will cause heat issues and heat will shut down a system fast.

    However, I have a question: In the 6 months between playing did you upgrade any components?

    I am concerned about your power supply.
  10. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,379   +16

    Regarding cleaning your PC, Compressed Air Clearer/Remover can be found at most retailers like Wal-Mart, Best Buy etc in the electronics department or can be bought online from etailers like Amazon or Newegg. Prices may vary depending on the brand but it's usually ~$4.00 or so a can.

    Now for those temperatures, both idle and the little gameplay you could get was higher than normal but still within acceptable levels. I would recommend doing a thorough cleaning though of your system to see if you can improve it, especially the fans with compressed air & Q-Tips on the fins to remove all the dust.

    Now for your power supply, from searching around I believe this is yours - DPS-250WB. And from those specifications that power supply is not meant to handle both a CPU & dedicated video card. Which I'm guessing is the generic brand that came with your system when you bought it. Having a bad power supply can cause issues such as bad performance in 3D games/applications, freezing, shut downs which you are experiencing and in the worst case scenario an overload.

    I would recommend that you stop trying to play games on that power supply until you can replace it with something of higher quality. An Antec EA 380W should be sufficient but if you would like something a little more powerful the 430W model will be just fine.
  11. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    Thanks for all the help guys. I have never touched inside this pc until i cleaned it. I know what i need to bout gaming pcs. This was by far the better pc for what i wanted at the time of purchase.

    never thought once bout the PSU. I stupidly assumed everything in the computer would work together with no issiues. Will have to buy a new psu i guess.

    Now about the psu is this a complecated thing to replace or is it as simple as most the things in a pc just plug in a go lol. Whilst am at that what graphics card would you guys recomend upgrading to for this system?
  12. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    First, measure the space in your case to see what dimensions your case will allow for a new PSU.

    Second, then go a reputable online dealer such as Newegg. The ones Relic linked you to are good. (I personally would go with the second choice). But, again, make sure of your dimensions.
  13. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,379   +16

    Pre-built systems from major manufacturers such as Dell, HP, E-Machine etc. will usually always come with a generic branded power supplies that's just enough to power the system itself. I'm assuming you upgraded to a gt220 never considering the power supply, and if not it's rather surprising that they only included a 250W PSU.

    Replacing a power supply is pretty straight forward and here is a good tutorial about it from Hardware Secrets. I personally would lay the system down as I find it easier to deal with since cables can be a little trick & tough. Also make sure you are properly grounded when handling anything internally or get yourself an anti-static wrist wrap.

    If you want to go the route of upgrading both power supply and video card, could you please provide us with a budget? Whatever video card fits within your budget will determine the power supply you need.
  14. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    Actually this is the way the pc was bought. Never upgraded since the day i got this pc. Would have thought the pc itself would be built to handle what it has inside.

    As for budget i would say 400 total would be the limit would be happy spending 200 tho and getting enough to run games with decent graphics. Always feel like am being ripped off buying top of the range.
  15. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,379   +16

    Hmm that is indeed odd, maybe you listed the wrong model part of your power supply given that they should at least have put in a 350W PSU.

    Either way, if you plan on upgrading video cards you will need a new power supply. With a maximum budget of $400 we should easily be able to find you something solid. First I have a few questions though, what resolution will you be gaming at? And from the games you listed above, do you plan on playing new releases like Battlefield 3 / Crysis 2?

    I would personally suggest something along the lines of a GTX 460 256bit 1GB ($190) version paired with a Corsair CX500 ($55), which would come out to
    $245 with an additional $35 MIR. You could of course go with a more powerful combination but I'd imagine you'd likely run into bottlenecks with your CPU and possibly resolution too.
  16. superty12

    superty12 TS Enthusiast Posts: 413

    I agree that your PSU is the problem, this is just happening now? Anyways, you'll need a powerful PSU, such as this. Although, that's probably way overpowered, with the right parts you can make games look and preform amazing.
  17. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,379   +16

    Ya he totally needs a 1500W PSU for that monstrous GT 220.
  18. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    bought a 500w psu and to my shock still having the same problem. from what i have read recently seems to be windows 7 and the gt220 do not like to operate together lol.

    Anyone get any other possible solutions?

    And regards to the graphics i do not need anything over the top. Just looking to play some older games maybe mmos and some the new releases i can not get on ps3. What would you guys recomend for that? btw i play in 1280x1024
  19. jetkami

    jetkami TS Booster Posts: 100

    1. reimage your drive back to factory settings
    2. Before you install any games install the latest version of Directx 11.
    3. Install a game that does not use alot of resources....ie Half life 2 (see if you ca play without crashes)
    4. Install http://www.ozone3d.net/msi_kombustor/
    5. If you receive errors its time the issue is in mainboard or ram.
    I used to repair computers for a living. Packard Bell was not a good brand in the U.S. and closed down. Start or find someone who can build you a gaming pc. Stay away from Ati because the have horrible drivers (great hardware). Gigabyte makes great products. Get really good ram and stay away from value ram.
  20. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    How do you mean reimage the drive. Do you mean system restore? If not please explain. Only know what i needed to bout pcs not all the tech stuff when it breaks lol
  21. jetkami

    jetkami TS Booster Posts: 100

    You should have a factory cd or image on your computers hard drive that will restore your system back to the way it was in the store (factory settings). I am not talking about the built in windows restore points. The restore will let you know if you have issues with your ram. Most systems with bad ram will not run a windows install successfully.
  22. Dowz

    Dowz TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 17

    yea thats what i thought you ment be avoiding having to do that. Would be alot of important things i could not salvage. So been putting that off till i know i have no other option
  23. jetkami

    jetkami TS Booster Posts: 100

    Sorry but its computer repair 101, return pc back to factory settings before further troubleshooting.
  24. superty12

    superty12 TS Enthusiast Posts: 413

    Reset 101: Back up the data first.
  25. jetkami

    jetkami TS Booster Posts: 100

    A bit of advice. If you want to venture into computer gaming...always have a pc built from custom specs (sites like this one have great hardware and software reviews and will give you a heads up, ensuring your system has as little down-time as possible).. PC gaming is unlike console gaming because YOU have to be responsible for your hardware and software. Unless you are willing to learn ow to build a PC and improve troubleshooting skills get an Xbox.
    You dont want to be "that guy" at a lan party who cant play (interrupting everyone else gaming time) because your asking others to figure out whats wrong with your pc. Coming to this forum is a great way to learn. Also read Comptia A+ cert book. It will teach you ALOT about your computer you need to know as a gamer.
    I had a issue with BF2BC giving me the WSOD and figured out its a Dx11 issue which cant be fixed by me. It took reading dozens of forums and starting from basic computer troubleshooting all the way up to applying Arctic silver thermal paste on the main-board chipset heat-sink. Skills any self-respecting pc gamer must have.

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