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Yet...another PSU question

By Kivuli ยท 12 replies
Mar 7, 2004
  1. I know you are all probably sick of these, but I'm having issues and I need to know whether it's my video card or my power supply. :eek: It is a custom-built job and uses an Enermax mid-tower ATX case.

    First off, System Specs:

    Pentium 4 3.0Ghz (800MHz fsb)
    MSI 865PE Neo2 LS (AMI BIOS version 1.7) (onboard 10/100 LAN)
    2 512MB PC3200 RAM sticks (Geil) Dual-Channel operation
    Western Digital 40GB 7200 RPM (8mb cache)
    Maxtor 9GB 5200 RPM
    Creative SoundBlaster Live! Value
    Lite On 52x DVD-ROM
    2 80mm case fans, 1 PCI slot exhaust fan (all three use four-pin connectors)
    Gainward GeForce FX 5900 Ultra "Golden Sample" (256MB)
    Dell M780 17" CRT monitor
    Dell QuietKey standard keyboard
    Logitech USB Wheel Mouse

    And, the suspected troublemaker:
    PowerUp 350W power supply (LC-B350ATX)
    Ratings from sticker:
    28A 3.3v, 35A 5.0v, 16A 12v
    0.3A -5v, 0.8v -12v, 2A +5vsb
    200W combined 5/3.3v max, 192W 12v max, 330W 3.3/5/12v max, total output 350W

    My problem is this:
    Before, I was running a Gainward GeForce3 ti200 Golden Sample card and the system ran great. No artifacts, no freezes, no overheating, nothing. But, when I upgraded from the GeForce3 to the GeForce FX 5900 Ultra, the 5900 didn't perform any better than the GeForce3. After a day or two, I began to see freezeups happening in my 3D games (such as Savage, EverQuest, and Neverwinter Nights). Now, it has gotten to the point that I cannot play any 3D games without texture render problems, artifacts, and major render glitches. When I put the GeForce3 back into the system, it works fine.
    Overheating isn't a problem, the case is very well ventillated. I've tried re-installing drivers, DirectX, etc. Nothing works. I don't have a system that I can test the video card in but I highly suspect that it's the power supply not being able to keep up with the system's needs. Does this sound like a reasonable thing to you guys?
  2. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    It seems reasonable with the 28A output.....you're borderline there IMHO. I like to opt for 30 Amp minimum.

    BUT take a look at your driver set for your card. I run an ATI but the basic concept is the same....if you're upgrading cards and changing driver sets make sure you've completely uninstalled and cleaned the old driver set out. You could have a conflict on file version types going on. I'm not sure of a good Nvidia driver cleaner but there are some other guys here who run Nvidia that can probably help.
  3. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    When you uninstall nVidia drivers via the Add/Remove programs application in the control panel, after the reboot, do a search on "nv*.*" in your WINNT folder ( or however you have chosen to name it ).

    You might find some left-over files from the previous install. Send them to the recycle bin ( if they files installed by another application, you can always restore them ) & then the new drivers for the new card.

    Would it be possible to strip down the system to the bare essentials & see if you still have the rendering problems ? That FX5900 does require a bit more power then a GF3 ( & straight from the PSU if I'm not mistaken ).
  4. Kivuli

    Kivuli TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I used a cleaner to scrub the old ForceWare drivers after uninstall before I upgraded so it's definitely a clean install. I tried running 3DMark 2003 with only a single hard drive and the video card/sound card for peripherals. I was still getting artifacts and render glitches. I can only think of two possibilities now.
    1. PSU already damaged and needs replacement.
    2. GeForce FX card is defective.

    What do you guys think?
  5. snowman

    snowman TS Rookie Posts: 183

    i would first upgrade the powersupply to atleast a 400w antec or enermax. that system is a beast and seems like it would need a little more than 350w.
  6. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    16A on the +12v rail seems a bit low to me. Most things now will recommend 17A minimum, I personally try for 20A+. The current on the +12v rail is very important on today's systems since you have quite a few devices feeding off of it.
    Just getting a larger PSU isn't the answer, you need a PSU with ample current available to each rail.
    For a long time people would recommend a specific size wattage and everyone believed that was all that mattered. That is a myth, while you do need more wattage, it is not the bottom line of overall wattage that is important, it is the distribution of available current to each rail that will determine if it will cover your needs.

    [​IMG] Read the following thread and the linked pages within to better understand https://www.techspot.com/vb/showthread.php?s=&threadid=377
  7. Kivuli

    Kivuli TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Testing completed. In three (count 'em three) different systems of varying power (all above 350W psus), the rendering glitches occured in pretty much the same manner. I even replaced my 350W psu with a 500W psu and tried again. Nada. Conclusion: Card is at fault.

    RMA acquired and shipping it back to NewEgg. Here's hoping the new card isn't glitchy. Still going to upgrade my power supply just in case.
  8. lowman

    lowman TS Rookie Posts: 380

    FYI - Antec makes a great unit called the TrueControl - it has a control panel that installs in one of your 5 1\2 inch bays - you cna adjust the current from there - pretty cool stuff. I know it comes in a 550 watt unit, maybe a 500 watt as well...but I love the thing.
  9. Kivuli

    Kivuli TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Heh. Well, I'll remember that for my next box. I'd already ordered an Antec TruePower 430.
  10. JayRoMe99

    JayRoMe99 TS Rookie

    Quesction concerning PowerUp 350W power supply (LC-B350ATX)......

    I had a quick question, I also just had a computer custome made (AMD atlhon 64 3200+) and It runs extremely loud...much louder then my old dell dimension. Its not the cpu fan and I have turned the pc fan off just to see whether it was the source of the noise but it wasn't, it has to be the power supply.

    Did your PowerUp 350W power supply (LC-B350ATX) perform very loud when you had it? I want to make sure there is nothing wrong with it....

    Let me know...

  11. Mr_Bandit

    Mr_Bandit TS Rookie

    Hi, i have a powerup 350w psu and mine is fine abit loud mind, but when this psu dies i'll get a antec PSU maybe 400w or 350w.

    Replying to your question, try different components and try to resolve the problem maybe its called problem solving...

  12. Kivuli

    Kivuli TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Nope, it was a quiet power supply. Subsequent testing with a brand new MSI card leads me to believe it's the motherboard that's the problem. The card worked beautifully in another system but had the same problems in mine.
  13. Kivuli

    Kivuli TS Rookie Topic Starter

    And now the new motherboard is having the same problem. I'm completely at a freakin' loss as to what is causing this and it's really starting to bug me.
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