Screen goes blank while playing games?

Zephorious

Junior Member
Dec 19, 2009
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I just recently finished building my new pc last night. I installed a Crysis and Crysis Warhead today and after playing either one fore about 5 - 10 minutes my screen goes blank with the words "no signal" appearing on it. The computer still appears to continue running; the hdd light flashes for 5 seconds afterwards, all the fans continue to spin, lights on the mobo continue to glow, but the audio switches off too (no game music or sound effects). My suspicion is the video card, but I'm somewhat of a newbie to these things, so I could be wrong.

My specs are:
Core I5 750, running at stock speeds.
4GB (2x@GB) DDR3-1333 G.Skill Ripjaws
Asrock p55 Extreme.
XFX HD4870 1GB.
Zalmon ZM-600ST.
Windows 7 64bit.

I monitered the the temps while playing Crysis Warhead with everything set to gamer (some setting may have been set to enthusiast) at 1280x720 resolution. The Cpu reached around 48-49 degrees celcius and the mobo reached 35 degrees celcius. I'm not sure what the psu was, but it wasn't blowing out hot air at all. The graphics card slowly climbed up to around 72-73 degrees celcius before the screen went blank again.

Hopefully someone here can help me out with this problem.
 

Zephorious

Junior Member
Dec 19, 2009
5
0
0
Thanks for the reply, mpilchfamily .

The psu is a 600w Zalmon ZM-600ST.

As for reinstalling the divers, I attempted to do that, but I couldn't figure out how to uninstall them in Windows 7. I've come from XP to 7, so I'm not quite used to 7 yet. I googled unistalling ati drivers in 7, but it didn't really turn up anything useful. It seems rather different to XP, the process I used to uninstall drivers in XP doesn't work on 7.

I researched my issue with the screen going blank a bit further and found that I'm not alone... and sadly not many have found a solution to the problem. I found some fixes that work for some, but not everyone. One of them was to set the fan at 50%. I set mine to 60% and started up Crysis Warhead. After playing for over an hour, the screen didn't go blank at all. The temps stayed around 68-70 degrees and didn't go over 71. Somehow having the graphics card 2 degrees cooler helped. I don't believe this is the end of the problem though, I'll have to continue testing it tomorrow and push the settings a bit higher.

So if the temps are effecting it, it must be heat issue then? The fact that it doesn't like being around 75 degrees makes me think I've got a bad card, as it should be able to handle that. I'm still not 100% sure about this theory, so if someone can assist me further with the issue, it would be greatly appreciated.
 
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mpilchfamily

Diamond Member
Jun 11, 2007
3,559
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You temps are fine on the card. If this is a common porblem across other Win7 systems then it is a driver issue. Wish i could help on the driver unistall part but i'm not near my win7 unit and its a netbook with the starter addition so i'm not sure it would be of much help anyway.
 

Zephorious

Junior Member
Dec 19, 2009
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Apparently this also happens on vista and xp as well. The thread I was reading goes back from 2008 to 2009 on the AMD forums. AMD hasn't responded to any of issues there...

I was playing Crysis Warhead again today with the card set 60% fan speed. I pushed all settings up to "enthuisast" and got around 45 minutes worth of gameplay 'til the screen went blank again. The temps didn't go over 71 degrees like earlier either. I dunno what going on... this whole thing makes me feel a little ill.

Maybe I should return it and go with Nvidia. If it's a driver issue, then a completly different card with different drivers might fix things.
 

Zephorious

Junior Member
Dec 19, 2009
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I figured out how to uninstall the drivers... reinstalling them didn't help. I'm thinking I'm just gonna rma the card, I don't really want to have to roll back to older drivers.

I'll probably install my 9600GT out of my other computer and see how that goes. If I experience the same problem I'll know it's not the graphics card.
 

kalrith

Diamond Member
Aug 22, 2005
6,630
7
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Do you have the PCIe power connector(s) connected to your graphics card? This happened to me a long time ago with an AGP card that required a molex connector. It worked fine in 2d mode, but several minutes into playing a game the screen would just go black. I would double-check all connections and reseat the card and power connections.
 

Zephorious

Junior Member
Dec 19, 2009
5
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I suspect you guys could be right about it being a power issue. I remember when I was installing the psu, I did notice something that struck me as odd about my psu. The two 6 pin pcie cables are connected -- one of them comes out of the other just like the 4 pin molex cables. After looking at other psus I noticed most of them aren't like that, they have two separate cables runing out of the psu. I'm not sure if this is linked to my problem, but perhaps because the video card is drawing from one particular cable might mean it's not supplying enough power. I'm not sure how psus work, so I could be wrong about that. The video card did include 2x 4 pin molex to 6 pin pci-e connectors, so perhaps I might get some results by changing one of the cables to that way. I'll also try underclocking the card and see what happens.

At the moment I've got my old 9600GT in it. Still testing it out at the moment, so I'll see what happens. I played Crysis for about 20 minutes last night, but then I had to leave it paused for awhile. When I came back the screen hadn't turned off, so that seem hopeful. I remember I left Crysis paused when I had the 4870 hooked up and the screen switched off while I was away. So this may suggest the problem is likely isolated to either the psu or video card. I'm right in assuming if it was any other component I would likely get a blue screen or a beep from the motherboard?

Thanks for you suggestions and advice everyone, I'll test things out later.