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Author Topic: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...  (Read 223 times)

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WxTech

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I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« on: February 12, 2019, 07:48:10 PM »

This day I cleaned out dust in the CPU cooling fins, by removing the fan/cooling block. After re-installing and starting the computer, then firing up Il-2, the frame rates had plummeted, but more strangely in a kind of random pattern. That is, if my view is not moving, and the scenery is essentially fixed on screen, the FPS counter will vary by at least a factor of 2, whereas previously it would remain pretty near at a constant rate under such conditions. Even in the FMB, with the view completely static, the FPS value is up and down by easily a factor of 2.

Note that nothing else had been altered. My conf.ini is write protected. And no other changes to hardware or software was performed.

After altering some values for the video card parameters and then enabling them, the sound that the card makes is slowed by 1/3-1/2 the time it always did before. You see, immediately after applying such changes, the card makes a high-pitched, descending-in-frequency tone that lasts about a second or so, followed quickly by the very same sound. Normally, that is. Now it's all slowed down by 2-3X, like the thing is very tired.

I also did a Windows (7) performance evaluation, and got the same score as the first time I did it. And I have see the Nvidia inspector tool to see if anything untoward showed up, but perhaps it's insufficient to this task.

Oh. I checked the performance on another OpenGL program called the Digital Universe (based on a package called Particle Viewer), as released by the Hayden Planetarium. It looks to now suffer also a reduced frame rate.

I'm getting the sinking feeling that it's time to replace/upgrade. Is it weird to suddenly have a vid card slow down, but otherwise still work?

Any notions on things I might try/look into? The card is a Zotac Nvidia 9600GT. Or should I just give up on it?
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vpmedia

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2019, 08:37:34 PM »

When you take off the cooling block from an 11 year old graphics card but forget to replace the thermal paste on the GPU...
removing the fan/cooling block


WxTech

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2019, 03:39:14 AM »

Istvan,
It was the CPU cooling block I removed, not GPU.

And yes, I did note that the old thermal compound was dry and hard, leaving a matching patchwork on both surfaces. I'll get some compound to put here. My gut says to remove the old stuff in order to ensure the best contact; what if the old stuff is very hard?

But will this CPU interface business have an impact on graphics performance, such as for an Il-2 track playback? (Where FPS is reduced notably, just as though using a less capable card.)

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LuseKofte

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2019, 04:07:06 AM »

I get headache reading things like this, my kids moving out I had to clean up a small apartment (room with. bathroom and another room containing no more than 4 pcś
All of them capable to fly IL 2 with left hand and solitaire with the right. But just not worth a damn in a marked in Scandinavia. No Schools would take them, no second hand shop either. So I recycled it.
However I got one left , 1 with no noticeable problems. a i7 2,8 ghz with a gtx 680 gpu. No marked for it either and I guess price for shipping is more than its worth too
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Bigmug

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2019, 04:22:01 AM »

Hi!
Maybe the mainboards/CPUs built-in graphics are in use as primary GPU?
Just an idea.
BigMug
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vpmedia

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2019, 08:48:46 AM »

What you experience is called thermal throttling due to an imperfect connection between the cooler and the processor. Replace the old thermal paste by scratching it off with something plastic and cleaning the rest with isopropyl alcohol and strong paper towel. Use the opposite corners method when tightening down the cooler. I'm not familiar with current thermal paste brands, but afaik it must be non conductive...google recommends Thermal Grizzly. It looks like theres even liquid metal thermal compound now. :)

 Btw you can use Open Hardware Monitor free software (https://openhardwaremonitor.org/) to view the temperature of your components, I'd also check the manufacturers recommended temperature limits for gpu and cpu to ensure that your system is running well.

WxTech

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Re: I wonder if my graphics card is on the fritz...
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2019, 01:04:36 PM »

It seems it was the CPU after all. Cleaned and re-pasted the interface, and all is back to normal. And the 'Geiger counter' clicking that was present for years--and became worse yesterday--is gone. Yay!
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