'Artifacting' (I think) on Desktop PC

100 Orc Death Knight
18040
Every now and then, since switching to 64 bit Windows 7, my screen seemingly randomly gets covered in red boxes in a grid-like pattern.

The last three times this happened, the computer forced a restart. This latest time, a few minutes ago, it seemed to reload everything back to normal a few moments after the issue occurred. No error report, no "Display driver stopped working and recovered" message.

At this point I'm considering replacing the computer, but it's only about two years old. Is it more likely that this is just a processor or video card issue? I'd prefer to replace parts rather than purchase an entirely new PC if possible.

If any extra information about my PC is required, just let me know how to find it for you. Thanks.
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100 Human Mage
17225
Your description makes it sound like artifacts. Have you updated your video card drivers at all? Does the card have airflow? No dust in the case? It may be a temperature issue also. If I had to put money on it though, I think your video card needs replaced, it just doesn't hurt to try everything first.
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91 Blood Elf Paladin
10060
^^Yeah, chances are it's a video card issue. It could be overheating, so go in the case and blow out the dust bunnies, especially if the video card has a clogged up fan. You could update the drivers but usually, in my experience, artifacts aren't caused by outdated drivers, they're caused by either an overheated video card or vid card failure.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
We basically took the video card out of the computer and got rid of the dust after the first three times, then it seemed to be working, until the fourth time. I also installed what I'm fairly sure is the most up-to-date driver set, one that was released about three months ago. Certainly a more modern version than what Windows thinks it should be,

I've been using it with no real issues for about a year and a half to two years, so I don't think it's airflow. I'm not too computer literate, I admit, but I'd expect the video card is on the blink more than it being an overheating issue.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
Both nVidia and AMD has newer drivers less than a week old.

Try running MSI Kombuster and see if artifacts show up uncontrollably.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
I'm using an ATi Radeon HD 4800 series, and the driver was released in July.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
Oh, 4800. That's the infamous card known for heat problems. Have you been leaving the fan on automatic?

And yeah, the card is now a legacy card.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
Heh, and the box claimed to be heat resistant. Fairly sure I've left the fan on automatic, I can certainly hear something whirling around in there.

Okay, now I know it's a relic, how would I go about replacing it once it finally carks it? ould any modern video card work, or do I need to get one supported by the motherboard?

In this case, the motherboard is a Gigabyte GA-P55-UD3.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
That's not good. HD 4800 is probably nearing death then.
By default, HD 4800's default fan profiles can cause GPU to heat up too much.

Any modern video card should work.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
Running CPUID monitor, it seems my video card is currently hovering around the 50c-52c range. That's with WoW open on the log-in screen but not in play. I'll play for a bit and see if things heat up..

Seems to be hovering around the 72 Celsius mark while playing. Though it got up to 78 at some point.

So, is that overheating or generally par for the course?
Edited by Soeroah on 10/26/2012 12:17 AM PDT
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
Okay, it's continuing to happen randomly. I'll upload a couple things Windows provided popups about regarding 'recovering from an unexpected error' or whatever. Four in total.

---------------------------------------------------
1st:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.768.3
Locale ID: 3081

Additional information about the problem:
BCCode: 116
BCP1: FFFFFA80074F94E0
BCP2: FFFFF8800482A45C
BCP3: 0000000000000000
BCP4: 0000000000000002
OS Version: 6_1_7601
Service Pack: 1_0
Product: 768_1

------------------------------------------------------------
2nd:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.768.3
Locale ID: 3081

Additional information about the problem:
BCCode: 116
BCP1: FFFFFA8006A70120
BCP2: FFFFF8800407345C
BCP3: 0000000000000000
BCP4: 0000000000000002
OS Version: 6_1_7601
Service Pack: 1_0
Product: 768_1
------------------------------------------------------------
3rd:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.768.3
Locale ID: 3081

Additional information about the problem:
BCCode: 116
BCP1: FFFFFA80042AD010
BCP2: FFFFF8800436E45C
BCP3: 0000000000000000
BCP4: 0000000000000002
OS Version: 6_1_7601
Service Pack: 1_0
Product: 768_1

------------------------------------------------------------
4th:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: BlueScreen
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.768.3
Locale ID: 3081

Additional information about the problem:
BCCode: 116
BCP1: FFFFFA800632F4E0
BCP2: FFFFF880048B2EFC
BCP3: 0000000000000000
BCP4: 0000000000000002
OS Version: 6_1_7601
Service Pack: 1_0
Product: 768_1
------------------------------------------------------------

In addition to those, there are a couple more instances where I get a rid of pixely red squares on and off, the image on my monitor cuts out as if I hit the reset button, but it reloads everything as it was.
Edited by Soeroah on 10/30/2012 9:02 PM PDT
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
Do you have onboard video or alternative video card to test? Currently, 116 means more or less your GPU is about to die.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
I do not, unfortunately. I used a laptop before this so my old PC's video card is well and truly gone by this point.

Also unfortunately I need to leave the house for now, so I won't be able to interact as much as I'd like. At this point I'm considering just buying a new computer. There's a nice one for $3000 but that's !@#$ing expensive, considering some of the prices I've seen provided.

Would prefer to build a new one out of custom parts, salvaging what I could from this one. I might need a larger case if I want to get that Radeon HD 7850 thing, though. I was told the HD 4800 series is smaller.
Edited by Soeroah on 10/30/2012 9:38 PM PDT
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80 Night Elf Druid
6030
I do not, unfortunately. I used a laptop before this so my old PC's video card is well and truly gone by this point.

Also unfortunately I need to leave the house for now, so I won't be able to interact as much as I'd like. At this point I'm considering just buying a new computer. There's a nice one for $3000 but that's !@#$ing expensive, considering some of the prices I've seen provided.

Would prefer to build a new one out of custom parts, salvaging what I could from this one. I might need a larger case if I want to get that Radeon HD 7850 thing, though. I was told the HD 4800 series is smaller.


Don't just drop 3k$ on a PC that is factory. Go to the proper store like Fry's and get one based on what you need, not whats the most recent and expensive. You can save yourself a large amount of money and get what you actually need.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
I'm not sure there are any Fry's stores in South Australia, I've never heard of it. I'm going to meet up with a cousin who has been doing studies related to computer hardware, so hopefully he'll be able to help me come up with a cheap computer that can handle what I want it to handle.

I just need to find out what the requirements for WoW on Ultra graphics are.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
WoW requires -both- good CPU and GPU. GPU-wise, assuming 1080p, a Radeon HD 7850 can easily provide you great FPS with ultra settings. If really tight on money, last-gen HD 6870 / GTX 560 can fulfill that need just as well.
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
I should have enough resources stocked for a computer built around a Radeon HD 7850, I just don't want to spend $3000 on a computer is all.

Looks like they are about $228 to $338, if I can find them in my area. I asked about it the other day at an electronics store, and the rep said my current card (Radeon HD 4800 series) is smaller than the 7850. Since there's already little room for that card in my case, I think I'll need to get a larger casing, too. Probably a new power source, but I'll ask my cousin to help me determine that part.

What CPU would you suggest? I'm currently running a Gigabyte P55-UD3 motherboard, it's a few years old by this point. I'd like to have the new computer Windows 7 64 bit capable, and I'll be aiming for 8 gigabytes of RAM if possible. I have a monitor, mouse, speakers and keyboard I'd like to keep, I use an ethernet-over-powerline system to connect to the modem, and while keeping my current hard drive isn't a need, I'd prefer to salvage what I could if possible to lower the total price.

So as it stands, the peripherals I want to keep, the actual computer itself is fair game for replacing.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
HD 7850 online is about $170. You don't live in USA?

Power supply must be 80 Plus Bronze certified, 500W is more than enough to power an HD 7850.

i5-3xxx (i5-3470 is $150 at MicroCenter) + B75 motherboard + 8GB (2x 4GB) DDR3-1600 would work
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100 Orc Death Knight
18040
Nope, I live in Australia, so things tend to be 50%-120% more expensive when it comes to electronics for some mystifying reason.

I may try to order online, though I suspect it'd be weeks before I get anything delivered.

I'll jot those specs down, thanks. Power supply, just to confirm, is the computer's built-in supply, and it wouldn't matter what voltage the wall socket gives, wouldn't it?

Regarding the "i5-3470 + B75 motherboard", is the first set of characters the CPU, and B75 is the motherboard name/model, or should I look for it all together?
Edited by Soeroah on 11/1/2012 6:35 PM PDT
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
9210
If you try order online, there are few Aussie PC part shops like MWave and few others.

Good power supplies (like those 80 Plus Bronze certified ones) dynamically accept any normal range of voltage put out by home outlets. !@#$ty ones will require you to change 110v or 220v depending on where you live.

You should not worry about this. Just need the right cord.
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