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Unexpected Shutdown


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#1 StephaneP

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:28 AM

Hi all,

I bought a new computer at the beginning of this year. Since that time, I encounter a recurring problem which is very annoying, and I try everything I find to solve it, without any results.

Here is my current hardware:
Motherboard : Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe
Processor : Athlon 64 X 4600+
Rad : Thermalright XP-90 Ultra + fan
RAM : 2 X Twin (512 Mb X 2) XMS Corsair DDR PC3200
Case : Antec P180 + 4 X 12mm fans
Power supply : Antec NeoHE 550W
Graphic Card : GeForce 7950 GX2
Sound card : Soundblaster XTreme Music
HDD : 2 IDE Maxtor Disk, 1 WD Raptor 36GB, 1 SATA Maxtor Diamond Max 10.
Mouse : Razer Copperhead
Keyboard : Logitech MX700
Screen : Acer 2416Ws 24"
OS : Windows 2000 and Windows XP

When I'm playing a recent game, with graphic parameters set to the highest and usually in huge resolution (1920X1200 or 16000X1000), my computer simply shutdown without any warning, randomly, after a various duration.
I made a lot of tests, change my graphic card (I had a 7800 GTX before), my motherboard (I had an Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe before), my processor (I had a Athlon X2 3800+ before) and it still happens. I tried a lot of softwares to monitor the problem (Asus Probe, Speedfan, Everest home, nVidia interface to check GC temperature, ...) to check all my hardware parameters, without anything abnormal.

I also formated everything, reinstalled windows XP (I had Windows 2000 before), check for malware, for virus and for hijack (Using Nod32, AVG, Panda online, Spybot, AdAware, Ewido, Windows Defender, Hijackthis, ...) without any success.

I returned my computer to my reseller, who tested it a complete afternoon with 3D Marks 05 without any failure.

I'm really hopeless as I cannot find any solution to my problem. I could post an everest report later (When I'll be at home) if someone as use of it...

I really hope somone could help me...

Thanks,

Stephane

Edited by StephaneP, 18 September 2006 - 07:30 AM.


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#2 Gary335

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:54 AM

Usually when a computer simply shuts down for no apparent reason its because something is overheating. Are you sure that everything is running at a safe temperature while your playing the game? If your checking the temperature of everything after the shut down occurs, your not getting a true reading of the temperature because everything has had a moment to cool off. Also check to make sure there's no dust caked up on the cpu fan or gc fan, as this will slow them down and cause them to not cool properly.

#3 StephaneP

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 08:06 AM

Thanks for your quick answer.

I've already cleaned up my computer's fans many time, but even when totally cleared of dust, it happens. I also tried to put all the fans at top speed without any change...

Regarding overheating, I've tried to play in windowed mode, with Everest monitor running on the side. I also tried with Asus Probe and NVidia temperature check interface, without any significant increase of t°.

For information, GPU doesn't pass the 70°c (Staying mainly in 60-65°c) and CPU/Chipset stay around 40-45°c and HDD less than 40°c.

I'm wondering if it's not a power supply problem, as the shutdown is really brutal (As if I unplugged the power cable, for example...even if I don't! :thumbsup:)...I'm wondering if games that require high ressources from the computer doesn't cause an instability and that the power supply shutdown to avoid overpower...

Is there any way to check this (Voltage problem? What are the "normal value" for a power supply like mine?) ?

I forgot to mention I have an UPS but I'm not sure it'll help...

Any other ideas?

Thanks...

Edited by StephaneP, 18 September 2006 - 08:07 AM.


#4 Gary335

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 09:13 AM

What is the wattage of the power suppy your using? It could be that the power supply isn't powerful enough. For what your doing I'd suggest no less than 400 watts. Anything less is likely to be too weak. Do you have another power supply you could test? Also, do younotice any odd noises or smells coming from your power supply?

#5 StephaneP

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 09:30 AM

No strange noise nor smells...:thumbsup:

Here is my Power supply : Antec NeoHE 550W.

I could test with the power supply of my wife's computer, an Antec NeoHE 430 W...if she agree!

I appreciate your answers, as I really dig up the net to find a solution...

#6 Gary335

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 09:42 AM

No strange noise nor smells...:thumbsup:

Here is my Power supply : Antec NeoHE 550W.

I could test with the power supply of my wife's computer, an Antec NeoHE 430 W...if she agree!

I appreciate your answers, as I really dig up the net to find a solution...


If its alright with your wife I would definitley suggest doing that. If that does not solve the problem, then at leastwe've eliminated one possibility.

#7 StephaneP

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Posted 19 September 2006 - 04:14 AM

I'll give it a try tomorrow's evening (Today's evening already full :thumbsup:) and keep you informed.

#8 usasma

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Posted 19 September 2006 - 11:20 AM

FWIW - you can get a power supply tester for about $10 at most electronics stores (I just got one at CompUSA for $11.99 + tax).
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#9 StephaneP

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 08:14 AM

I found the time to switch the power supply today, and everything seems to work fine. After maybe one or two hours, the PC simply shutdown again, as I was playing Lego Starwars in 1600X1200 with my oldest child.

So I presume it's not the power supply, neither the mainboard, nor the processor nor the graphic card...what else remains?

I've a hard time to understand why the PC shutdown this way...

Any other idea?

Thanks,

Stephane.

#10 Enthusiast

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 09:31 AM

Obviously something is causing the heat in your processor or RAM to exceed its safe limits, whether it is the game using too much in the way of resources, etc.

Download Everest V1.51 or some other ap that will give you temps and fan speeds ald look at what is happening until the computer shuts down.

Everest V1.51 in the utilities section of Oldversion.com

Also run a RAM test, preferably overnight.

RAM tests

http://www.simmtester.com/page/products/doc/download.asp
http://oca.microsoft.com/en/windiag.asp
http://www.memtest.org/
http://www.memtest86.com/

Edited by Enthusiast, 24 September 2006 - 09:33 AM.


#11 StephaneP

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 11:50 AM

Well I just rechecked everything, ram is fine, no problem.

But it seems that my CPU is overheating too much, going as high as 80 ° celsius (But without shuting down)

I didn't get any shutdown in 2 hours but I find this overheating very strange.

I have a Thermaltake XP-90 Ultra with a fan on it above the processor, which should cool down it. I also have 2 chassis fans next to the processor.

The motherboard goes as high as 55 ° celsius.

There is thermal paste between cpu and the thermaltake ventirad...

What else can I do to cool it down?

Thanks,

S.
PS : Everest doesn't notice specific t° increase but Speedfan does...

Edited by StephaneP, 24 September 2006 - 11:51 AM.


#12 acklan

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 12:58 PM

I know this is obvious but it the fan on the processor blowing it the correct direction? It may be upside down.
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#13 StephaneP

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 01:51 PM

I didn't put everything together, it was the reseller who do it. However, I have the strange impression that it was not mounted correctly.

Is there anymore who now exactly how di I have to put the fans in an Antec P180?

Thanks,

S.

Edited by StephaneP, 24 September 2006 - 02:15 PM.


#14 Enthusiast

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 03:00 PM

The tower comes with:
Cooling System:
- 1 rear (standard) 120mm TriCool™ Fan with 3-speed switch control
- 1 top (standard) 120mm TriCool™ Fan
- 1 lower chamber (standard) 120mm TriCool™ Fan
- 1 front (optional - may have)) 120mm fan
- 1 middle (optional - may have) 120mm fan to cool graphics cards
- Upper drive cage can be used as a duct to provide fresh air to graphics cards
http://www.antec.com/us/productDetails.php?ProdID=81800

If you have connections on the MB for the optional fans they may help.
(really nice tower by the way)

Here is the owners manual for it:
http://www.antec.com/pdf/manuals/P180v1.1_Manual_EN.pdf

Cooling System
The Tricool™ fan:
The P180 includes three installed 120mm Tricool™ fans. Tricool™ fans have a three-speed switch that lets you choose between quiet, standard or maximum cooling. We set the default fan speed to “Low” for the upper and rear120mm fans. (See specifications below.) Note: The minimum voltage to start the fan is 5V. We recommend our users to set the fan speed to High if you choose to connect the fan to a fan control device or to the Fan-Only connector found on some Antec power supplies. A fan-controlled-device regulates the fan speed by varying the voltage to the fan. The voltage may start as low as 4.5V to 5V. Connecting a Tricool™ set on Medium or Low to a fan-control device may result in the fan not being able to start. The already lowered voltage from the fan control device will be further reduced by the Tricool™ circuitry below 5V.
The Top and Rear Exhaust Tricool™ Fans

We recommend leaving these two fans at the default Low speed setting as these fans sit right next to your CPU and can effectively exhaust heat from your chassis.

If you choose to overclock or install a very hot CPU you can increase the fan speed to achieve better cooling.

These two fans are mounted so that the air is blowing out of the case. The top fan comes with a spoiler to mount on the top of the case.

The Lower Chamber Tricool™ Fan
This is a special high throughput 120mm fan. Because of its design this fan can move more air than standard 120mm fans at the same speed (RPM). This fan is placed in the middle of the lower chamber, which act likes a wind tunnel when the side panels are closed. Note: we recommend setting the speed to Medium or Low.
The default fan setting is “Medium”.

I posted part of the assembly instructions.
Read the manual to make sure it was assembled properly.

http://www.antec.com/pdf/manuals/P180v1.1_Manual_EN.pdf


The Washable Air Filter
There are two filters located behind the front grilles. From time to time it will be
necessary to wash the installed air filters. Not washing the air filters will result in higher system temperatures and possible operational stability problems. We recommend checking the air filters at least once a month initially. This frequency may change depending on system usage (users whose systems run 24/7 will likely have to check/wash more often than those who don’t use their systems every day) and environmental conditions.

Try raising the fan speeds, make sure the case is assembled properly and the filters are clean.

If the case is assembled properly and increasing the fan speeds do not do sufficiently you may want to add the aditional fans as shown.

#15 StephaneP

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 05:24 PM

Just checked, everything is fine on that part...

About the ventirad XP90 Ultra from thermal take, where should the fan be located? Blowing in direction of the top fan or blowing to the other direction? (up or down)

I didn't understand well this sentence : "We recommend leaving these two fans at the default Low speed setting as these fans sit right next to your CPU and can effectively exhaust heat from your chassis.=> Does that means that it's better to keep them at low speed?

Anyway, except the ventirad fan, everything seems ok.

Last 3 hours, the processor goes up to 65-70° and the MB to 45-50° when playing and testing, but no more...

Thanks again for your help.




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