Question Advice on possible upgrade/finding component culprit

Oct 7, 2019
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Hello :)

For the past few month I've noticed a decline in the performance of my computer; I built it a few years ago now - I will include a spec list at the end.

I do a lot of fairly heavy cg work, rendering and whatnot, I often have 4+ packages open each needing substantial resources.

2-3 months ago I bought a new main monitor (ultrawide 29inch - 3 monitors total) and there have been black screen crashes ever since, forcing me to manually restart my pc.

I use 3 HDDs and 1 SSD (os) 2 of my HDDs are pretty old and really chug when trying to access files from them (I just use them for various, unimportant file storage), the 3rd HDD is new and is what I keep the good stuff on.

I'm writing this after trying to export a large set of files from a certain 3d package only for my pc to entirely freeze up, forcing me to manually restart. Professionally I can't let this keep happening so I'm hoping someone can advise me on which component(s) are throttling my system.

Issues only arise when under heavy workload - I'm suspecting a memory issue, perhaps 8gb vram isn't enough seeing as my blacks screens only started since adding a 3rd, ultrawide monitor - though I'm really not sure.

Thank you very much.

Here are my specs:

Xeon E3-1240 V5
32GB DDR4
GTX 1070 8gb
SATA III 6gb/s SSD (OS)
Various 7200rpm HDD(Seagate, WD)
Great component temperatures across the board (asides from my oldest HDD, temps are bad at load).
Ultrawide 29WK500 29
2x Acer 1080p
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Hello :)

For the past few month I've noticed a decline in the performance of my computer; I built it a few years ago now - I will include a spec list at the end.

I do a lot of fairly heavy cg work, rendering and whatnot, I often have 4+ packages open each needing substantial resources.

2-3 months ago I bought a new main monitor (ultrawide 29inch - 3 monitors total) and there have been black screen crashes ever since, forcing me to manually restart my pc.

I use 3 HDDs and 1 SSD (os) 2 of my HDDs are pretty old and really chug when trying to access files from them (I just use them for various, unimportant file storage), the 3rd HDD is new and is what I keep the good stuff on.

I'm writing this after trying to export a large set of files from a certain 3d package only for my pc to entirely freeze up, forcing me to manually restart. Professionally I can't let this keep happening so I'm hoping someone can advise me on which component(s) are throttling my system.

Issues only arise when under heavy workload - I'm suspecting a memory issue, perhaps 8gb vram isn't enough seeing as my blacks screens only started since adding a 3rd, ultrawide monitor - though I'm really not sure.

Thank you very much.

Here are my specs:

Xeon E3-1240 V5
32GB DDR4
GTX 1070 8gb
SATA III 6gb/s SSD (OS)
Various 7200rpm HDD(Seagate, WD)
Great component temperatures across the board (asides from my oldest HDD, temps are bad at load).
Ultrawide 29WK500 29
2x Acer 1080p
What power supply are you running? Black screen crashes sound like power dropping out or possibly a faulty motherboard. The list of components is good- although given how cheap SSD's are these days I'd suggest maybe ditching the old HDD drives entirely and replacing with another SSD. You could get a nice performance boost by changing the OS drive to an NVME SSD which offers much higher speeds than you can get with Sata (up to ~ 2000 mb/s vs 600 for sata).

You shouldn't have any issue running those three screens off of a 1070, 8gb vram is more than enough. There are restrictions on max resolution / refresh rate on a per screen basis, depending on which connection you are using for which screen... what port / cable are you using for the ultra wide? The two 1080p screens should be fine on any connection.
 
Oct 7, 2019
5
0
10
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What power supply are you running? Black screen crashes sound like power dropping out or possibly a faulty motherboard. The list of components is good- although given how cheap SSD's are these days I'd suggest maybe ditching the old HDD drives entirely and replacing with another SSD. You could get a nice performance boost by changing the OS drive to an NVME SSD which offers much higher speeds than you can get with Sata (up to ~ 2000 mb/s vs 600 for sata).

You shouldn't have any issue running those three screens off of a 1070, 8gb vram is more than enough. There are restrictions on max resolution / refresh rate on a per screen basis, depending on which connection you are using for which screen... what port / cable are you using for the ultra wide? The two 1080p screens should be fine on any connection.
Hi, thanks for your response.

I'm running a 650w XFx TS Series GOLD power supply. The SSD I currently have is a SanDisk Z400S. If I was to buy a few more SSDs, would I want to get two, one faster speed for OS and a second, slower one (cheaper) for my work files?

My ultrawide is connected via the only HDMI on my gpu, the other two are on the other slots. However, the ultrawide does have an adapter - I'm not sure whether that would make any difference.

Thanks again! :)
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Hi, thanks for your response.

I'm running a 650w XFx TS Series GOLD power supply. The SSD I currently have is a SanDisk Z400S. If I was to buy a few more SSDs, would I want to get two, one faster speed for OS and a second, slower one (cheaper) for my work files?

My ultrawide is connected via the only HDMI on my gpu, the other two are on the other slots. However, the ultrawide does have an adapter - I'm not sure whether that would make any difference.

Thanks again! :)
That is a decent power supply- that should be an issue. Actually I think HDMI is probably the worst port to use for the screen. The other outputs on a 1070 should be display port connections... these are better as they support higher bandwidth than HDMI, so maybe try switching the ultrawide to use a DP connection instead? You would be better running one of the 1080p screens off of the HDMI.

With respect to the SSD drives, probably one of the best options at the moment is the Intel 660p drives- you can get a 1tb drive for ~£120 and it's pretty fast. Chances are your motherboard will only have one NVME port, so I'd use that as the primary drive and then get additional sata drives for bulk storage.

If you want maximum performance the Samsung 970 nvme drives are the absolute fastest available, although they cost a lot more than the Intel drive for not much more performance in real terms.
 
Oct 7, 2019
5
0
10
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That is a decent power supply- that should be an issue. Actually I think HDMI is probably the worst port to use for the screen. The other outputs on a 1070 should be display port connections... these are better as they support higher bandwidth than HDMI, so maybe try switching the ultrawide to use a DP connection instead? You would be better running one of the 1080p screens off of the HDMI.

With respect to the SSD drives, probably one of the best options at the moment is the Intel 660p drives- you can get a 1tb drive for ~£120 and it's pretty fast. Chances are your motherboard will only have one NVME port, so I'd use that as the primary drive and then get additional sata drives for bulk storage.

If you want maximum performance the Samsung 970 nvme drives are the absolute fastest available, although they cost a lot more than the Intel drive for not much more performance in real terms.
My mistake! My ultrawide is in fact on a display port.

Would the SSD/HDD/storage be the cause for my black screen freeze/crashes? Often when the crashes occur it's when I'm exporting files - I would have thought it would be to do with memory, ram or otherwise?
 
Oct 7, 2019
5
0
10
0
That is a decent power supply- that should be an issue. Actually I think HDMI is probably the worst port to use for the screen. The other outputs on a 1070 should be display port connections... these are better as they support higher bandwidth than HDMI, so maybe try switching the ultrawide to use a DP connection instead? You would be better running one of the 1080p screens off of the HDMI.

With respect to the SSD drives, probably one of the best options at the moment is the Intel 660p drives- you can get a 1tb drive for ~£120 and it's pretty fast. Chances are your motherboard will only have one NVME port, so I'd use that as the primary drive and then get additional sata drives for bulk storage.

If you want maximum performance the Samsung 970 nvme drives are the absolute fastest available, although they cost a lot more than the Intel drive for not much more performance in real terms.
Also - If I was to get some new SDDs, one of thes 970s for my OS. Would I easily be able to move my OS from my current drive to the new one? I don't want to have to reinstall my entire setup if at all possible.
 
Oct 7, 2019
5
0
10
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Also - If I was to get some new SDDs, one of thes 970s for my OS. Would I easily be able to move my OS from my current drive to the new one? I don't want to have to reinstall my entire setup if at all possible.
My computer just crashed again whilst browsing tomshardware, I had two packages open in the background, one would have been using a substantial amount of ram but low cpu usage, the other would have had less ram usage, more cpu. I was unable to check the exact levels.
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Also - If I was to get some new SDDs, one of thes 970s for my OS. Would I easily be able to move my OS from my current drive to the new one? I don't want to have to reinstall my entire setup if at all possible.
Firstly- yes it should be easy to migrate to the SSD- there are a number of tools available (I think some are available with the drives and there are some 3rd party solutions). I personally have used 'AOMEI Partition Assistant' (link: https://www.disk-partition.com/ )- the free version includes disk migration tools that recreate your system drive on a new target drive. The only requirement is the target drive must have enough free space for the total amount of data on the source drive (so you can actually move from a larger drive to a smaller drive if the source isn't full, which is handy when going HDD -> SSD).
 

cdrkf

Honorable
My computer just crashed again whilst browsing tomshardware, I had two packages open in the background, one would have been using a substantial amount of ram but low cpu usage, the other would have had less ram usage, more cpu. I was unable to check the exact levels.
Hmm, what settings are you using for your ram? If the ram is on XMP settings maybe try resetting to default (in fact you could just go into the bios and restore factory settings) and then see if that improves things?
 

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