i5 3570K GTX 970 reboots while gaming

CX4Life

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Nov 12, 2015
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Hi all,

Specs:
MSI Z77A-G41
Intel i5-3570k
Gigabyte GTX 970
Corsair hx850 PSU
Corsair vengeance 2x4gb DDR3-1600 RAM
Windows 7 64-bit Home premium
Graphics drivers removed with DDU, installed with Geforce Experience
Mobo BIOS flashed and updated to get 970 to work
No overclock on GPU
i5-3570k OC'd at 4.2 gHz (scaled back from previously stable 4.5 gHz)

I recently upgraded my crossfire'd AMD Radeon 7850's to a Gigabyte GTX 970. In the process of swapping GPUs and getting the 970 to run I removed my RAM, blew out some 2 year-old dust, switched out my noisy fan on my evo 212 cpu cooler, and reinserted my RAM. In the process of swapping things over, I've had issues with crashes while gaming. After about 2 or 3 minutes, I've had games completely reboot my system. Temps for GPU in FurMark never went over 70C.

I ran Prime95 in the "tests lots of RAM" configuration and it failed after about 10 minutes... It did not reboot like it did while gaming, but it "stopped responding" according to Windows.

Crashes have occurred in Fallout 4, especially during dialog, or various transitions like entering power armor. This is repeatable, and loading a save game from right before a known spot where the game crashes results in consistent crashes to hard reboots at these times. Also have occurred in Project Cars, although I haven't noticed a pattern as to when it occurs.

I suspect my PSU is giving out, or I'm unable to draw sufficient power from my 110 year old apartment outlet (is that possible?). I'd like to know if there's a simple way to test my PSU for issues, or if I need to attend to other problems.

Thanks for any help. -tw
 

CX4Life

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Nov 12, 2015
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Welp. Solved the problem. NOT a PSU issue as many have pointed to in other threads (although I have a new one being shipped to me... oops).

After running some more tests, and looking at all the drivers that Geforce Experience installs, I noticed two things.
First, I was able to easily maintain stability running Furmark and Prime95 at the same time. 100% usage of CPU and GPU. Temps all stayed in the 60's. This points to it not strictly being a power delivery, temperature or hardware problem, me thinks.

I then ran Memtest86 with all tests and got 0 errors, so shouldn't be a memory issue.

Second thing I noticed is what these tests don't do, that gaming does - play audio! And hey, didn't Geforce Experience just install a new audio driver? And hey, when I updated my BIOS to get the card to work, didn't that also install a new audio driver? And hey, doesn't my discrete sound card have it's own driver? And hey, doesn't my back panel headphone jack have it's own driver?

So, my system was running 4 different audio drivers, and with my display is hooked up with an HDMI. After uninstalling the nvidia driver in device manager under sound, video and game controllers, I reloaded Project Cars and had no issues playing it through my usb headphones. Checked it again through the back panel speakers, no issues. Checked with front panel (sound card powered) speakers, no issues.

Nvidia audio driver be wrecking my weekend. Deleted. Solved.
 

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