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Is my graphics card dead? Recommendations for new one

#1 User is offline Selbi 

Posted 11 November 2014 - 06:59 PM

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R.I.P. Selbi's nVidia GeForce GTX 260 (May 2009 - November 2014)

After five and a half years, my GTX 260 has stopped working. While playing TF2, the game just resulted in driver crashes from time to time over the last few years, but this time it outright BSOD'd me five times. On that fifth time, something must've had a serious impact on my card, as from there on my PC would no longer boot normally. It showed red dots scattered all over my screen while doing its regular BIOS screen text, but when the "Starting Windows..." screen appears these dots are replaced with green ones instead and my system is stuck:

Posted Image

The only workaround so far is starting Windows in safe mode and disabling my card. However, not even the default VGA driver is being used (which at least gave me options up until 1600x1200), but an ugly 800x600 resolution.

That was yesterday. Today I tried taking out my card and cleaning every piece of dust in it. Turns out I haven't cleaned it once in its over-five-years lifespan. Unfortunately, that didn't help at all, though it made my PC a little quieter.


Is this a hardware malfunction? In other words, is there anything I can do other than getting a new one? I would rather not do that, if it can be worked around. However, I don't see a reference guide to "weird red and green dots on the screen during boot up" to tell me what actually is causing the problem.


But just in the likely case that I really don't have another option, what should I get as a new one? It should be in the good middle range, so something that's below 200€. Recommendations I got so far were the ASUS R9-270X and the nVidia GeForce 770.
This post has been edited by Selbi: 11 November 2014 - 07:00 PM

#2 User is offline Covarr 

Posted 11 November 2014 - 07:14 PM

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Your hardware is definitely damaged (and a good possibility it's heat related, if you've had it this long without cleaning it), and may or may not be reparable depending on exactly where the damage is. It'd be difficult to judge without seeing the thing, but it's incredibly likely it cannot be repaired.

Personally I would just recommend replacing the thing. GTX 770 is a pretty decent card, and I definitely recommend it (personally I'd go with the GTX 970; it's a good bang for your buck and has a nice low power draw, but it's out of your listed price range and probably higher end than you actually need if you were happy with a GTX 260).

#3 User is offline sonicblur 

Posted 11 November 2014 - 08:54 PM

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As a last resort, (if you're just going to throw it away) you could try cleaning then baking it.
http://lifehacker.co...ake-in-the-oven

#4 User is offline Selbi 

Posted 12 November 2014 - 03:07 PM

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View Postsonicblur, on 11 November 2014 - 08:54 PM, said:

As a last resort, (if you're just going to throw it away) you could try cleaning then baking it.
http://lifehacker.co...ake-in-the-oven


At first I thought you were joking, then I read through the article and thought, "Hey, I got nothing to lose anyway." So I did it.

Posted Image

Long story short, it worked! This has to be the dumbest thing I've ever been told to do (at least on paper), but I'm currently having my full 1920x1200 screen rendered by a card that used to be completely dead two hours ago.

Thank you so much for the recommendation! :)

#5 User is offline Azu 

Posted 12 November 2014 - 05:04 PM

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That's a temporary fix. I did that to my 560 GTX and it lasted a month.

#6 User is offline winterhell 

Posted 13 November 2014 - 07:05 AM

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Yeah If I were you I'd start saving for Nvidia Maxwell GPU like 750 Ti or 960.

#7 User is offline Axel Letterman 

Posted 13 November 2014 - 07:13 AM

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Yeah, I'd recommend on getting a new GPU card.

GeForce GTX 750Ti would be a great card for both quality and for your budget, that's what I got at this moment and boy it runs most of my games nicely.

Besides, most of today's game would need a GeForce GTX 450 as the minimum requirement.

#8 User is offline Elston87 

Posted 13 November 2014 - 03:45 PM

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If putting it in the oven fixed it (and this isn't gonna be a permanent fix like aforementioned) then chances are that the card's chip has cracking solder joints. Letting the oven bake the chip basically reflowed the solder, but the same situation is gonna happen again in the future, depending on how much heavy usage the card is gonna go through. The card may finally give in the next time it happens.

I'd go with an EVGA or MSi Geforce GTX 760 as a replacement; those two brands have pretty trustworthy nVidia cards. If you're within the budget then you could also just jump to the GTX 770.

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