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Hey guys, long time no see. Haven't been here in a long while, too long.

Anyways, I wanted to get some input from the hardware gurus out there on a particular problem I'm having. I put together a high-end gaming system for my friend but it keeps crashing in the middle of games. It would draw a blank screen and freeze up. I tested it a bit and found it happens whenever 3D graphics features are accessed (such as the game suite in PC Mark or during the Direct3D assessment in Vista). It doesn't always happen but it's frequent enough to cause headaches.

I tried a number of things to track down the problem. I initially thought the GPU was overheating so I tried downclocking the memory and core and increasing the fan speed. Nothing. So I took out the GPU and put it in my own system. I ran a slew of benchmarks and ran several games but encountered no problems. I also tried updating the drivers to the latest Forceware drivers and also tried several older drivers but still no go. I swapped the RAM with some other ones and updated the motherboard BIOS but it still freezes. Thinking the CPU might be problematic I performed a prime95 stress test and did CPU stress tests through PCMark and 3DMark but still nothing. I also tried several OSes on it, including Vista 32-bit, Vista 64-bit, and Windows 64-bit. All of them had the same issue.

I'm just about out of ideas. No matter what I do the system still crashes. I'm pretty sure it's not the GPU hardware since it works perfectly fine in my own system (I also tried putting my own GPU in my friend's computer and it crashed similarly). I'm also sure it's not the OS or the RAM (I put my own RAM in there but it still crashed). I don't think the power supply is an issue (800W) and I don't want to go through the trouble of replacing the motherboard unless I have to. If anyone out there has experienced similar problems or has some idea of what the problem might be then please let me know. Here's the core specs:

CPU: Intel Core i7 920
Mobo: Asus P6T
Memory: Corsair XMS3 PC10600 (PC1333) Tri-Channel DDR3
GPU: BFG GeForce GTX 280 OC
PSU: Ultra X3 800W

Any input would be appreciated. Thanks.
 

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Configure the DDR timings manually...
and consider the quality of the powersupply.
 

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weird....
The PSU came to mind here (it could just be faulty), but that Geforce card should probably go make an annoying "whistling" noise when it doesn't receive enough power.

You could try replace the soundcard drivers... dunno if it uses onboard or not, and this hasn't happened to me in recent years, but faulty sound drivers can definately cause such problems.

Another thing you could try is updating the MOBO drivers, and, for as far as applicable, remove any add-on cards (such as tv tuner cards), or even disable certain onboard features of the MOBO to see if the system doesn't crash then.
 
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