Originally Posted by Tillmander
Ok so this is kinda weird. I took out my gpu today to remove the xfx metal band to see if it would lower temps. After I reboted I stress tested it, it's temps when up to 89 degrees and the fan speed hit %95. Before the highest temps I would see was low to mid 70's and for the fan speed it never used to get above %60. Any ideas what could cause this or fix this?
Metal band? Are you referring to the 'shroud', the largely aesthetic metal piece that covers the heatsink and around the fans but is completely unnecessary? Or are you referring to something else (a lot of 7950s do have a metal 'thing', not sure if I'd call it a band', things like gigabyte's and sapphire vapor-x's metal stabilizer bar(?) that runs along the length of the card to help keep it stiff and upright instead of sagging under it's weight+length like the all of them do, a metal plate on the back like the asus 7970 and swifftech komodo plate has, or a plate-heatsink on the vram and sometimes vrm too like the msi tf3)?
To me, it sounds like a seating issue, those can really mess up temps if your GPU isn't seated properly. I won't say tightness, since as long as there's just a little pressure and even contact, it should be good, and overtightening will easily break a 7950 and it's really easy for a 7950 to unseat.
Did you change any settings? It also sounds like if you were only in the 70s with the worst-cooling 7950 on the market, that you didn't have the power limit changed so as to not heavily throttle your card to ~50% of it's performance. When you change the power limit, the card can do more work. More work = more electricity. More electricity = more heat. So a card that's not being throttled running at 800mhz 100% of the time, will hit ~80-90C with 100% fan speed, but a card that's at 1200mhz only 70% of the time with 50% fan speed will run much cooler... like the 70s.
I mean there's no way in the world that an XFX DD will stay in the 70s with 100% fan speed, or even less than that, unless it's being throttled.
Anyways, have you put the 'metal band' back on? I have no idea what your metal band is, but I can't imagine it being responsible for ~20C unless it was the whole dang heatsink. 89C sounds about exactly where an XFX DD 7950 on the stock 800mhz clock should be at 100% fan speed and not throttling though. In a cool room.
Ok so, I got some more evidence/symptoms. I reset my bios do default settings. I havn't had a sleep mode crash yet. I also spent a little more time evaluating my game play. So heres the scoop. I've noticed that in all games I play, the FPS will half and double every couple seconds. League of legends goes from 113 to 66, 113 to 66, 111 to 65, plus or minus a few FPS sometimes. BF4 goes from about 80 to 40. When its at 80 it's smooth, but at 40 I will get a brief bit of lag and then it smooths out.
At normal clock speeds shadows will sometimes tweak out and I get black flashes and I will have that "microstutter" in BF4. At reduced clock speeds the black flashes go away but I still get that microstutter and I think I may have assumed there was no GPU stability improvement because I was experiencing the stutter.
Only just an hour ago I tried the +50% power limit tweak in afterburner. The microstutter.. or lag bits in BF4 is still there. When I minimize to check afterburner's GPU usage %, its about 99% all the time when in game.
Edit: Almost forgot, sometimes when I reset, my system wont even show post. Monitor input just dies. Hard reset sometimes won't fix it and I'll have t hard reset a few more times before post. Or shut off the power for a minute.
Sounds like the 113-66-113 fps issue is throttling, which is a totally separate issue from the artifacts and instability, and is 'normal' by AMD's standards.
Not showing post... do you have multiple monitors? Possibly anything set to auto, like your monitor's input selection, or your BIOS display initialization, pci-e initialization, or iGPU initialization? Turn off your 2nd monitor and iGPU.
I mean you really gotta cut the variables down. Lowering the clock speed reducing artifacts seems like hardware, but it also sounds like there are other issues going on and we really want to isolate stuff before making drastic decisions. That said, I've had to RMA plenty of graphics cards, 7950s included.
Does the microstutter or lag occur in any other games? Happening in a single game sounds like a sign of driver conflict and/or software. That would still make it hardware related if lowering clocks reduces artifacts, but you might be having software issues too going on.
I hate to say this, but you do have the newest drivers and stuff right? I'm sure you're on that already, but having issues with a specific game is pretty common, some games just aren't coded for certain hardware. I mean you have to realize that most games don't come close to utilizing a 7950, and developers are cognizant of the fact that the average gamer, like the vast majority, only use something on the level of like... a gt440. I forget exactly what and where I read it, but it's an extremely small percentage of gamers that use anything stronger than a 7770.