Computer "crashes" but I can't work out why

  Mintyrebel 18:10 07 Aug 2014

First of all I would like to apologise if I've placed this thread in the wrong forum topic, I wasn't sure which one to chose but since my computer was built by me I assumed this was correct.

OK so my problem is that I've had my computer about three years now and for two and a half of those years my computers has every now and then "crashed" (although it's not a typical crash, I'll come to that later) which I didn't worry to much about since it did it maybe once every two weeks after being used for about 10 hours or so of gaming in quiet demanding titles like Battlefield 3 or Payday 2. However recently it has started happening more and more, although still only when playing games it now happens with much lower quality titles such as Hearthstone and League of Legends.

As I mentioned earlier the crash isn't your typical crash either, the computer doesn't shut down, instead I hear a load screeching type of noise somewhat like static, and if I happen to be in a Skype call my friends can hear it as well, a lot of graphics glitches will appear on screen. After this every program fails to respond and I can't re-open them. Oddly enough a restart of my machine fixes everything and it just runs fine again.

Initially I was worried that the CPU was overheating however it appears that the hottest it gets is 75c and it does not crash when reaching this temperature, the most recent crash happened at around 68c.

Then I was worried that it might be my GPU but again it only goes to about 90c max without manual fan control (when I do manually control the fan it makes no difference) but never crashes at that, the most recent crash was when the CPU was at 80c.

Next I tested my RAM with the Windows diagnostic tools and that all came back clear.

It has been mentioned by someone that my PSU may be at fault, I was wondering what you guys thought of this (the model is below) and if it IS at fault I was wondering if you could tell me whether a 500W model would be OK with my build and whether this PSU would work (click here Yes I am on a VERY VERY VERY tight budget.

Also note I have reinstalled Windows several times in the past few years so I don't think there is a software issue.


ASRock N68C-S UCC - Motherboard AMD Phenom II X4 850 - CPU AMD Radeon HD 6870 - GPU 1TB HDD 8GB Corsair XM3 RAM CiT 750W Power Supply Unit (click here 7 64bit OS 2 case fans and an upgraded (don't ask me what it is because I don't know) heat sink.

Here is a screencap of the HWMonitor when not under too much load (I don't have one of just before it crashes although I do have a look at it in the video underneath this image)

click here also tried taking a video of my screen just after the crash started to happen, as you can see I was just about to play a game of Hearthstone, the noise you can hear at the start is the noise my computer makes via my monitor and not anything from inside the case.

click here yeah, really sorry for the wall of text but I have no idea what to do. Thanks in advance for any help and I'll keep an eye on this thread and answer any questions.

Windows I So

  Mintyrebel 18:15 07 Aug 2014

Sorry for the formatting, I can't actually edit it (or at least I can't work out how to) and it is a copy and paste job since I also posted this on another forum (I won't name it because I'm not sure what the rules are on that)

  Mintyrebel 18:23 07 Aug 2014

@MechKB2 The noises actually aren't coming from a component they are coming from the monitor, it is a sound that the computer outputs via whatever speakers I am using. If I was having my audio through headphones then the crash noise would be via them. As for the crash happening for years I agree I should have dealt with it sooner but as I say up until recently it only happened pretty rarely and I wasn't TOO worried about it.

Thanks for the advice regarding the PSU, I will certainly look at purchasing that EVGA PSU, I just wasn't sure if 500W was enough since I have heard that is the very minimum my graphics card needs.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:30 07 Aug 2014

My old XP machine would do exactly the same thing on occasion. A click followed by a loud screeching from the speakers and everything locked up.

Only solution - hold power button and let it reboot.

Never did sort it, nothing in the crash reports or system events - I think it was down to one of the hard drives (due to the click) probably the system drive causing the lock up.

  Mintyrebel 18:43 07 Aug 2014

@Fruit Bat

Thanks for the suggestion, I did try opening other programs when the last crash occurred and nothing opened HOWEVER I could open things such as pictures and browse my folder and files therefore I'm not sure it is a HDD issue.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:54 07 Aug 2014

ok so its only the program you are using that locks up?

  Mintyrebel 19:03 07 Aug 2014

@Fruit Bat

All programs lock up although I can close and attempt to re-open them. Upon doing so they are graphically glitched and never work properly. They work fine upon a restart.

@MechKB Thanks for the info, I might look at getting a new PSU even if it turns out it's not the issue at some point in the future although I will keep investigating the PSU and see what happens. Thanks for your help :)

  rdave13 19:33 07 Aug 2014

I have the same CPU as yours. The Tj Max shows as 70C so it's running hot. Mine reaches 54C on heavy load. GPU at 90C would also seem a bit hot for me. I would think its lack of cooling in your case. I have a 120mm rear exhaust fan with a front 80mm input fan.

  Mintyrebel 16:06 10 Aug 2014

Update: The PSU upgrade did NOT work. I know I'm linking to another tech forum but I have updated my post several times on Toms Hardware so for more information please check there (if it is against the rules to link there let me know and I'll copy everything over to here). Seriously if you have any ideas please help because I am out of them :*(

click here

  Mintyrebel 17:01 10 Aug 2014

I'm curious, do you guys think a faulty audio driver could cause the issue, I had always installed a realtek driver however I went in and tried to update everything in the device manager (I had never done this before) and it installed an AMD driver and also changed the name of the device, does anyone think this could have anything to do with the issue?

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