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Video Card "shadowing"

By mtuschmitty ·
I have a NVIDIA RIVA TNT2 Model 64 vid card (AGP) that has developed a shadowing problem. all text and some graphics leave a horizontal dark strip on the screen, it looks somewhat like screenburn, but it moves with the text and graphics.

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by mtuschmitty In reply to Video Card "shadowing"

oops, hit enter by accident. Anyway, I have tried to update the drivers (I'm running XP Pro), but I also noticed that it occurs during startup at the Bios screen as well. Does this warrent a new vid card, or is there a simple fix my card can undergo to repair it? Thanks for the replies.

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Monitor Brightness

by TheChas In reply to continued

First, you will 'usually' get a quicker and more responses to technical questions if you post them in the Technical Q&A forum.

I suspect a monitor problem.

Start by turning down the brightness.

If that helps, but does not eleiminate the problem, swap in a different monitor.

If the problem remains, then I suspect a bad video card.
For the most part, video cards are non-repairable.

You might check with the card manufacture (not Nvidia) for a video BIOS upgrade, but, I don't expectthat to help much with this problem.


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by GuruOfDos In reply to Video Card "shadowing"

If you have 'shadowing', check the HPhase adjustment of the monitor.

It may also be a break in one of the ground pins in the monitor cable.

Check with another monitor first if you have either of the above sysmptoms.

You may also have a bad chunk of ram on the graphics card. TNT2 Cards are prone to this. Swap the card into another computer and check it out. If the problem moves with the card it sounds like the RAM has become defective, but I'd suspect a monitor or cable problem first.

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Already done

by mtuschmitty In reply to HPhase

I performed this swap in order to put all my newest and best parts into one system, and the shadowing moved with the card, so I suspect the card. If I get time, I might inspect the card more closely looking for a faulty connection, but it could very well be the RAM. my only problem is that this card is less than a year old, so I don't see where it could fail so rapidly. Guess I just go with a GeForce series next time; I have not had a single problem so far with their cards. Thanks for the replies, it helps out.

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Bathtub curve!

by GuruOfDos In reply to Already done

With any electronics product, there will be a fair few failures in the early days, due to component faults or other random failures. This is known as 'infant mortality'. Once a device has been running happily for a while, it is likely to carry on doing so for a fairly long time. Old age then sets in and we get end life failures.

Plotting the failure rate of a sample of devices against time will give us an initial high level of failures due to infant mortality (exacerbated by manufacturers who use lower quality components), decreasing to a low level of failure over a longer time, then an increasing failure rate towards end of life...the characteristic 'bath-tub' curve.

Of course, an individual card is NOT representative of a batch! I always 'burn in' any card ferociously during build and if it can last for 48 hours soak test with everything stressed to it's limits, it's likely to survive long term. A good burn in test will often show up faults in a product, allowing return under warranty. How many times have we had a device fail at 13 months, to find out it's warranty has expired!!

RAM chips are more likely to fail than any other component on a graphics card, other than the GPU, which normally has a heatsink of fan on better cards. Have a feel of the RAM on a card sometime...the chips get hot in use!! Poor cooling inside a case can lead to temperature rises in these RAM chips and they can fail with the symptoms you describe.

Of course, in the early days of graphics cards (ISA, VLB and early PCI), the typical RAM on a graphics card was 512K or perhaps 1MB and, more often than not, the RAM chips were socketed. Ah, the good old days of swapping out a duff V-RAM chip with one from a scrap card!

Naturally, with the increase in popularity of on-board video and shared RAM, faulty RAM is not an issue...swap out a stick of system RAM and lo and more video fault!

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by djent In reply to Video Card "shadowing"

Are you using a monitor extension cable? If so try eliminating it, this is common with unshielded cables.

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