Hello all,

I am having some video card problems. It is working fine when I don't use directdraw or direct3d, but when I play games my games will have some graphics problems. Firstly the graphics would be blurry and the bottom 1/5 of the screen is black. When I increase the resolution of the game to something higher, it works perfect. No problem. However for other games, I can't change the resolution. How do I solve my problem?

Homer, told me that it is because my video card can't sync with my monitor and at higher resolution it syncs better hence I don't get it.

I'm trying to figure out what's wrong and hoping that I don't have to get a new video card given that I just bought it 7 months ago and I can't find the warranty. Sigh.

It just occurred one night after I got back from work.
Posted on 2007-12-18 09:32:07 by roticv
do you have official drivers?
Posted on 2007-12-18 09:53:22 by vid
Old/broken HDDs/FDDs tend to create strong magnetic interferences with GFX cards. I remember buying, like, every part to find the cause of a similar problem. The interference is especially strong when the power supply is heavily loaded / overloaded. Changing the HDD finally solved the problem in my case. The most funny thing is that this interference manifests mostly only when using 3D hardware acceleration (in games, for example). Don't know for sure if that's the problem with your card but it's worth trying some other HDD before buying new one ^^
Posted on 2007-12-18 11:54:41 by ti_mo_n
This might sound a little silly, but have you removed the card and cleaned the edge connector?
I've seen dirty edge connectors manifest problems such as timing inconsistancies before.
This acts similarly to a dry solder joint - it can create thermal intermittent faults (now you see it, now you dont), and can cause false capacitance and resistance at the joint, which as you can imagine will screw with any low-power timing signals. At least its not going to cost anything to check this.
Posted on 2007-12-18 19:45:00 by Homer
More data probably is needed: which videocard, what drivers, what resolutions and what monitor. If you simply run your desktop on those low resolutions, is the problem present? GDI blits are usually DirectDraw-accelerated, so it can be strange if only ingame it shows problems.

timon: Isn't that more like simple power-surges than magnetic interference? Such a strong electromagnetic interference will erase your HDD completely in most circumstances, I think. Gamers know well that getting your gpu under-fed with power leads to awful glitches onscreen.

But with low resolutions and simple DDraw apps that can run perfectly on higher resolution, your problem isn't in power-surges. Triple-check all cables and slots (clean them and fit perfectly). Unplug the PC power-cord, monitor power-cord and VGA cable for a a minute to discharge any capacitors - and if it still doesn't solve the problem... I think we'll need that extra data. Or if you're with a CRT monitor, it could be a bit nasty problem (needs repair).
Posted on 2007-12-18 21:58:51 by Ultrano
Find an app that can show motherboard voltages while running windows, and check that as well?
Posted on 2007-12-19 05:21:49 by f0dder
Okay here's the details:

Video card: Sapphire 9550
Monitor: Samsung Sync Master 173T (17" LCD)

I will test out your suggestions and get back to you guys.
Posted on 2007-12-19 06:20:40 by roticv
I've tested out what happens when I set my screen resolution to 1024*768. The results were pretty - I got the symptoms that I have described earlier and at the same time it messed up all my icons positioning.
Posted on 2007-12-19 06:23:25 by roticv
So you had the same blurryness and 20% black screen in regular GDI desktop-mode on resolutions of 1024x768 and lower resolutions?
Which do you use as a cable - DVI or analog VGA? If you have the other type of cable, too - please try it. And moreover, if you can try another monitor (get one from a friend just to test), do so. If you're using VGA cable, are you sure you didn't forget to make the monitor auto-adjust itself? (leftmost button)
Samsung monitors seem to suck awfully at some resolutions, but 640x480, 800x600 and 1024x768 should always be supported well. Getting a bit of blurriness there is nothing strange. Too much blurriness can mean the monitor simply isn't adjusted.
That 1/5 of the screen missing... is the whole desktop visible (just squashed vertically), or really data is culled?

I had a videocard like yours, it's flawless. And had used it with a 17" LCD very similar to yours.

It would be funny if it was simply the lack of adjustment :)
Btw Victor, you make a lousy beta-tester currently :P
Posted on 2007-12-19 18:30:47 by Ultrano
Hahahahaha I agree. I'm using DVI cable. The data is culled, not squashed up. I can click on things in the black region, but I just can't see them on the monitor. I think it is worse in 800*600 if I'm not wrong. At that resolution I can only see have my screen.
Posted on 2007-12-19 20:27:54 by roticv
Then simply start using the VGA cable :).
With my Sapphire Radeon9600, (basically the same card) and my similar dual-input Samsung monitor, I had some funny adventure - was plugging the DVI in and out very often (to swap with another DVI source), and right on the first day during one plug-in there were sparks and the DVI output of the card stopped working correctly ^^". Black everywhere, and once every several seconds parts of the screen flashed then again black. Couldn't try different resolutions with that full-black screen, so I removed my second monitor and started using the VGA cable. So much for the 3080x1050 combined screen-space I wanted :).
Posted on 2007-12-19 23:34:53 by Ultrano
Ultrano , you hit home run. I changed to VGA cable and surprisingly it worked. So maybe my DVI cable died on me, but the effects are scary. Thanks a lot.
Posted on 2007-12-20 06:49:04 by roticv

Ultrano , you hit home run. I changed to VGA cable and surprisingly it worked. So maybe my DVI cable died on me, but the effects are scary. Thanks a lot.

Perhaps. Dust or electrical exposures causing shorts in the circuitry, the DVI input of your monitor/TV is failing, etc...
Posted on 2007-12-20 22:01:12 by SpooK
Or the Radeon9600 DVI circuitry is clunky  :).
Posted on 2007-12-21 06:45:49 by Ultrano
Or I was right and its a connector issue - just not in the card edge :P
Posted on 2007-12-22 05:58:30 by Homer