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Video card or driver problem?

Hi, I have recently bought a second hand computer with pretty decent specs. I have finally been able to play Halo and Farcry (originals) since I only had an old laptop before. Anyway, I am experiencing problems with freezing and shutting down during both games. During game play (not necessarily heavy/graphics intensive play) the screen freezes, then goes black, then something kicks in (sounds like a fan in the case) and I get audio back but no video - the screen stays black - when I get it back to the desktop, I see that I have been prompted to contact Ati with an error report. At other times, I wont even get audio, there will be no fan noise but from the frozen screen I then get the black screen then the system restarts itself.
The guy I bought the computer from is an IT consultant and assures me there is nothing wrong with my hardware and that is it how I have installed drivers and various updates that is causing the problem. The thing is, I don't experience probs other than when I am gaming and the card I am using should provide more than enough power for these oldish games. I have uninstalled and installed my OS and driver and windows updates a number of times but haven't been able to get stability during game play once (the glitches seem to be random, happening at any time during game play). Please help.

My system details are:
GPU: ATI X850XT - 256MB
RAM: 1GB of Kingston HyperX Memory running at Dual Channel (2x512)
HDD: 2 x 74GB Western Digital Raptor Hard Drives in a RAID 0
Gigabyte motherboard running an Nvidia NForce 4 Chipset, 7.1 Sound and 2 network cards, one with Gigabit networking.
OS: XP Home + SP2
.NET framework 2.0 I think.
Latest Ati GPU drivers.
550W Power I think.

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Make sure you have the latest patch

In reply to: Video card or driver problem?

Microsoft Discusses something on the Halo Website about Windows XP SP2 and 256mb Video Cards.

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(NT) Thanks, will check it out. Hope it applies to Farcry too...

In reply to: Make sure you have the latest patch

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Think the card...

In reply to: Video card or driver problem?

Sounds like the card to me.But have you tried
Omega drivers...?
Many think they are better then the Ati...
( Im one of them)

I had the same problem..
I bought a new card...
Problem solved..

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Hmm, was worried someone might say that.

In reply to: Think the card...

A dodgy vid card was in the back of my mind as well. I guess I just didn't want to face the fact that I might have been sold something that didn't work properly. There are still a number of things I still need to check out before i write it off completely though. Thanks for your advice re the amiga drivers, I will definately try that solution. I am trying to use glitches as an excuse to buy a new card, maybe an nvidia 8800 or a 7950 GX2 but my fiancee isn't having any of it and keeps reminding me that i told her i wouldn't need to upgrade for a while if I bought this computer...women...
Anyway, I'll give these suggestions a go before giving up for good... just getting silly now. Cheers.

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