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View Full Version : XFX 6800GT "clicking"/"whining" - puzzled


nVNewsOnyx
01-20-05, 07:45 PM
Got my XFX 6800GT about 4 months ago. Love it.

But during the last month something has started to happen...

Anytime the GPU is being used the card emits a whine. The whine is getting louder as the weeks go by.

It isn't the fan. That was the first thing I thought, that it was one of the fans in the system. But I've disconnected them all and the whine was still there.

I finally realized it's the 6800 when running 3DMark. During the GPU tests and splash screens, it whines. The pitch is relative to how taxed the card is. But during the CPU tests and when the screen goes black between each test, the whine disappears.

During normal windows use, I don't hear the whine, but do hear a faint yet perceptable clicking anytime graphics are manipulated (moving a window around, scrolling in a window, moving the mouse). It isn't a HD click, and it isn't coming from the sound system, it's definitely coming from the 6800, but a HDD click is similar to what it sounds like when the GPU is not being used.

It's almost like anytime electricity is being passed through the graphics chip it kinda "chirps" rapidly.

I talked to XFX and they said to send it in for a new fan, but it *isn't* the fan. Hell, I can stop the fan manually for a second and still hear the whine. I hear it in every game/app that uses the GPU (NWN, D3, Q3, etc)

The card isn't OC'd and there aren't any other tweaks applied to it. Just straight out of the box and after a few months an annoying, growing whine.

Anyone else heard of this?

ViN86
01-20-05, 07:51 PM
you sure its the card? CRT (LCD might too, idk) monitors make those kind of pitches and based on the resolution and the rate at which it flickers it can make some really annoying and strange sounds.

just an idea ;)

NemesisChild
01-20-05, 08:44 PM
That's really odd, I've never heard of a GPU making sounds.
Is the card performing in 3D games as it did when you first got it?
I would highly recommend sending it back with a full explaination of the problem.
Hopefully, XFX can duplicate the problem and take corrective action (replacement, etc.).

Good luck........

nVNewsOnyx
01-20-05, 09:36 PM
Definitely not the monitor, I unplugged it to test.

Plus, I had my head *in* the case, it's definitely coming from the card.

My 3DMark score is the same as always (10000ish) and I don't notice any drop in performance otherwise. It's just annoying to have this whine in the background when I'm playing games, or to hear this little "chatter" evertime I scroll in a window or move the mouse.

I agree, it's the damndest thing. I've never seen anything like it in all my years of use/working in I.T.

Dr.Nick
01-20-05, 09:58 PM
That's weird, sounds like what a psu would do under heavy load. Make absolutely sure its the card and if it is an rma is probably the best way to deal with it.

einstein_314
01-20-05, 10:21 PM
It's almost like anytime electricity is being passed through the graphics chip it kinda "chirps" rapidly.

Ummm, there is always electricity passing through the gpu. if there wasn't, you wouldn't get anything on your display. What about the GPU fan? As the temperature of the chip increases, so does the fan speed. So maybe it's that fan. Did you try unplugging that one? I don't know if that's a good idea though, unplugging the gpu fan. Maybe for only enough time to hear if the whining stops.

Acid Rain
01-21-05, 12:09 AM
Guys, this is the real deal. Some cards truly do make these chirps/rapid chirping that sounds like a squeal or something.

I had a 5900ultra from MSI that did the same thing. It really does come from the card, though I am not sure how. I think it must be some part of the card other than the GPU or memory (capaciters and such).

I am not sure if it causes damage or warns of impending failure, but to put minds somewhat at ease, I gamed heavily on this card for about a year with it doing this.

It truly is odd. By the way, the psu was an enermax 460 watt, a decent supply and the card was on it's own cable.

I would love to hear the real answer on this, as I have seen it discussed a bit before with no answers.

It's always the same, no-one but the person with the problem believes that it is the card, and that is totally understandable, but it truly is the card. To be honest, once you've heard it, it becomes obvious that nothing else is making the sound.

BOARD MAKERS, TELL US WHAT THIS ANOMALY IS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They know, you know;)

nVNewsOnyx
01-21-05, 07:52 PM
Thanks Shadowcast.

And once gain, NO IT IS NOT THE GPU FAN. It isn't *any* of the fans in the case (nor the PSU fan). I stopped every fan in the system, either by unplugging them or manually holding them in place. With every fan in the system stopped, the card "chirps" or "squeals" when taxed. The fact that I'm not the only one who has encountered this makes me fee a bit better. I hate RMA'ing the card without a solution though.

john19055
01-21-05, 08:20 PM
Could it be the buzzer on the card ,my 6800ultra has a buzzer that makes a sound when it does not have enough voltage to it.

crainger
01-21-05, 09:04 PM
Could it be the buzzer on the card ,my 6800ultra has a buzzer that makes a sound when it does not have enough voltage to it.

Could be the buzzer, for some reason strain on the card is causing sounds to come from the buzzer. I would place it another system if you can, and listen for the sounds. If they appear there then RMA before something drastic happens and it takes out your whole computer.

nVNewsOnyx
01-22-05, 09:04 AM
Hmmm. That's the first time anyone has mentioned a "buzzer". XFX tech support didn't say anything about it. In fact, they specifically said there was nothing on the card that should generate noise.

I'm running it on a RaidMax 400 PSU. During one of my tests I tried unplugging everthing but the MC, 6800 and the two HD's in the system. The card was the only thing on the power cable that it was using. Still it made the "chirping".

Unfortunatley my second system has the exact same PSU. I'm going to try it in there today, but if it is an issue with the PSU then I have no way of knowing since the same one will be used in troubleshooting.

I hate the idea of picking up another bigger PSU if it turns out not to solve the problem.

What typical power are people running?
I've got a:
6800Gt (not OC'd)
Intel P4 2.52 OC'd to 2.9
2 IDE HDD's
2 ICD CD-Rom's
CPU fan
3 case fans

All powered by a 400.

But the chirping remained even when it was just:
6800Gt (not OC'd)
Intel P4 2.52 OC'd to 2.9
CPU Fan
2 IDE HDD's

coldmist
01-22-05, 12:00 PM
If you want to hear the buzzer, with the computer turned off, unplug the extra molex connecter and turn on the computer. (Ya, I forgot to reconnect it when I installed an NV5 ;) Scared me to death when I first heard it ;)

That buzzer has a voltage/current sensor that trips it. Could it be a small PSU not giving enough juice, causing the sensor to think it's an under-power issue, causing it to chirp? Maybe even a bad solder joint in the molex connector/cable causing the card to think it doesn't have that line connected?

Try changing the molex to another one on a different string from the PSU.

NemesisChild
01-22-05, 03:57 PM
If it is the warning buzzer on the card, you would know it right away.
It's like nothing you've ever heard before, a very loud chirping noise.
What NVNewsOnyx is describing is more like a stressed or defective hard drive clicking noise.
I hate to say it, but your best option is to RMA the card.
How many amps are running on your 12v rail?
This really doesn't sound like a PSU issue, but you definitely don't want to be underpowered!

crainger
01-22-05, 05:52 PM
If it is the warning buzzer on the card, you would know it right away.
It's like nothing you've ever heard before, a very loud chirping noise.
What NVNewsOnyx is describing is more like a stressed or defective hard drive clicking noise.
I hate to say it, but your best option is to RMA the card.
How many amps are running on your 12v rail?
This really doesn't sound like a PSU issue, but you definitely don't want to be underpowered!

What if its the buzzer not working correctly and its not recieving enough power to sound off like it should. If its sitting there recieving a tiny amount of power then is it possible it is making the clicks and whines? As XFX tech supoort says. There is nothing on the card that can make noise, but we know there are two things that can. Thats the fan and the buzzer. The fan has been ruled out, now we just need a way to disable the buzzer for a bit. Or you could just return the card.

bkswaney
01-22-05, 11:15 PM
Guys, this is the real deal. Some cards truly do make these chirps/rapid chirping that sounds like a squeal or something.

I had a 5900ultra from MSI that did the same thing. It really does come from the card, though I am not sure how. I think it must be some part of the card other than the GPU or memory (capaciters and such).

I am not sure if it causes damage or warns of impending failure, but to put minds somewhat at ease, I gamed heavily on this card for about a year with it doing this.

It truly is odd. By the way, the psu was an enermax 460 watt, a decent supply and the card was on it's own cable.

I would love to hear the real answer on this, as I have seen it discussed a bit before with no answers.

It's always the same, no-one but the person with the problem believes that it is the card, and that is totally understandable, but it truly is the card. To be honest, once you've heard it, it becomes obvious that nothing else is making the sound.

BOARD MAKERS, TELL US WHAT THIS ANOMALY IS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They know, you know;)



I have to agree. My old 5900 made all kinds of strange noises.

robhancock
01-23-05, 05:04 PM
It is likely part of the voltage regulation circuitry on the card - it's possible that one of the inductor coils (or maybe even a capacitor or something) is resonating at a high frequency and producing noise. If that's the case, one thing you could try is slopping some hot glue or something onto the inductors to try to stop the vibration, but I'd be more inclined to just RMA the card..