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Old 04-16-05, 10:11 PM   #1
Acid Rain
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Default Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

O.K. guys, I have a dilemma, I believe. I'll try to keep this short.

I am running the machine in the sig, and I also have a nearly duplicate machine besides the graphics card and the power supply. Other machine runs a 5900Ultra and a 460 watt Enermax. Both cards are fed with their own power line. No problems whatsoever besides the one I'll outline below. However, BOTH machines display the same thing and nothing in either pc is overclocked, except for the factory overclock on the GT.

Here goes....

I am replaying Doom 3, and it is fun all over again. However, in on particular area http://img183.echo.cx/img183/3369/do...03433356xe.jpg I see randomly placed artifacts (white dots, I've edited the pic to point out their favorite locations as they pop in and out too fast for capture). They pretty much only appear at fairly regular intervals, right after some sparks fly.

Friggen weird. These are the types of artifacts normally related to overly hot video ram, so you can imagine my dire concern. However, nothing is OCed and both cards are running quite below the heat threshhold, especially the 5900 which idles at 42c and loads at 59c.

To get to the area in question (beginning of game) you "Grab your gear" then head out and down to the bottom of the stairs. Then, head through the door at the bottom, wind your way around that little bend with the machine that illuminates the chamber from below as it wisks around the corner. Head through the door and down the next corridor, just passing the hose on the floor with the steam and heat blur. Then, turn around, get the sparks that are cast and the heat blur hose in your view and wait a little. *edit* The door behind you MUST be open. *end edit* Just keep staring at the screen and you will probably see little flashing white dots here and there, especially after the sparks are cast.

Man I hope someone is willing to do this. I really want confirmation that my systems are fine, and I'd really like to know what causes this. Currently, keeping my eyes peeled for artifacts is driving me insane. 71.89 currently, by the way, though it does this with the 67.66 as well, whether the game is patched or not.

I hope someone confirms that this is a global "bug".

Thank you!
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Last edited by Shadowcast; 04-18-05 at 05:13 AM.
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Old 04-16-05, 10:46 PM   #2
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Just give me a few minutes and I'll see if I can re-create this bug.
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Old 04-16-05, 10:49 PM   #3
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by GamingLordX
Just give me a few minutes and I'll see if I can re-create this bug.
That would be awesome. It's really easy to get to. Then, when you're there, you just keep that keat blur on screen like in my shot, and basically look for artifacts. It's not always immediate, but it's pretty darn quick.
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Old 04-16-05, 10:57 PM   #4
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadowcast
That would be awesome. It's really easy to get to. Then, when you're there, you just keep that keat blur on screen like in my shot, and basically look for artifacts. It's not always immediate, but it's pretty darn quick.
I've got some bad news.. I didn't see the artifacts. Just to make sure I'll post a screenshot of where I looked (I edited and increased the images contrast so you could actually see):



I stood there for a couple minutes and didn't see anything like what your screenshot shows. I tried to reproduce your results with and without the flashlight and nothing. The only thing I saw in the way of light was in fact just the sparks. Sorry.
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Old 04-16-05, 11:03 PM   #5
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

I didn't see any white dots either. I'm using the 71.89s and I believe the version of Doom 3 that I'm running is 1.2 (since it was patched by the RoE addon.

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Old 04-16-05, 11:03 PM   #6
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by GamingLordX
I stood there for a couple minutes and didn't see anything like what your screenshot shows. I tried to reproduce your results with and without the flashlight and nothing. The only thing I saw in the way of light was in fact just the sparks. Sorry.
Crap. That's the right place. By the way, the dots in my shot are big ones I placed there because I couldn't capture the little bastards. I placed the dots in the locations that they like to appear the most.

They are very small usually and you have to look for them. They aren't everywhere and they seem to happen on a cycle, usually right after the sparks fly, but they definitely look like video ram artifacts.

Damn. This is weird. Maybe it's an AthlonXP/nForce 2 only type of deal. I've never had any problems before in other games, and that I get these with both the 5900 and 6800. Never OCed, nothing, and great cooling, for air.

Damnit, I will get to the bottom of this. Thank you very much, Gaming Lord.
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Old 04-17-05, 02:37 AM   #7
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Freaky stuff to report here.

In order to eliminate hardware problems like overheating/defects/not enough power/etc. I down-clocked my FSB to 100 and took the Vcore down to a gastly 1.55v, to make the cpu draw as little power as possible.

Then I downclocked the 5900 (already the cooler running of the two) to 100mz. core and 350 memory. Holy bottom dollar clock frequency, Batman!!!

Anyway, this ice cool, slow as hell system (fast writes off) with the latest official drivers all the way around STILL displayed artifacts!!! It gets funkier...

I disabled ALL graphical goodies in Doom 3 and ran it at 640x480 on LOW quality, with the aforementioned downclocks, and wahlah, no artifacts.

Turning on graphical goodies one by one revealed shadows to be the culprit. Everything else can be maxxed with no issues, but no shadows (on either card).

However, when I stepped further into the corridor, the door behind me closed, cutting off the light emitting machine behind me. Once that happened, the artifacts dissappeared, even with shadows (and everything else) enabled. That explained the "schedule" the artifacts seemed to be on, as that machine only casts light when it's swinging by.

Friggen weird, because these "artifacts" I keep mentioning are without a doubt the exact same as OCed memory artifacts. I've seen them many times in the past, and they are unmistakable. Randomly placed white dots flickering in and out. Anyway, I am no longer concerned about my hardware, thankfully, but what the heck is going on in the engine to cause this?????

Now the only thing that would rule out the last thing I can think of (AthlonXP/nForce 2 driver issue) is if somebody tried this, making sure the door behind them was OPEN. Once it closes, there problem dissappears.
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Last edited by Shadowcast; 04-18-05 at 05:18 AM.
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Old 04-17-05, 06:10 AM   #8
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Sounds like could be artifacts in the stencil only buffer ? Sounds odd, but thats what it sounds like. Not sure how thats even possible.. but..
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Old 04-17-05, 03:19 PM   #9
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadowcast
Now the only thing that would rule out the last thing I can think of (AthlonXP/nForce 2 driver issue) is if somebody tried this, making sure the door behind them was OPEN. Once it closes, there problem dissappears.
I had some other screenshots that I didn't post where the door was open behind me. I posted the ones with it closed b/c it was easier to see the sparks since it was darker.

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Old 04-17-05, 06:44 PM   #10
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutty
Sounds like could be artifacts in the stencil only buffer ? Sounds odd, but thats what it sounds like. Not sure how thats even possible.. but..
I know. And on two seperate machines in only this one area. (By the way, it's become obvious that the light that comes and goes here, attached to that machine, is indeed the culprit, as no other areas, or effects/lights cause this. Just that particular light source and it's interaction with the map. Turn off shadows and the light spills all the way into the next room, unrealistically, like, through the wall. It's almost like turning on shadows forces the light to be cast only where it would be, realistically, yet, in my case, there are little holes in the system and the light isn't completely quarrantined to the right areas.)

Never seen it elsewhere, ever. Or in any other games, for that matter. Not to mention my ultimate test of downclocking the coolest runner of the two machines to Celeron/Voodoo 3 performance levels and running the game at the lowest possible settings, minus shadows.

Thanks again OWA for your continued input here!!! If anyone else plays and sees these "rare artifacts" , please post. As it is, I'm not too worried anymore after my "Ultimate Test". It has to be software related somehow. At least now I don't feel like my hardware is just about toast. That would suck, right now. It does still bug me to see scary-ass/"your system is frying" little dots, so I will turn a blind eye and avoid returning to that spot again

*additional info* I discovered that the artifacts are much easier to spot if you go into the chamber with the machine that swings the light source around, get in the middle or so, and look to the leftmost door. Just about everytime the light goes by, artifacts riddle the bottom of the door.)http://img183.echo.cx/img183/7196/do...72105467aa.jpg Just add little white specks to the door, and you've got the idea. I can't seem to capture the little bastards
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Last edited by Shadowcast; 04-18-05 at 05:27 AM.
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Old 04-17-05, 07:56 PM   #11
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Wasn't there a driver bug that caused crawling white dots in Half Life 2? Maybe this is the same thing?
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Old 04-17-05, 08:41 PM   #12
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Default Re: Doom 3 artifacting in a specific place only

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vagrant Zero
Wasn't there a driver bug that caused crawling white dots in Half Life 2? Maybe this is the same thing?
I'd go with that, but I've tried drivers all the way back to 61.77. Same deal, same place, both cards. I bet they were there from day one, and I just ran through fast enough to miss them. I sure do wish there was confirmation that I am not the only one in the world who sees this. I wonder what's different with OWA's setup. Is it just an nForce2/AthlonXP deal???
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