I purchased a Gigabyte Radion X800XL ( passive cooling ) two weeks ago from Scan which appears to be faulty. Unfortunately, I am not sure what to do at this stage because the fault is very intermittent. My case is well ventilated with an 80mm fan at the back of the case and the 120mm fan on the psu both sucking air out of the case. The cpu and motherboard temperatures level off to about 38 and 33 degrees C respectively when the system is under heavy load. When the graphics are 2d only (i.e. xp desktop ) the GPU temperature levels off to about 50 degrees C and the passive heatsink is very warm to the touch. The fun starts when I run a 3d application or game ( e.g. Celestia on demo mode full screen ); the temperature of the GPU increases to about 70 degrees C and the copper heatsink is almost unbearably hot to touch. I am certain the fault is in the graphics card because I have replaced it with an ATI x300 and the system is now totally stable. I should add that nothing is overclocked or has ever been.
The system only crashes ( BSD – Blue Screen of Death, requiring a cold restart ) when running a 3d application. If the crashes were more predictable it would be a straightforward case of returning the card for a replacement/repair, the snag is that the system will sometimes run flawlessly for maybe half an hour before it crashes. I am worried that if I return the card, it will be tested in the Scan labs, found not to be faulty and returned with me having to pay all expenses. This happened to me a few years ago when I returned an intermittently faulty memory module.
Any advice on what I should do would be gratefully received.