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 Post subject: Slightly OT: Check your card after modding!!
PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 9:57 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2003 9:06 pm
Posts: 485
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Hey all,

just wanted to pass this story on to you guys:

Last week I tried to exchange the fan on my VGA card -- the cooling result wasn't satisfactory, so I switched back to the stock cooler.

Trouble is that I couldn't play any games using Direct3D on the computer after the modding/unmodding -- I got massive artifacts. 2D graphics worked fine, though. Since the card's still on warranty, I considered an RMA, but didn't have much hope of getting it through.

This morning, I took the card out and inspected it. I saw that some thermal grease (Zalman's silicon based variety) was left on various parts of the card, among those between two of the contacts on the AGP rail. I cleaned it off using a Q-tip and mild force. (Wished I had had some rubbing alcohol handy).

Put the card back in, turned the computer on. Ran dxdiag without a hitch. Started my fav games (Battlefield series) -- AND IT WAS BACK TO NORMAL!

Conclusions:
1. Even silicone based thermal grease can be conductive -- at least it can disturb electronics.
2. Be scrupulous about cleaning off any thermal grease residue, regardless of where they are deposited.

And, of course: Don't spill any thermal grease in the first place.

_________________
Happy silencing!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 10:49 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 11, 2004 3:58 pm
Posts: 2057
Location: Toronto
That's why I never use anthing but arctic alumina/ceramique, even though a friend of mine says that arctic silver 5 is very non-conductive. I think I remember hearing that silicone grease isn't very insulative.


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