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graphics problem solved?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Technical Support' started by swiss1, May 14, 2006.

  1. swiss1

    swiss1 not a ratbag!

    May 5, 2006
    Montana, USA
    I recently bought Civilization IV and have had video problems with it from the start (even with the demo). The game graphics, even when set to low through the option screen, would start scrambling about 15 minutes into the game. Searching this forum, I came across some postings with similar problems…blacked out areas, random spots and sprites appearing on the screen, and extended 3d lines of solid color extending from the map area to the edges or front of the screen, obscuring the normal map view. From what I read here and on other 3d support boards,I guess these are called “artifacts” and do occur when 3d cards get too hot, are underpowered, or are going bad. Here are my system specs:
    Abit IS7E motherboard
    Radeon 9800 pro 128 mb video card
    512k pc3200 ddr ram
    P4 2.8 ghz cpu
    350 watt generic power supply
    Win XP Home operating system
    All drivers were current including Catalyst 6.4 ATI drivers
    Civ 4 1.61 update
    2 case fans drawing air through
    I’ve run other 3d games such as Rome Total War, and Dungeon Siege II without any problems with this system.
    After getting no improvement with all the suggested remedies, including the Pak build rendering fix, I started looking into symptoms of 3d card problems in general and followed the advice of downloading and replacing the Catalyst drivers with the Omega Radeon drivers at this link: http://fileforum.betanews.com/detail/Radeon_Omega_Drivers/1086739971/1
    They seemed to help at first…I finally made it to the medieval period without the graphics breaking up!
    I did, however, crank the graphics settings up to high to see if this was really working. After about an hour, the symptoms described above returned so I set up a small fan behind my pc to blow extra air through it ( hoping it wasn't the underpowered or going bad problems) and was able to run Civ 4 for about 5 hours without any breakups. So far as I can tell, that has solved the problem. I get a little screen rolling wave distortion from the emf off of the fan motor but I guess that’s a good trade-off for now till I improve the case mounted cooling in my pc. Hope this will help others with similar problems...what kind of demands does Civ 4 make on a 3d card anyway?


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