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Thread: Really bizarre and persistent video problems

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Chicago, IL 60610
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    339

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    Greetings and thanks in advance for any assistance:

    The machine: 7600, 336MB RAM, 1GB Narrow drive

    additonal bits:
    *XLR8 Carrier card + stock Apple 300MHz G3 chip
    *Full VRAM (added a chip)
    *Miles2 + 18GB Barracuda
    *Generic (MacSense, I think) USB PCI card + Simple Tech. CompactFlash Reader
    *Apple FireWire PCI card

    I had experienced the 'usual' video artifact problem in the past and was able to correct matters via extension management. Then this last spring, in an event I have since regretted, I installed Adaptec Toast 3.5.x on the machine and motored my ol' Pinnacle-Micro burner over to the 7600...and the troubles began (I have two machines and had always just transferred files from one to the other in order to archive...this time, as I had about 6GB of client image files to archive, I figured I'd just move the burner over to the 7600 rather than shoving 6GB worth of files through a 10 Mb/s LAN):

    1.) First was a return of the 'original' video artifact: a vertical 'line', following the cursor and running the height of the screen, reappeared. It doesn't appear to be _really_ bad, but it's thoroughly annoying.

    2.) I go and re-install Conflict Catcher and run a conflict test. I removed pretty much every extension that I didn't think I needed. No luck.

    3.) Not knowing what was up after trying _several_ system reinstalls (followed by conflict tests, etc.), I acquired (McAffee Dr. Solomon) Virex, TechTool and Roxio Toast v.5.

    4.) Upon installing TechTool a _new_ video artifact appeared: I now have _fixed_ vertical lines every 1/8th inch or so running the height of the screen (again, the original artifact _followed_ the right hand side of the cursor). TechTool _did_ locate some bad files (e.g., bad dates, corrupted fonts) and neither TechTool nor Virex found any infected files.

    5.) Oddly enough, the Apple System Profiler is able to locate things, but now says this: "The startup device has been chosen; however Apple System Profiler can't determine which SCSI bus device it is."

    6.) I have since re-installed the system, again to no avail. I tried installing MACh Speed Control 1.4.3, again without success in removing the problem.

    I am at a loss and would very much appreciate _any_and_all_ suggestions. I have not yanked the monitor (yet), but that's a possibility. I am thinking about booting from the CD, low-level formatting the boot partition and starting over.

    I again note that _everything_ was working fine _until_ Adaptec Toast v. 3.5.x was installed and then TechTool (the artifact would very rarely re-appear, but it always went away after the machine had been used a bit). I am _really_ hoping that no hardware has crapped out!

    And of course...a bunch of work just came in the front door!!

    Thank you!

    revi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    169

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    The most likely cause for your artifacts are that you are running a G3 card and still using the onboard video. The old and slow onboard video can't keep up with the new, fast processor, and will give you the artifacts you experience. Solution? Get a PCI video card. Check www.pricewatch.com for a Voodoo 3 2000 or 3000 PCI (flash the ROM, easy to do, for use in Mac, V3s go for around $35), an ixMicro Ult Rez from macsales.com for $40, a Voodoo 5 PCI for $79-99, or the most expensive ATI Radeon PCI for $179+

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Chicago, IL 60610
    Posts
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    Wow! Thanks for the info...that was something I hadn't considered. I guess it'll be time to ditch the individual 1394 and USB cards and go for a combo PCI card.

    It's only just more money... ;-)

    Man, 'Murphy' is at work: he must have seen all the work coming in and figured now was the time for more hardware replacements. It just gets me that everything _was_ behaving well for awhile!

    _Thanks_Again_ for the info...I'm going to look into matters immediately!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    1hr N/W of LA LA Land
    Posts
    3,320

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    I too had artifacts after I installed an XLR8 G3 400 in my 8500 w/ 4MB MOBO VRAM. They were really bad in the ProTools edit window.

    However...

    I solved the problem by diabling ALL hardware related video extensions and running in millions of colors. Haven't seen any artifacts since.

    ------------------
    I started out with nothing.
    I still have most of it left!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Chicago, IL 60610
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    Thanks for the info...I had this beast under control for a long time (~1 yr.) and what weirded me out was that the artifacts returned after I installed _software_ (first Adaptec Toast 3.5.x and then TechTool)...now this 7600 is running a CarrierZIF card...my other box, a beige G3, got the 500MHz G3 XLR8 chip I bought and the 7600 then got the original (Apple) G3 300MHz chip. I haven't had these problems (knockonwood) on the G3MT (coincidentally, I'm running a pretty full MotU rig on that box, but that machine only needed a ZIF chip, as opposed to a card)...the problem on the 7600 was/is driving me berserk!

    I'm really digging the video card idea...and am looking into it...gotta free up a PCI slot (and about 200 clams!)...but anything that can solve this problem is worth it!!

    Thanks again for the feedback...this is all helping!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Chicago, IL 60610
    Posts
    339

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    Greetings,

    Well, I broke down and got a ATI Radeon PCI from the 'Gurus and, lo-and-behold, all problems automagically disappeared. Completely. When I was managing matters via extensions (ConflictCatcher, etc.), I still had vestigial artifacts...nothing catastrophic, in fact essentially negligible...but they were still there.

    With the video card, _everything_ is just smokin'!! I wish I had just added one from jump! (I am certainly lucky that this mac does not have all the additional cards that the other does...)

    THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR SUGGESTIONS!!!

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