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GTX 480 video card defective ? Replacement card compatibility ?

Hi there,

The Geforce GTX 480 video card in my Aurora ALX (built in 2010) system is causing problems.
I think it is broken and I do need to buy a replacement. (Two Questions at the bottom of the following text…)

Some time ago I started having random crashes and reboots, and/or the error message ‘Display Driver Nvidia Windows Kernel Mode Driver Version … stopped responding and has successfully recovered’.

According to several sources this occurs in case of hardware related video card defects, outdated video drivers, out-of-syncs between video card and (overclocked) CPU. The Microsoft Windows 7 Fix It patch 50848 was installed and brought no improvement; the same error message keeps recurring.

When crashing: Sometimes after reboot everything was okay again, in other cases Windows seemed to be booting okay (with all the regular Windows sounds coming through the speakers) however: no display. Just a black screen and the monitor ‘entering into sleeping  mode’. Probably due to no input signal from the video card.

Possible causes:

Video Driver ? No. I already tried upgrading to the latest version of Nvidia’s drivers. Also did rollback to previous versions. Also removing the drivers via
Control Panel and doing clean re-install.

Monitor ? No. Alienware AW2310 monitor is in good order and all functions and colours tested with a utility progam.

DVI Cable ? No. Tried the old cable on both DVI ports (no signal); also tried another DVI cable with no effect.

So I tried the (never used before) HDMI port instead and, look and behold:

There IS input via HDMI so I can still use my PC. However: present HDMI video quality is slightly worse than previously DVI. Like a slightly grey wash on black screen backgrounds; and the skies in PC Games, in the past being bright blue with clouds, now are greyish and bland.

Overheating ? No, as my PC works stable for hours and hours, even days on a row via the HDMI cable.

Other hardware component broken, like hard disk, RAM modules or power unit ? No, same reason.

Question 1:

So I think it’s safe to conclude that my GTX 480 is broken beyond repair ?

DVI output no longer available and degraded quality via HDMI.

Now I am thinking about getting a replacement card.

Question 2:

Could I buy one the new top models GeForce GTX Titan or GTX 780 ? Will they be compatible with my Aurora ALX motherboard and (overclocked) CPU settings ?

It’s $500+ I am gonna spend, so I would like to be very sure I am making the right decisions here.

Any help would be greatly appreciated !

Thanks for reading, Jan

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