Not so Polaris Eternal: Baby Turing Returns and Polaris isn't dead! (Yet).

Okay, so where do I start? Well, let me start by saying I thought my RX 590 kicked the bucket yesterday. This is after I sold my 5700 due to driver-crashing. I was pretty upset, actually very close to crying because it stressed me out, a lot. Anyway, the long and the short of it is; I loaded up Rage 2 and after about half an hour of gameplay, I started getting really, really bad artifacting. It looked to me like that Power Boozer (lol) Polaris 30 had finally drawn too much current and his logic fried.

If you're interested, here's what I saw in the game.

EPILEPSY WARNING. Please DO NOT watch this if you have Photosensitive epilepsy (PSE). This is truly a Fuster Cluck of flashing and it almost sent me into a daze, let alone someone with PSE. With that our of the way, here's the video.

... Yeah. On top of that, if I tried to alter the clock speed in-game (using the Radeon Overlay with Wattman) the entire system would 'brown-screen' and lock up. In all honesty, I just pulled the card out of my system and almost teared up. At that point I went to Amazon and bought a GTX 1660 SUPER base model with a single fan (more on that in a moment...) for £199 with free same-day shipping (Amazon Prime FTW). It was a quick purchase, because I was pretty pissed off. Anyway...

Sash gets baby Turing again, this time SUPER-charged (lol).

...Fast forward to today, and the card arrived this evening. Here's the little guy.

It's just so dinky...

Some people might think I'm silly, but I actually prefer the way a naked PCB looks to a back-plate. So not having one here isn't a major concern for me.


As you can see it's a pretty small card. That's actually a nice thing for me, since it lets me get my fat hands/fingers around it to the other components without taking the card out. Anyway... I installed the thing and fired up my system. DDU'd the old AMD Driver and pulled down the latest Nvidia driver...

'DCH' Driver doesn't include the Nvidia Control Panel. And Microsoft Store still sucks.

...Except that didn't install the Nvidia Control Panel, and the advice was to get that from the Microsoft Store (this is already going just great...). Except...

The Microsoft Store wasn't going to co-operate. By the way, the poor reviews of this 'app' on the store are from people with my exact same issue. That's already inspiring me with confidence!

Anyway, after some googling and hoop-jumping I found out that this is with the 'DCH' driver and has some Microsoft thing that says it can't include Nvidia's control panel with the package. Well, that's nice, if it would actually let me download the app so I can configure my newly purchased graphics card.

The fix is to simply search for the 'Standard' driver package from Nvidia (believe it or not, the default one on their website is the 'DCH' one). So I pulled that down, and everything is fine and dandy. Fired up Warframe and the card is A-okay.

This card is efficient. Like, really efficient. It's also remarkably cool and quiet for a teeny, tiny single-fan model. TU116 is a pretty damn efficient chip - even boosting to 1900 MHz it's barely hitting 70C and I can't hear it over my case fans (admitedly they are quite loud...).

Priceless, Rare Artifacts are so nice!

I'm always a bit anxious when using a new component for the first time. But everything was fine! Well, it was until I tried RAGE 2 again, but I bet you already figured out what I'm going to say.

I managed to progress a bit, and the area that artifacted on the RX 590 was running fine on the 1660 SUPER so I assumed the 590 was at fault. Until I entered a new area, and the textures went all stretchy and artifacty, on my shiny new Nvidia card. Yeah.

Logical deduction tells me this isn't a GPU / driver issue. Since both cards are absolutely rock-solid in Warframe at 100% load, and that game does push the shaders pretty hard (generates a lot of heat). There's no way my luck is that bad, so I guess the issue is software with RAGE 2 or my Windows install. Or my RAM and CPU, which is unlikely - actually - since I do WCG 20/7 and I've yet to return an invalid result that isn't the result of AMD's unstable drivers (>_>).

I'm going to re-install the game, and if necessary, Windows, and see if that fixes. If not, then I'm just not going to play RAGE 2, lol. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I'm glad Polaris didn't die. But I'm going to keep the GTX 1660 SUPER.

I'm happy that my RX 590 is still going, even though it's a bit of a pig and needs some tweaking to get it to not explode in my face and use 300 Watts. The 8GB is nice, and I will for sure use it in one of my other PCs as a backup. Which brings me to say, I am going to keep the GTX 1660 SUPER as my main PC's graphics card. There's a few reasons for this, which I will list.

Firstly, this card is extremely power efficient. Both under load and idle; with all my Radeon cards, idle power use at 144 Hz is extremely high as the GDDR5/6 memory doesn't enter idle power-saving states. It's about 30-35W at idle, just for the graphics card. That is really bad for leaving my PC on 24/7, so I had to set the monitor to 120 Hz which fixes the issue. I mean, it wasn't the worst thing in the world; but the 1660 SUPER has ultra-low idle use even at 144Hz so I guess that's one less annoyance to deal with.