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Thread: A665 3DV flickering screen

  1. A665 3DV flickering screen
    #1
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    Device: laptop, Satellite A665 3DV (bought in 2012)
    OS: Windows 7

    In June 2018, my laptop suddenly developed a condition where the screen starts flickering every second or so, with lines and/or bars of random colors manifesting during the flickers and the resolution/clarity suffering as well; the computer still registers moving the mouse and clicking its buttons, though it's rather hard to track the cursor in between the frequent flickers (every other flicker shows a display from a few seconds to a few minutes ago). Through trial and error, I believe I managed to narrow the cause down to a possible overheating problem in the CPU/GPU/motherboard (don't know which one, only that it logically must be one of them), and adjusted my habits of using the laptop to avoid reaching the heat threshold (mainly by keeping the room cool to roughly 22C and not using too many programs/browser tabs). I dare say the problem may have even disappeared abruptly at some point, because I noticed a month or so ago that I no longer need to strictly follow my new approach to operating the computer.

    Yesterday, however, the problem manifested again, only in a new, seemingly selective fashion: The screen only glitches out on certain program windows or Internet browser tabs, and if I switch out from the problematic window/tab, the problem ceases completely, only to immediately reemerge when I switch back to the window/tab that was causing the problem.

    The only things consistent about when the flickering happens now is that the window/tab has to fulfill one of the following:
    1. It has a "lot" of images on it. How many is "too many", I have yet to figure out.
    2. It's a Youtube tab with a running video... though it's inconsistent about whether the flickering happens in the middle of the video or after it ends and the list of recommended videos pops out in the video mini-window. In fact, I've re-run one video that saw this flickering manifest, and the problem didn't manifest again at any point!


    I'm at my wits end, and it doesn't help that the local computer maintenance shops are subpar when it comes to such issues, to put it mildly.

  2. Re: A665 3DV flickering screen
    #2
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    These intermittent issues are difficult to diagnose, but if the laptop can't cope with "too many" images, then I would think it might be a graphics card issue.

    If you are able to connect an external screen to the laptop to check that your laptop screen isn't dying, that would be a good place to start.

  3. Re: A665 3DV flickering screen
    #3
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    I have been told by the one maintenance shop that I trusted enough to have my laptop checked at for at least a more experienced opinion that the problem is most likely in the graphics card. The guy there said something about "accumulation of air bubbles"; is that even a thing?

    On your suggestion... I don't have a spare external screen, and even then I seriously doubt it's the screen itself, because as I've said, the current manifestation of the problem is limited to specific windows/tabs among multiple concurrently running ones, and switching out of the problematic ones immediately terminates the flickering. If the issue was in the screen itself, then logically the problem should've been "universal", right?

    Speaking of which, I've forgotten to mention one more detail: Sometimes the flickering stops on its own without switching out of the problematic window/tab. This mostly happens on Internet browser tabs (I use both Chrome and Firefox), though so far it seems to be mainly if the tab is running a Youtube video page and I paused the video.

  4. Re: A665 3DV flickering screen
    #4
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    To keep your costs as low as possible, you could buy a used graphics card of the same type from eBay and then cross your fingers.

    Just thought of something...

    I seem to remember Adobe Flash has a box that you can tick to enable "graphics acceleration" or similar?

    https://www.macromedia.com/support/d...lp/help01.html

    Of course, this won't cure your problem when you have the browser closed.

  5. Re: A665 3DV flickering screen
    #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexei_Sayle View Post
    To keep your costs as low as possible, you could buy a used graphics card of the same type from eBay and then cross your fingers.
    Laptops - at least this particular model - do not allow changing internal parts like you can do with desktop computers. Such is the price of making a highly compact design.

    Just thought of something...

    I seem to remember Adobe Flash has a box that you can tick to enable "graphics acceleration" or similar?

    https://www.macromedia.com/support/d...lp/help01.html

    Of course, this won't cure your problem when you have the browser closed.
    After some digging, it turns out that hardware acceleration is already enabled for Chrome.

  6. Re: A665 3DV flickering screen
    #6
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    I guess the graphics card is soldered to the Motherboard, which does complicate things somewhat.

    I hope someone more knowledgeable than me can help you fix your problem.


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