Nvidia "Sentinel" Power supply problem.

Just upgraded the Grapics card in a new PC (Dell 5150) to a PCI-E MSI Geforce 6600gt.

When starting the machine (cold boot) I get a message from the Nvidia "sentinel" telling me that the card isn't getting enough power & it is reducing the cards capabity.

The card does not have any extra power connector (should be able to get enough juice from the PCI-E connection I believe).

This doesnt happen on a reboot & the card seems to be running happy as a songbird even when put under stress or playing a demanding game or benchmark (3D mark 05).

The PC has a 305w PSU (within the reccomended for the card) & apart from the HD & cd.dvd drive doesnt have any other extras sucking power.

The Case fan seems to have a good old spin during the initial boot (BTX case) & I was wondering if that might be part of the problem.

Any advice appreciated.

  SG Atlantis 09:43 01 Dec 05

I emailed nvidia about power requirement before and they said 300w to 350w minimum. I asked the opinion of several retailers what they thought. They all said they wouldn't run the card on less than a 450w PSU.

My system has a 300w PSU. I didn't go ahead with the upgrade.

  citadel 19:19 01 Dec 05

I would get a top brand 480 psu, this will give stable rails and will see you through future upgades.

  flyingbrit 21:33 01 Dec 05

Yea I've had this sentinal message from my 6600gt I had a 350w psu in and I ended up putting in a 500w psu, now no problems. However mine is AGP not PCI-E and it has its own power socket on the board, but I've also got two hdd's pulling power, so a 450w should be ok but I think I'd go with citadel.

Cheers chaps

I've been googling this & looks like its a common problem with the NVIDIA drivers, even when using a powerful PSU. (I've also found that the 6600GT isnt particularly power hungry).

Given that my system is running with pretty low overheads (i.e. Just the Hard drive & optical drive - soundcard is integrated) & that the problem only happens on cold booting that its more a software issue (as seems to be the common conclusion of my google investigation).

I have no problems at all even if I push the card for a couple of hours with a demanding game.

I've changed to the NGO driver which stops the warning and gives a slightly higher benchmark score to boot :-)

If I get any problems that look as if they are power related I'll be straight down to "PSU`s-R-Us" asap.

Does this sound reasonable or am I being daft?

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