So I would like to add my piece, mainly since there are a lot of people out there yet to add their side, even to confirm if solutions did or did not help. I have an HP Omen desktop, about 5 years old. i5 6700k or something or other and an AMD Radeon R9 390X.
So while playing a game I started getting weird flickers and artifacting, this was not long after my computer started to overheat while gaming. So I stopped using it for 6 months, during the quarantine I decided to have another go at removing the GPU myself. I had some trouble getting the GPU off the motherboard. There was a thick wad of dust on the inside, all over one side of the heat sink so I'm glad I decided to do this. Replaced the thermal paste and cleaned it all with isopropyl alcohol and it works better than ever. At least for about a week. After a week of playing Total War: Warhammer 2 great on ultra it started doing some weird artifacts on the screen again. Weird. Immediately realised the graphics were on ultra so I turned them down only for the PC to crash.
So I decided it might not be a hardware issue even though my PC was still very hot, this latest crash had been after a particularly intense overnight gaming session after all. I went to get the latest driver from AMD and my PC died while finishing the install. Black screen of death. My heart froze in concurrence with the PC. Maybe all the things you guys said about disconnecting from the internet while updating were a good idea, I'll make a system restore point and try that.
So anyway after that my PC wouldn't boot. Display froze on startup so I had to a clean install of Windows.
The PC does seem a lot crisper and faster but that isn't the issue. My next plan is to see how it goes for now, try ddu again and install the latest AMD drivers from my PC manufacturers website, according to HP, the latest AMD driver supported by my PC is from 2017 rather than the latest 2020 version. There is a lot of junk in the AMD folder in my PC that I want to see if DDU deletes. Failing that I will replace the graphics card and see if that fixes the issue. I'd be surprised if it didn't. There is an outside chance it a PSU issue too.
So just to update you guys... I went through the process of trying different drivers and methods but none of them seemed to improve things much. I left my PC on while I went to do something and I came back to find it had switched off which is weird since it didn't even have chrome open, sometimes it flickers and stuff if I have a lot of recent tabs open, especially if I'm gaming at the same time. Anyway after that, it ran the benchmark test in Total War: Warhammer 2 without crashing like last time. I turned the graphics settings down a bit to be safe as well and it has managed to play the Skaven campaign for a couple hours now! Fingers crossed it keeps this up, I have a spare graphics card ready to go but I'm not sure it's compatible with my motherboard but there's no harm in trying. I don't think it's fixed but I'm sure the drivers had some effect.
I wouldn't blame the drivers tbh, seems to be something wrong with the graphics card itself. You can argue it's planned obsolescence or just that technology has a lifespan which is decreased by overuse. Having the fan set to 70% at all times while gaming should help since I never heard the fan this loud before. The fan will wear down faster this way but there obviously isn't much life left in the graphics card anyway.
I did that... I'm getting the occasional screen flicker in chrome now but not in-game! Even though the GPU gets to at least 70C when I'm gaming and maybe 30C when browsing so I'm not sure that's the issue unless the sensor on the GPU is crap.
I'll keep you guys updated.
From there, about all you can do is regress to older drivers. I would try one from late 2019 or earlier. If the problem disappears you know it was driver related and can report it to AMD: https://www.amd.com/en/support/contact-email-form
I haven't managed to successfully update to any driver except a 2017 version. It normally crashes the PC and it boots in automatic repair. The 2017 driver was the most recent driver on HP's website for my particular model and the only one to successfully install. It didn't improve much, might have made it slightly worse.
Also it is unlikely to be the driver at fault no? Why would I start having these errors suddenly otherwise? Windows thinks 2016 is a perfectly recent driver and probably never messed with it in the first place? GPU is probably in the lower percentile of quality or just nearing the end of its lifespan.
So I just tried manually installing an AMD driver instead of letting the software do it but that didn't make a difference.. Running out of options, I might have to bake it.
My current solution is to only enable the graphics card when gaming as it hasn't had any funny colours or screen flickers whilst in a game recently. It doesn't seem to like the same screen for too long, desktop or white chrome background but maybe that's just seeing patterns in a mosaic.