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[Help] My computer won't start.

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#1
Tactical

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Hi, I'm not really much of a hardware guru, and I'd like to ask for a little help. I am a gamer, and just bought a new graphics card for my computer. It worked fine for about six hours, and then next thing I know, I hear a "pop" I see a small flash from inside my case, and then there's nothing. It temperature inside the case was a little warm, but it wasn't hot. However my only assumption at this point is either the card overheated, or my processor overheated. The graphics card I bought was a Galaxy 1GB Geforce GTX 465. My system specs were: An Intel 6600 quad processor, 2GB DDR2 ram, and I'm not positive on the motherboard, I haven't really looked at it, and a 650 watt PSU. Cooled by like 4 internal fans, as well as a well ventilated case. I was playing battlefield bad company 2 at the time when my computer fried. This morning, I pulled out the graphics card and reinstalled my old one, just to make sure it wasn't the card. However my computer still won't start. No beeps, no lights, nothing. Does anyone know how I can diagnose what went wrong, and what sort of repairs I would be looking at? Basically.. what should I do now?

Thanks!
-Tact


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#2
ChiefZeke

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My initial guess is the power supply died and, probably, in the process it took out the motherboard and the new video card. The new video card - did it come with specifications for the required size of the power supply?

First, check the power supply for a fuse. Probably not there but won't hurt to check.

If you're familier with electronic parts/devices look for leaking/bulging capacitors, burnt/scorched items on the motherboard/video card, odor of electronic items that were overheated.

#3
Tactical

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After a bit of digging around online, I've also come to the conclusion it was most likely the power supply. The fuse was still intact, but there was a faint smell of burnt electronics within the PSU. The motherboard doesn't have any burn marks, and rather than dealing with the new video card, I just returned it to the store which I bought it from. After a bit of research, I decided the GTX 460 would be a better buy anyways. (Aside from now needing the cash for a new PSU... None of the capacitors are swollen or burst, so hopefully the mobo is still okay. The PSU was a 650 watts, max. The graphics card minimum specs was a 550 watt PSU. However after looking at my current PSU, I noticed there was no name brand, the only markings I found was an inspection back in 2008, so it very well may have been a cheaply made product that was dying anyways, and the card just drew in a bit more current than it could handle despite the 650 watt spec.

#4
CoffeeFiend

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The PSU was a 650 watts, max. [snip] However after looking at my current PSU, I noticed there was no name brand, the only markings I found was an inspection back in 2008, so it very well may have been a cheaply made product that was dying anyways, and the card just drew in a bit more current than it could handle despite the 650 watt spec.

There you go. Cheap PSUs VERY often do just this. Quality is everything when it comes to PSUs.

There's some quality PSUs under 550W that would easily handle that load, and then there's the no name cheapos... Like this 650W unit that dies at 184W in a load test (more LULZ from other cheap units in the following pages). When it comes to cheap no-name units, wattage claims are little more than marketing lies (lots of under-spec'ed parts, inadequate cooling, etc). It's not uncommon for them to take out the rest of your computer with them when they die either.
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#5
Zenskas

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Hopefully the rest of your PC is all good :)
Very smart move going from a 465 to a 460, the 460 draws less power and is actually faster the majority of the time :lol:
Grab a decent PSU like the Seasonic X-650 650W and your set. Looks a bit expensive but extremely efficient, silent at idle (fan actually turns off), and very good quality not to mention modular :thumbup
If you can't afford that maybe a Corsair HX-650W, I have the HX-520W and it runs my system fine. I could wack an i7 930 with a bunch of HDD's and high end DDR3 RAM and it will still run fine with my GPU. The 260 draws pretty much the same amount of power as a 460, if not more, so the HX-650W would run your PC with ease.

EDIT: Oh there is also the new Corsair AX series, absolutely stunning PSU's, the AX-750W will run dual GTX 460's and a quad core CPU @ 4.5GHz no problem. I am upgrading to an AX-750 or 850W PSU in about a month or two, just because my HX-520 is getting old/dusty and because I am going to move to a more powerful CPU/GPU soon.

Edited by Zenskas, 23 August 2010 - 04:13 AM.

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#6
puntoMX

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EDIT: Oh there is also the new Corsair AX series, absolutely stunning PSU's, the AX-750W will run dual GTX 460's and a quad core CPU @ 4.5GHz no problem. I am upgrading to an AX-750 or 850W PSU in about a month or two, just because my HX-520 is getting old/dusty and because I am going to move to a more powerful CPU/GPU soon.

Bad reasons :P, just tell us the truth that you want something new ;).

Even a 400W would be fine from the brands you mentioned before...

There's some quality PSUs under 550W that would easily handle that load, and then there's the no name cheapos... Like this 650W unit that dies at 184W in a load test (more LULZ from other cheap units in the following pages).

They forgot to ad that extra magic smoke... good link, finally some one that tests the non-highend stuff. I was not surprised that the Delta came out good for a 300W PSU.

#7
Tactical

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I had actually read that same link the night before lol, I posted my situation on a few forums, and someone linked me to that.
Anyways, I took back that graphics card, and used the cash to buy an Antec TP-750 blue PSU. It's pretty nice and was on sale for $123 at fry's.

But there's also some bad news. Apparently something else went along with the old PSU. There's no burnt electronics smell, the capacitors on the mobo look fine, the processor looks fine, visually, everything looks good right now. But when I flip on the power, the fans and lights come on, I can open the cd/tray, and the hard drive disks spin, but I'm not getting any video signal. My monitor reads the card, as it doesn't say "no signal" but it's not actually receiving a signal. The screen stays black. So, I'm trying to figure out if maybe my ram fried, or my processor, or maybe the mobo went bad too. I can't even get BIOS right now, so I'm going to assume it's either the processor or the mobo. What do you guys think?

On a side note, what controls whether the PSU is on or off? Besides the power switch on the PSU. Because this computer has had an ongoing issue, where occasionally it will power on for a few seconds, and then power back off again, and it would repeat the cycle until you messed with it for a bit of flipping on and off the power. Would it be the motherboard? I noticed that even with the new PSU, it just had that same issue a moment ago.

Here's a pic of what it currently looks like.

Posted Image

Edited by Tactical, 23 August 2010 - 02:13 PM.


#8
Zenskas

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EDIT: Oh there is also the new Corsair AX series, absolutely stunning PSU's, the AX-750W will run dual GTX 460's and a quad core CPU @ 4.5GHz no problem. I am upgrading to an AX-750 or 850W PSU in about a month or two, just because my HX-520 is getting old/dusty and because I am going to move to a more powerful CPU/GPU soon.

Bad reasons :P, just tell us the truth that you want something new ;).

Even a 400W would be fine from the brands you mentioned before...

Yeah a SUPER HIGH quality 400W might run an i5 @ 4GHz+ with 5 HDD's and a GTX 260 but why would I bother when it's not even going to have dual 6 pin connectors forcing me to use adapters, not to mention is starting to push it's limits? Better to get a PSU overpowered that will last me into the future.
My HX-520W also makes a buzzing noise, nothing I can do as it has no warranty left because last owner took it apart to clean. I got it super cheap so I'm no complaining but would obviously like something that does not buzz.
On top of all that, will be going the SLI GTX 460 route soon, running two of those off a HX-520W, let alone a 400W, with a quad core etc isn't good at all :lol:
[The ULTIMATE Sleeper PC] IBM Aptiva mATX | i3 2120 | Cooler Master Hyper 212+ | ASUS P8P67-M PRO | 4GB G.Skill Ripjaws 1333MHz | OCZ Vertex 3 120GB | Inno3D GTX 570 | Thermalright Shaman | Antec Neo HE 550W
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#9
puntoMX

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Tactical,

Put those memory modules to the left, so DIMM 0 is the first one. I see you didn't use your new video card? Reset the BIOS...

Start with that ;).

#10
CoffeeFiend

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I was not surprised that the Delta came out good for a 300W PSU.

That's a far more honest rating than most though.

Anyway. Often, when a cheapo PSU fails like that, it makes really nice voltage spikes. Those often take out the motherboard (if often doesn't take much), sometimes more... I'd still start by clearing the CMOS like puntoMX said.
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#11
ChiefZeke

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When the PSU went and maybe took the video card it could have affected the motherboard video card connector itself - burnt some of the internal parts of the connector. It would be very hard to visually look inside the connector for scorch/burn marks but you could try.

I'm assuming the motherboard does not have onboard video which could be turned on to check things out?

Motherboard have an onboard POST code indicator?




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