Troubleshooting: mobo or CPU?

Dear Tomshardwarians,

My home built pc recent crashed in the middle of a game (torchlight 2), with the screen going gray, then fully red, to red and black patterns. After a hard shut down, I was unable to get any monitor input, though bios beep codes seemed to indicate a normal startup sequence. My initial thought was that my graphics card was dead, so I went ahead and bought a new one, as I had been looking to upgrade for a while anyway. After swapping the old for the new, my computer seemed to take issue and would not post. After doing some more research, I realized that there could be issues with exist drivers that could throw off the boot sequence. I tried resetting the bios in order to get the system to recognize the new graphics card to no avail. I am not sure if my bios is actually being reset or not, though I have tried several times by switching the CMOS pins as well as removing the battery for an extended period of time. After having no luck with this I decided to run a more thorough examination of other components, so I started in on the official tomshardware breadboard test procedure. After removing the mono from the case and hooking up CPU, hsf, psu, and one stick of ram, I am receiving a process error (5 long beep) code. Without ram, the system will not fully start (3 second power intervals). With the new graphics card installed I get the same problem as before, prolonged startup, no post or bios beep code, other than a frail wisp of a single beep which honestly sounds like it isn't supposed to be interpreted as actually being a beep at all. Oddly enough, with the old card inserted it still gives the post passed code, as it did before with the same ingredients in the case. My concern is that the process error code heard with the bare essential components installed on a breadboard setup is indicating a failing CPU or Mobo. I am not inherently averse to replacing either component, however my strategy moving forward depends precisely on which component is actually malfunctioning. If it is the mobo, which to me seems the most likely scenario at the moment, then I will buy a new mobo and carry on with all other existing components. If it is in fact the CPU that has failed, I would like to make the move from intel to AMD as the price point last time I checked was crazy good, and I don't see myself over clocking or otherwise testing the limits of the CPU beyond the factory specs, in which case I would stick with intel, which my research indicates tends to be a more robust piece of hardware better suited for such endeavors. Does my current situation strike anyone as being symptomatic of a faulty CPU, mobo, or perhaps something else entirely? Please let me know what you guys think, as it could help me save a few hundred bucks. Thanks in advance.

Ps: I don't believe my problems to be stemming from psu or ram as I have a know working psu I have cross tested that have yielded the same results. I have also tested each of the systems 4 sticks of ram individually in the mobos proper first slot and all have yielded the same results.
6 answers Last reply
More about troubleshooting mobo cpu
  1. Uninstall the old card drivers & run driver sweeper (or registry cleaner of your choice). Then Install the new card & new card drivers.
  2. I don't think it finishes booting. Motherboards seem to fail more often then CPUs but it is hard to say for sure.

    Any chance you can try your CPU in another machine? Or try a different CPU?
  3. ur6beersaway said:
    Uninstall the old card drivers & run driver sweeper (or registry cleaner of your choice). Then Install the new card & new card drivers.


    I would love nothing better than to do this , however I was never able to get past my initial issue of no monitor input, and my mobo does not have a built in graphic interface, I should have mentioned this earlier.

    Here are specs for further reference:

    Mobo: Msi p67-g45
    CPU: i7 2600k
    Orig. gpu: xfx hd6780 (new gpu: powercor hd7850)
    Ram: patriot g2 8gb ddr3 (x4)
    Hd: adata s510 120 gb ssd
  4. I would guess you tried the other pcie slot also ?
  5. ur6beersaway said:
    I would guess you tried the other pcie slot also ?


    Yep, same results.
  6. smeezekitty said:
    I don't think it finishes booting. Motherboards seem to fail more often then CPUs but it is hard to say for sure.

    Any chance you can try your CPU in another machine? Or try a different CPU?


    Unfortunately I don't have access to other known working rigs/ CPUs/ mobos. If I am unable to get a definitive answer from someone who has had this same problem I will start with a new intel mobo, as this is the potentially cheaper route and my current mobos inability to properly reset the bios seems to at least indicate some level of malfunction in that piece of hardware.
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