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Would a Loose HD Power Cable Cause My Monitor to Go Black?

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August 22, 2008 10:41:31 PM

I've been having this problem with my monitor going black every so often. I think I may have found the cause. The power cables that I use are very stiff and one power cable is shared between two hard drives (the two cables are joined together and go to the power supply). I think that when I put the case on, it jiggles the power cables and maybe cause one of them to get loose. I'm thinking that the one that gets loose is the one that goes to my main drive.

Is this a good guess or not?

Also I'm not sure if it is related. I had an error caused by source SPTD in my event log.
a b C Monitor
a c 157 G Storage
August 22, 2008 11:38:08 PM

SPTD may be there if you are running DAEMON tools.

If that is causing problems, try to uninstall it for a test.

When a hard drive disconnects you normally have a temporary system freeze and resume on secondary drives, and a BSOD or write failure message on a primary(OS) drive.

It should not cause the screen to go blank.

Can you please list more info on your system including all parts and OS.
August 23, 2008 12:45:18 AM

GA-EP45-DS3L Mobo
Q6600
8800GTS
Samsung 80GB HD
Seagate 250GB HD
Thermaltake SopranoRS case
Ultra Xconnect 500 (maybe 550) Watt Power Supply (got from friend) with really stiff power cables

It seems to work with the case open (don't want to jinx it).

Let me know if I forgot anything.

Do you think something is getting too hot?

I was also thinking about that.

Additional Info: I added a new motherboard, cpu, and PSU. I was playing a few games last night and my monitor went blank. Last night, I just kept my case open and it didn't happen again (didn't think much more about it at the time). Today I started up my computer with the case closed. I was playing a few games and the same thing happened again. I tried restarting and every time it got past the windows logo, my monitor would just go blank. I took out my video card, put it back in, reconfigured the cables a bit, and let it sit. I finally got in, turned my resolution way down, did a defrag, check disk for errors, and virus scan. All revealed nothing. When I put the side panel of my case back on, my screen eventually went blank. The cables were a bit loose when I checked (especially the HD cable). It is pretty tight inside the mid-tower and I thought my case was just knocking into the cables. I also thought that it could be the heat. Now, I'm running my computer without the side pannel and it seems to working fine (it's been running for a few hours fine and I can play Crysis on High with no issues). I would like to figure out the problem though, so that I can put my case side panel on.
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a b C Monitor
a c 157 G Storage
August 23, 2008 1:21:13 AM

If you want to keep an eye on your temps tryout HWmonitor. It will log your high temps.

http://www.cpuid.com/hwmonitor.php

Closing your case should not overheat it(the case looks fairly ventilated), but that is what HWmon is for. try to keep your cables away from the door so it does not hit them.
August 23, 2008 1:28:53 AM

Thanks, I'll give that a try. Will HWMonitor work with other programs? I believe I also used to have Ntune, but now I don't appear to have it (the Ntune folder is empty). Should I uninstall RivaTuner? I installed it to check on my Video Card Temp. Its idle temp is about 58ish C with the side off and it was in the low 70s C right after Crysis. Also, I might need to get new cables in order to keep them away from the side. Could that be the problem? I can surely get a few cables from NewEgg for not too much. I'm also using an old Dell P990 (really old). I guess that could also be the problem, but I don't see why having the side panel off would effect the monitor.
a b C Monitor
a c 157 G Storage
August 23, 2008 1:31:59 AM

You do not have to uninstall anything to make HWmon work. Your video temps are fine.

You should not need new cables, just do some bending(with them unplugged to avoid damage to your hdd connectors, sata is delicate) they should stay in place, tie excess away.
August 23, 2008 1:38:38 AM

I think it might be my CPU (Q6600). I don't have it overclocked, but the cores are in the 60s and I'm idling right now. Is there any way to increase the stock fan speed.

Should I turn my computer off. I heard that the Q6600 runs hot, but this seems really hot. I'm sort of scared now that I know. Do you think I hurt my CPU?
a b C Monitor
a c 157 G Storage
August 23, 2008 1:56:28 AM

Enter your bios and go into the hardware monitor, there you will be able to turn off the fan speed control.

What OS are you running? Vista will auto use the speed step feature. If you are on XP, go into the display properties and click on the "Screen Saver" tab, select the "Power" button. Now set the "Power scheme" to "Portable/Laptop". Apply that setting then you can readjust your times for everything or even set it all back to never and apply again.

This will make the cpu run at 1.6GHz when it is doing nothing. This can drastically cut the idle temps and is the reason many idle in the 30's. Also make sure it is enable along with C1E in the bios.

Always remember the stock cooler will run hotter, but 60 idle is still kind of high at idle.
August 23, 2008 2:07:35 AM

nukemaster said:
Enter your bios and go into the hardware monitor, there you will be able to turn off the fan speed control.

What OS are you running? Vista will auto use the speed step feature. If you are on XP, go into the display properties and click on the "Screen Saver" tab, select the "Power" button. Now set the "Power scheme" to "Portable/Laptop". Apply that setting then you can readjust your times for everything or even set it all back to never and apply again.

This will make the cpu run at 1.6GHz when it is doing nothing. This can drastically cut the idle temps and is the reason many idle in the 30's. Also make sure it is enable along with C1E in the bios.

Always remember the stock cooler will run hotter, but 60 idle is still kind of high at idle.


Thanks, I'm running xp. I'll give that a try. I was shocked at how high it was when I saw it. I had no idea. The stock cooling is def spinning, I felt the warm breeze :p . The fan came with thermal paste on the bottom, but should I add more. Also is there a good quality cpu fan that I could buy somewhere?

I'm also having trouble getting into the Bios. The Bios screen goes by way too quickly (it's the first screen on and by that time my keyboard hasn't even started yet. I'm using the G15. Do you know anything about the Bios issue?

Thanks for the help so far. This is the first computer that I built. Hopefully I can get all these issues resolved.
a b C Monitor
a c 157 G Storage
August 23, 2008 2:25:48 AM

Do NOT add more paste(If you remove the heatsink you HAVE to clean it and use NEW paste), it should be fine, Just make sure ALL the pins(the 4 that hold the heatsink on) clicked in solid to the board.

Try to hammer the crap out of del as soon as you hit power and see if it goes. If not, break into a computer museum and steal a old PS2 keyboard. Then enable the setting called USB legacy support or similar in the bios.
August 25, 2008 2:09:43 PM

Monitor going black has nothing to do with hard drive power cables. It's a lack of signal somewhere in the video subsystem. Might be a dodgy monitor cable, monitor itself is intermittently broken or defective, video card not seated good in the slot, etc, or of course video card overheating.

Since your video and CPU both seem hot it is likely you have inadequate case airflow or a very warm ambient environment requiring more than average airflow to compensate. While the video card temp isn't exceptionally high in the 70s after a game, it was certainly higher during the gaming.

Worrying about power management features isn't important right now, your processor should idle under that temp without EIST and C1E enabled. You'd only be masking the problem so you need to see how much difference having the case open makes. Point a desk fan at the open system and see how much the temp drops. If it drops by more than about 8C you need to modify the case and/or add some fan(s). If it doesn't drop more than you need to take the heatsink off, clean off the original thermal interface material and apply a very thin coat of high quality heatsink grease, and be sure you have all the 'sink pushpins fully inserted when reinstalling the 'sink.


Lastly, that PSU is junk and unsuited for the system, if it isn't failing now it will be eventually. Better to replace it than wait and risk problems later... then see if that helps, large power fluctuations can cause higher current consumption in the interim which would also raise temps.
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