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Help! Newly built PC powers off after 2 seconds!

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March 2, 2009 11:01:43 PM

I just built my first computer from scratch, using this barebones kit from Tiger:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applica [...] &CatId=333

PNY GeForce 7150 GPU Motherboard
Intel Pentium DC E2200 2.20GHz
Corsair TWINX 2048MB PC6400
XFX GeForce 9600 GSO Video Card
Power Up Mid-T w/450-Watt PSU

Everything went together logically enough. When I applied power though, the front LED illuminated,
the CPU and Case fans spun up, and I was feeling rather pleased with myself -- for about two seconds,
then everything went dark.

Here's where I am on troubleshooting:

1) I THOUGHT the thin coat of some sort of grease which the CPU had on it when it arrived was adequate.
Various people and several websites said no, so I'll get cleaner and thermal paste on the way home.
It seems amazing to me that the lack of paste could be detected and cause a shutdown so quickly, but what do I know? CAN it?

2) I disconnected everything except the fans and RAM, tried again, same result. I even disconnected
everything from the case front to check for a bad power switch, jumped the start terminals with a
screwdriver, same result.

3) Belatedly, I checked the reviews from Tiger not just on the system, but on the case itself. Several
people said their Power Supply was Dead On Arrival, but did not elaborate. Could a failing PS allow the
fans to spin up, run out of amperage, and shut everything down?

I did install the MoBo on standoffs, so do not believe it's grounding against the case anywhere.

I am open to any and all trouble shooting ideas, but would rather not rush out to replace brand new
components until I know what's at fault.

Thanks in advance to all who offer help,

Kelly Fitz
Guam, USA
March 2, 2009 11:03:52 PM

Sorry about the multiple post -- saw the "X" on the icon and thought I had screwed up.

Kelly
March 3, 2009 2:16:56 AM

First impression is a short. There are certain holes on the mobo for the mounts, and there are also holes that aren't supposed to be used. You should check that all the mounts are where they are supposed to be.

Secondly, you should try to wiggle the cpu fan/heatsink. If it moves at all, you may have an overheating issue w/ the cpu.
Related resources
March 3, 2009 2:43:24 AM


No, the mounting holes are clearly marked (with a sort of cross-hatched green circle) and I used only those holes.

CPU and Heatsink/fan are very secure, but I will clean up and re-grease tonight just in case.

I have also purchased a new PSU, as several sites have mentioned similar problems caused by a bad one, and
I have found reports of this case shipping with a dead or semi-dead power supply.

Will post results soon.

Thanks,

Kelly
March 3, 2009 2:47:36 AM

Yes... The PSU can cause the problem you listed. Did you connect the 4 Pin ATX Power Connector?
March 3, 2009 2:50:25 AM



Sure did. I'm hoping the PSU that came with the case was bad, as
some other buyers have indicated theirs were. I'm already learning some
valuable lessons about under-researched, bargain basement parts.

March 3, 2009 3:10:35 AM

Unfortunately, many builders try to save money when it comes to the PSU. Some cheap ones can take out other parts when they go. Hope your new one solves the problem....let us know how it goes.
March 3, 2009 4:56:40 AM

When people think about building a new pc, people seem to want to get cutting edge hardware. But when they see the price, they want to cut back somewhere. Unfortunately the psu is the common target. The psu touches almost everything in the pc. If it blows, it can take anything with it and be very costly.

I've done it myself. My first build I made that mistake. Never again....
March 3, 2009 12:23:25 PM

PSU is a good first choice to change. PSU's are frequently DOA.
March 3, 2009 12:59:55 PM

Bad PSU or a shorted component ... best bet......
March 4, 2009 10:24:28 AM

Well, kids, we're having fun now!

Still no power up. I have:

Installed a new PSU. Cleaned and (very lightly) re-greased the CPU and re-mounted the heatsink/fan.

Placed the MoBo on a cardboard sheet in case it was grounding against the case.

Connected ONLY the 4 pin ATX connector (the squarish plug, right?), the CPU and case fans, the CPU communication (18 pin) plug, and one stick of RAM.

Jumped the start switch terminals, and got 2 seconds of spinning fans followed by silence and darkness (sigh).

Replaced the RAM with a different stick. Same result.

What do you think guys? Am I another victim of a DOA PNY MoBo?

Now, since I bought this system (it took a month to get here) other buyers have reported dead PSUs AND dead MoBos on arrival. Had I seen those reviews, obviously I'd have bought a different kit.

I'm fairly mechanically and electrically adept, so figured snapping together a lower end computer kit would be no trouble. So far I am simply very frustrated (although fascinated, in a sick, twisted way, with the learning process).

Even my son is beginning, I fear, to doubt the godlike qualities of his Dad.
Old Dad is beginning to wish he'd bought a POS HP from the Navy Exchange.

Help! All the assistance you good people have rendered so far is much appreciated, but if I don't make this thing at LEAST get to the POST tests soon I'm gonna need a rubber room.

Thanks, again,

Kelly
Guam, USA



March 4, 2009 11:12:50 AM

My suggestion might take a bit of work but it'll help eliminate a bunch of problems.

1) Take your motherboard completely out of your case. Place it on a peice of carboard on a table or whatever.

2) Hook up the PSU to the Motherboard (both the 20pin and 4/8 pin connector).

3) Insert the CPU and heatsink. Make sure the heat sink's fan is connected. to the motherboard. Some people forget to plug in this and some motherboards won't allow bootup if there is no active fan cooling the cpu.

4) Put in a single stick of ram in slot 0.

5) Insert your vidoe card (I don't believe off the top of my head that 9600 has any power adapaters -sorry being lazy this morning to double check.)

5) Now the question is how to turn this guy on. In your MB manual read the documentation of where the case's plugs go. Find where the power switch is. Use a screw driver or paper clip to "short" the two pins. Just need to make contact for a breif moment and it should fire up. Lets see if that gets you up and running. Please report back with your results. Can't have the son losing faith in good old dad now.
March 4, 2009 2:53:37 PM

It's not a mobo short as the OP has already tried booting outside the case.

Try tying up all the extra wires, to make sure you don't have any exposed wires touching the case.

When you get the flash of power through the system, are you using the front panel switch, or is when you plug the cord into the psu? I've seen bursts of power through the system when plugging in the power cord, even when the switch on the psu is OFF. It may be a dumb suggestion, but is the psu power switch on?

Do you have the front panel wiring on the right pins? You may have switched the power and reset wiring.
March 4, 2009 5:05:07 PM


kubes,

What you suggest here is precisely what I did last night (and described above), with the exception that I did not install the video card, as the MoBo also features on-board graphics, so that was one less accessory to troubleshoot.

1) Card was out of box, on a cardboard sheet, connected ONLY to power supply and both fans.

2) Installed one RAM stick.

3) Shorted "start" pins wit a screwdriver.

4) Fans powered up for a couple seconds, everything powered down.

5) Replaced RAM stick with another one, in case RAM was shorted or bad. Same result.

6) Back to "AAAaaaarrrrgh!".

Any other ideas?

Kelly





kubes said:
My suggestion might take a bit of work but it'll help eliminate a bunch of problems.

1) Take your motherboard completely out of your case. Place it on a peice of carboard on a table or whatever.

2) Hook up the PSU to the Motherboard (both the 20pin and 4/8 pin connector).

3) Insert the CPU and heatsink. Make sure the heat sink's fan is connected. to the motherboard. Some people forget to plug in this and some motherboards won't allow bootup if there is no active fan cooling the cpu.

4) Put in a single stick of ram in slot 0.

5) Insert your vidoe card (I don't believe off the top of my head that 9600 has any power adapaters -sorry being lazy this morning to double check.)

5) Now the question is how to turn this guy on. In your MB manual read the documentation of where the case's plugs go. Find where the power switch is. Use a screw driver or paper clip to "short" the two pins. Just need to make contact for a breif moment and it should fire up. Lets see if that gets you up and running. Please report back with your results. Can't have the son losing faith in good old dad now.

March 4, 2009 5:14:37 PM


All wires were secured, and the box was not connected in any way (except PSU to MoBo).

As described above, nothing was connected except the fans and 1 RAM stick, which
I swapped out for another one after the first failure.

I started it (for the 2 seconds or so it ran) by shorting the "start" button pins. None of the
front panel stuff was connected, so the front panel wiring is not a factor, and neither is the switch.

Yep, PSU swith is "on", and cord is plugged into wall. I had to chuckle when I read that, because
I am ALWAYS going on about checking easy stuff first when working on cars, boats or planes.
Guess we have to apply the same to computers! (grin).

I'm stumped as to what else it could be except the MoBo or chip . . .

Luckily my son is treating it all as a learning experience and taking it with (relatively) good humor
and patience, but *I* am getting frustrated . . .

Kelly






aford10 said:
It's not a mobo short as the OP has already tried booting outside the case.

Try tying up all the extra wires, to make sure you don't have any exposed wires touching the case.

When you get the flash of power through the system, are you using the front panel switch, or is when you plug the cord into the psu? I've seen bursts of power through the system when plugging in the power cord, even when the switch on the psu is OFF. It may be a dumb suggestion, but is the psu power switch on?

Do you have the front panel wiring on the right pins? You may have switched the power and reset wiring.

March 4, 2009 5:24:26 PM

You might have a bad mobo....That's the only other thing I can think of.
Also, do you have a friend that has a similar lg775 mobo to test the cpu on?
That would eliminate that component and you could probably test the ram on your friends board as well.
If those all pass then send back the board it's most likely D.O.A.
Hope this helps!
March 4, 2009 5:34:23 PM


I think we're probably down to bad MoBo or Processor as well (any other ideas?
Anyone?).

I'll check with our SysAdmin at school (I teach science here on Guam) as to
whether we have any machines with a compatible socket 775 and RAM, good idea.

My other PC is a dinosaur and would be of no help. If in fact the board is dead,
does anyone have a recommendation for a good (read: reliable) budget board?

I'd rather pay for a replacement than go through all this again, and one other
customer (again, writing his review AFTER I bought this system) claims he got
one Mobo DOA with the barebones kit AND a dead replacement from PNY!

It's too bad, I've had good luck with their memory products, so the MoBo issue
is disappointing.

Kelly
March 4, 2009 5:45:36 PM

Bad or incompatible ram could cause such a problem.
But---Corsair is a good brand, and I doubt that you would get two bad sticks.
Since the ram was sold as a package, I would hope that it was compatible.

One thing to try is to reset the cmos to make certain that you are at the default values which should work.

I still can't help but wonder if you got sent a return which was defective, based on finding material on the cpu which should never have been there.

Intel, Asus, and Gigabyte would be my three picks for a reliable motherboard, using intel chips. You should be able to get one for about $50.
Keep the cpu and ram, which are probably good.

March 4, 2009 6:14:21 PM


OK, I'm a computer rookie (except as a user).

Is it somehow possible to reset CMOS to defaults on a computer that won't power up?

By the way, this forum is wonderful, as are the many friendly and helpful folks who are on it.


Thanks again,

Kelly




geofelt said:
Bad or incompatible ram could cause such a problem.
But---Corsair is a good brand, and I doubt that you would get two bad sticks.
Since the ram was sold as a package, I would hope that it was compatible.

One thing to try is to reset the cmos to make certain that you are at the default values which should work.

I still can't help but wonder if you got sent a return which was defective, based on finding material on the cpu which should never have been there.

Intel, Asus, and Gigabyte would be my three picks for a reliable motherboard, using intel chips. You should be able to get one for about $50.
Keep the cpu and ram, which are probably good.

, I'm a computer rookie (except as an internet user
March 4, 2009 6:29:07 PM

Read the mobo instruction manual. If you did not get one in your kit, download it from the pny web site. I think there are some jumpers that you switch to reset the cmos. Removing the battery from the mobo for a few minutes should also work. While you are at it, go through the whole manual looking for something that might have been missed.

Does the mobo have any lights, lcd indicators or such which may indicate the problem?

Can you attach a speaker? Some mobo problems give sounds to identify the problem.
March 4, 2009 7:48:23 PM

The MoBo came with basically no documentation, and the manual on the
website is less than helpful (doesn't even show the same configuration as
the one I got). It's another reason I'm inclined to go with a more reputable
manufacturer rather than waiting for a warranty replacement.
I'll have another look, though.

Thanks,

Kelly

March 4, 2009 10:06:57 PM

fitzguam said:
The MoBo came with basically no documentation, and the manual on the
website is less than helpful (doesn't even show the same configuration as
the one I got). It's another reason I'm inclined to go with a more reputable
manufacturer rather than waiting for a warranty replacement.
I'll have another look, though.

Thanks,

Kelly


I think you should cut your losses, and send the kit back.
No doubt you can get a better list of parts from these forum members.
March 4, 2009 10:11:34 PM


Not a bad idea. I'll have to explore what options I have in terms of return policy with Tiger Direct. Meantime, my school's SysAdmin just confirmed that we have some machines I can swap my RAM and Processor into to make sure they're OK . . .



March 4, 2009 11:38:07 PM

Fitz...if it came with no documentation then you're the victim of a re-send....They take a board that they don't want to test but believe it's ok and send it back out so the poor customer can verify that it is indeed dead!
I personally don't pay for something I can't touch or hold in my hand...ratings or no ratings.
I believe that if I give you 200.00 that you in turn give me a product in hand and if that product doesn't work I'll be knocking your door down for one that does!
Think of buying a product with a cheque, if the cheque bounces they're not gonna look at if the ink is bad or the paper is faulty. They're gonna come after your ass and demand the money! and possibly press charges!
Treat this as the same!
Hope this helps!
March 5, 2009 11:12:28 AM

Sorry, I misread the OP about some of his test setups. Ya, I am in agreeance that this is most likely a bad board. All the signs are saying you got a open box item MB which is a coin flip on if its going to be good or not.

I had TigerDirect do that to me before in the past and now I stick strickly with newegg for my parts.
March 5, 2009 4:49:42 PM



Thanks all,

I had never looked at Newegg before. I'm impressed with
their range and pricing, and will give them a try.

I assume from the above that I should resist the impulse to buy
anything from them marked "open box", huh? But at least they
identify it as such!

The SysAdmin at my school has some socket 775 machines I can
try my RAM and processor in, hopefully today. If that does in fact
narrow it down to the MoBo I'll spring for an ASUS or Gigabyte.

This whole thing has been frustrating, especially for my first build,
but with the help of the GOOD PEOPLE here and on a couple other
sites, I've learned so much through the experience that it's been
more than worthwhile.

Kelly
March 6, 2009 6:02:34 AM

Newegg is probably the best site to buy from. They have great prices, and even better customer service. Open box items are risky, you don't know what you are getting. That is why there is a price discount on those items.

Good luck, let us know what you find out.
March 6, 2009 6:28:12 AM

just look at some of the mobos used by the respondendents in their signatures...they usually give the board they are currently using.
You caneasilydraw a conclusion as to what are the good boards to buy just from that!
My son just bought a Gigabyte board the GA-EP45T-DS3R and a E7400 processor and it ROCKS!
Went in without any hassles and fired up on the first boot and hasn't quit yet....that was 2 months ago!
Hope you get this sorted out soon so you can enjoy some gaming and no head-aches.
March 25, 2009 8:54:22 AM


You folks are wonderful! Without you, I had no clue how to proceed. With your patient instruction, we trouble-shot it down to a bad MoBo DOA right out of the box. AAaargghhh. . . .

Pretty frustrating for our first ever build, but you know what? I'm kind of glad it happened. We learned a lot more than if it had fired right up!

I blew off the POS PNY MoBo. Tiger refuses to refund it, as I didn't report it within 30 days. Could be because it took them 30 days to ship it via USPS, huh?

So I TRIED to order my new parts from NewEgg, per your suggestions. Problem; they will neither ship to, nor take orders from, the End of The Earth. Damn. Back to Tiger.

Anyhow, I bought the Gigabyte MoBo several of you suggested, wired it up, and fired it up. We're at the BIOS screen at last!

Now what do I do first? Install the drivers, or install XP?

We have a SATA hard drive, but from my understanding since I have XP Service Pack 3 it should install correctly. If not, I know where I'll be coming for help.

Again, a Thousand Thanks from Guam, you folks are GREAT!




March 25, 2009 1:17:07 PM

When you install XP, it will ask you to insert the cd that came with the mobo. That is where it will get the drivers. Later, you might want to get the latest drivers from intel or wherever.

For the first test, I would download and run memtest86+ from cd for at least a full pass to verify that all the ram is ok. There should be no errors.

Then install the OS.

After the os is installed, run prime95 to exercise the cpu. Run it for about an hour with the option to check rounding errors. There should be none.
Monitor the temperatures during this process. Speedfan is a good program to use.
---good luck---
March 25, 2009 2:18:57 PM

The first thing you should do at that point is change the boot order in the bios and boot off of your OS disc. It will start the format and windows installation. Once that is done and you get into windows, you can then install all of your drivers.
!