Big SMOKE...

Hey guys,

I just burned my PC by playing with nVidia's Inspector.
I was trying to improve graphics and FPS in Microsoft Flight Simulator X and followed the instructions I found in one of the FSX forums:

After applying those changes in nVidia's Inspector, I ran the flight simulator x. When the game loaded, 5 seconds later the PC turned off and it tried to reset, but then I heard funny noise and saw the big smoke coming out the PC case! It was so huge it almost set the fire alarm off, I thought that everything would have melted inside.

I opened my PC case and removed my Graphic Card and Power supply, but no visual damage anywhere except the burnt smell. I am not sure what has burnt but I'm guessing it was my video card since I played with the nVidia's Instructor?

I got Q6600 CPU, 4GB DDR2 RAM, MSI GTX 260 Video Card that runs on Vista 64.

Did I burn my video card only, or maybe the rest as well? How do I check this?

15 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Best answer
    You should take your PC to a reputable repair shop so they can put some new smoke in for you.

    No just joking.

    I would recommend first removing all non-essential parts to see if the PC runs with the bare minimums. Remove everything from the motherboard except the CPU and the RAM, and see if the PC turns on. If it does, plug in the hard drive and see if Windows boots. If it does, start adding other things, GPU, optical drive(s), additional RAM sticks and keep going until you find the thing that won't work.
  2. lol @ smoke refill!

    Thanks for the post mate, I'll try that. I am a bit scared to plug it back into the power but I close my eyes and push the button! Hopefully it isn't the power supply. here is my PC specs by the way:

    Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS3L
    CPU: Intel Q6600 2.40 GHz
    RAM: 4GB (2 x 2GB) G.Skill 1066
    GPU: MSI N260GTX Series
    MONITOR: LG FLATRON W2353V-PF. Resolution 1920 × 1200
  3. Just how far did you try to O/C? Warp Speed?
    Seems odd that you would blow anything including a GPU by just loading a game.
    Coincidence, I would think...
    Interesting article on O/Cing a 260,1953.html
  4. The 260's are known to run quite hot. If it is anything, I'm willing to bet it is the GPU. You won't notice damage visually, but smelling the card closely should confirm damage as well. You can't miss the smell of burnt transistors in the morning...
  5. Have a look at the first page/original post:

    This is what I used and changed the settings as followed those instructions.
    The very last post there is my post, so you can have a look at what i wrote there too.
    It might have been something else, but I never had any issues before, except running FSX on high video settings that has only slowed my FPS. I thought using this Inspector would make my graphics and performance better. I can smell burnt on both GPU and PCU as well as motherboard... I can not tell. I think I'll take my PC to a local PC shop tomorrow and see what parts have survived! I only really worry about my HDD! To be honest with you, I didn't even know this was over-clocking! I'll find out soon and confirm if was the GPU or PCU. I played many games on high running smooth without any problems, i had this video card for over 2 years now. Microsoft Flight Simulator X with addons is worse then playing Crysis...
  6. Is this a 65nm or a 55nm version? Have you been keeping the card clean at all since the time when you first got it? Check the board and psu for burn marks as well use your nose to smell around as burnt pcb as a very unique smell.
  7. I don't know what you mean by "nm" version. The card bios version is 62.00.0E.00.03 and Model P651, there are heaps more numbers and serials but nothing that I see in "nm". Ever since I got the card I only cleaned it once about 8 months ago, and only around the fan area. I never removed the plastic cover.
    I checked each part for burnt marks and smell, and I can only smell the video card, the rest of the parts seem to be fine. With my PCU, I only had it for 5 months and it has a 5 years warranty.
  8. OK does it have the same backplate as the gtx 280? If it does it is the 65nm version. The 65nm version does run hot but if kept clean and cool they hold up for a very long time. The newer version was built a lot cheaper but uses less power thus less heat. As for the card it's shot.
  9. I would say yes, they look a like. This is what my card looks like:
    and it's 896MB
  10. Would anyone know or have heard of nVidia's Inspector and would this cause any problems to a video card if not configured correctly or my video card just got that hot to a stage where it smoked and caused by running FSX?
  11. Anything not configured correctly can easily cause major damage to component. That's why overclocking is dangerous, and this is why programs like MSI Afterburner exist to make the process as safe and easy as possible.

    I suspect you jumped the voltage on the card to high (whether on purpose or by accident remains irrelevant) and it caused major heat to build up on the card. Now all that remains to know is if it is the physical GPU or other components that failed. I'd like to know only because I'm curious... :D
  12. pull the plastic cover off....look for split open little cans....sounds like you popped a cap on the card
  13. Hey guys,

    I removed the cover from my graphic card and I couldn't find any burnt marks. It doesn't even stink anymore.
    I decided to completely remove motherboard from the case. I found big burnt marks at the back of the motherboard which I couldn't see til I completely removed it. I checked PSU, GPU, RAM and other parts for burnt marks, but I couldn't find anything.
    Power Supply looks clean and it seems fine, I don't know how my motherboard got burned. As I said, I was configuring "nVidia Inspector" when my computer smoked out.

    I've taken few photos with my phone and uploaded it on for you to have a look if you're interested.

    I will take my other parts to a local computer shop and test them, including my graphic card. Thanks for the support and sorry if I posted this in a wrong forum, I really thought this had something to do with overclocking a graphic card.

    Graphic Card:


  14. That is a 65nm gtx 260 and if it survived it will likely last a long time. As for the board I am glad that I am not using that brand anymore. I wouldn't trust the psu though but look up what pins that are connected to the psu connector that shorted out are for. If that was on the 12V source it would have had a major impact on everything else in your system.
  15. Best answer selected by Zherne.
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