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Solved first issue - One more quick question

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  • Homebuilt
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
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August 20, 2009 6:56:27 PM

Edit: I think I've answered this first question now, thanks for the help so far. Just one more question at the bottom of the thread. If you're wondering, my store replaced the dead video card and I'm back in the BIOS now.

Hey folks. First post here, I've come to this forum plenty of times to search for information, but now I've got a question of my own. Hopefully this is the right section, I have a guess as to what caused the problem but it could be anything.

I purchased all the parts for a custom system this past Monday. Brought everything home and assembled it, ran it, and got to the POST and BIOS just fine. Worked with the BIOS for an hour or so, and then went on to install the operating system, Windows 7 RC, once I was satisfied with my settings. In the middle of the installation the computer shut down (which happens during the RC install, but the system never actually recovered), and when I tried to restart it I could no longer get to the POST or BIOS. Fans and LEDs came on, but no display.

The key symptom to me was that while everything seemed to be running fine, many LEDs were lit on the motherboard - 4 for RAM status and about 10 for CPU status, some green some yellow some red. The manual said these were for overclock status, but I hadn't changed any CPU speed or voltage settings. This is of course a new and unfamiliar board for me, but it just seemed strange that all those LEDs would light up and stay lit.

Anyway after troubleshooting as best I could on my own I brought the system back to the store, they gave it another POST test and discovered that the video card was bad, which they exchanged for me (and successfully POST tested with the new one, to be sure).

My question is this:

Is it really possible that the video card just failed on its own after only a few hours of work? Seems unlikely to me, but I guess if cards can fail after a month they can fail in a day. Or could some other defective part have damaged it? The PSU especially, but maybe the motherboard? The PSU I purchased should be well suited to all the other parts I've purchased, but it is a refurbished product which has me wondering. Every refurbished product I've purchased in the past has performed just fine, I personally think they check them over better than they do brand new parts in most cases. But I guess this may be a PSU that started out flawed and stayed flawed, even after refurbishing. What I don't get though is how could the PSU be so messed up that it kills a card in just a few hours? I would think that most damage done by the PSU would be from it supplying too low/high a voltage which would wear the card down over time.

I'm holding off on reassembling the system until I figure out the answer, I'm not about to risk another damaged component. I don't have a second PSU that I can try, this is my first system built on my own though I've worked with friends on several others in the past. Sorry this post is so long, but I want to be thorough so you have all the info you might need. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide, I'd really appreciate it.

The system:
Intel i7 920
Gigabyte EX58 UD4P motherboard
OCZ Gold DDR3 kit - 6GB, 1600Mhz
PNY GTX 275 896MB video card - First one failed, replaced
OCZ StealthXStream 600W PSU - Refurbished
CoolerMaster Centurion case
Seagate 500GB HDD
OEM Samsung DVD writer

More about : solved issue quick question

August 20, 2009 7:12:01 PM

PNY thats your problem, budget brand. I've witnessed more of those things go up in smoke than any other brand. BFG or eVGA only 2 brands I would ever own or sell to my customers.

BTW nice case i have the same one.
August 20, 2009 7:21:19 PM

OCZ StealthXStream 600w psu is quite capable of outputting 700w all day long with no sweat according to Hardwaresecrets.com ,got one myself here now solid as a rock,I agree with MDGJoker PNY dosen't have it together as do others as mentioned above..:) 
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August 20, 2009 7:46:43 PM

Hey guys, thanks for the quick responses. My target price was $1000 so I had to go with the refurbished PSU and the PNY video card. EVGA was my first choice, but the PNY was $200 versus $235 for the EVGA. I didn't realize PNY was so far off the mark. Maybe I'll just leave the replacement card boxed and exchange it for the EVGA if I can come up with some more cash before the return policy is up. Sounds like you definitely think it's worth the 35 bucks.

And yeah MGD the case is awesome, couldn't be happier there. I love the layout of the PSU, and assuming it's not what caused the problem I'm psyched to see what it can do once I get this system running.

So you don't think another component damaged the video card? I was told this PSU has some protective measures that should prevent it from damaging anything, but I just want to be sure.
a c 136 B Homebuilt system
August 20, 2009 8:42:48 PM

The pny is a reference card with the same cooler as all the other GTX 275's ?

That makes it an identical part to all the others and not a cheap poor quality item as suggested .

Sometimes parts fail . Just like some people get hit by lightning
August 21, 2009 12:30:17 AM

One more quick question, I'm just trying to rule out any possible problems to protect the new card (tested the PSU and it's fine btw).

I'm connecting all the cables from the power supply, and the cable for the CPU makes it from point A to point B well enough, but it has to actually cross over my graphics card - it's not stretched tight, but it is resting on the card. I'm just wondering if everything is insulated well enough that that's not a problem or if I'm gonna have to extend the cable or something. It rests on the graphics card's plastic outer shell for the most part but also touches the green circuit board, though there aren't any actual metal parts or connections in that area. I was thinking maybe I could place a small piece of rubber or something like that underneath the cable to make sure it doesn't move?

Trying to attach a photo to illustrate, may or may not work.

a c 122 B Homebuilt system
August 22, 2009 4:21:52 AM

You should be fine. You can also put some extra insulation (a piece of electrical tape would do). You could also pick up an EPS extension cable and route it around the video card.
August 25, 2009 5:48:00 PM

Cooler Master CM690 w00t
!