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No POST, trying to figure out what's busted

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April 23, 2011 12:22:27 AM

I built a PC about two years ago and has been running (more-or-less) perfectly up until today. My girlfriend was doing something online and then suddenly the monitor clicks over to the "no signal" screen. I look at the tower and it seems to be humming along normally, so I reboot it, but nothing comes up, still "no signal". All the fans start and the graphics card LEDs are on normally, but the 6 phase LEDs on the motherboard are all on (they normally are on for a few seconds during POST then turn off) and it sounds like the HDs are going through their normal boot up. Another odd thing, if I go to press the power button off in the first few seconds it turns off and if I wait, I gotta do the typical hold for a few seconds, in other words, it's acting normally.

I'm hoping it's the graphics card, and I got a spare card coming in on Sunday to test out, but is there anything else I should check or try out. (And yes, I realize it's more than likely the CPU, but I'm hoping otherwise).

So here's what I tried...

- took out the video card, checked all the contacts, reinstalled it firmly
- reset the CMOS
- swearing at it
- tested all the ram individually and in pairs in the configurations that my mobo requires
- checked all the power connections and made sure nothing was shorting or touching the case
- checked both outputs on my graphics card and even tried on another monitor

Here's the relevant components:
- Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R motherboard
- Intel CORE 2 DUO QUAD Q9550
- 4x 2GB OCZ DDR2 PC2-8500
- OCZ MODXSTREAM-PRO 700W PS
- SAPPHIRE HD 4870 1GB

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated and if I left anything out, please let me know.


More about : post figure busted

April 23, 2011 12:24:43 AM

forgot to mention, i went through the NO POST checklist and most did not seem to apply. As I mentioned, it was working fine for 2 years.
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April 23, 2011 12:40:45 AM

Check the GPU for any bulging or leaking capacitors, these would be a clear indication of a bad card. The next item to check would be the PSU. You want to test the voltages at the P1 connector - while the computer is off, and while its on.

I'm more inlcined to believe that the problem is either PSU or GPU, as the CPU problems typically result in complete system shutdown. Still, reapplying thermal paste couldn't hurt, but make sure you completely remove all of the currently applied paste before applying again.
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April 23, 2011 12:46:43 AM

that's somewhat comforting... if the swapping of the GPU doesn't fix it on Sunday, I'll have to wait until Monday to check the PS... of course this is the weekend that I leave my multimeter at work.
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April 23, 2011 3:06:02 AM

checked the gpu too, looks to be in pretty good shape
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April 25, 2011 2:35:08 AM

yep, the gpu failed, we tried another one in there and it looked fine.

since the warranty expired last month, we took it apart and tried clearing out the dust and applying some new thermal paste, but alas it still didn't work.

at this point it could be the minor component we can't see failed or something else. we noticed the fan was spinning slowly when powered, anyone got any idea if the fan feedbacks it's health to the card?

anyways, looks like i gotta get a new one
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May 5, 2011 1:50:43 AM

Best answer selected by f-c-s-m.
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