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New build is making a clicking sound

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January 15, 2012 2:24:53 AM

Hey all,

My new build is up and running, and seems to be doing just fine. Temps are in normal range, everything is running super smooth.

So far I've only had one problem, and it has me a bit worried. If I have my computer under significant load, i.e. during a gaming session, a quick clicking sound will start emanating from my computer. Once it starts, it continues consistently until I turn off the computer. The clicking is very rapid, maybe 2-3 clicks a second. I've put my ear to the comp to try and determine where the sound is coming from, and it seems to be right where the power supply is located. I'm using a CX600. Perhaps I should also note that my motherboard, a ASRock Gen3 Extreme3 Z68, had a bent pin for the HD Audio. I managed to carefully bend it back, and everything seems fine... just thought it was worth mentioning.

Once again, nothing else appears to be wrong with my computer, even once the clicking begins. Temperatures are normal, everything runs fine. I'm just worried that it won't be that way for long if I don't solve this issue. It only seems to start when I'm doing something demanding. It happened initially after the second boot, after playing FEAR (first game, not very demanding), and didn't happen again for a few days, even after hours of playing demanding games, until just recently after I OCed my GPU and started playing Crysis.

Any ideas as to what is going on here?
January 15, 2012 7:14:04 AM

probably one of your psu fan fins is hitting a wire or something.
Get it out of the way.
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January 15, 2012 7:20:53 AM

vx53c said:
probably one of your psu fan fins is hitting a wire or something.
Get it out of the way.


+1, you can push it out of the way with a small screwdriver or something if that's the case, just make sure to unplug it from the wall first.
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January 15, 2012 10:08:39 AM

It could be any other wire on any other fan. just open the side window and have a look.
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January 15, 2012 1:01:05 PM

Don't think it's fan related. 3 of the visible fans out of the 4 total (forth is in front of case) are definitely clear of wires. The PSU fan is facing down, as my case has a vent w/ filter on the bottom for the psu, so I can't imagine it's touching any wires outside of what is in the PSU itself.
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January 15, 2012 1:11:14 PM

goaskalice00 said:
Don't think it's fan related. 3 of the visible fans out of the 4 total (forth is in front of case) are definitely clear of wires. The PSU fan is facing down, as my case has a vent w/ filter on the bottom for the psu, so I can't imagine it's touching any wires outside of what is in the PSU itself.


Hitting its' internal wires is what we are referring to. Other than a mechanical hard drive, the only thing that can make clicking sounds in a system are fans. Run with the side panel off the system until it starts making the noise again,then with your finger you can stop each fan in the case(don't do this with the PSU fan), which would help you eliminate the chance of it being a noisy bearing on a case fan.If you don't like the idea of stopping the fans with your finger, you can unplug each of them individually, but this adds the time of getting the noise to start again several times. If the clicking is inside the power supply, it's very likely a wire that moved a hair during heating/cooldown phase. With your system on its side as it runs. you can pull the filter off and watch this to be sure
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January 15, 2012 2:07:35 PM

If a mechanical drive was making clicks of death sounds at this rate they would have already died. I highly doubt it is an HDD.
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January 24, 2012 9:34:01 PM

Hey guys, sorry for the slow response. So, I managed to solve the clicking problem by turning my PSU right side up, as I initially had it upside down because my case has a bottom vent w/ filter for the PSU. The clicking very rarely occurs now, but I'm a tad disappointed that I can't take full advantage of my case's features. I believe you all were correct about the PSU wires hitting the fan.

Unfortunately, I now find myself with a new problem, again with the PSU, this time electrical. It seems to be making a very high pitch whining/squeaking noise. It is quite faint, but definitely audible, and appears to be getting slightly louder. The reason I believe this to be an electrical phenomena is due to the fact that this whining sound persists even when I have the computer turned off. I can only get it to stop by switching off the PSU itself. After switching off the PSU, the sound quickly fades away.

Any ideas about what's going on here guys? I fear that I will have to return this PSU, which I really don't want to do as returns always take a fair amount of time, and I do not want to temporary loose the functionality of my computer!

On the bright side, I'm considering going SLI with my GTX 560 anyways, which would call for higher wattage PSU... so I'd eventually have to upgrade my PSU this year anyways. Still, I'd like to know what you guys think I should do. Is it dangerous for my system to continue to use this PSU for a while longer?
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January 25, 2012 4:47:46 AM

whining psu = fat capacitors. Just a matter of time before it goes boom and takes something along. You got lots of humidity?
shame to see a corsair failing. If it is in the warantee then give it back.
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January 25, 2012 4:57:23 AM

so there is a risk that it will damage my system? :(  should i not use my computer until i get it replaced?
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January 25, 2012 5:05:00 AM

and no, it's quite dry where I live.
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January 25, 2012 9:18:46 PM

i advise against using it. The UPS only stabilizes the power intake, what the psu will send through the rails when it pops can be from 12v to 120v or whatever it is that your ups is feeding your psu.
On the bright side, this could just be an effect called coil whine. It is some short of incompatibility between mobo and psu with the mobo sending resonance back to the psu making it give off a high pitched whine. If that is the case then another PSU may or may not help you.
Which mobo you got? Do you have another PSU you might try out?
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January 25, 2012 9:21:54 PM

So, I sent an RMA request to Corsair.

Right now I have my computer plugged into the UPS 1100p battery backup unit, plugged into the battery backup outlet (as opposed to the surge protected outlets). I'm hoping that this will protect my computer against any PSU failures, but after a fair amount of research I'm still not positive that the UPS will protect my components from a PSU failure due to "fat capacitators" (i'm not entirely sure what this means).

Can any of you confirm whether or not I am safe to continue using my computer? If there is a true risk, I will not use it until I replace the PSU, but I'd rather not unless absolutely necessary.
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January 25, 2012 9:26:45 PM

I am not entirely sure if this is coil whining or fat capacitors. Unless you can see the capacitors themselves you can't know. Since you say it is dry where you live i would bet on coil whining and corsair has a big issue with it on the CX models.
On the other hand Corsair is great with RMA and will even send you another if you provide them with a CC# and you send them yours. If they don't receive, they charge.
They RMA all coil whinning cases i know of. Best of luck on your new one.
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January 25, 2012 9:26:58 PM

I have a ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 board. I do have an old 450 Watt PSU (very old, but functional), but I don't think it would work with my system.

Are there any other ways to check if it's just a coil whine? Perhaps if I unplug the power supply from the mobo, and then check if it still whines? If it's being cause by incompatibility between the mobo and the PSU, than the whine would cease if connection to the board was severed, correct?
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January 25, 2012 9:34:19 PM

You could paperclip the psu. Sometimes it is the GPU too that sends the resonance back to the psu. Gigabyte mobo combined with CX corsair are widely known to cause this.
Some people say coil whine cannot kill your psu some say it is the omen of impending doom. All i know is one way or the other it is a nuisance and since corsair are so great with RMA i don't see the point in having to turn off your computer from the psu switch each time you need to sleep.
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January 25, 2012 10:19:42 PM

Thanks for the help man, it's much appreciated. I will try the paperclip test, and also unplug everything to see if the whine remains. I will still most likely take advantage of the Corsair RMA. I'm only hesitant because I'm quite confident that the exchange will take at least a week if not triple that. I recently (well, one month ago) tried to take advantage of a warranty for a non-computer related electronic, and I still have no received my replacement. The damn shipping costs alone were $15. Naturally I'm a little put off by it, although I'm sure Corsair is reliable.
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January 25, 2012 10:19:59 PM

Best answer selected by goaskalice00.
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January 25, 2012 10:29:31 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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