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No video output on boot

Last response: in Systems
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March 25, 2012 6:11:07 PM

Hello,

I have a homebuilt system I built about 3-4 years ago. It has been rock solid since then but now I have a frustrating problem. I have read several posts on this very issue and I have a general idea what the resolution might be but before I start buying new components I want to try to make sure what the problem may be.

My build:

Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Mobo
Pentium E6850 Dual Core CPU
EVGA 8800 GTX 768MB Video Card
CoolMax CUG-700B 700W PSU
4 GB RAM
2 DVD drives
3 Sata HDs
1 Floppy

About a week ago, while on my machine, the monitor lost video output. I rebooted and the machine seemed to boot but there is no video output. I've been troubleshooting ever since. Here's what I've done, all with no resolution:

Changed monitors
Changed monitor cable
Removed RAM and tried one stick at a time
Unplugged everything except video card, cpu and mobo from PSU
Removed video card, cleaned contacts
Unplugged all peripherals

When the machine boots, I get a one beep post so it seems like the cpu and mobo may be fine. When I removed all ram, I got the error beep pattern for my mobo that says no ram. When I unplugged the video card, I got the error beep pattern for my mobo that says no video card. So by those tests, it seems the mobo is fine?

There was no change when I uplugged most everything from the PSU which would indicate the PSU is OK?

Today for some reason I was able to get some signal to the monitor, but as you can see, it ain't good:


It seems my video card has bitten the dust, but I wanted to see if I could get some more consensus before I bought another one.

And on a related note, assuming it is the card, I see that the newer cards are all PCIe x16 2.0 now. My board has a PCIe x16 1.0 slot in it. Will these newer cards still work in my board?

Thanks in advance!

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March 25, 2012 6:47:25 PM

Based on the photo, I'd say it looks like the video card is going bad. Although - before you buy anything else, try the video card in your other PCIe x16 slot. It's also possible that the slot itself is failing or not providing enough power.

Unfortunately, the best way to test whether it's the video card is to try a different video card - maybe you can borrow one from someone you know?

And to answer your other question, yes - newer cards will work on a PCIe x16 1.0 slot. They're backward compatible. PCIe x16 1.0 has less bandwidth, that's all. Most video cards aren't going to fill up even that much bandwidth - and in any case, your dual-core CPU would become a bottleneck long before the bandwidth of a PCIe 1.0 slot would.
March 25, 2012 7:15:48 PM

Thanks for the quick response. I just tried the other PCIe x16 slot and there is still no video output to the monitor. I guess I'll see if I can borrow a known good one to test first before I shell out the cash for a new one.

I'll repost with my findings.
March 30, 2012 2:46:17 AM

Well, I couldn't find another video card to test in my machine so I went ahead and bought one as I was fairly confident that the video card was the culprit. I didn't buy the latest and greatest just in case it wasn't the problem, but even with that the new one is better than the one I suspected went bad.

I plugged it in, reconnected everything, turned on the machine, and viola! I have video! So it's been two days now without any problems. So far it looks like the problem is solved.

I hope this helps somebody else who might be having a similar problem.
!