Grounding Issue - No System Power with PCI-E card installed

I'm a former IT professional (A+ and CCNA), and I am having some major difficulties with a build I'm currently working on for my girlfriend. This is one of the strangest issues I have come across and am hoping to get some additional input.

The Issue: The desktop will refuse to power at any point that a PCI-E card is installed. All motherboards have successfully POST and go to BIOS without issue, unless a video card is added, at which point the system will refuse to power at all.

I have tried 3 new motherboards, 3 different video cards, and 2 power supplies. The PSU have been tested with a tester and check out fine. The video cards are all functional and run fine in other builds. The first motherboard was RMA through newegg, and it's replacement had the same issue. Being frustrated, I went to a local store and bought a 3rd motherboard, which was tested prior to purchase. Again, the same issue arose once any of the 3 video cards was added.

1 New (Pre-Tested) Gigabyte GA-Z68AP-D3

Intel Core i5-2300

Video Cards:
Nvidia 9500
Foxconn 9800 GT

8GB (2x 4GB) G.SKILL Ripjaws DDR3
Antec 550W PSU

I have pulled the motherboard tray out of the case, and have bench tested it with same results. I have taken a multimeter and done a Continuity Test across the motherboard to ensure the standoffs are properly grounding. So far I have yet to find any issues except the lack of standoff hole in the case for one location.

I'm out of ideas other then a possible CPU issue (final elimination), and am ready to just bite the 15% restock and return everything.

Any ideas would be appreciated.
3 answers Last reply
More about grounding issue system power card installed
  1. Try another psu

    try breadboarding it . Use a screwdriver tip on the front panel connectors to start it
  2. Purchased a 2nd PSU after the first motherboard, and both have had the same the same issue.

    I removed everything and put the motherboard on an anti static bag, used a screwdriver to power it, same issue. Powers fine without a video card, but add a PCI-E card and it does nothing.

    I have basically eliminated every point of failure except the CPU, but that just doesn't seem logical to me. Unless someone has another suggestion, I can't do much but RMA the CPU and hope it resolves the issue.
  3. Are you still around, Rinsaku? You haven't responded or gotten a response since two years ago.

    The only thing I would suggest is to be sure that the graphics card have all the required power supply connectors plugged in, a red flag is when I see no video output from a video card; it may need a couple extra PCIe power connections direct from your power supply unit.
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