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Several parts later, still lost, is it my GPU or PSU?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 14, 2012 2:54:06 AM

Hi all,

Specs: E8400 3.0GHz (Never OC'd) GTX 460 SE 1GB, ASUS P5K-VM, 2x 2GB DDR2, W7 64, 700W PSU

I've been lost all week. All my free time has been on spent trying to figure out which computer part is messing things up.

I was playing a game a week ago before bed when the display went and the PC restarted. From that point on my HDD would click, so naturally I figured it was because it was from around '06. At that point on any gaming would cause the display to go and either the GPU or PSU fans would get abnormally loud. I know that it was not the CPU heatsink fan.

Since then I have purchased 3 different hard drives. The first two were GoFlex externals with 1TB internals inside of them. Both have me the same issue, which was when W7 was installed, upon restarting after installing my Nvidia drivers, the hard drives would make these beep, especially at boot. Windows was overall very unstable, and these beeps would happen often. I isolated both drives from the rest of the PC and it was for sure coming from them the HDDs. This was the beep http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9i5yixsJbk

The display would often go and the beeps would increase. The drives both started to get bad sectors.

I have another internal now, a WD Caviar Blue 500 gig and after installing W7 great, I'm having issues again after installing the Nvidia drivers. The display will go and I can't even get to the desktop. I get a BSOD 0x00000f4 error after the HDD makes these weird spin-up noises one after another. The BSOD says something about a physical memory dump but it moves quick to restart.

So here I am. Prime95 and Furmark lock up the PC. It seems using a lot of resources brings on the click of my old Hitachi, which I'm using to surf the web and such with. I cannot game though.

I've tried underclocking, my temperatures are all really good, especially here with winter. I tried taking ram and using certain slots. Nothing seems to make a difference.

Please help.

More about : parts lost gpu psu

a b U Graphics card
March 14, 2012 2:56:39 AM

Do you have a second PSU you can try? With just what you've said that would be my bet.
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March 14, 2012 3:01:34 AM

trapper said:
Do you have a second PSU you can try? With just what you've said that would be my bet.

I only have a 400 watt at my parents house in a box somewhere. It might still work, I think I just upgraded to a 700 from it, but it's been sitting for a while. I can't recall if I can even use it due to my GPU being a GTX 460. 400 seems cutting it.

If it is the PSU I'll be thankful, but I don't know if it is. With this old Hitachi drive I can get WoW to load for instance but only after being in game for about a minute does the display go, and either fans go blazing with noise or whatever HDD I'm using starts to click, beep, make spinning noises.
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a c 181 U Graphics card
March 14, 2012 3:06:00 AM

Either it is your PSU or your GPU is on its way out. How old is your system? you said one of the HDD's was 06. You will have to do what was suggested above. Good luck to you.
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March 14, 2012 3:11:16 AM

DM186 said:
Either it is your PSU or your GPU is on its way out. How old is your system? you said one of the HDD's was 06. You will have to do what was suggested above. Good luck to you.

Hey, thanks.

I built the system in 2010, but the GPU is from mid 2011, but yup, the HDD was the oldest part.

I can't seem to test if it was the GPU without something locking up. There was also a 120km an hour wind storm a week ago while I was in bed but my PC is hooked up to a surge protector. It was fine in the morning and didn't restart or anything so idk if there was a surge or not.

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March 14, 2012 11:01:06 AM

I ended up taking apart my GPU and noticed it was very clean, nothing was damaged. I reapplied paste and it's 10C cooler.

It still happens sadly. At start my PC just has an attack of hard drive stutters and like power is failing. My roommate turned on a hair dryer and the clicking of my hard drive got worse much quicker. I turned on a vacuum and the same thing happened, so this seems to be heavily power related.

My PC was most likely caught in a surge when I was sleeping recently because we've had a few storms as of late. I use a power surge protector but even so. My parts seem to be great, but this problem confuses me so much.

I'm probably going to go with getting a new PSU, but if it occurs again I'll cry.
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a b U Graphics card
March 14, 2012 11:38:45 AM

If outside sources cause the problem to get worse try plugging it into a different room if you can. Or at least on another socket in the room you're in (use extention cables if you can). Its possible that its the wall outlet.
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March 14, 2012 11:56:40 AM

This is true, I notice the lights flicker a lot and my outlets act funny during storms too. I'm going to try plugging it in elsewhere.
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March 14, 2012 1:40:24 PM

No go :(  Thing just keeps shutting off whenever I run a game, and sometime the display goes and restarts. Can't isolate GPU and PSU. Other parts seem to be fine.
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a b U Graphics card
March 14, 2012 2:29:29 PM

murkraz said:
No go :(  Thing just keeps shutting off whenever I run a game, and sometime the display goes and restarts. Can't isolate GPU and PSU. Other parts seem to be fine.


I would bet PSU is on it's way out. Getting power surges and flickers isn't helping it feed clean power to the rest of the system. Surge protectors aren't line conditioners, which is probably what you want in your case. Try a line conditioner, see if that straightens it out, then try a new PSU, if the line conditioner doesn't fix the problem. What make and model is your PSU?
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March 14, 2012 2:37:58 PM

egilbe said:
I would bet PSU is on it's way out. Getting power surges and flickers isn't helping it feed clean power to the rest of the system. Surge protectors aren't line conditioners, which is probably what you want in your case. Try a line conditioner, see if that straightens it out, then try a new PSU, if the line conditioner doesn't fix the problem. What make and model is your PSU?

The PSU doesn't have a sticker on it. I don't know any other way to check. It is 700W though.

This all started on a windy night a week ago. The only reason why I think it is GPU related is because when I install the GPU drivers my other HDDs have issues, bad sectors all of a sudden, power offs, monitor signal going, fan speeds changed. Playing a game shuts off the PC immediately and the GPU fan will get really loud.

I think that a power surge may have been the culprit to this. The reason why I think it's the PSU is because of how it's interacting with so many different HDDs in similar ways. I'm hoping a PSU upgrade does it...
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a b U Graphics card
March 14, 2012 3:11:00 PM

It all starts with the electrical current going to your pc. Everything in your pc is electrical. Ram, GPU, HDD, Motherboard. If you are feeding bad power to all the parts, you get flaky acting parts and it's hard to pinpoint. Since you have a bunch of flaky acting parts, start your troubleshooting with the power from the outlet and work your way to the keyboard.

If there's no label on the PSU, it's probably not even 700 watts. You can use a multi-meter and measure the power being fed into the pc under load. That should tell you if it's the power supply.
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March 14, 2012 11:26:06 PM

egilbe said:
It all starts with the electrical current going to your pc. Everything in your pc is electrical. Ram, GPU, HDD, Motherboard. If you are feeding bad power to all the parts, you get flaky acting parts and it's hard to pinpoint. Since you have a bunch of flaky acting parts, start your troubleshooting with the power from the outlet and work your way to the keyboard.

If there's no label on the PSU, it's probably not even 700 watts. You can use a multi-meter and measure the power being fed into the pc under load. That should tell you if it's the power supply.

Went out and got a new CPU fan, thermal paste, power cords, 6 pin cables, etc. Nothing seems to work. I have another PSU but it's only a 400W so I can't try it out as I don't know how to use onboard video with a GPU in the slot or out of it.
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a c 181 U Graphics card
March 15, 2012 12:28:32 AM

To use on board graphics pull out the GPU from your rig then plug into the VGA or DVI where all your USB and cat 5 or 6 plugs into. I am an electrician. Your home wiring has something very wrong.

Do you live in a mobile home? Most Mobile homes have a 100 or 50 amp service. Also older homes have the same problem. There for when you have your rig on and other things are trying to run like the refer, lites, heater, etc.

The PSU's have to have so many amps and if it is competing for the amps it is over working it's self. So I would say your PSU has burned it's self out. You can try the 400w but I don't know if it will work.

Because of your wiring or your service. And if you did get a surge in power it could have done some damage to the PSU or your MOBO. Try to make sure everything is off in the home except the REFER and Water heater if elcetric.
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March 15, 2012 12:46:15 AM

I live in a house, but you are right. I'm going to flip off the electricity tomorrow as we haven't done it in weeks amidst wind gusts of 100-120km, dimming lights and all of that. That's how this began.

This 400 watt is a Sparkle 400W-PN with 18A on each 12V. I'm only running an E8400, 4 gigs of DDR2 RAM and a 500 gig HDD with the 460 GTX SE.

I don't know if that's cutting it but I have 36A to work with it seems. This 400W seems to have very good reviews on Newegg. It has a huge "silent" fan. I had used it for a few months then got the 460 and a 630 PSU which is more of a no name brand. In a Stability Power box but I can't find anything on it online and there's little info even on it.
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a c 181 U Graphics card
March 15, 2012 1:11:06 AM

Yes your 400w PSU will work for you so give it a try and let us know the out come and Good luck.
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March 15, 2012 2:31:45 AM

Finally!! Wow. I'm speechless. I figured it would not work but it did, and my PC seems to be running faster than ever. I tried 3 games and they worked. Wasted money on a new HDD, but this one is gonna go eventually. All clicking/beeping and such is gone. Wish I remembered this thing a while ago.

Thanks for all your aid.
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a c 181 U Graphics card
March 15, 2012 2:36:03 AM

murkraz said:
Finally!! Wow. I'm speechless. I figured it would not work but it did, and my PC seems to be running faster than ever. I tried 3 games and they worked. Wasted money on a new HDD, but this one is gonna go eventually. All clicking/beeping and such is gone. Wish I remembered this thing a while ago.

Thanks for all your aid.


Wow I am glad to help and eveything working good that is what I like to hear. You are very welcome.
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