Built a system about 3-4 years ago and had a lot of help here! Now it's pooping out. To give you an idea of my usage, I graphic design, play games (this system let me play max payne 3 on full res which was sweet), and run my TV, music, and movies off the computer.
Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 92mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
The system recently started heving problems booting up. It would start up for about 5 seconds, then turn off. Then repeat. This actually happened intermittently over the years, but usually after a power off/unplug for 1 minute, then plug back in, it would work. Now, sometimes it will boot up, and I hear the hard drive working, but no display. The video card's fan will be running half the time, and half the time when I boot it won't turn on at all and the red "thermal" light is on.
What I've done so far
1. Got a hold of an old video card, and tried booting up with that.
2. Checked all cables and plugs. Unplugged and replugged most cords int he mobo. Cleaned fans. Removed fan from video card, cleaned off flakey thermal paste, reapplied new thermal paste. Removed cooler for microprocessor. Cleaned and reapplied thermal paste. Broke one of the annoying clips which attach the cooler, but three still on so what the hell.
System worked! For about 3 days, then the same problem. No boot up.
3. Figured it might be my PSU. Bought a new PSU from best buy (can always return). Plugged in all components with new PSU.
So now I figure it's my mobo, which means I'm basically forced to upgrade due to new tech, right? I am poor; work in education at a non profit. But I could probably sell my wii and upgrade. I figure I could hold on to the radeon card, the hard drive, DVD drive, PSU (it's 600w afterall), and case. But I'm open to the opinions of ya'll here, since you are smarter than me.
Anyway, thanks for your time reading this and looking forward to hearing your ideas!