Is defective HardWare really common on building a rig?

Just wan't to know that

will i expect a defective HW(MOBO,RAM,MEM,HDD,PSU)

during the build
Or its just small chance

WHAT will I do if I encounter defective parts?
12 answers Last reply
More about defective hardware common building
  1. No, it's not common. We hear about it more because people complain when things are defective. I have built many computers over the years, and have only had 1 defective part(a video card). The defective card was an upgrade to a system, so I RMA'd the card and just used the old card for a week until the new one came in. If you do run into defective parts, try to get them replaced where you purchased it - it will be quicker and easier.
  2. defective hardware is surprisingly common. I've had a large number of defective components over the years. Most defective products will show their defects within 30 days of purchase and almost certainly within 6 months. After that they should last through their warranty period. The only exception would be products with inherent defects that have been recalled (such as the NVidia 8000 series mobile GPUs).

    I've had several defective graphics cards (all from NVidia), several defective motherboard from EVGA (NVidia Chipsets were horrid, not entirely EVGAs fault), a defective SSD from Mushkin, at least two defective HDDs from Seagate, a defective mouse from Coolermaster and a defective Sound Card from Creative Labs. Granted these span many years of building and many PCs but it's higher than I would like.

    Most OEMs are very good at speedily replacing components on their dime and many will even cross-ship as long as you provide them with a credit card number. The only OEM that was a dick about RMAing the defective product was Coolermaster.

    Mushkin has an outstanding service department and warranty terms, as do XFX, EVGA, Corsair, Logitech and Asus. There are of course more out there.
  3. Defective parts have been rare in my experience.
  4. 2 out of 3 answer its not common,

    I need more...just to be sure... :D

    majority wins
  5. It depends. I would say often if the person uses cheap parts from brands with lower reputations, and ultimately lower quality then the potential for defective parts is higher. However, even good brands are known to have bad batches. Intel when they released Sandy Bridge had to issue a recall on tons of motherboards with the H61 and H67 chipsets because of a flaw they had.

    Anything mass produced runs the risk of defects. I've had defective parts before, 2 actually when I built the rig in my sig. RAM module and motherboard, neither were cheap and neither were from bad brands (Gigabyte 990FXA-UD5 mobo priced at $170 when I bought it, and Corsair 8GB RAM module that I paid $70 for).

    Addendum: Another thought that just came to me, now I don't have any hard data on this mind you, but as someone who has worked many years in the logistics field (Shipping), I'd guess that a large percentage of parts that are defective out of the box are a result of shipping and handling, not so much being defective off the assembly line. If you've ever wondered why things ship with so much packing material, its common knowledge that "Fragile" written on a box means... "toss it gently". When you order something online for example, not only is it shipped overseas from Mainland China, Taiwan, etc, its transported again to a distribution center, then transported again to often several different freight terminals before finally being delivered to your house. The product gets moved and jostled a lot.
  6. Allan_01 said:
    Just wan't to know that

    will i expect a defective HW(MOBO,RAM,MEM,HDD,PSU)

    during the build
    Or its just small chance

    WHAT will I do if I encounter defective parts?

    Defective parts depend mostly on two things:
    1) How tight is your budget?
    2) How well did you research your parts?

    It's possible to predict (with better accuracy than most would realize) what kind of build experience a person is in for, based on how much they are willing to spend and (more importantly) how much TIME and effort they are willing to invest, before purchasing a single piece of hardware.

    That doesn't mean you have to spend thousands of dollars and weeks on reading reviews. But either or both will help.

    Most common problem (always) is skimping on the power supply. If you buy a power supply included with a case, OR spend less than about $75 USD on the PSU alone, you've just doubled (or more) your odds of not being happy on build day. If you go along with "conventional" advice to just buy "brand X", same problem. There are some brands that (although widely recommended) rarely put out really good units. If in doubt though, you can always go Seasonic. It's really tough to mess up choosing Seasonic.

    Other common build problems in order of frequency:
    1) Buying RAM that is too fast for the motherboard, so the system will not boot properly. I see this one on almost every Intel build. will see a motherboard that specifies a range of frequencies of DDR3 RAM that goes up to like 2000, but everything past 1333 has a * on it (OC). That means the RAM will work if you input the timings manually. But in order to do that, you have to access the BIOS first. To access the BIOS, you need compatible RAM. I can't count the number of posts I've responded to (elsewhere) where someone bought 1600 DDR3 RAM (for example) for an Intel build with a 1333 motherboard, and now wonder why the system won't boot...
    On a side note, AMD builds have fewer issues with RAM as AMD chipsets support faster RAM anyway...
    2) Using a 4-pin CPU power cable on an 8-pin motherboard CPU power connector. This error (and it is an error) is made worse by motherboard manufacturers who incorrectly state that it will work. It almost never does. Consequently, the documentation is misleading.

    Actual DEFECTIVE (from the factory) or DOA components are somewhat rare. But if you read reviews (like on newegg in particular) you would conclude that DOA is a lot more common than it is. What happens is, someone will make a mistake like number (1 or 2) above, and then post that their motherboard is DOA. Ummmm, no. That is builder error.

    The most common DOA components are power supply (90%) and motherboard (8%) with everything else combined making up the other 2%. If you want to be happy on build day therefore:
    1) Get a really high-end power supply. READ REVIEWS to choose it!
    2) Stick to quality motherboards like Gigabyte ultra durable or Biostar T Series*
    3) Triple-check your RAM specs to make sure that they are compatible with your motherboard. Stick to name-brand RAM with decent heatsinks and low CAS ratings.
    If you cover those three items, you've just reduced the odds of a DOA build by probably 99% or better.

    * I know Biostar doesn't have the greatest rep, but their T Series boards are truly high-end and perform extremely well, not just at initial build...but long-term reliable.
  7. In my experience, whatever has to go, goes when you switch on the power for the first time.

    I hear a lot of PSU issues. If it works, it'll work for a long time, mostly it goes during the first few days.
    However, I haven't seen the other components going bad that frequently. There's a lot of safety built in pcbs.
  8. I've built 3 computers since about 2000, they were mostly for gaming. So far never had a defective part (at least that I know about). I've never even had a hard drive fail, which I attribute to luck and good cooling--always have a fan blowing across the hard drives. I've had a PSU start whining to the point that I needed to replace it, but it was about 3 years old and was the PSU that came bundled with the cheap ass case I bought so I figured it was ok. Replaced it with a ... HEC? brand? I think that was the brand. I don't think HEC would be considered a great brand, but it ran my OC'd Athlon X2 and video card for two + years (and still works just fine).

    Blow out dust fairly often.

    Recently built again a few months ago (3570k, HD7870, m4 ssd, reused old 2TB hdd, biostar mobo, 2 sticks of unmatched ram, etc) and its all going smoothly so far.

    I'm mostly convinced that some faulty parts are caused by someone with static electricity issues during the build. I'm super cautious about static. Damp, soapy towels, static wrist strap, etc. Some people probably build their PC on their carpet with socks on and the parts are still ok and last for years... lol who knows!
  9. I've had mostly good experiences with parts, I had a bad motherboard, but it turned out that was my fault, and the motherboard was in fact all right and working as it should have, just took me a while to figure out what the hell I was doing in the bios. I was running SLI on a server board, so not cheap, but this is back when SLI first came out that I'm aware of, and there weren't any dual core chips yet. Anyhow, the SLI wouldn't work even though all the parts tested all right without the SLI in every configuration, turned out I just needed to bump up the bridge voltage to get it stable with SLI. Other than that experience, I've never had a DOA part when bought new.

    I did buy an 18$ CPU upgrade for my parents off EBay recently, and there was a pin in the middle that was bent, but the guy was really cool about it, asked me to ship the defective one, put a new one in the mail the day I told him it had a bent pin and wouldn't work in the system without bending it more possibly breaking it. And he paid the return shipping. I was impressed.

    I buy with good warranties cause I reuse almost everything, when I buy a new computer, friends and family get the old ones. I love Newegg cause they keep track of all my orders, and I can reprint invoices whenever I need them, makes warranty jobs a snap. Like the previous posters have said, get a good PSU, and that'll cover 90% of the problems you might get at first boot. Take your time on the build. Personally, I put it all together outside of the case, test it, tear it down, then build it in the case, just in case there is a problem, and leave your original computer together so you can trouble shoot if you have to. Sometimes it's as easy as a bios adjustment.
  10. For those who replied Thank you..I can't really choose whats the BEST ANSWER in this forum...


    CPU: athlon ii x4 620(already Used)
    MOBO: AsRock 880gm-le
    Ram: Kingston HyperX Genesis 8GB Dual-Channel DDR3 1600 CL9
    GPU: HD6870(already Used)
    HDD: 500gb Caviar Black Sata III
    PSU: Seasonic 520W M12II520 80PLUS Bronze (Modular)

    this build was my plan

    I hope I can buy this parts and get them to work.... ^^

    Thank You All
  11. seems like a decent build depending how much you are paying for it. Care to share?
  12. Allan_01 said:
    Just wan't to know that

    will i expect a defective HW(MOBO,RAM,MEM,HDD,PSU)

    during the build
    Or its just small chance

    WHAT will I do if I encounter defective parts?

    There's always a chance, the more you build the greater the chance
    Put together 10 systems last week, ended up with one dead board, not the first ime it's happened and I'm certain it won't be the last
    You learn to deal with it
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