I recently built a computer which was a combination of new parts and those scavenged from my previous system. Initially it worked fine except that it was incapable of recognizing the video card. Even programs such as HWMonitor and GPU-Z failed to detect it. The next day the computer failed to boot at all.
Before I go any further, I'll list all the components involved.
Monitor: HP 2309m (23" @ 1920x1080)
Processor: AMD Athlon II X4 620
CPU cooler: Stock cooler
Operating System: Windows 7 64-bit
Graphics card: Sapphire HD 5850
Volatile memory: Elpida 4GB RAM (2x2)
Other memory: Digital Western 1TB HDD
Power supply: CIT 750UB 750W ("El Cheapo")
Computer case: Can't find a name, has the HP logo.
Processor: Intel Core i5 3570k
CPU cooler: Hyper 212 evo
Operating System: Windows 8 64-bit
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H (rev. 1.0)
Volatile memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4x4) [Low Profile]
Computer Case: Antec 900
The parts arrived on Tuesday. On Saturday I had time to throw everything together. That was where the mystery began. Everything worked fine except for the 5850. I performed the standard troubleshooting, no joy. I plugged it into my friend's computer. Nothing. It was completely and utterly dead. It never gave me any problems in the previous computer; not even on Friday night. That struck me as odd. I'm used to video cards slowly beginning to fail and somewhat working for weeks or even months before finally giving up the fight. For it to suddenly die instantly without warning made no sense to me at all.
Yesterday I tapped the power button. No response. After a few hours of adjusting cables, praying to various deities and mostly being unproductive I gave up. I decided that El Cheapo had, after several years, finally done what all 750w PSUs sold for ~ €30 do. It died and took as many components with it as possible.
So now I'm assuming that my venerable Sapphire card met it's end at the hands of a PSU which was on the verge of disaster. I never noticed any signs of a problem - no strange noises, no system instability, no odd smells or anything else.
I ran into town today and purchased the following;
Graphics card: Gigabyte HD 7750
Power supply: Corsair GS700
Lesson learned, and I ducked the false economy of another El Cheapo and purchased a Corsair. The 7750 doesn't feel like a worthy successor to my 5850, but I just purchased a fairly substantial upgrade for my computer and the money just isn't there.
I threw in the new PSU and video card, praying that only the Sapphire had been taken out. When I plug in and turn on the PSU, then hit the power button, the LED lights in the case come on for a second before going out again. There's no other signs of life from the computer at all. Hitting the power button again doesn't achieve anything. To make the LEDs flash again, I have to switch off and unplug the PSU before plugging it in again, turning it back on and then going for the power button.
So now I'm assuming my not-quite-a-week-old motherboard is toast. I know it's impossible to say for sure, but can anyone give me an educated guess at how much damage has been done? To reiterate, there are no beeps, no sounds, nothing at all except for a quick flash of blue light. There are no physical signs of damage on any of the components.
I suppose it goes without saying that nobody will be offering me a replacement for a component I killed myself?
Before you tell me I brought it on myself, that's not strictly true. Legally I'm on my own - but morally this is on HP.