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Nothing on display, but the PC boots successfully

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 5, 2013 6:46:50 PM

Configuration:

Win XP SP3
Intel Core 2 @ 1.8Ghz
Nvidia 8500GT/Ati HD5450
1GB of ddr2 RAM
MSI 945PL Neo3
Ezcool 400W PSU with 2 12V rails one 16 and the other 18 amps

also the system is about 6 or so years old.

I wanted to start using it as a media PC for a new TV I got. When I last had tried to use it (about a 1.5 years before) it worked well, so I hooked it up (had the 8500GT in it at that time) nothing came on display. So I switched the GPU out for the 7300GT that i knew was actually broken (it went to the repair shop and was replaced with the 8500GT), but as I could atleast get into safe mode with it i decided to try it.

It booted into regular windows, with purple lines on the screen. Changed the resolution the lines turned blue and became almost impossible to see. (actually i think the color quality being 16 bit has more to do with it).

Decided then that the 8500GT most likely broke down so I bought the 5450. With it the PC doesnt event reach POST. Fans start turning for about 5-6 seconds then it all goes silent and repeats itself. So I'm thinking that the PSU isn't powerful enough, altough it said on the box it requires a 350W PSU (ATI says 400W i am aware but club3d has lower standards I quess) however as the actual power drawn by the card is very low i thought i might be able to run it even with my cheapo PSU, guess not.

Went back to the 8500GT and I thought that the PC actually passed POST with it even if nothing came on the display, so I installed logmein on the pc usin the 7300GT and tried to remotely access the computer, and it worked, altough it was very slow, all colours were messed up.

Checked the device manager, that showed that i only had the logmein monitor mirror or something like that connected, meaning windows didnt recognize the 8500GT.


So my questions are:
Whats more likely: the Mobo's PCI-e slots broken
or the GPU(8500GT) broke while gatherling dust in the corner
something else

So would it make sense to:
get a new PSU and try the 5450 with it
get a completely new system for my media PC (im quite sceptical about this as it would get somewhat expensive)
change out the motherboard and with it the processor and RAM

Also wether it makes sense that the 5450 isnt getting enough power, or can there be another explanation.
a b U Graphics card
January 5, 2013 7:32:05 PM

5450's take about 8w of power, so I can't imagine that it would be your PSU not giving enough power. If it's a cheap PSU it could be that it's not giving out a constant voltage, for the GPU to work right at lower loads. This can happen at any load point, in this case at lower load. GPU's can be very sensitive to this kind of thing.
January 5, 2013 7:44:27 PM

but it would still mean that i have to get a new PSU to get the HD 5450 working right?
Related resources
a b U Graphics card
January 5, 2013 7:51:44 PM

No one can be 100% sure this will fix it, I used to like to play with old computers too and different things can start to get funny when they sit around for a few years. But, if this were a newer system, this is what I would look into first.
January 5, 2013 7:57:52 PM

mace200200 said:
Yes, I would order on of these, they're actually very good units for such a low price. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Alas I live in Estonia so I dont think i can purchase from newegg, however I thought that if it comes to getting a new PSU i'll probably get the corsair VS450 or corsair CX430 there both like 40€, i think those 2 should both be OK?
a c 203 U Graphics card
January 5, 2013 8:02:05 PM

with most video cards and parts..they can be batches of bad caps that get into vendor hangs..there we a buch of caps that got onto mb and hard drives a few years ago. the devices would work fine for 12-24 months then the caps would die..crack open or leak. look on the card see if there any bulging or cracked caps or part that been broken off. with older mb sometimes it the mb bios or chipset that dont like video cards. if you bought the card from a local shop bring your pc with you and ask them to try a nvidia 610/620 or one of the older 5xx cards. one other opps that can happen is if the pc has onboard video. sometime with some cards the onboard video if it has it does not turn off when a new gpu is plugged in. so that the onboard video port is the live port. the easy if is go into the bios and switch the video boot order to pci/gpu or turn off the onboard video.
a b U Graphics card
January 5, 2013 8:04:41 PM

boot you computer using the 7300 and update your BIOS
the 5450 is a pci e 2 card and your mainboard pci e is 1...so a BIOS update might be needed to support the card inspite of pci e being both backward and forward compatible
I don't think the psu could be an issue...the 5450 requires only 19w
January 5, 2013 8:06:52 PM

smorizio said:
with most video cards and parts..they can be batches of bad caps that get into vendor hangs..there we a buch of caps that got onto mb and hard drives a few years ago. the devices would work fine for 12-24 months then the caps would die..crack open or leak. look on the card see if there any bulging or cracked caps or part that been broken off. with older mb sometimes it the mb bios or chipset that dont like video cards. if you bought the card from a local shop bring your pc with you and ask them to try a nvidia 610/620 or one of the older 5xx cards. one other opps that can happen is if the pc has onboard video. sometime with some cards the onboard video if it has it does not turn off when a new gpu is plugged in. so that the onboard video port is the live port. the easy if is go into the bios and switch the video boot order to pci/gpu or turn off the onboard video.



My Mobo doest have a inbuilt Video card; currently my boot order for Video is PEG/PCI
January 5, 2013 8:15:07 PM

siddharthmukul007 said:
boot you computer using the 7300 and update your BIOS
the 5450 is a pci e 2 card and your mainboard pci e is 1...so a BIOS update might be needed to support the card inspite of pci e being both backward and forward compatible
I don't think the psu could be an issue...the 5450 requires only 19w



The Bios is the latest version, if i run the Updater that the manufacturer provides, get only get offers for a bunch of utilities and an intel driver update, for the processor i think, that just breezes trough if I run it and says that it successfully updated but the MSI's (mobo manufacturer) software still says that the driver needs to be updated...
January 6, 2013 12:56:15 PM

Cant edit for some reason so ill just add this in here:
when the system powers up with the 8500 or 7300 i always get 3 beeps from the BIOS before the beep for the successful POST. As i've always had a USB keyboard/mouse combo added, i believe one of the beeps signifies that, any idea what the other mean?
its an AMI bios.
January 7, 2013 6:00:11 PM

So this indicates a video issue, what a surprise;
However i think i have actually solved why the HD 5450 doesnt work. Altough it's widely believed that PCIe 1.0 and 2.1 are compadible, in fact when going through forums, (even this very forum) one finds examples, when if one's dealing with old motherboards that were phased out a long time ago this isnt always the case, as the motherboard hasnt recieved the necessary BIOS updates to work with a 2.1 card. (As much as I understand, as said its mostly believed that they are compadible)

To that effect I also spoke with a forum admisitrator on the Mobos manufacturers forum, who said in very broken English that he would be 99% sure the ATI HD 5xxx and above series arent compadible with my motherboard (he didnt mention PCIe 2.1 but as far as i know thats the main differentiator between previous ATI cards and the 5xxx series and later).

I also asked him about Nvidia's compadability (Models GT 210 and 610) to which he said that the and i qoute: "probably will works", and as they are both PCIe 2.0 cards, that would support the hypothesis that the reason he said that ATI HD 5xxx and above arent supported is because of PCIe 2.1.

So my advice: Be wary when buying PCIe 2.1 cards for PCIe 1.0 motherboard, especially if that motherboard has been phased out for a long time. I myself are going tomorrow to the retailers that i brought the HD 5450 from, hoping that i can exchange it for a GT 610.
a b U Graphics card
January 7, 2013 6:51:51 PM

well thanks for the info...but it is not widely believed that pci e 1 is compatible with pci e 2.
pci e rev. 1.0 never supports pci e 2.1 or higher cards it can at most support pci e 2.0
true compatibility started with pci e rev. 1.1 only.
your card not being supported has got nothing to do with BIOS update what so ever
!