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Need Help with Gaming Computer
Still won't work after replacing everything
hairresources




msg:4365371
 3:01 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

A friend put together a gaming computer for my daughter in Dec. 2010. All parts were from Newegg.com. Computer was set up and working fine. In May one day, the computer turned itself off and wouldn't turn back on (fans turn on, lights up but nothing on monitor). I have been replacing parts one by one- and all parts are now brand new. The computer will still not turn on (fans run, lights on - nothing on monitor) I have also tried other monitors.

Below is the order in which I replaced parts. After each replacement the computer still did not work.

Everything appears to be connected properly. I am at a loss for what to do at this point? Start replacing connectors?

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

1. Replaced Motherboard: msi NF-750-G55 AM3 NVIDIA nForce 750a SLI HDMI ATX AMD motherboard.
2. Replace Video Card: Zotac ZT-20109-10P GEForce GTS 250 1GB 256-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card.
3. Replaced Memory: OCS Obsidian 4GB 240-pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 2800) Desktop Memory Model OCZ30B1600LV4GK
3A. Purchase a new SATA Hard Drive- old one was not spinning. Seagate Brracuda ST3250312AS 250 GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 6.0 Gb/s 3.5
3B. Purchased new DVD drive to go with SATA Drive: Samsung CD/DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-222AB - OEM
4. Took it to Best Buy Geek squad for diagnostic service. They said test was inconclusive and that their guess was that the replacement motherboard was bad.
5. Re-replaced Motherboard
6. Replace CPU: AMD Athlon IIx4 640 Propus 3.0GHZ Socket AM3 95W Quad Core Desktop Processor ADX640WFGMBOX
7. Replaced Power supply: Antec TruePower New TP-750 Blue 750W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.3 EPS12V V2.91 SLI Certified Crossfire ready 80 Plus Bronze

 

Leosghost




msg:4365376
 3:12 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Start replacing connectors?

Certainly I'd have begun by replacing ( swapping out )the cable between the video output and the monitor..they do go bad occasionally..
And always keep a few internal cables around for the same reason ( swapping out cables is easier and cheaper than swapping out bits of hardware ) ..all cables can go weird.

When it powers up.. what ( if anything ) is it beeping..

J_RaD




msg:4365392
 3:43 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

okokokok these are those situations where you just need to remove everything from the case and have all parts just hanging out running on a test bench.

bad sata/pata devices / bad sata/pata cables will cause a computer to just crank up and sit in la la land.

remove EVERYHTING except what is needed, no video card no hard drives no DVD no fans NOTHING. Just the least amount of ram, processor and proc cooler.

start from there if you still are coming with with a black screen you've only got 3 things that could be at fault, mobo , ram , proc

mobo will do nothing, proc would do nothing, bad ram would make it beeeep beeep beep , but thats not always true.

do you have any other parts you can swap around and test things with?

most important thing is to get it stripped down and out of the case and remove all non-critical parts. Don't even hook up the power button or anything from the case, you can turn it on by momentarily shorting the power pins on the board with a small screw driver.

do all that and report back.....this will be a process.


---------

and don't ever go back to geek squad, i don't know what those guys call themselves but they'd be more useful selling microwaves or sweeping the floor.

hairresources




msg:4365418
 4:20 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have tried different cables between monitor and computer as well as different monitors. Still Nada---Computer powers on, fans all run, lights are on - but monitor is blank- black.

Tried removing parts to see about the beeping before (Did this after replacing the first 3 - motherboard, video card etc) - but wouldn't beep.

If I want to get see if the computer beeps/posts (not sure about this step) what would be the best thing to remove?

Also, if I have my speakers hooked up and turned on - is that all that is needed to hear the beeps? I heard somewhere that the motherboard had to have a special connection or speaker to actually hear the beeps.

Key_Master




msg:4365442
 4:59 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

The motherboard has a built in piezo disk that makes the beep.

I think you had a power issue. The hard drive not spinning is an possible indication of a failing power supply. Since you replaced the power supply last, it's possible you caused damage to one or more components you had replaced previously.

J_RaD




msg:4365459
 5:24 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

remove all ram and try to turn it on, that should make it nice and angry enough to beep at you.

you should have a speaker built onto the board, or into the case, or even the little short ones that plug right into the header and thats it.

look around the bunch of mulit color little wires that you plugged up for the power swtich...reset button...HD lights etc, red and black will be your PC speaker.

hairresources




msg:4365509
 6:37 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

I took out the ram and there are no beeps. However, I do not see any black/red wires going into the motherboard. Don't think the speakers are set up or plugged in. Have no idea if the motherboard has speakers, etc. Any tips on getting this set up? I took a photo of the motherboard: See: [beautyaristocrat...]

hairresources




msg:4365514
 6:53 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

sorry, don't think the url link was right. See (http://www.beautyaristocrat.com/gaming.htm)

Frank_Rizzo




msg:4365537
 7:52 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Don't overcomplicate it. Sometimes this can be as simple as the Power switch, or the reset switch stuck in the pushed in state.

As some have already said: Test this not by swapping a part out one by one, but by starting with the barebones and adding as you go along.

Test Motherboard / CPU
1. Remove all cards, memory, connectors and cables including USB, fans. Only have connected the big power cable and the PSU 4pin cable (if used), the fan cable for the CPU, the small cable used for the power switch, and the small cable used for the speaker.

Power up the PSU and press the power button. The fan should spin (and may stop) but you should hear motherboard beeps, which indicate that RAM, GFX is missing. If you do hear the beeps then that is good - check the BIOS Manufacturer website for the beep codes.

If you don't hear beeps then the problem is either the mobo, CPU, PSU. There is a slim chance it could be the CPU fan header shorting or something.

If you get past this stage (in that there are beeps) then start one by one adding: RAM, test again, GFX, test again, Disks, test again.

J_RaD




msg:4365540
 8:00 pm on Sep 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

one thing I did notice...... where is the 4 pin proc power plugging in at?

i looked up your board and on the heat sink that says AM3 ready, you should be plugging the 4 pin power connector for the proc


as for the speakers, I don't see one on the board and to much stuff is in the way for me to see the button header.

here is a pic

1 is where you need poower

2 is the area where all the switch lights and other stuff plug in

[tinypic.com...]


if you have removed and reinstalled lots of just and just failed to miss that connector....well there is your problem, you don't plug that in....nobody is home.

hairresources




msg:4365817
 12:31 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

I plugged in the 4 pin power connector next to the CPU. Originally I had that plugged in, but when I turned on the computer the fan would go really loud, then slow down, then really loud again.

Now with that connected it starts out loud and then the fans slow down and stay down.

I have a picture of those extra connectors- one that you can see more clearly (see again [beautyaristocrat.com...] There is only one connector- a 4-hole one I am holding-- that is not connected to anything. Don't see anything on the MB where it would even fit into.

Since the hard drive is brand new - with nothing installed on it - would the monitor screen show anything anyway?

I have taken out RAM and unplugged DVD drive and Hard Drive. Nothing beeps, nothing happens. The fans and lights do come on. But how do I know that the MB even has that built in speaker?

Also, where is the reset switch? If it is a new motherboard do I need to do something with setup somehow.

Another point - the monitor power switch is a solid blue when I turn it on. Then when I turn on the computer, after a few seconds, it starts blinking.

incrediBILL




msg:4365824
 1:01 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

See, this is exactly why I quit tinkering with hardware years ago.

I now head over to Costco, grab a new machine in a box, come home and unbox it, works first time every time and I don't have a down machine for more than a few hours ;)

PLUS - they give you an extended 2 year warranty so in your current situation you would just mail the box back to the manufacturer, which we've done once, and within a couple of weeks it comes back good as new.

PLUS PLUS - you can return the machine for any reason in the first 90 days (at least that was the policy when I got mine)

After all that soapboxing - sounds like either a short or a card/chip/cable not seated properly - I'd check everything to make sure it's properly seated as just a little slip can make some wacky results.

This is also a situation where having a voltmeter to test your power is often a good thing

J_RaD




msg:4365848
 2:01 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)


I plugged in the 4 pin power connector next to the CPU. Originally I had that plugged in, but when I turned on the computer the fan would go really loud, then slow down, then really loud again.


well that needs to be plugged in no matter what kinda crazy stuff the fans do, that provides that extra power to your processor, so plug it up and leave it its ((required)) and not optional.

its normal for fans to spin up full blast on a power on then drop... going back up, no but we've got bigger problems :-P


There is only one connector- a 4-hole one I am holding-- that is not connected to anything.


that is just a normal old style molex for Hard drives, DVD, fans, whatever its normal to have spare ones floating around.


lets forget the beeps for now, get that video card out, and unplug all the sata cables from the board, and lets go back to onboard video.

[i52.tinypic.com...]

I red x'ed everything i could see in this picture that needs to be pulled removed.


I know you are a little over your head with this one and this isn't exactly troubleshooting for noobs so when in doubt take a picture and we'll try to work you thru this best we can like this :-P

PS, if he still has the motherboard book that will tell you exactly what all of that cluster of pins do.

-------------------------------------------------------


See, this is exactly why I quit tinkering with hardware years ago.

tinkering...you said it correctly, don't tinkder.


I now head over to Costco, grab a new machine in a box, come home and unbox it, works first time every time

c'monnnnnnnnnn you KNOW those big box companies computers are trash with subpar quality stuff shoved in them! I can't tell you how many times i've seen 3G sata hard drives stuck on 6G boards, or the wrong speed ram shoved on the board, its like they build their computers outa spare parts laying around. Custom builds can be done cheaper or the same price coming out with a faster more quality machine. Also there are 1,000s of parts out that in which you just can't buy in a big box computer how matter how little or more you pay. they build x-y-z and this it.

[edited by: J_RaD at 2:10 pm (utc) on Sep 22, 2011]

tangor




msg:4365849
 2:03 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

These things can be a nightmare, but I do have one question: Have you tried a different monitor? Or, have you tried that monitor with a different computer? I've had a number of LCD screens "go black" over the years and still power up.

If there is nothing but power, motherboard (most have video ports), ram, and monitor, you'll get a screen display of the CMOS bios... that's your first test. Add your video card (if used) then test again. Good luck!

J_RaD




msg:4365851
 2:13 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

he said he did swap monitors.

incrediBILL




msg:4365886
 2:57 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

you KNOW those big box companies computers are trash with subpar quality stuff shoved in them!


Um - no, I snagged a near top of the line gaming machine as my primary a couple of years back and this thing is so screaming fast I'm still not considering replacing it.

The monitor alone was still retailing for $500 so the bundle was a steal.

Besides, if the machines were trash why are they all running and yours isn't? :)

Just say'n...

FWIW, I started out in hardware as a career before I switched to software, still not sure which was most frustrating to fix in the end.

Good luck with the box.

martinibuster




msg:4365899
 3:16 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Probably not what's going on with your set up but I'll chime in, just in case. Something similar happened to my wife's computer after I had opened it up to clean out the dust bunnies. Plugged everything back in, turned it on, and nothing. Switched cables and monitors and still nothing. Took it to the shop and they said it was working, nothing broken.

Took it back home and realized that I had been plugging the monitor into the native monitor input instead of into the input corresponding to the graphics card. Your computer comes with a native monitor input. But when you install a graphics card, you then have two monitor inputs. Once the graphics card is plugged in the native input may stop working.

I buy all my components from NewEgg. The only problem I've had was with a power supply that fried after about a year. You might want to take the rig to your local computer repair shop. Look for one that has been in business a long time and is busy when you enter. My guy is always busy with a line of people. The repairs are reasonably priced and he does a great job. Time is too precious to waste tinkering around with a computer for more than a couple hours.

[edited by: martinibuster at 3:20 pm (utc) on Sep 22, 2011]

hairresources




msg:4365900
 3:17 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

I get no beeps, no display, no matter what is plugged in or unplugged.

I'm thinking maybe micro center diagnostics? Already did the geek squad trip (they said was diagnostics was inconclusive)

martinibuster




msg:4365902
 3:21 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

If you decide to get professional work done, then take it to a real computer repair store, as I described above. Forget the Geek Squad.

BillyS




msg:4365934
 4:31 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Coming out of retirment for this one... I had a similar problem with a recent build (albeit a completely different setup).

First question: Do you see the BIOS screen at start up? Sounds like the answer is no...

Your motherboard should either have beep codes or lights to indicate a major problem (like bad ram or cpu connection). Check the manual for those indicators, see if that helps.

Okay, here is my guess... That board has NVIDIA Hybrid SLI Technology.

Based on NVIDIA's industry-leading SLI technology, Hybrid SLI technology enables a motherboard GPU and a discrete GPU to work together to deliver multi-GPU benefits. It provides boosted graphics processing ability through GeForce Boost and improved energy efficiency through HybridPower.

The board I had used the Intel / Lucid combination... (Same thing happened to me, except I tweaked something and broke the video output.)

If all the fans are whizzing around, then I suspect that this is a graphics problem (setting in BIOS). Your motherboard can use the AMD GPU in combination with the discrete board you have. You need to make sure the bios settings are correct. This is what I would recommend.

Remove the discrete graphics card and make sure you hook your monitor up to the motherboard's video output. With that combination, see if you can get to the BIOS screen.

Your motherboard manual should indicate how to set up the BIOS so the Hybrid SLI will work with a discrete card.

Did you ever see the BIOS screen when you installed a new motherboard? Even if it was only once, then never again...

If the above does not work, I would suggest doing a BIOS reset. Do not plug the video card back in until you get the motherboard's video working first. We need to make sure you can first get to the BIOS screen.

hairresources




msg:4365942
 4:57 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Question: "Remove the discrete graphics card and make sure you hook your monitor up to the motherboard's video output. With that combination, see if you can get to the BIOS screen."

How do I do this? I remember doing something before replacing the video card to get the onboard video- but can't remember.

I have never gotten bios to show up. The monitor screen has been completely blank since 6 months ago - during each replacement and test. Never has beeped before or after both motherboard replacements.

The manual for the motherboard ( [msi.com...] ) doesn't seem to say much (at least I can't understand it) about troubleshooting, etc.

martinibuster




msg:4365950
 5:16 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

How do I do this?

I explained it to you in my initial post:

Took it back home and realized that I had been plugging the monitor into the native monitor input instead of into the input corresponding to the graphics card. Your computer comes with a native monitor input. But when you install a graphics card, you then have two monitor inputs. Once the graphics card is plugged in the native input may stop working.


You should give it a look. Turn your computer around. There are two areas of the backside that have a monitor input. The input closest to the bottom usually corresponds to the graphics card monitor input. The input located closest to the top generally corresponds to the native input, the one that comes with your mobo.

hairresources




msg:4366002
 7:32 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Wow- what a trip.

I removed parts and kept restarting, waiting to hear beeps. Just didn't think that was possible since speakers not installed and no onboard speaker. Tried plugging monitor connection directly to mb without video card.

Well I looked through box with all the cords and parts that came with mb and found onboard speaker. Then I couldn't find where to plug it in.

I removed the plugs that were in line with the power button and tried to plug the speaker in there. It didn't fit.

Then I realized I couldn't remember how those plugs I pulled out were put in. So I tried to match up the tiny print on the mb with the print on the 2-slot cords.

Then, found a place to stick the onboard speaker. Turned it on and got 3 beeps. (after 6 months of silent treatment- pretty exciting)

Then plugged all parts back in I had and voila--I'm seeing words on the screen. Sweet!

I'm guessing from what everyone posted that the power supply was bad and burned the motherboard? Or it could be that the second motherboard replacement install (my daughter did install) had those plugs by the power switch messed up (one was HDD, reset switch and something else- little 2 hole connectors)

I'm still in process of setting up windows, but hopefully everything will go smoothly.

Thank you to everyone that helped out and made suggestions!

J_RaD




msg:4366022
 8:19 pm on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)


second motherboard replacement install (my daughter did install) had those plugs by the power switch messed up (one was HDD, reset switch and something else- little 2 hole connectors)


im going with this one.


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