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Old 08-26-2011, 11:01 PM   #1
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Default Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

My main PC died on me a while ago, and I finally got round to having a tech look at it last week because I couldn't figure it our myself.


Basically what happened is that I stopped getting a signal to my monitor. Every time I would try to start it up, a box would pop up in the middle of the screen stating 'Video input – no signal'. I checked everything, made sure all the cords were firmly in place, cards firmly seated, etc, etc. Nothing. Motherboard seems to initiate okay, judging from the lights, power is running, CPU fan going, Video card fan is spinning – but no output. I even swapped monitors around, but it made no difference.


I took it to the tech who does the work for my wife's office, and he stated unequivocally that it's the video card at issue, even though he didn't have a PCI-e card to slot in for a test, nor did he have an appropriate PC handy to put my own video card in. I asked him how he could be so sure, and asked why there couldn't be a problem further back in the chain, such as the Mobo or the CPU. He stated that the Video card has it's own set of onboard data that it posts separate to the other components, and if the power was running to it and nothing was showing on screen then it had to be an issue with the card - he confirmed that the fan on the card was running by plugging it in, and as there was nothing at all showing on start up, the card it had to be! He took the 8800 GTS card, glanced at it, claimed it looked as if it had overheated – then tossed it in a nearby bin.


As some of you know, I did some hunting around with online vendors trying to figure out a replacement card, then came on here to ask for some follow up advice. Eventually I determined on the EVGA GTS 450 as something that would cover my needs, placed an order with Newegg, and waited with baited breath for it's arrival. My troubles would finally be over!


This afternoon it arrived, and guess what? As soon as I slotted it in and connected everything up – nothing! Just the same signal as before 'video input – no signal'! Do I go postal at this point, or throw the PC through the largest window I can find? Not only am out $150 for the card and tech fee, but a perfectly good card literally got trashed as well – I had no reason to doubt this guy, as his company has taken care of my wife's office computers for a while and they've had no complaints.


I quickly phoned the tech's place of work, only to be told by his boss that he wouldn't be available till Monday. I really needed the thing up and running for some specific work I need to do, but at best I'm probably at least a week away now from starting it up again, given that I probably have some other component to order in now.


Does anyone have any kind of clue what could be wrong if it's not the video card, or how I could go about trying to isolate the problem component? Any pointers would be much appreciated.


Thanks...........Tim


PS – one point. I have to use an adapter to plug my older LCD monitor into the video card. Could it have become defective and cause these kind of issues?
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Old 08-27-2011, 12:39 AM   #2
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

It could be the actual PCI-E slot on your motherboard... maybe it was affected from your old card overheating?
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:16 AM   #3
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

When replacing hardware on a system, especially in a case like this, reset your CMOS/BIOS data by shorting the CMOS/BIOS jumper for a few seconds with the system off, and then put it back into the normal operation position, then try turning the system on again. It could be that the first card did indeed die, and it just confused the motherboard, so it thinks the old card is in the system. Happens all the time.

If you clear the CMOS and it still does this, don't freak out quite yet. Disconnect the power from the system, hold in your power button for 15 seconds and then let go, plug the system back in again and try turning it on.

The other kind of question to ask is what kind of power supply is it? Does the motherboard have onboard graphics you could test with temporarily?

If those don't work either, you can exercise what all good PC repair shops will honor, and that's the "misdiagnose return" - that is to say, you take your shiny new card in, and tell them that their original diagnosis was wrong and have them do it right this time. If they don't agree, or can't help you (well, WON'T help I guess it would be at this point) write it off, post them a nasty BBB complaint and don't look back. Then buy a replacement motherboard.
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Old 08-27-2011, 08:02 AM   #4
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

Oops - my bad! Og's post just reminded me that I hadn't posted my computer's hardware specs, which I usually do.


Motherboard – ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe
CPU - AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+
Graphics - NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS (died and gone to PC heaven!)
Sound - Soundblaster Audigy2 ZS
RAM - Corsair XMS2 4GB (2 x 2GB)
DVD - Lite-on DVDRW LH-20A1L SCSI
HD - Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB
Power - Cooler Master Real Power Pro RS-750-ACAA-A1 750W
OS – Windows 7 Ultimate (64)

Thanks for the pointers so far. I have to dash out (I only just woke up) but I'll give Og's suggestions a try when I return home.
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Old 08-27-2011, 02:20 PM   #5
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

Hi Og,
I have a couple of issues with shorting CMOS/BIOS. First, I didn't assemble the computer, I purchased it from someone else on Craigslist, so unlike my previous couple of PC's, which I put together myself, I'm not familiar with the Mobo on this unit, nor do I have the original books that it came with. Secondly, I read somewhere that you need to have the original BIOS on hand in case they're needed, and I don't have those either.

I also had a look around the mobo with a flashlight, and I can find four sets of pins, but none of them has a jumper in place. Any thoughts?

As an alternative I tried removing the backup battery, as this has worked for me in the past, but it didn't solve the issue.

Finally, I tried your suggestion regarding removing the power and pressing the power button for 15 seconds, but it made no difference. What is that actually supposed to accomplish?

Thanks............Tim
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Old 08-27-2011, 02:56 PM   #6
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo View Post
Hi Og,
I have a couple of issues with shorting CMOS/BIOS. First, I didn't assemble the computer, I purchased it from someone else on Craigslist, so unlike my previous couple of PC's, which I put together myself, I'm not familiar with the Mobo on this unit, nor do I have the original books that it came with. Secondly, I read somewhere that you need to have the original BIOS on hand in case they're needed, and I don't have those either.
Shorting the pins on the BIOS/CMOS is not a destructive process. It should NOT wipe the BIOS out in the system, it merely resets the settings. It's perfectly safe to do so. You should only have the original BIOS on hand if you're going to FLASH the BIOS, which is completely different than shorting the pins or pulling the battery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo
I also had a look around the mobo with a flashlight, and I can find four sets of pins, but none of them has a jumper in place. Any thoughts?
Look for the microscreening (tiny white lettering printed on the board itself) for the words "CMOS Reset" or "BIOS Reset" - the newer modern boards don't actually have a jumper you can move, you just touch two exposed pads on the board with the end of a screwdriver for a few seconds to perform the reset. You can also post the motherboard's model here, and we can tell you where they are on the board. The model is usually located between the PCI / PCI Express slots along with the manufacturer of the board. (MSI, Asus, Intel, etc)

Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo
As an alternative I tried removing the backup battery, as this has worked for me in the past, but it didn't solve the issue.
How long did you leave it out? To be effective, if you remove the battery, you also need to unplug everything from the system, including the power, and leave it sitting for at least 30 minutes (to be sure.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo
Finally, I tried your suggestion regarding removing the power and pressing the power button for 15 seconds, but it made no difference. What is that actually supposed to accomplish?
In some cases, this forces the system to try to turn on with the remaining power in the motherboard's power system, and completely drains the capacitors of any charge they have. Sometimes that residual charge can allow memory to store information that might be causing the system to hang up on start up. This is especially true if the system was operating normally and something interrupted the power, then immediately came back on. Sometimes the system just won't turn on again until you do this step. I discovered the trick back in 2000 after working at Gateway. It works on every PC i've ever encountered that could be saved in this way. It's not a fix-all, but it is standard advice for me in cases like this.

If you've tried all of what I've suggested, at every time I've mentioned, it's entirely possible that the system board itself the CPU, or possibly the power supply is hosed.
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Old 08-27-2011, 03:48 PM   #7
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

WTH, that tech is full of crap. This could mean your 8800gts was not broken at all.
A card with a fan running but with no video on screen does not mean its broken.
This happened to me a lot of times with different videocards. I just had to clean the videocard or ram with an eraser


Take everything apart now. remove all parts from your system except the motherboard and cpu.
Clean everything especially the pcie-slot and ram slots.
Turn it on and wait for a very long beep or fast continous beeps. If you hear it, you can rule out the board being broken.
Touch the CPU heatsink, if its warm, you can rule out the cpu too.

Now add the gpu, if it works add 1 stick of ram, keep adding 1 part after it works to see which is actually broken.
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:09 PM   #8
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

Not sure if serious...
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:54 PM   #9
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

A couple of quick points before I start pulling everything apart. Firstly at Og - exactly what number are you after other than what I specified earlier, that it's an ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe? I looked where you suggested and all it states there is exactly what I just wrote.

@ edalbkrad The Mobo isn't emitting any beeps at all, though the green light is coming on. The fans make so much noise collectively that I can't even recall now whether I ever noticed this unit beeping or not when it was operating - it's been out of operation for a couple of months, and I've simply been using my laptop while waiting to get around to solving the issue.

Thanks again all...........Tim
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Old 08-27-2011, 06:36 PM   #10
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Default Re: Replaced 'deffective' 8800GTS with new GTS450 - PC still not working.

Hi all,
Well, I tried everything that was suggested, and still got no joy.

I did a search online and managed to locate a post that directed me to where the jumper was (next to the battery - missed it when I was glancing around earlier) and tried that - nothing.

Took the suggestion to pull the components out and clean them, that didn't bring any results either.

So basically I'm back to where I was a week ago, not knowing for certain which component needs replacing, though at least I know for certain now that the video card isn't the issue - I just had to waste $150 to find that out.

One point - I left the power on for half an hour, and the CPU heatsink wasn't warm at all to the touch. Maybe it wasn't on long enough.

Thanks for all the help and thoughts everyone - much appreciated. When I find out for sure what the problem is (three months, $2,000 and 16 parts later!) I'll post back.
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