inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Don't see a specific place for your hardware question? This is the forum for you!

Moderators: mac_h8r1, Nemesis

inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 8:34 am

So at this point I’m convinced that something in my computer is cursed, inhabited by an evil entity whose goal is to create as annoying a hardware issue as possible.

… Seriously though, the issues I’m having are driving me up the wall.

So about a month ago my machine started having issues after I did some processor voltage tweaking(relatively minor tweaks, I look the vCore from 1.28 to 1.26 for some very temporary temperature testing, total of perhaps 5 minutes). I would occasionally either get a black screen with a device disconnect sound, requiring a standard restart, or my primary hard drive would hang indefinitely requiring a hard reset. I tried a bunch of things including resetting CMOS, reseating hardware, etc. with no results.

Eventually I admitted defeat and did a full reformat, assuming that I had some freak OS corruption problem due to my undervolted processor saying 2+3=4 at some point. My hard drive hang was resolved, but the black screen was not. Eventually the black screening got worse and I began to experience considerable display artifacting in the BIOS. The artifacting was inconsistent and letting the machine sit/reseating the graphics card would temporarily fix it, but on the next black screen it would resume.

Alright perfect, there’s the issue, I’ll RMA my graphics card. This card is a relatively new Zotac 780, so I figured it was just defective. I placed in a known good graphics card (my old MSI 570) and the issue seemed resolved. The MSI card was originally replaced due to overheating, but if I let it sit at desktop or only give it light loads it chugs along happily at 80C tops.

Now, after about a week, I wake up, wake my computer from sleep, and no video. I reboot from windows (pushing power button) and the machine happily restarts for me, no video. I reseat a few connectors, no video. The machine posts properly with a cheery motherboard beep and boots into windows, there seems to be nothing physically wrong with the machine that I can immediately see (no red LEDs, graphics card fan is spinning) but no video. The worst part is I’m sure I’m going to come back from work today and the machine will magically be working again, temporarily.

So it seems to me that I still have some hardware issue. My graphics card at this point seems to be the symptom and not the cause, I’m leaning towards a power supply issue because at this point what else could it be? My full specs are in my signature if that helps any.

What do you guys think, am I missing anything?

Thanks for taking the time to read this wall of text, hopefully I’ll get to the bottom of this soon.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 9:07 am

Are there any components you did NOT re-seat? Do you have a spare PSU you can try? Have you run a RAM diagnostic?
(this space intentionally left blank)
just brew it!
Administrator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 9:24 am

I have not reseated my CPU/cooler, sound card, or case/fan cables, everything else has been reseated.

I unfortunately do not have a spare PSU.

I ran some memory diagnostics back before my initial reformat and they came up clean.

I'm likely going to throw $40 at my local computer shop to see if they can pin down the issue with their (I would hope) better testing resources, my concern being that they're going to find nothing as the issue is inconsistent.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:16 am

I had some slightly similar issues when first building my Z87 rig. The system would POST and load Windows, but I'd only see a black screen. It turned out that for unknown reasons the motherboard was sending the video out through the 4770K's IGP instead of the GTX 480 in the main graphics slot. I don't know why but that was what it defaulted to until I disabled the 4770k's built in IGP. So in other words, next time you can't get it to show an image at boot try switching your monitor to the onboard graphics port on the back of the motherboard.

Inside the BIOS there's a setting for initial VGA output. You should set this to the main PCIe 16x slot for your system, the exact setting/names vary based on the mainboard vendor. You could even disable the onboard IGP completely and see if the problem persists. Also it doesn't hurt to make sure the graphics card PCIe connectors are clean and free of dirt, and that nothing got into the PCIe slot itself. If the issues comes back then I'd start looking elsewhere, as Brew said the PSU would be the next place I'd look.
Kougar
Gerbil Team Leader
 
Posts: 244
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 2:12 am
Location: Texas

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:22 am

Kougar wrote:I had some slightly similar issues when first building my Z87 rig. The system would POST and load Windows, but I'd only see a black screen. It turned out that for unknown reasons the motherboard was sending the video out through the 4770K's IGP instead of the GTX 480 in the main graphics slot. I don't know why but that was what it defaulted to until I disabled the 4770k's built in IGP. So in other words, next time you can't get it to show an image at boot try switching your monitor to the onboard graphics port on the back of the motherboard.

Inside the BIOS there's a setting for initial VGA output. You should set this to the main PCIe 16x slot for your system, the exact setting/names vary based on the mainboard vendor. You could even disable the onboard IGP completely and see if the problem persists. Also it doesn't hurt to make sure the graphics card PCIe connectors are clean and free of dirt, and that nothing got into the PCIe slot itself. If the issues comes back then I'd start looking elsewhere, as Brew said the PSU would be the next place I'd look.


that's a good thought but I'm over here in old fashioned sandy bridge P67 land where IGPs don't exist, if I had an IGP I would love to use it atm for troubleshooting. I'll give the card another good reseat when I get home tonight, but even if that works it should only be temporary, I have reseated the card before and at best its gotten the machine working for a week before issues reappear.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:27 am

Even without an IGP, video cabling issues could cause it to not see the monitor.
(this space intentionally left blank)
just brew it!
Administrator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:33 am

just brew it! wrote:Even without an IGP, video cabling issues could cause it to not see the monitor.


sorry, forgot to mention when you asked about reseating, the first thing I did when I saw the blank screen was reseat my DVI cable at both ends, when I get a bit more time I'll test with a different monitor but given the history of these issues I would be very surprised if my monitor is to blame.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:36 am

Try a different cable too. I've seen video cables go bad. It doesn't happen often, but it *does* happen.
(this space intentionally left blank)
just brew it!
Administrator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:50 am

just brew it! wrote:Try a different cable too. I've seen video cables go bad. It doesn't happen often, but it *does* happen.


would be lovely if it were that simple. All this time it was the graphics card and this is a totally unrelated issue, I'll test that when I get home.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 11:50 am

"device disconnect" noise and a black screen does indicate either a monitor fault or dodgy cable. The fuzzy corrupted BIOS image with another graphics card reinforces that theory, though it is just a theory.
<insert large, flashing, epileptic-fit-inducing signature (based on the latest internet-meme) here>
Chrispy_
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1752
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 3:49 pm

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 12:00 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:"device disconnect" noise and a black screen does indicate either a monitor fault or dodgy cable. The fuzzy corrupted BIOS image with another graphics card reinforces that theory, though it is just a theory.


sorry I mustn't have been clear.

Everything you mentioned happened with a single card, the second card is now showing a black screen and that is the first time it has had an issue.

Also, it's interesting to hear that the device disconnect sound could be related to a monitor disconnecting, as when I was testing I did manually unplug the DVI and got no device disconnect sound, perhaps that happens with HDMI.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 12:13 pm

HDMI may have an audio endpoint so that unplugging may get you the device disconenct noise out of your speakers.
notfred
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3706
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2004 10:10 am
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Tue Jun 17, 2014 12:21 pm

notfred wrote:HDMI may have an audio endpoint so that unplugging may get you the device disconenct noise out of your speakers.


my thoughts exactly, I wouldn't think any kind of DVI disconnect would get a device d/c sound, would it?
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: inconsistent hardware problem frustration!

Postposted on Sat Jun 21, 2014 1:23 pm

Hey, so I have an update

The DVI cable does seem to be dead actually, but replacing it did not solve my issue.

I opted to spend $40 and have Canada Computers diagnose the problem.
After three days of testing the found that:
my GTX 570 is dead, no question
my Power supply is working but the current it provides seems to be irregular, it's still barely within spec as far as they can tell but it's possible the supply dips in power occasionally and that is what's causing my graphics cards to die.

So I've got a cheap card I bought in my machine atm, hooked up via VGA, and i'm in the market for a new power supply before I dare put my GTX 780 in my machine once it returns from RMA.

Seems like that's everything sorted, thanks for your help.
i5-2500k@3.4ghz, P8P67 PRO, 8GiB DDR3@1.6ghz, GTX 570, Xonar DX, Intel 510 120GB, Deskstar 7k3000 3TB, Corsair 600T, OCZ Fatal1ty 750W.
00-Evan
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 334
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:25 pm
Location: Ontario


Return to General Hardware

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: derFunkenstein and 8 guests