Magical video card problems

Smrtko

n00b
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
5
Hello.
I've been lurking for a while and I finally have a reason to post, however unfortunate.
A technologically challenged friend of mine brought me his PC to fix. And it's magical.

The issue:
Display doesn't turn on.
1 long, 2 short beeps.

The specs:
Motherboard - Gigabyte GA-M52L-S3P rev 1.0.
2x 2GB Apacer DDR2 800 RAM
400W MS Industrial PSU
VTX Radeon HD4650 1GB PCI-Express
CPU - haven't bothered to check, will check if necessary

The background:
This PC has been working fine for a couple of years (or so I'm told).
A month ago it started turning off after 10-20 minutes of work.
The issue turned out to be faulty PC power cable.
It worked fine with a different PC power cable until a few days ago.

What I've tried so far:
Testing RAM slots and RAM modules by trying one slot and one module at a time -- no change.
Tried with a different PSU (750W) -- no change.
Resetting BIOS -- no change.

The magic:
When I tried his GPU in my PC it worked fine.
When I tried my GPU in his PC it worked fine.
My GPU needs external power, his doesn't, so my assumption was that the PCI-Express slot didn't transfer enough power through (I've ruled out the PSU since I had tried with a different unit).
I went ahead and borrowed Radeon HD5670 that doesn't need external power and tried it in his PC -- and it worked.
I also tried his GPU in one more PC and it worked.

The conclusion:
Two other GPUs work in his PC, but his doesn't and his GPU works in two other PCs.

Any ideas what to do?
Or any possible explanations for this situation?
The PC worked with that GPU just fine before.
Any help is greatly appreciated.
 

Ultima99

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 31, 2004
Messages
4,905
I would try more long term testing of his card in your machine and another card in his machine. See if any issues develop after continued testing.
 

Smrtko

n00b
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
5
I've used his card in my PC for over a day, even ran stress tests.
No artifacts, no issues.

The only unusual thing was - my screen went black once for a second or so.

My graphic card has been in his PC and I also ran stress tests there, no issues whatsoever.

Help please :(
 

staticlag

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Mar 26, 2010
Messages
1,678
Yeah sometimes the Raedons go black for a second when they switch modes, thats pretty normal.


I'd say the motherboard is buggered, might be a good chance to upgrade
 

Smrtko

n00b
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
5
Yeah, I read the beep code section as well.
However, it's not completely accurate since 1 long, 2 short can also sometimes indicate memory issues and possibly something else as well...

I have tried it on two different LCD screens and one CRT, no change.
Motherboard seems to be working fine with other graphic cards.

I ran some more tests with his card in my PC.
Black screen kept coming back and there was also some intermittent image shaking. This led me to visually recheck the GPU itself and lo and behold - a blown capacitor I had previously completely missed.
I would try to change it but I can't get a new capacitor for a while and he will most likely end up buying a new GPU because he wants to have it during the break.

I would need a 270uF, 16V capacitor, and the closest I could get locally is 330uF, 16V on Monday, so I might just order it, but it will take a while.
 

Smrtko

n00b
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
5
Friend decided to buy a new GPU which fixed the problem.

I'll still try to fix the card since he doesn't want it anymore.
I went ahead and ordered the capacitor(s), figured out that 330uF 16V I could get locally aren't rated for high temperatures.
 

DeFex

[H]ard|DCer of the Month - June 2011
Joined
Feb 13, 2001
Messages
5,248
Could be his motherboard can no longer supply enough power to the slot, and since you are using externally powered card (or one that needs less power), now it's ok.
 

Smrtko

n00b
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
5
That was one of my original assumptions.
However, I had tried it with a borrowed HD5670, and the PC currently works fine with HD6670, none of which use external power.
Purely based on TDP the power consumption should be HD4650 < HD5670 < HD6670 so I figured my assumption was wrong.
 
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