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My PC started intermittintly "squeaking" and I'm at a loss as to why

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm really lost with this one. Starting a few days ago, my PC started randomly make what I describe as squeaking or almost chirping noises. The noise is randomly occurring (but happens dozens of times an hour on average), and the volume of it varies a bit (it's not consistent in sound or timing; it is entirely random).

Here's are the steps I've taken.

I've monitored temperatures. Everything is fine.

I've scanned hard disks. Everything seems fine, and this occurs when all hard disks are powered down and only my solid state drive is active so I'm doubting the hard drives as a cause.

I'm still in the process of checking this, and it's one of my suspects, but I was starting to guess at a fan? I'll to have to do more testing when the noise occurs, but I tried stopping the few I could so far with no luck getting it to stop. I have not don this for the video card or PSU fan.

It is about time for for a routine cleaning/dusting but it's generally clean right now overall.

I've seen no side effects regarding the actual operation of the computer other than the noise itself. Nothing runs warm or crashes or freezes or anything. It's becoming more and more annoying though.

I'm lost as to what it could be though. I have witnessed this occur during any type of use. It happens at the desktop, during web browsing, when playing games, etc., so it does not seem use or demand related at all. It's just a random occurrence that happens when the PC is powered on (when the noise first started I actually almost suspected a cricket in my PC but it's not). I want to clarify that it does not sound like coil whine. It's sound more like a squeaking than an oscillating noise you get with coil whine, and it's far too random and not related to what I am doing when it occurs. My last video card attempt (GeForce GTX 970) was a nightmare with coil whine and I gave up on it, so I know how coil whine sounds. I've also had a system in the past where the motherboard would have coil whine when moving the mouse or scrolling a web page, for example. This noise is completely different in sound and behavior. I don't know enough to say it isn't some electrical by-product but it doesn't sound like the typical coil whine and it just started recently with no change in hardware or use.

Lastly, the noise is coming from the back half of the PC and not the front, but I have been unable to determine further which exact area it's coming from. It's coming from the PC for sure and not my speakers or anything else.

I guess I'm looking for further advice beyond finishing my checks with fans, and to see if anyone is familiar with such behavior or had a similar experience. Thank you.
post #2 of 12
Take the PSU out of the system and have it close to you that way if the noise is from the PSU you should hear it much better then if it was inside your system.
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Seravee
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post #3 of 12
It almost has to be a fan.
Yin&Yang
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Yin&Yang
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post #4 of 12
my fans squeak at a certain RPM... so whenever I dial them in at about 12%-16% they squeak, I guess the bearings dont like that RPM range? it has gotten better over the months, and I dont really find them making that noise anymore.

But it could be a lubrication issue on the bearings, or the bearings just making noise.

Or you have Tinnitus rolleyes.gif
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post #5 of 12
Well it certainly could be fan. Start tapping on the side of the case when it does it and see if it stops. That might shake the fan enough to stop the wobble that makes it squeak.

Seems like it wouldn't be a problem to isolate a single fan though unless you have them buried under a radiator or something.
post #6 of 12
If its the squeek I'm thinking of, it would be a crappy PSU getting too much of a load and not being able to handle it.
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post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Oh, right, sorry I forgot to mention the hardware.

ASUS P8Z68-V Pro
Core i5 2500K mildly overclocked (4GHz)
16GB DDR3 RAM
PNY GeForce GTX 650 (I know it's weaker compared to the rest, but it's working for my low needs at the moment since the multiple EVGA GeForce GTX 970s I attempted led to a coil whine nightmare after my EVGA GeForce GTX 560 Ti failed)
4x 640GB hard drives (three to four are usually spun down most of the time) and a single 256GB SSD
EVGA SuperNova G2 750

The power demand should be way lower than the PSU can provide, and the PSU is both somewhat recent (under a year old) and is supposed to be a good one (which I realize doesn't rule it out), and the fact that it happens irregardless of load of what I'm doing is what made me unsure of if that could be a cause. It sounds like it could be coming from the PSU, but I'd probably have to do something like shilka suggested to be sure as I can't narrow the source of the noise. If it is the PSU, wow do I have bad luck with EVGA.
post #8 of 12
If you can, get a piece of 8.5x11 paper, roll it up into a cone, and use it as a funnel directing the noise to see if you can narrow where the noise is coming from.
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Boinzy 2017
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post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boinz View Post

If you can, get a piece of 8.5x11 paper, roll it up into a cone, and use it as a funnel directing the noise to see if you can narrow where the noise is coming from.
I tried doing this, but it didn't really help much. It made me think a little more the noise was coming from the bottom lower half, which I sort of thought already, but I wasn't sure so I didn't want to say it, and it didn't make anything more conclusive.

I tried stopping each fan individually as the noise occurred. I did this with the rear exhaust fan, the two front intake fans, the top fan, and even the CPU and graphics card fan. The noise didn't stop. So if it is a fan, it has to be the PSU, and upon further struggling to hear where this noise is coming from, it seems more and more like it's coming from the area the PSU is in.

Is there anything in a PSU that would intermittently "squeak" or "chirp" unrelated to load or use, or does sound like a fan? The fan is spinning as I type this (as is the noise), but the noise comes and goes randomly and thew fan spinning seems to be constant.

Either way... I guess it's time to contact EVGA yet again? Or is there something easy I can do on my end without voiding the warranty? It's really frustrating contacting EVGA and going through with RMAs to get told "we find nothing on our end" like you're not being believed or something.
post #10 of 12
Try this, read it at some other place...

"If it is not the fan, then it is coil whine (which is the same noise you can sometimes hear monitors/TVs making), as there are no other moving parts. Coil whine is basically caused by inductors, which are coils of wire which electricity passes through, the coil shape causes changes in the voltage to be magnetically dampened (much like a shock in a car), these are often used in power supplies to smooth AC voltage into DC voltage.
However, the coil also experiences some physical force, and if they are a little loose, they can make a high pitched whining noise as they vibrate in place at certain power levels. "

I would say, try locating the noise source and see if applying pressure to any of the coils fixes it. Then try applying a more permanent fixing, like tightening screws if there are any, or applying thermal-resisting adhesive.
Edited by Audinac - 10/27/15 at 5:04pm
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