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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another one of my friends called to come an look to see what was wrong with his computer. It is a home built computer built in July of 07.

Here is the problem. I went and checked it out and this is what happened. I turned it on and just played around for a while and it worked fine. It ran smoothly, had good speed and looked just fine. I started doing some more things and opened up a couple browsers. I then went and turned on media player when the browsers were on and started listening to music. The screen got a little fuzzy and all the words and pictures etc went multi colored and the machine froze. The one thing I noticed though was that the speakers had some tat tat tat tat sounds continuously coming out of the speakers. I forced shut down and and restarted and tried the same things to have the same result. I know it is not media player that caused this to happen because media player was not opened when it happened to him. He just had several tabs and apps open at the time.

Video card going bad? PSU? CPU? Memory?

These are the components of the machine.
Ultra Black Case w/450 Antec Smartpower power supply

GIGABYTE GA-M57SLI-S4 Socket AM2

NVIDIA nForce 570 SLI MCP ATX AMD Motherboard

2 - Seagate Barracuda ES ST3320620NS 320GB
7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+ Windsor 2.4GHz
Socket AM2 Processor Model ADA4600CUBOX

Rosewill RCR-FD200 All-in-one USB 2.0 Black
3.5" Card Reader with 1.44MB Floppy Drive

Logitech 967692-0403 Beige & Black USB + PS/2 RF
Wireless Ergonomics Desktop Comfort Laser Mouse Included

LITE-ON Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model SHD-16S1S-05

Sony NEC Optiarc 18X DVD±R DVD Burner with
12X DVD-RAM Write Black SATA Model AD-7170S-0B

CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM
DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Memory Model TWIN2X2048-6400

XFX GeForce 8500 GT 256MB PCI Express Video Card w/DVI
It is raid 1 and one of the hdd went down a couple of months ago that I replaced for him.
 

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simplify the machine to only run the basics. like hd cpu ram video. than start swapping for known good. video card first since your getting colors on the screen. than ram.
 

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Quote:
simplify the machine to only run the basics. like hd cpu ram video. than start swapping for known good. video card first since your getting colors on the screen. than ram.
^ This.

I would guess it's a bad stick of ram..try booting up with only one stick of ram, then the other. see if it runs fine then..or perhaps run Memtesk on each stick to check for errors..usually on screen colors or lines through the screen indicae failing DIM sticks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, here is what has been happening also. For the last couple of times I was working on it if I would shut it down it would not power back up. When I hit the power button it would do a quick surge and then shut back down again. I would have to shut off the psu, hit the power button, turn the psu back on and it would start up.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ingeborgdot;11958392
Well, here is what has been happening also. For the last couple of times I was working on it if I would shut it down it would not power back up. When I hit the power button it would do a quick surge and then shut back down again. I would have to shut off the psu, hit the power button, turn the psu back on and it would start up.
I had this on a friend's PC, the cause was that the PSU wasn't good enough to run all that was going on after a RAM upgrade. It was quite old, however.
 

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Have you checked to make sure nothing is overheating?? If it runs for a while just fine and then it locks up on you I would probably check GPU/CPU temps before anything else. If nothing is overheating THEN I would move on to the other suggestions here. I'd just recommend checking temps first so you don't damage something when it is just an easy fix.

You'd be surprised the kind of dust people will let build up in their computers. It can cause a lot of problems
 

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Is this "friend" of the opposite sex? If so, I find it's much easier just to get them drunk - fixing their broken PCs takes way too much effort
tongue.gif


Seriously though. I doubt it is memory - bad memory ends in BSOD straight up. It could be PSU, but again, it would end with a shutdown or another BSOD.

My guess is it is something overheating - most likely the video card. Let it cool down for a while, then boot and install open hardware monitor as quick as you can - and start it up and check temps.

If it isn't temp of vid card, check the other temos listed in open hardware monitor - cpu, hdd, mainboard etc.

If all temps look normal, then start swapping hardware out with stuff you know works.
 

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Check the video card. The fan on my 4850 was going out without me knowing it and plagued my system with random crashes and artifacting. At the end of each crash, the speakers would go haywire. Make sure everything is staying cool.
 

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either the graphics card, or the motherboard. try a different graphics card. if symptoms persist its the board. people of having huge issues with Nvidia chipsets.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ingeborgdot;11955441
The screen got a little fuzzy and all the words and pictures etc went multi colored and the machine froze.
Same exact thing began happening to my old Athlon X2 system before it died for good. I narrowed it down. It wasn't the video card, RAM or HDD. That leaves the mobo and CPU (in my case I think it was CPU but not sure). My system was also built in '07. If your friend OC's and over-volts, as I did, it's likely his machine has reached the end of its lifespan.

Only way to tell for sure is to take out parts, one by one, and narrow it down. The obvious first choice is video card. Try a known good one. Then take out RAM and try known good RAM. If both of those are good, he's gonna need a new CPU and/or mobo.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ingeborgdot;12049142
Ran memtest for 24 hours and no errors. Put in a new psu and still the same problem. What next?
As thiussat said, check the video card next. If you don't have a spare on hand, just get a really cheap one that you can reuse or salvage a known-working one from an old machine. I have some old Geforce 4 MX440's around here that I just can't part with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
After talking to someone I removed the video card from the 16x1 video slot and placed it in the other 16x2 video slot. I worked the machine to death and nothing happens now. It seems to work fine but what am I losing with this? Why would this work and not the other slot? It may go bad after they start really using it but at this time it seems to work.
 
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