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Computer randomly powers off


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#1 Aceroth

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 12:58 AM

Specs:
Case - NZXT M59
Motherboard - GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD3R
Power Supply - Corsair TX750W
Processor - Intel i7 920 @ 2.6GHz (w/ Xigmatec Dark Knight fan/heatsink)
Video Card - XFX ATi Radeon HD5850
Hard Drive - Western Digital 640GB Caviar Black
RAM - 6gb (3x2gb) G.Skill DDR3 (PC3 12800)
OS: Windows 7 Professional


I built a PC a few weeks ago, and it's been working great. But today after it had been on and idle for a while, it just powered off as if the power supply had been unplugged. No BSOD, no restart, just turned off. Every time I've tried powering it on since then it will work for a while, then turn off again. I suspect it may be the video card because sometimes the display turns off before the rest of the computer and I can hear the GPU fan start spinning faster. I've tried resetting the GPU in the other PCI slot, and I tried plugging in different PCI-E cables from the PSU, but that hasn't worked. I also tried plugging the PSU into a different wall socket, but that didn't work either. It seems like the longer I leave it off, the longer it stays on before turning off the next time I boot, but it still hasn't stayed on for longer that 15-20 minutes since it started happening. I've also been hearing a high-pitched squealing noise coming from the case. I've heard that might mean one of my fans is failing, but SpeedFan tells me my temps are low (usually around 30-35C) and all 5 of my case fans and my CPU fan seem to be running fine (I opened the case and could see and feel that they were spinning). Could my GPU fan be failing? Would this mean I need a new GPU, or could it be that my PSU is faulty? I just tested it without my GPU in and it still shut off after about 15 minutes, so that seems to indicate it's not the GPU. Could it be the CPU?

I appreciate any help you can give. Let me know if you need more info about my specs.

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#2 OldPhil

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 11:27 AM

First place I would look would be to make sure the processor is seated properly, did you use heat transfer paste??

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#3 dpunisher

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 01:47 PM

Disable the voltage drop during idle down in BIOS and see if that fixes the problem. I keep mine set to 1.25V regardless of CPU load. I went through misery with my EX58-UD4P with the exact same symptoms.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

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#4 Aceroth

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 03:37 PM

@Phil: I used Arctic MX-2 thermal paste. I'll try re-seating it to see if that fixes it.

@dpunisher: I know almost nothing about over/underclocking and messing around with the voltage settings in the BIOS, so I'm a little wary about that. But aside from that, if that were the problem, wouldn't it have happened before? It ran really well for a few weeks, then it started, but it seems like if it were a BIOS setting (and I haven't changed any BIOS settings except boot order) wouldn't it have been a problem from the start?


UPDATE: I just tried re-seating the CPU heatsink and added a little more thermal compound, but it still shut off after 10 minutes or so. I guess it's looking more like it's the PSU.

Edited by Aceroth, 02 February 2010 - 05:02 PM.


#5 MrBruce1959

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 12:25 AM

aceroth how old is your psu? is it one that was used in a previous system?
Make sure there's no dust buildup in the PSU.
Try to figure out which fan is making noise, it might be on its way out, fans are cheap compared to other hard ware they might be protecting--don't delay!

Just curious does your BIOS setup utility have a POWER montoring option?
If so you can monitor the temps in the BIOS to see if there are temperture problems.
Sometimes bargain cooling fans can fail prematurely, you find those mostly in a tower that came with tower cooling fans already installed (they use the cheapest fans available!!!)

If not you could try running SPEEDFAN download from here http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php

This program will monitor your voltages in a GUI style program.
And monitor your temps as well.
Make sure you read how to use the program on the web site.

Good luck my friend.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 03 February 2010 - 12:31 AM.

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#6 Aceroth

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 02:02 AM

PSU is almost brand new. I checked all the temps in the BIOS and they were all good (ranging from 30-40C). I filed an RMA with Corsair, so hopefully they'll replace it soon.

#7 MrBruce1959

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 04:19 AM

Ok, but I'm still curious as to what noise you've been hearing coming from the case.
Have you located the source of that noise?
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#8 dpunisher

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 06:31 AM

@dpunisher: I know almost nothing about over/underclocking and messing around with the voltage settings in the BIOS, so I'm a little wary about that. But aside from that, if that were the problem, wouldn't it have happened before? It ran really well for a few weeks, then it started, but it seems like if it were a BIOS setting (and I haven't changed any BIOS settings except boot order) wouldn't it have been a problem from the start?


You can lead a horse to water.................................

When I tell you I had the exact same problem, down to the "It ran really well for a few weeks, then it started", then I mean it. That symptom cost me lot's of time, and a bit of money, as I thought I had a component dying on me. Mine ran great for a couple weeks and out of nowhere started this random reboot without warning. CPU temp didn't matter, load didn't matter. My Corsair 550VXs voltages were spot on (I still replaced it with a 750HX to cover my bases), I sent in the motherboard to Gigabyte to have it checked, I put the CPU (i920 D0) in another system to check it out, I even bought another 6 gigs of memory just because. I replaced my Xigmatek S1283 with a Scythe Mugen 2 because I didn't like the mounting system on the xigmatek (I thought it might be causing problems on the traces where the rear plate adheres to the board. I would have been royally pissed if I didn't work on/sell this stuff for a living so I could turn it over (and had an HTPC I was putting together as well). When it was all said and done................same problem. Sometimes it would reboot while I was in the BIOS screen.

Try this before you get RMA happy (or RMA miserable depending on the outcome).

ADVANCED CPU FEATURES:

CPU Enhanced Halt......Disabled
C3/C6/C7 state Support...........Disabled (Should be disabled already)
CPU EIST Function..........Disabled

On the voltage control, Enable "Load Line Calibration".

Make sure voltage is correct for RAM, as well as timings. Some RAM doesn't like 1.5V and needs more to function properly.

6 months so far and not a hiccup from my setup. I wish you luck as this is a frustrating problem.

Try the above and see if it makes a difference. Worst case, you reset your BIOS to "Fail safe Default", and no harm no foul.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#9 Aceroth

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 05:32 PM

MrBruce, I removed each fan incrementally and determined it wasn't any of those. It sounded like it may have been coming from the PSU itself.

dpunisher, I did what you recommended and am currently testing. I'll update with results when I determine if it's working. You said "Make sure voltage is correct for RAM, as well as timings. Some RAM doesn't like 1.5V and needs more to function properly." I don't really know what the correct voltage or timing is, but I haven't done any modifying with that, so is leaving it on the default setting okay, or do I need to change something?

#10 OldPhil

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 05:41 PM

Check you ram spec on the manufactures site.

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#11 Aceroth

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 06:57 PM

Okay, I changed those BIOS settings and still no luck. It made that god awful noise and shut of again like usual. Oh well, hopefully a new PSU will solve the problem.

#12 MrBruce1959

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 11:37 PM

Okay, I changed those BIOS settings and still no luck. It made that god awful noise and shut of again like usual. Oh well, hopefully a new PSU will solve the problem.


Let us know how it turns out, any fan making a noise other than pushing air around is a sign of failure.

Once those Bridge Rectifiers (Diodes) get hot enough, the power supply will shut down.

Any time a fan makes an abnormal noise, replace it, they are cheaper to replace than the hardware they are trying to protect is. Specially the Processor, keep those fans clean and spining.
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#13 Aceroth

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 05:51 PM

Update:

Just received the new power supply from Corsair today, and no luck. It still shut off after 10 minutes or so.

Any suggestions as to what it might be or what my next step should be? I really don't know what else I can do short of just replacing parts. Could it be the motherboard? Any thoughts on what the squealing sound could be?

#14 Aceroth

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 12:29 AM

Interesting development:

I've been troubleshooting for a few hours now, testing the memory primarily. I started off letting the system run with no ram for about 20 minutes, and it didn't shut down in that time frame. Then I tested each stick individually, and still got good results. I finally got up to all three sticks and the computer still wasn't shutting off like it was before. So I was confused about this (because I'd reseated the ram multiple times before sending the power supply back, so I figured that wouldn't be the issue), but figured what the hell, I won't worry about it too much unless the problem comes back. So I put the case cover back on, plugged in all my cables (speakers, ethernet, etc.) and booted it up. No luck this time, it shut off within 10 minutes like before. I opened the case back up and ran it, and now it's been going for about 30 minutes.

tl;dr: My computer only works when the case is open. What could be the reason for that? I can post pics sometime tomorrow if that will help.

EDIT: It powered off again with the case open, so I guess that doesn't have much to do with it.

Edited by Aceroth, 02 March 2010 - 01:15 AM.


#15 Vaerli

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Posted 03 March 2010 - 12:53 AM

This sounds really similiar to the problem I've been having with my build that's about a year and half or so old. It's been shutting down like yours has. While mine is a bit more sporadic, I haven't been able to sort it out either. I was thinking my PSU was the problem, but if yours still powers down without warning after fixing it, I'm not as anxious to try and get a new one.

For some reason mine runs almost perfectly at night... but it's terrible during the day. Does yours do anything like that?

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