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Replace Power Supply Unit?


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#1 Todd.

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Posted 21 June 2010 - 07:41 PM

My Dell Dimension 8300 is randomly shutting down every now and then. The fan is also running pretty loud. I have also checked the power option settings under control panel and it says my "UPS service is stopped". I'm thinking it might be time to replace the power supply unit as I've had this PC for over 4 years now. Does it seem like the PSU might be the problem here?

-The original system came with a 250W PSU and I'm thinking about replacing it with the Antec Earthwatts EA380 380W PSU. Is this Antec unit compatible with an older PSU (wattage, connections, bay space, etc.)? I don't plan to add any additional hardware in the future so I am just trying to replace it with something basic that will get me through another couple of years.

-Are Antec PSU's fairly easy to install? Screwdriver, cable ties, compressed air?

-Should I be concerned about the "UPS service is stopped" error message? Does this mean I need a new surge protector as well?

-Should I download the latest beta version of Everest from Lavalys.com to help with diagnostics?


Thanks for the advice and help!!

Todd.

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#2 ReviverSoft

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Posted 21 June 2010 - 09:05 PM

" My Dell Dimension 8300 is randomly shutting down every now and then. The fan is also running pretty loud. "
That could also be due to overheating, right?

Are Antec PSU's fairly easy to install? Screwdriver, cable ties, compressed air?
Yes, although installing it isn't the problem. You need to find out the exact dimension of your current PSU, to ensure a correct fit.
(Original dimensions, not too sure though: Depth: 4"; Height 3.25"; Width x 5.75")

Should I be concerned about the "UPS service is stopped" error message? Does this mean I need a new surge protector as well?
No.

Should I download the latest beta version of Everest from Lavalys.com to help with diagnostics?
Your call. The previous(stable) version should do just fine.

So what's the deal with the PSU replacement?
Well, Dell uses a proprietary PSU that does not have a 'power switch' at the back. Most PSUs(inc. the Antec one) in the market today, have one.
So to accommodate most PSUs, you will need to cut out the particular section, at the back of your case. That apart, any popular ATX12V PSU should work with the Dimension 8300.
Going by the system specs., a 3XX W PSU should be perfect.

There's just one after market brand that caters to Dell PSU replacements and their PSUs are undoubtedly expensive. Getting a PSU replacement from Dell, wouldn't be the most economical idea either.

Hope this helps. :thumbsup:

Edited by ReviverSoft, 21 June 2010 - 09:13 PM.

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#3 Todd.

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Posted 21 June 2010 - 11:48 PM

Thanks, ReviverSoft.

How can I tell if the PSU needs to be replaced due to overheating? I ran Everest and the CPU starts at 27 degrees celsius and gets up to 37 degrees celsius in about 12 minutes if the CPU is run at 100% non-stop. It gradually goes back down to around 34C as the fans cool it off.

I took off the case and both the heatsink fan and power supply fan are running. I also cleaned the inside with compressed air.

Are there any other reasons why the computer would randomly shutdown? How can I tell what is causing it to overheat?

I'm a little hesitant to immediately replace the PSU since the fan is working fine. Plus, I discovered the standard PSU motherboard connection won't work for Dell Dimension systems (and the power switch issue on the back as you pointed out), making it more costly and complicated than I originally anticipated.

Thanks,
Todd.

#4 ReviverSoft

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 08:04 PM

How can I tell if the PSU needs to be replaced due to overheating?
I was referring to the CPU here.

gets up to 37 degrees celsius in about 12 minutes if the CPU is run at 100% non-stop
100%? What kind of applications are you running? Does it shutdown in this situation?

How can I tell what is causing it to overheat?
One can never be sure, so the person has to start troubleshooting by cleaning/checking components that can overheat.
As such, the reason would be insufficient cooling.

Are there any other reasons why the computer would randomly shutdown?
For all we know, it could be the PSU that's failing. Now that can only be verified by testing your system components using another PSU, which may prove difficult.

Other reasons, well, it could be a driver related conflict, but that would result in a system reboot and not a shutdown.

Edited by ReviverSoft, 22 June 2010 - 08:08 PM.

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