Sporadic power-up with new hardware

Asus M4a79xtd evo motherboard
July 22, 2010 at 11:33:00
Specs: Windows XP SP3, AMD Phenom II X4 965
I recently began building a new computer from the ground up to replace my existing one. A lot of the hardware is new, but I kept my existing hard drives (one with Windows XP, SP3 on it and one just formatted for file storage), DVD drive, sound card, and ethernet card. I believe everything else is new.

I have double-checked and triple-checked my connections, and everything seems solid. Sometimes when I power on, I can get into BIOS and even bring Windows up. However, more often than not (probably 6 out of 7 tries), I instead get the fans to spin for the CPU and case (and LED light, internal case lights, etc., are on), but that's it. The hard drive doesn't spin, I don't see any light on my backlit keyboard, and I don't even see the POST messages on screen.

Without power to the keyboard (USB) or monitor, I can't even enter BIOS (or at least, I can't tell if I get in). The PS, mobo, CPU, case, mouse, KB, RAM, etc., is all new. I am writing this while at work, so I don't have all of the specs with me, but this covers almost everything about the system:

• Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
• Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W Continuous Power ATX12V version 2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC
• ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard
• G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL
• AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 140W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGIBOX
• XFX HD-587X-ZNFV Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
• Logitech M505 Red 3 Buttons Tilt Wheel Wireless Laser Mouse
• Microsoft Reclusa gaming keyboard
• 2 Hard Drives (1 is a Maxtor; I can't remember the other offhand)
• 1 LG DVD drive (I can't remember the model)
• Creative Soundblaster card (really old; I believe it's at least very similar to Sound Blaster PCI 512)
• Generic Ethernet card

Given that the graphics card requires at least 500W and the mobo has printed on it 150W required, my 750W PS might provide too little power. Any thoughts? Maybe a bad mobo or PS?

I have not yet really done much other than look at forums for possible solutions to anything sounding similar. I don't think I've ever had this issue before, so it's all educated guesses for me for now. Any help is appreciated.

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July 22, 2010 at 11:48:44
Oh, it also might be worth noting that the monitor is a CRT (I know, it was really old: I'm planning on replacing that as well), using a converter from the VGA PC Monitor connection to a DVI connection. The monitor, while on, gives a green "active" light initially, which then goes to the "sleep" light after a few seconds (maybe 5–10).

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July 30, 2010 at 09:55:14
It appears to be a short-circuit. I've gone down to the bare minimum (Mobo, CPU, PSU, RAM, and Video card) and still have the problem. I have swapped the PSU (from a 750W Antec to a 1220W Kingwin) and the graphics card (from an ATI Radeon 5870 to my what was in my last system, viz., a GeForce 6100) with no change, other than that with the video swap the computer locked up part way through the POST messages.

I'm going to try to RMA the mobo and see if a replacement fixes the problem.

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