Black Screen when powering on PC

February 19, 2010 at 18:04:20
Specs: Windows XP, Core2Duo/DDR2
My PC recently crashed and i now get a black screen when powering it on. I tried to removed everything but CPU, RAM and Video Card and still get the same results. I tried a different video card but still get black screen.

I am using an ASUS P5K motherboard with Intel Core 2 Duo cpu.

Any tips are appreciated

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February 19, 2010 at 18:23:33
I'm assuming you're getting no video at all.
If you're getting video while booting until Windows is supposed to load, then no video, that's a different situation.

Unplug the case/power supply, or switch off the AC power to it otherwise.
Power off your monitor.
Open up the case by removing the left side panel as seen when you're looking at the front of the case.
Check all the connections of the wiring to make sure they are all the way onto their pins and into their sockets, especially the main connector from the power supply. The wires close to the mboard going into the main power connector/socket should be more or less perpendicular to the mboard surface rather than at an angle. Make sure all cards in slots are all the way down in their slots.

See response 2 in this - try cleaning the contacts on the ram modules, and making sure the modules are properly seated:

While you're in there, if the cpu fan/heatsink has mung (dust, lint, etc.) on it, clean it off, but DO NOT use a vaccuum cleaner to do that (they produce a tremendous amount of static electricity when running, and anything connected to them can discharge that to your components) - use canned air, or an air nozzle if you have access to an air compressor, or an artist's brush that can be used in small spaces, etc. It may be difficult to clean the top of the heatsink under the cpu fan - the most likely place to have mung on it - and the bottom side of the cpu fan blades unless you remove the fan. If you have a case fan, clean that too if it needs it.

Also check for mung on the video card fan and heatsink if it has that, and the power supply's openings / fan.

With the cover still off, restore the AC power, start the computer and make sure the cpu fan spins - if it doesn't spin, if you're sure the power supply is working okay, don't use the computer until you have replaced it.
If it spins too slowly, and/or if it makes rattling or screeching noises, most likely to be noticed when the computer has cooled to room temp, has not been used for a while, and then is started up, the cpu fan's bearings are failing - the cpu is likely to overheat as a result of that if it can no longer spin it's full speed - replace it as soon as you can.

While the computer is running, if your video card has a fan and heat sink, make sure the fan is spinning.

Some video cards must have an additional power connector from the power supply connected to asmal sicket on the card.

Try the computer.

If that doesn't help, this is the most likely cause:

Failing power supplies are common and can cause your symptoms.
Check your PS.
They often partially work, fans and hard drives may spin, leds may come on, yet you may get no video and the mboard will not boot all the way.
See response 4 in this:

If it is failing, you can usually replace it with any decent standard sized standard ATX PS with the same capacity or greater.

Standard (PS/2) power supply size - 86mm high, 150mm wide, 140mm deep, or 3 3/8" h x 5 7/8" w x 5 1/2" d , or very close to that, though the depth can be more or less for some PSs.

Don't buy an el-cheapo PS.
See response 3 in this:

Some people these days are frying their power supply because they have installed a video card that requires more capacity than their power supply can handle.

Your power supply must have at least the minumum capacity required to support a system with the graphics card you are using installed, or the max graphics card you might install in the future.
(Onboard video - video built into the mboard - IS NOT A CARD!)
If that info is not in the ad for the video card, you can go to the video card maker's web site and look up the specs for the model - often under system requirements - the minimum PS wattage, and, more important, the minimum amperage the PS must supply at 12v is stated. If you don't find that, any card with the same video chipset including any letters after the model number has very similar minimum PS requirements. Some power supplies have two or more +12v ratings - in that case, add those ratings to determine the total +12v current capacity.

If you're a gamer.....
In most if not all cases, the max capacity rating of the PS is an intermittant rating. It's recommended that you do not load your PS to any more that 80% of that rating if you are going to be using something that puts a constant load on it, such as playing a recent game for hours on end. In that case, you multiply the min capacity stated for the system with the particular video chipset on the card by 1.25 to find the min. capacity of the PS you should get.

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February 19, 2010 at 18:36:22
Thank you for your response Tubesandwires. I have tried cleaning out the case of dust with compressed air. I also removed motherboard and PSU and tried to boot it outside of case to see if that was problem but still recieve black screen. I reseated all RAM and even tried using just one module with no luck. Also i have a 750w PSU and has been working fine for 2 years.

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February 19, 2010 at 18:51:09
Are you hearing the normal one beep while booting,
or no beeps,
or a different pattern of beeps?

Your PS has more than enough capacity for even two or three high end video cards, but the quality of power supplies varies widely. What make and model is it?

If you have access to another PS you can borrow, try that - 400 watts, or more, capacity is enough for a test.

Examine the mboard to see if you have bad capacitors, and/or other findable signs of mboard damage .

This was the original bad capacitor problem - has some example pictures.
History of why the exploding capacitors and which mboard makers were affected:

What to look for, mboard symptoms, example pictures:
Home page that site
- what the problem is caused by
- he says there are STILL bad capacitors on more recent mboards.

Pictures of blown capacitors, other components, power supplies, Athlon cpu's, etc.:

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Related Solutions

February 19, 2010 at 19:05:09
I am hearing no beeps on boot but if i remove the RAM i recieve the error beep code for no ram. And sorry forgot to say yes i am getting no video at all.

For my PSU it is a Thermaltake Toughpower.

Someone had mentioned the capacitator idea to me earlier and i looked about the motherboard and couldent find any that seemed bad. I dont have a PSU here but i can try n borrow one maybe to see if that the problem.

All fans are spinning and if i do plug in the HDD i hear it spin and same with DVD drive gets power.

I really appreciate the help.

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February 19, 2010 at 20:56:34
"I am hearing no beeps on boot but if i remove the RAM i recieve the error beep code for no ram."

"....if i remove the RAM i recieve the error beep code for no ram"

That's a good sign, but it may not entirely rule out a faulty power supply.

"I am hearing no beeps on boot ..."

That could be a ram connection problem. You could try re-seating the ram again. It can be finicky to get to seat, especially if it has heat sinks on it, or if a slot is close to something else.

Does the cpu fan spin okay ? Is it plugged into the cpu fan header?

Did you unplug the case/power supply, or switch off the AC power to it otherwise, at ALL times when you were installing and removing the ram, fiddling with connections, and removing cards ??

If you didn't you may have damaged the ram - some of the contacts in the ram slots (and the other mboard slots) have power all the time the power supply has AC power.

Otherwise, it's extremely rare for ram to fail spontaneously, almost unheard of for more than one to fail at a time, unless it was damaged by an external event such as a power spike or surge, or a power failure event, or a lightning strike on the power grid, or a static electricity discharge .

You could test the ram in another mboard, however, it would have to be looked up and found to be compatible with using it in the other mboard - otherwise if it doesn't work in another mboard, that doesn't necessarily prove it's "bad" . On the other hand, if it DOES work fine in another mboard, passes a memory diagnostic test, that DOES prove it's okay.

"All fans are spinning and if i do plug in the HDD i hear it spin and same with DVD drive gets power. "

"PSU it is a Thermaltake Toughpower."

That's a good brand and model.

But as I said above....

They (faulty power supplies) often partially work, fans and hard drives may spin, leds may come on, yet you may get no video and the mboard will not boot all the way.

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