No Picture signal on Monitor from Geforce 4

June 25, 2011 at 12:33:30
Specs: Windows XP, P4 3GHz/1GB Ram
No Picture signal on Monitor from Geforce 4

My monitor keeps displaying "No Signal" whenever it is connected to my Geforce 4 MX 4000 card.
It was working normally until one day when I shut it down and then restarted it. It displayed "no signal". On closer observation, I also noticed it does not boot beyond the initial screen. This is because I did not hear it read the hard disk as it does normally. Also at this point pressing the power button does not turn it off. It simply just does not respond. I have to turn off the mains.
But when I connect the monitor to the onboard video port, it works very fine except for the games.
There were no recent changes (software or hardware). All other things work perfectly; fans, processors, USB, hard disks, CD drive, etc. Someone help pls.

My system specs are:

P4 board and P4 Intel processor 3.06GHz with Hyper-Threading support
1GB DDR RAM and 160GB hard disk (2 x 80GB)
Windows XP Media Center Edition
DirectX 9.0c
Nvidia Geforce 4 MX 4000 AGP card

Got some hint from this link; but I had already tried those options before yet nothing positive.

Richard59 pls review this and help. Anybody else with useful info pls help.

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June 25, 2011 at 15:19:40
Does your power supply have enough capacity ?
The Geforce 4 MX 4000 video chipset requires a recommended minimum 250 watt (max total power output rating) power supply be on your system - does your system have at least that ?

If no, an inadequate power supply may allow the card to work anyway for a while but the power supply is eventually damaged from being constantly overloaded, and eventually it may no longer allow the system to boot when the card is installed because of the card's current (amperage) requirements.
In that case, the card will work fine and the system will boot fine when the card is installed if the system has an adequate capacity power supply.

If yes, it has at least 250 watts capacity.....

What make and model is it ? El-cheapo power supplies are much more likely to cause you problems.

Is it's fan spinning properly ? Can you feel it output a reasonable amount of air ?

In any case, failing power supplies are common. You could try connecting a different used power supply, if one is available to you, e.g. from a system you or a friend has, without installing it in your system's case if you need to do that.

"... I also noticed it does not boot beyond the initial screen. "

Screen ? Are you seeing video BEFORE Windows loads while booting ?

The Geforce 4 MX 4000 AGP's chipset , or any video chipset, does not require drivers on the hard drive to produce video while booting - there should always be video BEFORE Windows loads.

If you have no display AFTER Windows starts to load, that's a problem that's usually easy to fix.

If you DO have video while booting, there may be nothing wrong with the card and replacing the power supply may fix your problem.
In that case, the card will work fine connected to another system with an adequate power supply.

If you have no video at ball while booting from the Geforce 4 MX 4000 AGP card, the card probably has a poor connection or it's fried. Either thing can cause the computer to not boot normally when the card is installed

Does it have a fan on it ? If so, is it still spinning properly ?
If it does and it isn't, the video chip the fan cools may be fried.

The card must be all the way down in the slot.

If you plug in or unplug a video card while the power supply still has AC power to it and the PS itself is switched on, the mboard always has power in some places even when the computer is NOT runninfg including some of the contacts in the AGP slot, and the video card is easily damaged.

If the AGP card was NOT fastened down to the case at any time, all it takes for it to be damaged is for it to move slightly upwards in it's slot, such as when you plug in or unlpug the cablre to a monitor, when the PS has AC power, whether the computer was running at the time or not.
AGP cards / AGP slots are especially vulnerable because the contacts on the card and in the slot are in two staggered vertical levels.

If you can, try the Geforce 4 MX 4000 with another mboard to rule out a possible AGP slot vwith damaged circuits on your mboard, but it's likely you'll get similar symptoms when it's on the other mboard.

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June 25, 2011 at 15:55:23
Thanks for the advice.
I've used the card for about 2 years straight without issues. Yes there used to be the initial screen stating the card name and card memory size (128MB). Now nothing shows at all. I never shake the PC whether when on or off. AGP card fan and PC processor fan are still working perfectly. Card and processor are well seated and properly screwed in. So all those are eliminated.
About the supply's max power rating I'll check it out and get back here. I would also try another mboard and power supply.
Thanks again.

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June 25, 2011 at 17:58:45
One thing I forgot to mention.

This can also apply to power supplies and video cards.

If your mboard is not new (usually the mboard is at least 2 years old when this happens)......

Some mboards develop this problem - electrolytic capacitors were installed on them that were not properly made, and they fail eventually - the mboard manufacturer didn't know they were improperly made at the time the mboard was made.

Open up your case and 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, fried Athlon cpus, etc.:

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July 1, 2011 at 13:20:38
Thanks for d idea. U may be right. Coz I checked the power supply. It was rated 145W. So I replaced it with 350W PSU. I then reduced the system to bare bones (mboard, processor and fan, PSU, RAM, keyboard and Geforce 4 card). It worked perfectly for 2 hrs then went blank as before upon restarting. I then removed the AFP card and tried the onboard Video port. This didn't work this time. So i guess the problem is with d mboard.
Upon testing the AGP card, one cap seeemed shorted (read 15 ohms btw its terminals). Though I noticed there were some 15 ohm resistors close to it.

I'll look the mboard up and let u know what I find. My mboard is 4.5 yrs old and Geforce card is 3 yrs now. Thanks a lot.

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July 1, 2011 at 13:34:18
could not open the first link u posted. Require me to register.

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July 1, 2011 at 14:19:53
"could not open the first link u posted. Require me to register."

The first one in response 3 ?

Apparently that member's page is no longer there. Thanks for letting me know - I'll delete that in my info.

Most places on the web that require you to register only require your email address and perhaps a password - there is usually no fee..

350 watts is a lot more capacity than the recommended minimum required for a system with the particular video chip(set) the card in the slot has. You didn't need to run the system configured bare bones.
Hard drives and optical (CD or DVD) drives, most if not all cards installed in slots other than some video cards, mice and keyboards, and all USB devices (2.5 watts max for USB 1.x and USB 2.0 devices) , draw very little power.

Whether there is one or more failing capacitor(s) on the AGP card is not relevant if the system does not produce video with just the onboard video.

I've never seen a failing or failed electrolytic capacitor on any video card, ever, but it can happen in theory.

Try the AGP card with a working system.

If there is no obvious physical sign of a bad capacitor on the mboard, try a different power supply, 250 watts capacity or more if the AGP ard is installed.

You could also try the 350 watt PS with a working computer that it has enough capacity for (any mboard that has no video card in a slot), or open up the PS's case to see if it has failing or failed capacitors - that's a frequent reason they fail, especially if it's an el-cheapo brand..

You most often can't test a capacitor properly when it's still connected to a board - you're often experiencing it being connected to other components. Apparently, on mboards, capacitors in a row or close to each other are often connected in parallel - all the capacitors connected in parallel in the one place will have the same reading.
If the capacitor is not a conventional electrolytic capacitor, an aluminum can that has the top of it crimped /formed so that you can see seams/lines in the metal, then it's probably a polymer electrolytic or other capacitor which supposedly never fails.
If the top of the conventional electrolytic capacitor is not flat, and/or if the seams have opened up there, and/or if you see liquid or dried deposits from liquid on the top or at the base of the capacitor, or if the top is opened right up, or if the capacitor has blown up and it's can is not there at all, just it's leads in the board, it is or was probably definately an improperly made capacitor.


I looked up more info about bad capacitors recently

It's difficult to determine whether an electrolytic capacitor is defective with an ohm meter even when it has been removed from the board, unless it's shorted (0 ohms ) or open (infinite ohms - no reading ).

Apparently a bad electrolytic capacitor that may or may show physical signs of failure most often tests close to normal readings when it is disconnected from the board even with a meter with (a) proper capacitor testing selection(s). What changes drastically is the ESR - Equivalent Series Resistance - you can't measure that with a normal meter, but a bright guy in Australia came up with a circuit for a meter that can measure the ESR directly, in the 90's,and there are places on the web where you can order a kit to make the latest version of that meter.

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July 18, 2011 at 12:49:04
Sorry I have been out of town for a while. Did some checks. Found out CPU is dead. A lot of the pins are shorted. What i don't know is if d board was the cause. If not has it been affected? Guess I need to see the professionals. Thanks for your reponses and time though.

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July 18, 2011 at 19:31:13
"Found out CPU is dead. A lot of the pins are shorted. "


Do you mean the CPU = the processor ?

There are probably a lot of pins that are for grounds - it would be perfectly normal for those to measure 0 ohms with respect to each other.

I don't know of any procedure for testing the CPU by connecting a meter or whatever to the pins.

The only sure way of testing the CPU that I know of is by installing it in another known to be working mboard that is compatible with it.

It's possible the CPU is dead but it's extremely unlikely, unless something such as a failing power supply or a power spike or surge or a lightning strike damaged it, or it got hot enough that it fried itself - most mboard's Bois's will shut off the mboard automatically long before that happens and will not start up again until the CPU has cooled down - almost always something else is wrong.

If your original power supply failed because you installed the Geforce 4 card and overloaded it, sometimes a power supply damages something else while failing, most often the mboard. It's possible for the mboard to work for a while after it has been damaged and then fail.
I've seen that happen with a video card, on two separate occasions, and a dial-up modem after a power supply failed and was replaced.

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July 22, 2011 at 16:23:06
Yeah sure. I did a series of tests before coming up with my conclusions. These weren't ground pins. And not just a few pins were shorted. A lot were. The whole of the pins in the west and south columns were shorted out. As a recent electronics graduate I'm aware of certain precautions and deductions. I just haven't had a lot of hands-on experience dealing with complex systems as mboards so I decieded to seek some clues and directions. And I'm really grateful for your help. You helped confirm my suspicions and give insight. So thanks again.
Yes you are right. My system was set to shut down if processor temp reaches 64 celsius; though it has never gotten that hot. (Proper Ventilation and good processor fan). You are also right about possible mboard and PSU faults. I'm getting them checked soon.
"It's possible for the mboard to work for a while after it has been damaged and then fail."
This is probably the case with mine. I would also get my hard disks checked even though there were no signs; just to eliminate other components from the list.
Thanks again.

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July 22, 2011 at 18:31:40
Thanks for the Thanks.

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