Bad caps?

By Nacho321
Feb 3, 2014
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  1. Recently, I've been having ocassional issues with my computer. Sometimes, while using it, the screen goes black, and there's no HD activity. I can't power it down by holding the power button, so I have to actually remove the power chord. If I try to restart the computer right after this happens, the screen remains black, no BIOS is loaded and HD activity happens very briefly at the beginning and then nothing else. I have to wait around 1 minute to get it to boot normally.
    The issue doesn't happen at a specific time; sometimes 5 minutes in or 50 minutes in. I have actually used my computer 7 hours straight without anything happening.
    I have a cool room, 4 fans and my temperature indicator doesn't detect any alarming temperatures. This started happening a few months ago. I thought it was a HD issue, so I bought a new one, but the issue remained (at least now I have 2 TBs :p).
    I built the desktop in December 2011. The motherboard is GIGABYTE GA-990FXA-UD3, cpu is AMD 1100T, 16 Gb of Corsair Blue DDR3 RAM at 1600 Mhz, and the vcard is a radeon 6950. I use it mainly for gaming and programming.
    I checked the motherboard and didn't see any liquid around the caps. I didn't notice any bulges or anything, but I believe this is a capacitor plague. Also, since I can't check the power source caps, I can't be sure if the issue is on the powersource and not the MOBO.
    Any ideas/thoughts?
    Thanks!
  2. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,070   +1,181

    The signs you are looking for are not symptoms of bad solid capacitors. Solid capacitors don't have anything that can leak. I'm not saying you can't have bad capacitors. I'm simply saying the solid capacitors used on your motherboard were a fix to the capacitor bulging and leaking issues. For nearly a decade now, solid capacitors have been used instead of the capacitors known for those issues. In fact some sites don't even freely advertise using solid capacitors anymore.

    I recently had similar issues with system freezing, that turned out to be incompatible (not sure if bad so I'll say incompatible) RAM. But honestly it could be anything at fault causing this black screen. The only thing I know to say, is disconnect everything that is not needed while you troubleshoot. Try one RAM module at a time, who knows it could be one stick that is causing issues.
  3. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 3,197   +555

    This, along with your other symptoms, seem to point to a mobo failure.
  4. Johnc984

    Johnc984 Newcomer, in training

    I had a similar problem with an Asus M5A99X EVO mobo, Athlon II X2 260, and G-Skill PC3 14900 F3-14900CL9Q-16GBZL RAM.
    The motherboard was setting the memory speed by default to the JEDEC spec of 1600 MHz. However the memory controller speed in the Athlon is only 1066MHz, and so I had subtle instabilities and issues, and random crashes.
    I manually dialled the speed down to 1033MHz in the BIOS, and it improved.
    The Phenom II 1100T will have a memory controller speed of 1333MHz. If your mobo has defaulted the memory to 1600MHz, then you are overclocking the controller. Try dial it down in the BIOS and see if that helps.
    Best regards,
    John.


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