TechSpot

Scrambled PC Screen

  1. Hi. I would like some help to know what's wrong with my computer. About a week ago, I turned it on and the screen was all scrambled and nothing was responding. I restarted it, and it booted up fine. Then about 10 minutes after it was at the desktop, the screen went scrambled again and I had to restart it. This kept happening randomly, whether it be every 2 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes or 5 hours...it just scrambles with lines all over the screen of various colours no matter what I'm doing or if it's on standby. Sometimes, it just cuts off from the tower and restarts. Since this issue occurred and me having to constantly restart it, there has also been a chainsaw-like sound coming from the tower as well. I don't know if it's the fan or power supply or what. Also, I don't have a graphics card at the moment since it died a while back so I'm using the integrated graphics from the motherboard. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. JC713

    JC713 TS Evangelist Posts: 6,975   +908

    What are your full system specs (OS [32bit or 64bit?], CPU, amount of RAM)? What connection are you using to your monitor (HDMI, DVI, VGA, etc)?
     
  3. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    Uh, is the fan on your CPU spinning? Chainsaw sound is most like a fan, and your PC restarting means it's a critical component probably overheating.
     
  4. JC713

    JC713 TS Evangelist Posts: 6,975   +908

    Yeah I was thinking that. I think it is a GPU overheating issue.
     
  5. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    OP said he took out his graphics card and is using onboard. That's why CPU (or even chipset) could be overheating.
     
  6. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Windows 7 Ultimate 32-bit, Intel E5400 @ 2.7Ghz, 2.5 GB RAM, VGA.
     
  7. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Yes, the fan on my CPU is spinning.
     
  8. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    Alright, so what's making the chainsaw sound?

    Take a photo and circle the part that's making the noise, if you don't know what it is.
     
  9. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    I believe it's the fan on the CPU. When the tower is open and I turn it on, I touched the sides where the screws are and it made an even louder chainsaw-like noise. Maybe the screws are slack or something? I also see black, dust-like fragments under the propeller. Also, if it is the chipset overheating, will getting a graphics card solve the issue instead of replacing the motherboard or whatever? Thanks.
     
  10. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    Can you take a photo please? It'll be easier to tell you what to focus on.

    By the way, be careful when the PC is running. ..

    The noise is probably the fan blades hitting a cable, or something similar.
     
  11. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Okay, I will but I can't right now. It's pretty late so I gotta hit the hay. :)
     
     
  12. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    Alrighty, goodnight! :)
     
  13. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Good night/ Good morning...since it's after 12 a.m. here. :p Bye!
     
  14. JC713

    JC713 TS Evangelist Posts: 6,975   +908

    Herp derp *nerd*. Oops lol.
     
  15. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Hey. Here is a photo: IMG_20130619_224712.jpg
     
  16. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    That looks pretty clean. Can you circle the parts you mentioned in post #9?

    - Where you touched.
    - What is making noise
    - Black dust-like fragments.
     
  17. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Here you go...it's not circled though: 1.jpg
     
  18. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    See the silver square on bottom-left of photo? Most likely, that's your chipset. You should gently touch it when PC is turned off (recently) and check to see if it's very hot.

    In regards to your fan: maybe your screws are loose. If you say there's dust in your fan, maybe it's time for a good clean. Use a screwdiver to make sure the screws are nice and tight, and blow out the dust. Or, if you're feeling like some DIY, you can do the below.



    Follow a video such as this:


    Of course, make sure your hands are clean, you 'discharge' yourself and ground yourself (touch case while touching components), power is unplugged, etc...

    You need to remove that fan, blow out the dust, then replace the thermal compound.
     
  19. JC713

    JC713 TS Evangelist Posts: 6,975   +908

  20. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    I have some pictures of some of the crashes that occurred recently if it will help. This is what the screen looked like: img (1).jpg img (3).jpg img (6).jpg img (8).jpg img (10).jpg IMG_20130620_075409.jpg
     
  21. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,469   +622

    Eh, hard to tell. I'd swap out monitors, if you have another to test.
     
  22. JC713

    JC713 TS Evangelist Posts: 6,975   +908

    I think it is a monitor issue like Stick said.
     
  23. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

  24. Cobalt006

    Cobalt006 TS Maniac Posts: 1,831   +184

    It may be the monitor. Try swapping out monitors. If this does not work , I would lean toward your on board graphics chip.
     
  25. DaFroginator101

    DaFroginator101 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Hey everyone. Sorry I took so long to reply. I got a new graphics card and everything is working fine now since I got it but as of this week the PC freezes on desktop start up. Yesterday it froze on "Starting Windows". I twitched the DVI-VGA cable a little bit and it seemed to be working now. But I am afraid to shut it down again as I don't know if it will turn back on. My card is an EVGA GTX 650 and I'm using the latest beta drivers from Nvidia's website. Any help will be appreciated again. Thanks. :)
     


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...


Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.