Strange black and white lines on screen force reboot

By Will_m
May 13, 2008
  1. Hi there, I've recently been experiencing a problem with my HP Pavilion laptop (running Vista Home 32bit), every so often the screen will just turn black with some white diagonal lines running across it. It will then not respond to any commands and will force me to reboot and lose anything I was working on, please can anyone help me as I've lost work twice now due to this problem.


    Many thanks,

  2. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,261   +92

    Do you know if the system locks up or if it's just the LCD that starts displaying that image? For instance, if you're listening to music, does it freeze?

    Have you tried uninstalling and reinstalling your display drivers?

    :) By the way, just a little kick while you're down, your screen is dirty!
  3. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Defective screen. We see lots of them. Failed. Same symptom.
  4. Will_m

    Will_m TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 77

    Hi there thanks for the replies, I'm not sure if the system locks up as I haven't been playing music etc when it has happened. It doesn't respond to trying to open task manager though.It doesn't really happen often enough for me to test this though, It's happened around three times since I bought it in September. If I remember correctly the first time it happened it was a white screen with black lines, does this make any difference?

    Raybay - When you say 'we see lots of them' do you mean here on techspot, or where you work or something? Also if it is a failed screen does this mean I will need to get a laptop replacement or just have it repaired, its still in warranty so I guess that's plus, although I guess it will be hard to prove it faulty as it's an intermittent problem.

    Thanks for the help guys,


    P.S - I will have my screen gleaming for my next post!
  5. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,261   +92

    You have a picture, there should be no problems at all with getting them to take it in. It's fixable because it's either a defective LCD on some level or it's your video card/system board. They'll should just have to replace one or the other and you'll be back in shape.

    It might also be corrupt display drivers as well, so you might want to consider reinstalling those for sh*ts and giggles before you go shipping your laptop away.

    Haha, I was only kidding with you :)....
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    We see a number of them in our shops... either a bad screen, or bad inverter...
    The streaks are usually the bad monitor. We haven't found a replacement that works... but many are still under warranty... only the warranty is usually only a year.
    I would get it to an authorized repair center right away. They can install a new screen and have it back on the road in four hours.
    Since it is intermittent, be persistent. They do have to make the problem recur in the shop, however.
    Take photos each time it happens... without a flash... in a dark room. Each time it does it... the image will then show the time and dates, to verify it is a problem.
    It may be just the inverter, which is only a $15 part.
  7. Will_m

    Will_m TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 77

    Many thanks guys, I shall contact the repair centre and see if they agree to taking it in for me, it also has a sound issue (I get a horrible buzzing when running on a.c power and external speakers are connected) so hopefully they will be able to fix that too! I'm not sure about buying an HP again though.

    Much appreciated!

  8. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    The noise gives the problem a new dimension. It may possible that your power adapter is defective and the spurious responses emitted are causing the streaking and such... be sure HP knows about both. I am almost certain they are related... either the screen problem is affecting the sound, or another problem is creating both the sound issue and the screen streaking problem.
  9. Will_m

    Will_m TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 77

    Ah thanks, that's interesting I did ring them about the sound problem (this was before the screen problem) and I was told the power supply might be to blame and to try another one, sadly I don't know anyone else that has one so I'm still working on that. If it is related that would be good as I could get both sorted in one go! I shall try again to find someone else with a suitable power supply.


  10. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    You can get them on eBay... be sure to search for the official HP brand, as many of the others introduce spurious electrical emissions themselves. They too can affect sound and screen.
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