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Can a faulty graphics card "destroy" a monitor?

By AdamE ยท 12 replies
Oct 6, 2006
  1. I've been having some problems with my computer recently (blue screens). I'm not 100% sure what's causing it but I have a strong feeling that it may be a faulty graphics card. The reasons why I think it might be the graphics card is because:
    • the screen flickers,
    • I once got a shock when attaching the monitor cable to the back of the graphics card (is this even safe?), and
    • Windows attributes the error to a 'device driver'.

    Now back to my main question, can a faulty graphics card cause a monitor to "break"? Just today, my monitor is displaying all the colours wrong (a massive red tint). I've tried it on another computer and it's definitely the monitor displaying incorrect colours.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Well, not destroy. Fry some circuitry, yes - VGA signals are 0.7V and shorting 12V to it is not a good idea :)

    As for the shock you got.. Are you using grounded outlets and/or the same outlet for the PC and the monitor?
  3. AdamE

    AdamE TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I live in Australia. The power supply for the computer unit is earthed but I am not sure if the monitor is earthed or not (it's currently packed up for warranty repair).

    The shock doesn't sound normal ay? Might check around the case again for leaking voltage.
  4. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    The monitors should be grounded (as per aussie standard, unless it goes through a power adaptor, which is grounded anyways>3 pins). What brand/model is it?

    The shock.. could be a bad case of static maybe? (wool carpet, PC and/or monitor still pluged in/turned on etc) or as said a bad grounding in the PC..

    havn't heard of monitors breaking by a graphics card, but like Nodsu said, circtuitary, maybe..
  5. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    It's not likely that a faulty card would damage a monitor, but a massive static shock or discharge could destroy both the monitor and the video card... and most any other device.

    CRT monitors have their signal cables attached to the computer and the other end attaches to a video IC. This Integrated Circuit creates the video and its colors. These are transmitted through other circuitry to the CRT, or to the face of the monitor as light
  6. AdamE

    AdamE TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your help.

    It definitely wasn't a build up of static. I got the shock when screwing in the metal screws (with my hands) on the DVI plug into the back of my graphics card. I had been holding the same metal "screw" for some time before the shock occured. I also then grabbed my special 'dangerous voltage measuring' screwdriver which immediately lit up indicating a strong current.
  7. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Yeah my monitor seemed to crash after I tried to run BF2 at full graphics and I had to get a new monitor, guess I blew a circut or something =P
  8. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Refresh rates usually cause a monitor to display incorrectly, but not damage a monitor...
  9. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Eh, it gave me a excuse to replace my crap monitor for a better one =P

    And I think it was damage because when they took it to Radioshack and tried it on another computer it wouldnt work at all so they basicly traded it for another one in the shop so... guess it was broken =D
  10. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,432   +801

    Unless it's a USB/Firewire cable, it's best to NEVER perform cabling with a HOT
    system -- nasty things just happen.

    You should really verify the outlet is grounded -- it's only a few $$ for a tester
    and you will be assured that you/your family will be safe.

    Btw: Even if you have a surge protector or UPS, they only provide protection
    if the outlet is properly grounded, so testing on the device
    (surge protector or UPS) will show the entire setup is correct
  11. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Excellant advice jobeard :)
  12. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Old monitors don't have that kind of protection.
  13. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    What do you mean by "old monitors"? CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) monitors? If this is what you mean, I again say " Wrong refresh rates can damage a monitor, but they will display incorrectly first. This can usually be corrected without damaging a monitor
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