Purchased a computer on ebay and its duff - what could be wrong with it?

By mcpalmer ยท 8 replies
Feb 1, 2006
  1. Hi all,

    I purchased this computer - here - and recieved it today. Unfortunately the product was not adequately packaged and had been shaken about like a ****tail in transit!!

    So the hard drive was hanging out with one screw bent at nasty angle and there were a number of screws at the bottom of the case that had collected up. Apart from that everything <seemed> ok with no obvious signs of damage. When i turn the computer on it powers up all the fans start up and various fancy lights ping on. But there is no bio read out on screen, nothing, no beeps to say something is wrong just nothing - and the monitor then goes into power save like nothing is being sent to the screen. What's the likeliest thing wrong here? Has the mobo totally had it? Could there be an obvious reason that it isn't powering up properly (apart from fact its knackered)?
  2. JMMD

    JMMD TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 854

    It could be a lot of things. Anything could have been damaged. Notify the seller and send it back. If it wasn't packed properly you shouldn't keep it.
  3. mcpalmer

    mcpalmer TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yes, this is most likely what will happen, but if i could be sure it was just the mother board, i would keep it, get a part refund from the seller and replace the motherboard with the refunded money. I suppose it would be a big risk though because i wouldn't know if anything else was damaged until i got the new motherboard
  4. mcpalmer

    mcpalmer TS Rookie Topic Starter

    well i figured if it won't even boot up it might be a cpu problem and it was - it had become unseated and some pins had been bent in the process. I bent them back and reseated the cpu and it now boots up ok :) Unfortunately it also freezes in windows xp after about 2 mins. It doesn't in safe mode however, its stable. Does this mean the hardware's ok and its just a bad windows install (the guy appears to have not bothered installing some of the hardware and i have no drivers or details of the hardware - cheers mate)? Or am i still in trouble? The bios was reset to default settings btw
  5. 48Rustbucket

    48Rustbucket TS Rookie

    I'd still get with the seller, explain the issue. Hopefully it was shipped insured, so that you can get some money back on the unit.

    That being said, I'd load up a fresh install of Windows XP, and do a wipe of all the old data, Not in that order, though, then bring it up to Service Pack 2.

    Hope that you have another computer with Internet access, as you will most likely have to do some searching for some drivers you will need. Sneaker net still has it's uses....

  6. mcpalmer

    mcpalmer TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Ok, reinstalled windows xp sp 2 and it loaded fine, installed a wireless usb network adaptor (so useful when you've got 4 systems at the mo like me) and downloaded all drivers - nforce4 amd chipset, forceware - from nvidia site. The system now seems stable in normal mode but when i set sli mode the system reboots but freezes while loading windows so something's still not right. To recap the system has:

    gigabyte - ga-k8nxp-sli mobo

    2 x asus n6600gt 128mb cards

    hey ho, i hope one of the cards or mobo is not faulty, i'll have to do some tests and have a browse on the net.

    The guy who sold this system to me still has not got back to me. but its ok, if he doesn't reply, i know where he lives, and so do ebay.
  7. 48Rustbucket

    48Rustbucket TS Rookie

    I'd see if there is a BIOS update for that mobo, then after doing that, go into your BIOS and set your settings a bit conservative. Some mobo's will hang if you try to push them to the max, and as this being a used unit, and after all it's been through, I would not try to push it hard, ie:eek:verclocking tricks, etc. If you are still having issues after doing this, start removing cards one at a time, moving them to other slots, etc...This alone may clear up your problems.

    Another thing to try is to blow out all slots with canned air, you may possibly have some debris, dust bunny, etc, in the slot, keeping a solid connection from occuring.

    I'm not familiar with SLI mode, so you will have to let me know what that is...one thing that caught my eye is that you are running a dual video card setup. Your power supply may not have enough "uummph" to run them.

    Also, it helps if you post your full system specs in your post. Processor speed, amount of RAM, and type, etc.....helps us a lot in figuring out proceedures for you to try out to correct your issue..

  8. mcpalmer

    mcpalmer TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well the system spec was on the link in the first post but i'll put it here:

    AMD 64 3500+ - venice core ( i think )
    Gigabyte - GA-K8NXP-SLI
    1GB Corsair 3200 XMS 2 x 512 (with activity led's)
    2 x Asus EN6600GT's
    Super Flower 520w Psu
    Antec PlusView II Case
    WD 120GB Sata Hard Disk Drive
    Samsung DVD +/- drive

    There are extra usb connections taking up 2 of the rear pci bays - making a total of 8 (!) usb2 available at the back - these will have to go i think, i don't need them.

    SLI is acroynm for scalable link interface and on compatible system it allows you to run 2 cards at the same time, allowing greater frame rates at high resolution. Apparently, the difference between 1 and 2 cards at lower resolutions is negligible, and the overall poly pushing grunt is not improved but i still want it to work of course!

    I just updated the bios and it made no difference. I've also had mobo settings on default since i got the system - no way will even think about increasing settings until i've got it working stable on the defaults. I'll take out extreneous stuff, then swap cards over, then if that doesn't work i don't know what i'll do!
  9. mcpalmer

    mcpalmer TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Ok, i tried both cards separately and they are fine. i tried the second card in the sli slot - not in sli mode though, just connecting the monitor to the 2nd card not the first (which you can do if you direct the bios to do so) and it displayed artefacts on screen as windows loaded and then crashed so that 2nd pci-e slot looks like its got a problem possibly.

    I then had another look on the interweb to look for solution to sli troubles and found that the porblem may be that though the 2 cards are the same model ,they may have subtle differences causing them not to workin sli, i.e. the bios version may be different for each card. This looks a distinct possibility since one card was made in china and another in taiwan. They also slightly different model numbers. If this is the case i doubt the system i purchased ever even worked in sli mode even for the ahole i bought it off!!

    So i created a start up floppy added a video bios flash app and added an up-to-date bios for my graphics card model. The plan was to flash the same bios to each card so then, hopefully, they would work in sli!

    Unfortunately the floppy would not boot on start up! Kept coming up "I/O error, please replace disk" - it looks like the floppy controller on the mobo's had it - i tried 2 different cables and 2 different floppy drives.

    I was going to create a boot cd instead but it looked too much like hard work, and i had lost motivation by then. pffffff. that guy had better contact me. :mad:
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