My PC cuts out at random

  Stan 17:49 04 Apr 2004

My PC has developed the anoying habit of shutting down at random usualy during fast graphic intense gaming.When I say shuts down I mean its as if the plug has been pulled out, the thing just stops dead. The only way to start it again is to switch off at the mains, wait, then switch on again. If it does not fire up first go I have to switch of at the mains and try again.
I have added a larger heatsink and fan in case this is an overheating problem but this did not work, any suggestions out there?
Tsunami 400 watt PSU
Asrock K7S8X Mobo
1 Gig PC2700 Ram
Athlon 2800+ Barton CPU
Saphire Radion 9500 Pro Graphics
Sound Blaster 5.1 Digital Soundcard
DVD Rom Drive
CD-RW Drive
DVD-RW Drive
3.5 inch Floppy
Internal card reader
USB scanner
Usb Printer

  AbodeMilano 17:50 04 Apr 2004

Can I ask what PSU you have? Sounds like it could be a power problem.

  Stan 18:00 04 Apr 2004

System: Tsunami 400 watt PSU, Asrock K7S8X Mobo, 1 Gig PC2700 Ram, Athlon 2800+ Barton CPU, Saphire Radion 9500 Pro Graphics, Sound Blaster 5.1 Digital Soundcard, DVD Rom Drive, CD-RW Drive, DVD-RW Drive, 3.5 inch Floppy, Internal card reader, USB Hub, USB scanner, Usb Printer.

  AbodeMilano 19:08 04 Apr 2004

Hmm 400w should be ok, I only have a 360 but I do have less equipment. Maybe the cpu/mb is overheating and cutting out?

  961 19:25 04 Apr 2004

Check temperatures in BIOS

Have you extract fan in rear and fan in PSU and are both working

Check fan on cpu heatsink working

If you have fan in front of case ensure it is intake and not extract, and then try disabling front fan. Often temp will be lower with only rear fans working

  thedarkside 20:22 04 Apr 2004

Check your temperatures in BIOS first.

Also, is there some kind of thermal protection setting that may be set too low. I have a feeling that your Asrock mobo has such a thing.

  Stan 21:56 04 Apr 2004

I do feel its some sort overheating problem as it usualy happens during heavy gameplay, and I belive the motherboard does have thermal protection, assuming I can ajust this what sort of settings should I go for with an Athlon 2800+

Many thanks


  Smudge 22:04 04 Apr 2004

I had a similar problem and found that the fan on the power supply was cutting out intermittently. The computer would just die and had to be left some minutes before it would re-start. I bought and installed a new fan in the power supply and it is back to normal.

  thedarkside 23:24 04 Apr 2004

Like most manufacturers, the default setting will, I imagine be set on the conservative side.
You should be able to find this in BIOS under "advanced chipset" or some such heading.
If the system was overheating gradually, the usual symptom is a lock-up, not a shut down. This sure seems like something is stepping in.

An Athlon 2800 does run hot. I have a friend whose Athlon 3200 was running at 63 degrees. I fitted an Aero 7 and got it down to 45 degrees.
Anything up to about 50 - 55 degrees should be OK. Above that things can get interesting.

Also it might be an idea to have a few case fans fitted. I use 2 as intake, 3 as exhaust. The air in a PC does get hot, so therefore it makes sense to draw cool air in and vent hot air out!

I am also inclined to think Smudge may have a good point. Dicky PSU give more grief that most other things combined

  Stan 19:48 16 Apr 2004

Thanks for all the help guys, great forum.
Sorry about the late response but I have finaly fixed the problem.
Firstly I swaped out the motherboard, which windows didn't take kindly to. Still got the power cutting out. Then I swapped out the PSU, no more power cuts but windows would not boot, and before anyone asks of course I hadn't backed up my HDD (does anyone). Tried reinstalling windows, but couldn't.
Last chance, I put the old mobo back with the new PSU still would not boot but it did allow me to reinstall windows. Hey Presto!! I'm back in business.

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