PC Died - Mobo or CPU I think...

  26trouble 17:31 04 Jul 2006

I have a home build PC which I assembled in 2002. Spec as follows:

Gigabyte GA-7VAXP Mobo
2 x 256mb Memory (crucial)
AMD Athlon XP 2100+ CPU
Seagate Barracuda 40GB Hard Drive (O/S etc)
Seagate Barracuda 120GB Hard Drive - extra storage added December 2005
AGP 8x Graphics Card (nothing special GE Force 4 I think)
Onboard Sound
PCI Dial-up Modem
External USB ADSL Modem
USB Printer
USB Keyboard and Mouse.
Running Windows XP Home

My Problem: PC Will not boot up - at all!! I turn it on, my case lights and fans Etc all come on and work. It does not even do its usual start up bleep, which is why I suspect the MOBO or CPU is the problem. I cannot hear any sounds fromt he hard drive, I have before experienced Graphics failure and normally the PC sounds like it is workign you just cannot see a screen, this time it does not sound like it is working at all.

The heatsink on the graphics card warms up to the touch so I suspect that is working.

The heatsink on the CPU does not warm up, even If I disconnect the fan (and would hence expect it to get hot) it is still cold after being on for half hour.

The mobo light that says the memory is working does come on.

Nothing looks or smells obviously fried.

Money is tight, hence cannto decided whether to gamble on a replacment CPU or whether to get a new Motherboard, CPU, memory etc and replace the lot - if I go down this route do you have any reccomendations?

Concerns with just replacing CPU is that as it is Socket A (now discontinued) if this is not the brokern part I will struggle to get a Socket A Mobo....

Any thought most appreciated!!!


  brundle 17:34 04 Jul 2006

Try another PSU if you can, sometimes a faulty rail can cause what you describe.

Take out the memory and video card, boot the PC - if you get no warning beeps at all your CPU is dead.

  Smiler 17:37 04 Jul 2006

Why not try removing and refitting the power connectors from the PSU to the mobo first.

  woodchip 17:41 04 Jul 2006

First thing to check is as above PSU, a cheap one in the case

  26trouble 17:42 04 Jul 2006

Emails from work at the moment - Not got a PC at home now :-o!

I have an old PSU I can try, but the PSU in it is a good quality Antec 550w one cost a fair whack at the time, and it is still powering the mobo (based on the memory on indicator light LED working) and all my case fans etc still work.

The cold heatsink does seem like CPU to me, but hey I am no expert! I just dont want to waste my hard earned on a new Socket A processor if it turns out it is the mobo...any sure fire way of telling?

  brundle 17:45 04 Jul 2006

Not really, except trying it in another machine. Socket A processors cost more than they're worth on Ebay and are risky to buy second hand. Recently noticed AMD are doing a mobile design based on socket A that may be worth a try as a replacement - click here

  Arnie 17:50 04 Jul 2006

Switch off the computer from the mains socket.
Unclip the fan/heatsink assembly and loosen the lever to allow you to lift the CPU.

Reinsert the CPU and refit the heatsink to see if it works, if so, refit the fan.

Since the computer is not working you have nothing to lose.

It won't be the first time this method has worked. It happened to a friend's socket A AMD CPU.

It's a long time ago but I think it was something like a K600 3D Now CPU.

  brundle 17:55 04 Jul 2006

Always good to learn different solutions. Unusual, but every option is worth a try

  26trouble 17:59 04 Jul 2006

Will go home and have a go tonight, Thanks for your advice guys.

If anyone else reads this later this evening, I am still open to (not too expensive) suggestions for a new CPU/Mobo/Memory suggestions. Ideally either re-use my current AGP graphics card or have on board graphics (no gaming so not a huge issue). Onboard Sound and reasonably future proof - I understand PCI Express is the way forward?

Any suggestions greatly appreciated! Will check back in the morning

  woodchip 18:29 04 Jul 2006

Do not try any AMD without a Fan heat sink attached

  thms 18:40 04 Jul 2006

Try here for motherboard bundles.
click here

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