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PC Video card
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vickyg2003
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Joined: 20 Mar 2004
Posts: 6952
Location: Florida

PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:04 pm    Post subject: PC Video card Reply with quote

Hi guys,

My xp machine video card is getting BSOD from the video card. I reloaded the drivers but that didn't fix it either. So I opened the case and could see that the fan on the video card is not spinning. I pulled the card and found a distinct smoky smell.

I did a little research and found that the fan might be replaceable for about 7 dollars. I have no idea on how to do the replacement, nor if the card might already be seriously damaged by the heat.
The card only has 256MB on board, but it has svideo output that makes my life a lot easier.

A new card with 1GB of memory and HDMI is only $28, so it would seem that would be the logical route.

I thought that someday this machine might be a HTPC but now I can stream media from my phone, HTPC might be obsolete by the time I retire the PC in the fall I do expect to replace this machine before Windows 8 is my only option. I've been playing with that operating system, and can say I'm less than impressed! What are they thinking?

So bottom line
1) Could the heat have destroyed the card.
2) Even though I have lots of Svideo equipment, should I be upgrading to HDMI, seems to me that you guys said that I could send this all over the house.....
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jgfarrell



Joined: 12 Apr 2010
Posts: 15
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 2:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Vicky

If you can see the BSOD on screen, the video card is quite possibly not heat-damaged. Take a look at the electrolytic capacitors on the card and see if any look like they are bulging similar to the ones in this picture:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Defekte_Kondensatoren.jpg

I just recently had the same issue as you're having and replacing the defective capacitors fixed the problem for me. Unless you can do it yourself (or know someone else with moderate soldering skills) it probably isn't worthwhile, though. The capacitors are only a buck or two each, but it will probably cost you fifty bucks or so to have them replaced.

John
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vickyg2003
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Joined: 20 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 12:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jgfarrell wrote:
Hi Vicky

If you can see the BSOD on screen, the video card is quite possibly not heat-damaged. Take a look at the electrolytic capacitors on the card and see if any look like they are bulging similar to the ones in this picture:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Defekte_Kondensatoren.jpg

I just recently had the same issue as you're having and replacing the defective capacitors fixed the problem for me. Unless you can do it yourself (or know someone else with moderate soldering skills) it probably isn't worthwhile, though. The capacitors are only a buck or two each, but it will probably cost you fifty bucks or so to have them replaced.

John


Hi John,

Thanks for the information and education. I do see the bulging capacitor, and although I probably have the soldering skills and tools to replace it, the "ick" factor of doing it makes this a no go for me. It looks like I'll be going HDMI. That should open up some interesting home theater options for this machine when I get a new computer in the fall.
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jgfarrell



Joined: 12 Apr 2010
Posts: 15
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're welcome. I was going to do the same thing, but I figured I'd give it a $5 gamble first, and I lucked out.

John
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The Robman
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Joined: 01 Aug 2003
Posts: 18277
Location: Chicago, IL

PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vickyg2003 wrote:
I do see the bulging capacitor, and although I probably have the soldering skills and tools to replace it, the "ick" factor of doing it makes this a no go for me.

Really Vicky? You're going to let the "ick" factor stop you from being a true JP1-er? Boo hiss! Wink
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vickyg2003
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep REALLY. Rolling Eyes Laughing That "ick" factor is so great that it amost cured me of the jp1-sickness. That ill fated 6011 conversion was my undoing. I did learn how to solder though, and that did translate really well when I did aluminum welding on some lawn furniture, but the ick factor is just to icky for vicky.
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The Robman
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just replaced a couple of capacitors on my FM Modulator but unfortunately it didn't fix the problem. Once upon a time, I replaced loads of capacitors and a few diodes on my old Raite DVD player and brought that puppy back to life. I re-soldered a few bits & pieces inside my TV and got that working again too.
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vickyg2003
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So even experienced people like you have the failures. Its so mysterious! and icky.
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The Robman
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, while I can rip out an old capacitor and solder in a new one, I'm not an electronics expert by any means. I was hoping that Steve was stop by and give me some idea of whether those caps were likely suspects re: the video problem, but I just went ahead and replaced them anyway. The unit still works as well as it did before, so I didn't do any harm, but one of the channels is still not usable.
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underquark
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Capacitors, basically, come in two flavors - reliable and cheap. Guess which ones get installed in most consumer products? Particularly problematic in power supply units and other areas where heat is a factor. Typically one (or more) goes out of spec and when the heat is on then a vital voltage rail (e.g. 3.5V) goes out of spec and that affects the voltages and function of the whole board. First the unit works for a while and then fails after a period of use and later there can be a domino effect as other components fail. If you look up repair of PSUs etc. on the Internet you'll see that it is usually recommended to replace several capacitors at one sitting.

I have been known to embrace the "ick" factor - I built a JP1.2 interface from scratch, glued it into a plastic battery box, hacked a bit off a HDD connector; I repaired a PS2 games console with failing DVD drive mechanism, I've enjoyed building garden furniture.

But I also recognize when I'm beat or when the ick factor out-ways the enjoyment factor. Hence I trashed a CRT television when I traced the fault to the high-tension circuitry, I didn't even attempt to repair my broadband modem (four capacitors bulging, multi-layer PCB), I paid a couple of guys to do some heavy work in the garden whilst I got on and did my own paid work (indoors).

Something like this -
VTX3D 1GB Radeon HD 5450 DDR3 Graphics Card with Low Profile Bracket
- is cheap and has HDMI and VGA out and you can get cheap VGA to s-video adapters. Always check that your motherboard supports the correct PCI format for these mostly newer cheap cards.

Get a new graphics card. Enjoy the summer. I'm ordering a FTDI cable and moving JP1 to my "new" PC as the old machine with the serial ports is not long for this world. Of course, I'm not abandoning "ick" as I'm using linux now instead of Windows but modern linux is lower on ick than it used to be.
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zaphod7501



Joined: 02 Aug 2004
Posts: 528
Location: Peoria Illinois

PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm still around but its been a little hectic this week.
Racing bicycles on the weekend and closing down the shop.
(out of the commercial location and setting up in the basement)

The capacitor issue is twofold. Poor vendors and poor design. A 5 volt DC supply with a capacitor rated at 6 - 10 volts will fail regardless of the quality of the cap. Also, as noted, when you corrupt the power supply, other components can fail. My success rate on TV repair was only 20 - 30 %. Further, the capacitors in question contain a liquid organic electrolyte. This has two effects - biodegradable (yeah - government happy) corrosive (literally eats through circuit boards = board destroyed)

The overall lifespan of modern electronics is only about 5 years due to:
no-lead solder
"tin whisker" effect (because of the no-lead solder)
Biodegradable components (organic = limited lifespan)
digital chip supplier's component packaging (BGA & similar types)

What this means is that when something is 2 years old, there is a fair chance of a simple repair succeeding. When it is 5 years old, there is a very small chance of success, and even a success is doomed to short life since a repair does not extend live, just gets you back to the original span.
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vickyg2003
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 4:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

underquark wrote:
I have been known to embrace the "ick" factor - I built a JP1.2 interface from scratch, glued it into a plastic battery box, hacked a bit off a HDD connector; I repaired a PS2 games console with failing DVD drive mechanism, I've enjoyed building garden furniture.

But I also recognize when I'm beat or when the ick factor out-ways the enjoyment factor. Hence I trashed a CRT television when I traced the fault to the high-tension circuitry, I didn't even attempt to repair my broadband modem (four capacitors bulging, multi-layer PCB), I paid a couple of guys to do some heavy work in the garden whilst I got on and did my own paid work (indoors).


We all have different "ick" factors. I'd rather muck with manure than solder. Laughing Although I don't look forward to digging out the stump of the tree that I lost this winter.

Quote:

Get a new graphics card. Enjoy the summer. I'm ordering a FTDI cable and moving JP1 to my "new" PC as the old machine with the serial ports is not long for this world. Of course, I'm not abandoning "ick" as I'm using linux now instead of Windows but modern linux is lower on ick than it used to be.


I played around with puppy linux last year, and must say that compared to the last Win 8 consumer preview, linux was looking better and better.
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underquark
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm running Puppy linux on a HP mini machine (ex large company offices via local recycling centre). It has just a 1GB solid "disk" and 1GB RAM and no fan needed and I'm using it to stream video from another PC via a domestic power-line network adapter (HomePlug). The remote I'm using isn't JP1; it's a wireless Rii mini keyboard/trackpad which is pretty good for e-mail, searching internet etc. on your TV.

I run ubuntu 12.04 on my large machine, ubuntu 10.04 and variants on machines for the kids (one has 10.10 because its nickname of "Maverick Meerkat" sounds cool).
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vickyg2003
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zaphod7501 wrote:
I'm still around but its been a little hectic this week.
Racing bicycles on the weekend and closing down the shop.
(out of the commercial location and setting up in the basement)

I
Oh sorry to hear that you are giving up your commercial location.

Quote:

The overall lifespan of modern electronics is only about 5 years due to:
no-lead solder
"tin whisker" effect (because of the no-lead solder)
Biodegradable components (organic = limited lifespan)
digital chip supplier's component packaging (BGA & similar types)

What this means is that when something is 2 years old, there is a fair chance of a simple repair succeeding. When it is 5 years old, there is a very small chance of success, and even a success is doomed to short life since a repair does not extend live, just gets you back to the original span.

In trying to understand this post, I have a couple of questions.
What is the "tin whisker" effect, what is BGA

I want to understand why the lifespan of my electronics is going to be so short.
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vickyg2003
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Joined: 20 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

underquark wrote:
I'm running Puppy linux on a HP mini machine (ex large company offices via local recycling centre). It has just a 1GB solid "disk" and 1GB RAM and no fan needed and I'm using it to stream video from another PC via a domestic power-line network adapter (HomePlug). The remote I'm using isn't JP1; it's a wireless Rii mini keyboard/trackpad which is pretty good for e-mail, searching internet etc. on your TV.


This sounds really interesting. I'd like to hear more.

My venture with Linux was to bring back an ancient laptop with 256MB memory back to life so I could have a TitanTV available to find out what is on TV. The bare basic cable I have doesn't have a guide channel, so its anybody's guess whats on. Fortunately one of you guys (zaphod I think) turned me on to TitanTV and I was able to use that for my guide. Since then I got a smart phone and now have the TitanTV App on my phone which is REALLY Cool. This lets me have listings for EVERY system where ever I am. When I babysit I might have Comcast, Buckeye, or WOW and can easily flip between the lineups to know what is on where I am. Too Cool. Now I have the little linux computer as a guest computer so people can surf.

However I have this xp media edition computer that has lots of power that will be obsolete in a year, and really would like to do something fun with it. Now it will have a better graphics card if it ever arrives.
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