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Monitor issue, or is it the cable, or the graphics card????

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Cockles, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Hi guys. Hope you are all well

    Had a slight problem with my home PC last night, and I am fairly sure I've sussed what the problem is, but just looking for a second opinion.

    Turned my PC on as usual, then noticed my monitor (Hyundai TFT) was staying blank. The power light was on, but was flicking between green and amber (it normally stays on amber when the monitor is on but it has no signal, it never blinks though). My PC appeared to boot up though, as I heard the Windows start-up theme through the speakers and my little task-bar speechbubble telling me my AVG was out of date.

    I disconnected the cable from the graphics card (nVidia GeForce 7600GT, DVI-D connectors) and the monitor suddenly flashed up with an RGB bar telling me I had no signal, so I assume the monitor is ok, the display isn't broken or anything.

    I opened up the PC and checked the graphics card, and it had power going to it as the fan was working.

    Unfortunately, I didn't have any spare cabling to test with at home, and had the incorrect cabling for my spare graphics card.

    I'm assuming this is a cable or video card problemn then (hoping to dear lord it is the cable), the only thing that concerned me is that the monitor sprang to life after I disconnected the cable.

    Any one had any similar problems, before I go spending money I really don't have?

    Ta very much guys
     
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  2. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

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    As you say - this is either the graphics card or the cable.

    When you removed the cable and the monitor appeared to work, this is a standard function of modern monitors. The bar saying 'no signal' is generated by the monitor itself.

    I always keep a spare old VGA card and monitor for this sort of problem. You don't need to boot all the way into Windows - just the BIOS screen will do to prove that things are working.

    Harry.
     
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  3. noelg24

    noelg24 Terabyte Poster

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    I fully agree. It always helps to keep an old graphics card and cable to hand just in case of these kind of emergencies. But I think u pretty much found out the problem...:biggrin
     
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  4. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Thanks chaps. Bit annoying as I have an old graphics card but no analogue cabling, lord knows where that has gone.

    I've managed to borrow a spare DVI-D cable from IT at work so I'll try it tonight. Really hoping it isn't the graphics card though, as I was thinking of doing a MOBO upgrade soon, but not yet (and it's only a year old). My current one is AGP, so there's hardly any point buying a new one of them for my current board if I intend to upgrade the whole thing in a few months to PCI-E
     
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  5. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Did you get the text showing video card/memory/HDDs as it started up? Can you boot into safe mode and does it display correctly? I ask because the video driver may be set to a resolution that the monitor can't handle.

    Just a thought. 8)

    J.
     
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  6. TimoftheC

    TimoftheC Kilobyte Poster

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    Same here, a bit obvoius but did you try and get into safe mode?
     
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  7. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Hello mate

    No, screen was totally blank throughout startup, not a flicker through anything barring the power light blinking green and amber. Last time I used the PC was Monday night, and it worked perfect, and I used it for nothing more strenuous that importing some music CDs into iTunes for about an hour. Weird

    I did try holding F5 for safe mode but again, no dice
     
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  8. juice142

    juice142 Megabyte Poster

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    Ah... it's F8 for safe mode mate! Tap it as the system boots. :biggrin

    Cheers,

    J.
     
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  9. twizzle

    twizzle Gigabyte Poster

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    Can you try the monitor on another PC? Sometimes the monitor will act as if the Graphics card has been detected (not sure but think it just checks that a signal i sent down 1 wire and back another) and that removeing the cable would trigger a no signal present notice. I ghave seen monitors refuse to turn on properly and keep switching between standby and powered mode which it sound like yours is doing due to the flickering LED.
    I would say that it sounds more of a Card problem though becasue if this failed he monitor would have problems locking onto a source and also do the same problem. And this happens more commonly than the monitor problem. Open the PC case and see if theres a fan on your graphics card and does this spin when powered up? is it caked in dust, is the card seated ok (not been knocked since last used?) and does the card still get warm / hot after five minutes of power on? If the fans dead or the card stone cold theres ya fault!

    It could be cable but when a cable goes normally you loose a colour and moving the cable affects the signal you see on screen. You normally wouldnt loose picture altogther through a faulty cable.

    With this sort of fault, if paoosible ots always best to try all 3 compnents on a different PC speratley. You never know the fault could be a compounded on from al 3 pieces involved.
     
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  10. twizzle

    twizzle Gigabyte Poster

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    double post deleted
     
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  11. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    :oops:

    I think I need glasses, I referred to my Myers book and could barely read it as I was quite knackered, read it as F5
     
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  12. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Hello mate

    I do have another PC at home, just need to get an analogue cable for it, so I'll try and grab one today

    The card powers up fine, fan spinning away, plus I cleared it of dust whilst I was there, and the PC case has not even been moved for a while. I did check the card's seating and it was all still screwed tightly in place.

    Best I can do at is try my monitor on another PC as you suggested to eliminate that, if it works then install my old graphics card with my monitor, pray it isnlt that, then if it is the card, beg the other half for forgiveness when she finds out I'm about to spend 3-400 odd jib on a system upgrade.
     
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  13. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Just spoke to Scan (where I bought the card) and they reckon it does sound like a card problem, but to try another Molex connector on it just to be sure. Thankfully, it came with a two year warranty, so if it is duff, at least I'm not out of pocket.

    Cheers for the help guys, appreciated as always
     
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  14. Stoney

    Stoney Megabyte Poster

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    Can you see the monitor menus, eg: brightness, contrast etc? If you can see the No Signal message then I would assume you should be able to see those.

    And I take it your mobo hasn't got onboard graphics to test it on?

    It does sound like the card, but don't discount any other possibilities.
     
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  15. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Ah, I didn't think of that Stoney, cheers, I'll give that a bash

    I do have onboard, but like a tw@t I think I got rid of my old 15-pin cable when I got the new card in. I'll be taking one home with me tonight so I'll test that out tonight too
     
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  16. TimoftheC

    TimoftheC Kilobyte Poster

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    /me whistles and walks away :D
     
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  17. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Oi, cheeky monkey, quit yo jibba jabba
     
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  18. BrotherBill

    BrotherBill Byte Poster

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    To access Safe Mode in Windows 2000 or XP, restart the system and watch for the black and white Starting Windows bar at the bottom of the screen, then press either [F5] or [F8] to bring up the Advanced Options Menu, then select Safe Mode.

    Probably doesn't apply, but in Windows 9x or ME, you can access Safe Mode by restarting the computer and watching the screen while it is still black. If you see the Starting Windows message flash on the screen, you can go directly into Safe Mode by pressing the [F5] key immediately, or if you want to see the advanced boot options menu, press the [F8] key, Safe Mode is one of the available options. Another way to get to the boot options menu in 9x or ME is to press and hold the [CTRL] key when you boot the system.
     
  19. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Thank you sir, very handy to know that.

    Only issue I had in this case is that there was nothing on the screen at all, so even if I got the options menu (using XP Pro, by the way) there would be nothing I could do about it anyway. All evidence seems to point towards a knackered card, but the safe mode is good to know as I'll probably have to use the onboard card for a while.

    Cheers
     
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  20. BrotherBill

    BrotherBill Byte Poster

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    As I'm re-reading my post, that issue suddenly stared back at me. I guess you can't watch for anything on the screen if you can't see anything anyway. It's still early here.
     

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