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Help! My Power Supply Exploded!

#1 User is offline   tclifford7997 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:28 PM

So, one late night of gaming, my power supply (500w, came with the case) went "bang.....bang bang" and everything powered down. I almost immediately knew it was the PSU, so I ripped it out and looked in the guts. Sure enough, there was a couple wires where the insulation had burned off and one of the components on the board (not sure what it's called) looked pretty melty.
I put in a replacement power supply, which was 520 watts. Upon firing up the system everything seemed fine--but whenever I would try to start a game it would give me a 'blue screen of death' and restart. I downloaded CPUID HWMonitor to check the voltages to the components, and I noticed that the 12v rail was running at only 4v (or so it said) and the 5v rail was showing about 3v. The graphics card was not getting hardly any power as well. With the help of a buddy, I discovered that my "cheapo" power supply from Best Buy did not have sufficient amperage on the rails to run the Nvidia GTX 460 that I have, so I assumed this was causing the crashes upon starting games. It also went 'blue screen' afer just leaving the PC idle for about 45 minutes.
So I decided to bring in the big guns and ordered a 750 watts PSU, with lots of amps on the rails--I wanted to be sure my components were getting enough amperage. My video card now shows plenty of power supplied to it , which is good news. However, the 12v rail is still showing only 4v and the 5v rail is still only showing 3v. I did still get a 'blue screen' from idling the computer despite the fact that the video card is well-powered. Did I fry my motherboard? Does anyone have any suggestions or other tests I can run? Thanks in advance!


EDIT: I didn't think of checking the voltages in the BIOS until now...I did and the voltage for the 12v rail is reading 11.8 and the 5v rail is spot on. The monitoring software must be faulty. But now the question is, why do I get blue screens if the voltages are good after swapping out the power supply?

This post has been edited by tclifford7997: 16 January 2013 - 03:45 PM

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#2 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:18 PM

What brand and model of 750W PSU did you get? What specific error are the BSODs giving you? (Ignore the "Windows has shutdown to protect stuff etc..." part.)

FYI, monitoring software tends to be wrong with voltages - for instance, hwmonitor thinks my 12V line is at less than 2V. Like the machine wouldn't have crashed if that were the case...
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#3 User is offline   tclifford7997 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:32 PM

View PostLiveBrianD, on 16 January 2013 - 04:18 PM, said:

What brand and model of 750W PSU did you get? What specific error are the BSODs giving you? (Ignore the "Windows has shutdown to protect stuff etc..." part.)

FYI, monitoring software tends to be wrong with voltages - for instance, hwmonitor thinks my 12V line is at less than 2V. Like the machine wouldn't have crashed if that were the case...



http://www.tigerdire...&Sku=ULT-LSP750

The BSODs are there and gone so quick before the system restarts, I can't even tell if they are the same message each time. I'm currently working on learning how to run debug on that....

EDIT: I just got one while I was checking back on my posts...the error it gives me is: DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

This post has been edited by tclifford7997: 16 January 2013 - 04:52 PM

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#4 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:51 PM

That's still a piece of garbage. I suggest returning it and getting an Antec (non-Basiq), Corsair, Seasonic, or Silverstone unit. For instance, I have a Seasonic S12II 520W (about the same price as that) and am happy with it. That unit is more than enough to run a 460 with room to spare.
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#5 User is offline   tclifford7997 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:09 PM

View PostLiveBrianD, on 16 January 2013 - 04:51 PM, said:

That's still a piece of garbage. I suggest returning it and getting an Antec (non-Basiq), Corsair, Seasonic, or Silverstone unit. For instance, I have a Seasonic S12II 520W (about the same price as that) and am happy with it. That unit is more than enough to run a 460 with room to spare.


I just got several of the same BSOD message in a row, different than the one above...it was: PAGE_FAULT_IN_NON_PAGE_AREA

Frankly, I'm fairly certain the PSU itself is not the issue. I had a lower-grade PSU running my system for almost 2 years just fine--I'm trying to determine what other components might have been damaged with the surges from the explosions. Any thoughts on how to test the processor, motherboard or hard drive?
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#6 User is offline   mjd420nova 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 07:00 PM

You need to spend some time looking at the MOBO. I'd start around the memory, and try to eliminate one of the memory cards as being the fault. Don't trust the software, use a multimeter and you'll be sure of the correct voltages,
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#7 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 07:07 PM

For the RAM, Memtest86+ is something to try.
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#8 User is offline   waldojim 

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 01:46 AM

Ok, here is the short and skinny of this. The power supply is the one component that can readily take out ANYTHING when it dies. As yours ended quite violently, you can expect that it damaged components in the process. That Ultra branded power supply is no better than what blew up. Next time, you may want to ask first. At the end, I will list common makes and models that are generally accepted as quality. You may want to switch to one of them. The wattage rating will mean very little. anything over 400 watts will run a high end gaming PC these days. And they come in prices ranging from $40 through $300 depending on model.

Now then. Start by stripping out ALL non-essentials. Test the motherboard with a SINGLE stick of ram, and your video card only. Use Memtest86, and let it run for at least 4 hours per stick. IF all of them pass, then install them all and test again. You want at least TWO COMPLETE CYCLES. That could take some time.

IF everything passes, then fire up Windows, and Prime95. Allow prime to run is BLEND mode. This will heat up the cpu a bit, but has a decent amount of memory transfers as well. If you FAIL here, then you need to run further CPU and memory tests to determine which is the cause. Try Prime95 in a SMALL memory mode, this way the calculations will fit in the cache on the CPU. If this still fails, your CPU is likely toast. If it passes, then either your ram is bad, or the memory controller.


Generally accepted quality powersupplies:
Antec EarthWatts, and High Current series
Corsair power supplies
PC Power and Cooling Silencer series
OCZ ZT/ZS series
Seasonic M and G series
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