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New mobo: boot -> power blink -> blank screen

Posted on 2008-10-18
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Last Modified: 2013-11-09
I have assembled a new computer from individually-purchased components (see system description, below). When I turn it on, all 4 fans power up (and presumably everything else inside), but 10 seconds after power on, all the fans turn off for 4-5 seconds, then they all come back on and stay on. I never see anything on the monitor.

The mobo has no on-board video, so all I can do is pray the graphics card and its interface to the mobo are working. (Who thought it was a good idea to not put any video on a mobo?) I assume that if everything else is broken (bad RAM, CPU incorrectly seated, etc.), I would still see SOMETHING on the monitor from the BIOS. The odd fan off/on behavior makes me wonder if I am experiencing something related to the "Express Gate" feature of the mobo (see below). In any event, what do I need to do to get to the point where I am seeing BIOS output on my monitor?

Here's the blurb about ASUS Express Gate from the Overview/Specifications for this mobo:
"5 Secs Bootup to online
Taking only 5 seconds to go online from bootup, Express Gate is the one-stop gateway to instant fun! It´s a unique motherboard built-in OS. You can utilize the most popular Instant Messengers (IM) like MSN, Skype, Google talk, QQ, and Yahoo! Messenger to keep in touch with friends, or quickly check on the weather and e-mails just before leaving your house. What´s more, the user-friendly picture manager lets you view your pictures without entering Windows at anytime!
* The actual boot time is subject to hardware configurations and product models"

The mobo's overview/specification is here: http://www.asus.com/products.aspx?modelmenu=1&model=2429&l1=3&l2=11&l3=709&l4=0
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Question by:GJanusz
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9 Comments
 
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Assisted Solution

by:jamietoner
jamietoner earned 1280 total points
ID: 22748944
Whats the make and model of the power supply? Also with bad ram or a misseated cpu you wouldn't get any messages on the screen but in most cases you would get beep codes.
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by:GJanusz
ID: 22749244
Additional information:
I get no beep codes and the power LED on the front of the case never lights. I was using this case with different guts a few days ago, so I know the speaker and LED work fine. Also, the monitor never goes active (i.e., power saver monitor LED stays amber and never goes green.)
All behavior was the same after I pulled all the RAM out.

I don't have access to another working computer with a PCIe 2.0 x 16 slot to verify the graphics card works, although I might have access to a computer with a PCIe or PCIe x 16 slot.

The power supply is a new Rosewill RX750-D-B: http://rosewill.com/products/697/productDetail.htm
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by:jamietoner
jamietoner earned 1280 total points
ID: 22749698
A pci-e 16x will work fine as pci-e 2.0 cards are backwards compatible, but if it was graphics you'd most likely be getting beeps codes. My guess would be Psu, motherboard or cpu. Can you try another power supply? Rosewill isn't what I'd call a reliable brand.
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by:
nobus earned 720 total points
ID: 22751552
i suggest testing with the minimum setup - disconnect also all peripherals and network cables :
motherboard + cpu + 1 ram stick, video card, power supply
on boot, do you have a display?
if NO it is one of the connected, swap ram, Power supply, video card - leaving only motherboard and cpu
if Yes, add devices till the problem shows
*****you may try an old video card, even a PCI one will do for testing
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by:GJanusz
ID: 22753067
I powered up a system consisting of just the motherboard and 1 stick of memory--that is, no graphics card. The behavior remained unchanged--note especially, no beep codes. Unfortunately, I discovered that there is more than one "ATX" specification for power supplies, and I only have alternate power supplies with 20-pin power connectors, so can't try another power supply.

However, this time I noted that during the originally-described 4-5 second "power off" blink, the power supply fans are among those that power off (along with their pretty blue LEDs). A bad motherboard shouldn't be able to cause this, right? This particular power supply does not have a mobo connector for reporting RPM or temperature. I'm thinking it is RMA time. Agreed?

While I doubt Newegg will let me get a different brand of power supply and only pay the difference, I can at least ask. What brands are of high quality and are worth the price? (I am happy to pay more if I get more.)

Now I'm praying the other components will be working 100% even though they spent time being connected to a bad power supply. I think I've just become partial to mobos with (possibly cheap) on-board graphics.
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Expert Comment

by:jamietoner
ID: 22754302
Newegg has let me return items in the past for a full refund when they were shipped DOA, and it does help to mention you will be buying the replacement through them their customer service for me as been excellent.
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Author Comment

by:GJanusz
ID: 22754567
Ack, I spoke to soon. I should have phrased my previous post as a question. I have since realized that the motherboard does have a measure of control over the power supply, since it initiates the normal "soft off." Also, if the motherboard supports a sleep mode, as mine does, it has perhaps even more sophisticated control than that.

SO, my gut it telling me that it is the motherboard, not the power supply. Are your guts telling you anything?

jamietoner, you wrote "Rosewill isn't what I'd call a reliable brand." Any comment on more preferred brands?

(I will award points after I see what the results of my part swapping is, which unfortunately, will be several days hence.)
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LVL 34

Expert Comment

by:jamietoner
ID: 22754635
It's possible its not the PSU but I have seen Rosewill send out a lot more cheap, DOA parts than ASUS. For PSU brands I recommend Corsair, PC power and cooling, Zalman, OCZ, BFG and Silverstone.
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Author Closing Comment

by:GJanusz
ID: 31507437
It was the motherboard. Replaced it and everything started working. Thanks for the help!
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