HP Pavilion Dv7 will not boot, no display.

Client has an HP Dv7 laptop that will not boot and there is no display on the screen. The machine turns on and the only noise from the machine are the fans and the DVD drive, which continuously tries to read a disk. There is no disk in the machine. All of the lights on the machine are displayed and the CAPS Lock and NUM Lock lights continuously blink on and off.  

I have tried the following solutions:

1. Inserted a random disk into the DVD drive: Drive reads disk, resets, and tries reading disk again.
2. Removed DVD drive from machine: Machine turns on, no hard drive activity no monitor display
3. Removed RAM from machine: Turned machine back on with no RAM, no beeps from MOBO
4. Removed Battery and Power Supply, held power button for 20 seconds, connected power supply, turned machine back on: No HDD activity, no display.
5. Connected to external monitor via VGA: no display

Any other recommendations would be greatly appreciated!
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how about a little info on the DV7... when it starts up.. what do the lights do?

NumLock, Caps Lock, Wireless light, Hard Drive light, Power Light...  all of these are what HP uses to display ERROR codes.

Also.. when u do the reset, unplug battery and power cord, hold down power button for a minute.. plug in JUST the power cord, no battery, and start up... this way we get a clean set of error lights if any

let me know

mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the response Sapphire:

Battery out, power supply out, reset power button, plugged power supply back in, powered on and these are the lights:

Power Button; Mediasmart; Volume Mute; Volume Bar; Media Buttons (Play, Stop, Forward, Reverse); Wireless on but Orange not Blue; and, CAPS & NUM Lock are blinking every 2-3 seconds
Hey I work on laptops every day.
THis is a On board Video Chip problem.
I re-flow these chips all the time.
Please see my article here on EE on video problems.


Here is a video on how to do the re flow with just a normal heat gun.

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mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
Grant1842: Thanks so much for the information and sorry for the delayed response! My apologies. I watched the video link that you posted and it was commented that this same technique could also be done using a gas oven?

Do you know if this is possible, and if so, which method would be safer? I'd have to purchase a heat gun...but I already own an oven ;) haha. More importantly though, I don't want to damage the mono.

Thanks again!
I have not personnely used the oven method.
But I have used a small butane lighter and head the chip and all ways had success.
mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
So I don't have to heat the whole board? Just the video chip?

Also, and I don't know if it's a really strange coincidence, but a friend brought over his machine today with similar symptoms...I open the case...and it's the EXACT same machine, a Pavilion Dv7. I have another laptop coming in tomorrow with "power up" issues...I hope it's not 3 for 3! HA!
Hi mjgreenley;

the error you have based on the lights blinking.. is a problem HP has had for a few years.. on VARIOUS models..  While HP is the Largest "Distributed" laptop, according to JDPower and Associates, it has the highest "failure" rate of over 24%

Dell, is in the 20% range now, ever since they went full china manufacturing..  as well as Gateway, eMachine, and almost every other laptop you see..

Only Toshiba, Sony and Asus, are still made in Japanese, Malaysia and Korean controlled factories, while Asus has been moved to china, their product is not built in one of the 2 laptop plants in China that all other brands are made in..

Toshiba, Sony and Asus, have the lowest failure rate, with all 3 being under 10%, and Sony being around 4%.. very nice..

The problem you have, like Grant1842 said, is based on the Video chip inside not being properly soldered on the motherboard.  His idea of the butane lighter, is just one of the ideas out there, including the Oven idea, turning it on, and wrapping it with a TOWEL for 2 hours.. so it overheats to the point of total failure, then let it cool down for about 30 minutes.. and power it up..

You know you have a known problem when there are Youtube Videos on how to do it, and eBay sellers, that sell the "service" of "heating" the solder joints...

My advice... get another laptop..  I know it's not the choice most people want to do.. but HP doesn't care, or they would repair it for free, to keep their customers...

As a computer tech for the past 25 years, and the fact that I toss out at least 20-30 laptops a year into the garbage, it's nice to know, I've never once tossed out a Toshiba or Sony laptop at all..

good luck

mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
Thanks theSAPPHIRE, that's good information to have when making recommendations to my clients. I've actually been done with HP since 2004...I'll never buy another product from them for exactly what you mentioned; no customer loyalty or respect.

These HP's aren't mine, and I have already spoke to my clients and advised them to talk to HP regarding their warranties along with all of the information that I've found about this problem, including a class action suit surrounding this soldering problem, and if HP wants to charge them for any service or repair, I've advised them to put their money into a new machine. I'll definitely use this information to recommend a Sony or Toshiba.

After 20+ years of being a PC I actually jumped ship last year to Apple and I'm really happy with the decision. I'll still fix PC's...but now when clients have dead machines I tell them to save their money and invest in a Mac. If they're not ready, I'll be sure to use this info to steer them towards Toshiba or Sony. Thanks for the info!

Grant1842: I found way too much information regarding this problem after having that second Dv7 with the same problem. There are forums after forums and even a giant threat on HP's site regarding this issue (http://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Notebook-Lockups-Freezes-Hangs/How-many-HP-Pavillion-customers-have-the-Black-Screen-Problem/td-p/290626) leading to a class action suit involving HP and NVidia. I don't think that I'm going to mess with it until they talk to HP first.

Thanks for all the help! Any objections to splitting points?
No objection.. split the points away... sounds good..

Smart on the ditching of the HP.. and as for the class action... it will be a waste of time as 95% of them always are... they end up with a "Here's a hundred bucks.. u fix it", type resolution..

The only problem you may have with MAC's in a business environment, is the incompatibility with a lot of business type websites, I find a lot of Finance, Banking, RealEstate, and government websites don't play well with Mac's...

But in a MAC Enviornment, such as a full Mac network.. they are great together...

and Now that MAC's are just PC's inside, soon, MAC will release their own, OS for the masses... this may be a 2012 to 2013 strategy they are already working on...  it's been fun to watch those 2 companies, Microsoft and Apple fight it out over the years...

mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
theSapphire: The class action is actually over and too late to submit a claim. I'm just having them contact HP in hopes that they might do the right thing and fix their machines under warranty without charge. Not holding my breathe though.

That sounds more like a browser compatibility issue than a MAC issue. Safari isn't my favorite, I prefer Firefox.

Either way, I'm not worried about the MAC for my business needs, actually quite the contrary. I do manage a handful of small business networks, nothing too complicated, and help out a bunch of family and friends...but my main profession is photography and graphic design...which the MAC environment lends itself to beautifully especially for processing power and, more importantly, stability. I can run all of my resource-hogging programs at once with zero lag.
One thing they did right in Unix, now called Linux for the free version, that MAC uses on their computers, is Multi-Tasking...  

With Windows continously trying to maintain backwards compatibility all the way back to 1982 they limit their abilities to create true multi-tasking system..

As MAC did with osX in 2002, the discontinued support for all backward compatibilities of os-9 software and you had to buy new versions of your MAC software, or updates to be able to use software on the new osX.. that keeps the vendors happy, more sales.. but it also advances the software development, rather than catering to their stagnant ways..

If Microsoft would just create one OS, and tell all the others, that all the old versions of Windows are obsolete and no more backwards compatibility, we could move Windows into the 21st century..

But it did take Windows until 1995 (Windows 95), before they made a "useable" Mac Clone on the PC.

have fun man

mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
That would be really cool to see MS come out with a new OS like you stated. I would give it a try, easily! I agree with you 100% about losing the old and embracing the new!

Thanks for the info and thanks for all the help. Much appreciated!
mjgreenleyAuthor Commented:
Although I decided not to take further actions to fix this machine, the solutions were accurate. The machine is not worth fixing and is still under warranty. Because of the legal implications surrounding this problem I instructed the owner to contact the manufacturer of the machine to come to a resolution on reimbursement or replacement.
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