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> Computer Upgrade Help, new video card / power supply?
Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 22 2007, 05:41 AM
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EDIT-EDIT-EDIT: just getting the power supply for now

EDIT: current plan is to buy a new Video card and power supply although doing this going to leave be VERY VERY POOR. unless there was so magically way to just fix the problem... laugh.gif

hey guys, this has been bothering me for several weeks now, and i've been unable to figure everything out by myself so i'm asking for help.

currently, i'm using an emachines t6534. yeah i know, everybody says emachines are pretty lame, but it was cheap and it usually is enough for me. however, lately (last two months) half the time i turn the PC on i get no display on my monitor. i've checked all the cables and everything, seems ok... when the pc does actually show a display the screen seems to "scramble" up alot, and most of my programs don't work well.

examples:

Counterstrike runs like crap. (before these problems occured i could run this on high quality perfectly etc)

Guitarpro constantly does the "scramble" thing on my screen. each note comes out pretty badly, and the program runs choppy overall. (a 5 year old computer could probably run guitar pro)

when surfing the web my screen "scrambles" a little bit whenever i go over a link.

i've tried uninstalling and reinstalling my display driver several times. tried getting the latest driver. tried e-mailing emachines tech support (they just said to get new drivers).

my father says i need to get a new video card... i'm really poor right now, but if i have to i will buy one. since i haven't been able to solve the problem any other way, i'm guessing something bad is going on with my video card.

here are my PC's specs~

Operating System: Genuine Microsoft® Windows® XP Home (SP2)

CPU: AMD Athlon™ 64 3700+ processor with AMD 64 Technology
(2.20GHz, 2000MHz system bus, 1MB L2 cache)

Chipset: NVIDIA® GeForce® 6100

Memory: 1 gb of RAM

Hard Drive: 200GB (7200rpm, 2MB cache)

Optical Drive: 16x multiformat dual-layer DVD±RW
(Up to 8.5GB with dual-layer media)

Video: NVIDIA® GeForce® 6100 integrated graphics solution
Up to 128MB of shared video memory


PCI Express (PCIe x16) slot available

Ports/Other: 5 USB 2.0 (1 in Digital Media Manager™, 4 in back), VGA external connector, parallel port, 2 PS/2 ports (keyboard and mouse), 5 audio ports (2 in front, 3 in back)


lastly, upon reading more on emachines, i guess they have a "very very bad" 300w power supply. my dad also suggested my power suppy sucks, i need to get a new one. will that ^ video card work with the normal emachines power supply? do i need to get a new one of those too? ohhhh boy.

thank you for taking the time to read this. i'm sorry to bother anyone, it's just gotten to the point where i feel almost turned off when trying to play guitar when i have to deal with guitar pro running like rubbish.

This post has been edited by Asphyxia Feeling: Oct 25 2007, 06:04 PM


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Bondy
post Oct 22 2007, 05:46 AM
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it's your video card 128mb is far to low even for counterstrike i have a gaming pc and iam running a 6800gt and 2 gig of ram big difference u deffo need to upgrade your video card if you wanna online game


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Unleash-The-Shre...
post Oct 22 2007, 05:48 AM
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Sounds like either RAM problems, or Hard Drive problems, maybe you should bring it to a computer tech.

You would probably be recommended to buy new parts so they can fix it but yeah you should look into another computer besides an emachine, or build your own to your own preferences, which is what i'm going to do when i get the money. (Costs some good dough though)
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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 22 2007, 05:51 AM
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no guys i have a gig of ram, my video card just uses 128 of my total ram for display and stuff. before my computer started screwing up, i was able to play World of Warcraft / half life / counterstrike NO PROBLEM whatsoever.


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What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Unleash-The-Shre...
post Oct 22 2007, 05:56 AM
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QUOTE (Asphyxia Feeling @ Oct 22 2007, 12:51 AM) *
no guys i have a gig of ram, my video card just uses 128 of my total ram for display and stuff. before my computer started screwing up, i was able to play World of Warcraft / half life / counterstrike NO PROBLEM whatsoever.


Well having 1 gig of RAM doesnt meanin couldnt get messed up, but it could also be the hard drive. But the reason i think its the RAM is that the RAM is the Random Access Memory, and you said your computer has trouble starting up so it mightbe having trouble accessing something it has to in order to start up.
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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 22 2007, 05:59 AM
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QUOTE (Unleash-The-Shred @ Oct 21 2007, 09:56 PM) *
Well having 1 gig of RAM doesnt meanin couldnt get messed up, but it could also be the hard drive. But the reason i think its the RAM is that the RAM is the Random Access Memory, and you said your computer has trouble starting up so it mightbe having trouble accessing something it has to in order to start up.



i know. but, i don't understand why it would start doing this out of the blue. my computer has had 1gb of ram for over a year. it was not until recently that anything started going badly. if my computer does not get any display when i turn it on, it is probably a display / video card issue. the computer starts up ok, i just don't get any display. then when i do get display its kind of choppy. everything on my PC works fine, just anything to do with display / games has been acting badly as of late.


--------------------
What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Saoirse O'Shea
post Oct 22 2007, 07:03 AM
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With pc issues like a black screen it's useful to listen to the POST messages you get on startup as they can help pin down the issue.

Regardless of, and without the POST, to me its sounds like the heart of the issue is the video card.

First the spec of the card, particularly that it shares ram, isn't really good enough for a lot of new games. (Though the spec is more then good enough for guitar pro, surfing the net and 2d apps in general.)

Second the screen glitches point to the card, or at the very least the video driver dlls. 2d scramble that you describe sounds like a refresh/redraw issue.

Video driver dlls are not easy to remove and correct btw. Often all that happens is they partly uninstall and the new fresh driver then fails to install properly. You then think that you have a good install but you don't - sad but true.

No display on start up can be the video card not initiating properly but could be other issues. I don't know what power supply comes with an e-machine but a failing power supply can cause this effect as well. A failing power supply can cause all sorts of problems btw as it will not be able to produce consistent power to the board. High end video cards pull a lot of juice, particularly on pc startup and can sometimes result in drm issues for other peripherals.

Failing and incorrectly installed ram can cause a black screen and 3d crashes. Ram that's been in place and functioning ok for a year doesn't, in my experience, fail very often so I'd look first to the video card as the possible culprit here. If you can borrow a different video card and see if that will work ok AND try your video card out in a different pc and see what happens.

Cheers,
Tony


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Pavel
post Oct 22 2007, 07:09 AM
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Whatever graphic card you take, it has dedicated RAM memory. Only on-board graphic cards have shared memory.

As for your problem - it's strange (i know, this is not much help but still....)

A lot of problems could be because of faulty RAM chips. It is worth testing those.


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Tmas
post Oct 22 2007, 07:32 AM
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No screen booting up could be a number of things, but is most likely your video card. I doubt its your RAM b/c if it was it would do it every time, as with your motherboard and harddrive. I would recommend a Nvidia Geforce 8600 series card. They can be found from 90-130 on newegg. Its affordable and its also a decent card. Another good choice would be a 7900. Your best bet would be to run some tests on your RAM just to double check Just google Ram Test or something, its not too hard to find, and then buy a new video card. Right now your card is integrated, but If you buy an actual card you don't have to worry about the whole "dedicated" memory thing, b/c its all dedicated. I had a video card that failed on me once and that exactly what happened to me. I started getting artifacts or scrambles on my display and sometimes the screen would flicker. Since your card is integrated into your motherboard, if it is going bad it could account for the slowdowns and problems running other programs. As for the power supply, when your PC boots but just gives you a black screen, do you hear any beeping. If the computer is actually booted up and just not showing you a display, I highly doubt it that the Power supply is responsible. If its not booting up at all, it could be a sign that the Power supply is failing, but if thats the case you would most likely be having random restarts and shut downs also.
Hope that helps!

Also, Bondy he said his card (not his total RAM) had 128 RAM and yes that is enough to play counterstrike.

Unleash-The-Shred - a computer does not need to access anything stored on its RAM in order to boot. It uses Ram to preload data so it can quickly access it when needed. Well, at least to a degree. I also doubt its a harddrive issue because if windows was having problems accessing data from the HD while booting up, it would give you an error message, most likely telling you that the boot sector was corrupt.


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kahall
post Oct 22 2007, 08:25 AM
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If you need anything computer part related you just can not beat newegg. The PS's are here, read the reviews and pick one out.

I do have to say the description of your problem seems to be video card related. But a new power supply is a lot cheaper way to go and you can eliminate it as the problem for very little.


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Understudy
post Oct 22 2007, 08:39 AM
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If I can ask a question, when you turn on the PC does the monitor say " No Signal" ? It sounds like your machine is not booting up or posting. I have experience with this , as I own a Gateway POS. If this is the case and it says no signal, you have a motherboard failure, not video card related. Emachines was purchased by Gateway, Gateway was recently purchased by the Walmart Corp. We all know the quality Walmart instills in everything it touches. Back on point , after they were bought , quality control went in the toilet and motherboard failure has been very common with both products. Mine has been to Gateway 4 times and still doesn't work. Simple solution, don't turn it off. Mine has been on for 2 years now smile.gif. Easy way to test my theory, hook another monitor to your pc and another pc to your monitor. I'll bet it's motherboard related.

This post has been edited by Understudy: Oct 22 2007, 08:40 AM


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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 22 2007, 09:58 AM
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thank you for all the help-

my computer seems to boot up fine everytime; i hear the noises and wiiiiiiiirrrrrr sounds (haha). i just get no display (ie, the screen says "YOUR MONITOR IS WORKING PROPERLY PLEASE CHECK CABLES ETC ETC" it would show if you were to turn on the monitor without the pc on.

i will run memtest asap, just to make sure that isn't an issue.

as for drivers, i have just downloaded a driver from NVIDIA's website and installed it like that, and i have also booted in safe mode, uninstalled / deleted my driver, and reinstalled. none of things solves any problems.

thank you guys for correcting me on the video card RAM thing. i was totally unsure of this... i thought "integrated" meant it just "borrowed" RAM from my pc, but that the video card was still there... i opened up my PC and found a video-card like looking thing that i thought was the 6100.

being brought down to the choice on trying a new video card or a new power supply, i'll try get a new video card first. i thought about the GEFORCE 8 series, but honestly the GEFORCE 6 series that was in there was doing me fine; i'd rather just get this pc in "working" condition with an average (but still better then the 6100) card and use it for another year... then i'll just buy a newer, better brand or something.

i thought i had pinned down the problem as the power supply because somebody on NVIDIA's forums had the same problem as me and some computer wizz there said "it's probably your power supply go buy a new one".

QUOTE (Understudy @ Oct 22 2007, 12:39 AM) *
If I can ask a question, when you turn on the PC does the monitor say " No Signal" ? It sounds like your machine is not booting up or posting. I have experience with this , as I own a Gateway POS. If this is the case and it says no signal, you have a motherboard failure, not video card related. Emachines was purchased by Gateway, Gateway was recently purchased by the Walmart Corp. We all know the quality Walmart instills in everything it touches. Back on point , after they were bought , quality control went in the toilet and motherboard failure has been very common with both products. Mine has been to Gateway 4 times and still doesn't work. Simple solution, don't turn it off. Mine has been on for 2 years now smile.gif. Easy way to test my theory, hook another monitor to your pc and another pc to your monitor. I'll bet it's motherboard related.


i tried using another monitor with the PC, it did not work. my father also suggested that it was my motherboard that was screwing up, however i'd like to try and not picture this being the case; i simply cannot afford to go buy another pc right now. that would SCREW me over completely sad.gif

that is sad to hear about walmart owning emachines. sad.gif


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What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Understudy
post Oct 22 2007, 10:10 AM
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The noises you hear are your cooling fans and hard drive , if it were booting up and posting you would have video smile.gif . I hope it is not your motherboard, but it sounds like it is sad.gif


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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 22 2007, 10:16 AM
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QUOTE (Understudy @ Oct 22 2007, 02:10 AM) *
The noises you hear are your cooling fans and hard drive , if it were booting up and posting you would have video smile.gif . I hope it is not your motherboard, but it sounds like it is sad.gif


ahhhhh NOOOOOO. it had better not be the motherboard. UGHH. stupid emachines. now i feel weird about even buying a video card if it's not even going to work!


ps. looked at the 7600gt, looks good.

EDIT: OH OH! i don't know if this means anything, but when i boot in safe mode things are fine... aside from being in safe mode.

This post has been edited by Asphyxia Feeling: Oct 22 2007, 10:47 AM


--------------------
What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Understudy
post Oct 22 2007, 10:41 AM
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When my pc started to do the same thing, luckily for me I had a good friend who buildt computers. He suggested trying a new video card, I had an extra on hand so I switched it out, same problem. He suggested the power supply, had a spare kicking around, same problem. Fortunately it was under warranty and it was shipped back to Gateway , they had it for 6 weeks and when I got it back, same problem. So we shipped it back several more times until I just gave up, now it cannot be turned off or it will take anywhere from 10 minutes to 2 days of turning it on and off before it finally boots up. good luck with it, but I would take it in to have it looked at before dropping 200 bucks on a video card


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Andrew Cockburn
post Oct 22 2007, 08:05 PM
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QUOTE (Asphyxia Feeling @ Oct 22 2007, 05:16 AM) *
ahhhhh NOOOOOO. it had better not be the motherboard. UGHH. stupid emachines. now i feel weird about even buying a video card if it's not even going to work!
ps. looked at the 7600gt, looks good.

EDIT: OH OH! i don't know if this means anything, but when i boot in safe mode things are fine... aside from being in safe mode.


If it boots in safe mode it is unlikely to be any sort of hardware issue - far more likely to be drivers. The MB is obviously ok, as is the graphics card. In your previous posts you just said you got a blank screen - if that is the case, how do you boot it into safe mode? Do you get regular bootup messages then a blank screen after that?


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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 23 2007, 06:40 AM
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QUOTE (Andrew Cockburn @ Oct 22 2007, 12:05 PM) *
If it boots in safe mode it is unlikely to be any sort of hardware issue - far more likely to be drivers. The MB is obviously ok, as is the graphics card. In your previous posts you just said you got a blank screen - if that is the case, how do you boot it into safe mode? Do you get regular bootup messages then a blank screen after that?


if i boot and get no display, it just stays that way. i hold power to manually shut off the computer, and then try again. about 1/3 of the time i DO get a display and windows starts normally, albeit with the scrambly screen and limited use for gaming / programs (guitar pro won't work right sad.gif)

This post has been edited by Asphyxia Feeling: Oct 23 2007, 06:57 AM


--------------------
What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Asphyxia Feeling
post Oct 25 2007, 06:03 PM
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Semi-bump. i did not have enough money for both a power supply + video card, so i ordered the power supply by itself instead (my current power supply did not meet the requirements for the new card anyway). HOPEFULLY this will fix the problem, so i won't really have to buy a new card for a while.

This post has been edited by Asphyxia Feeling: Oct 25 2007, 06:03 PM


--------------------
What did you learn tonight?
while shouting so loud, you barely joyous, broken thing.
You are a voice that never sings, is what i say.
You are freezing over hell
You are bringing on that end you do so well
and you can only blame yourself, is what is say.
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Muris Varajic
post Oct 25 2007, 07:24 PM
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Sometimes it's lot easier to sell old one and but new machine.
Course,after you "fix" old one.
Just an idea.

P.S. I have 2 gb or RAM and think 1 gb is pretty fine but if it's fault chipset,
yeah might cause the issue.
But it worked fine before you said.
Hmm blink.gif


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Saoirse O'Shea
post Oct 25 2007, 11:17 PM
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Very true Muris,
You can fast get to the point where you virtual end up rebuilding the pc. Mass market boxes are generally cheaper then custom building a pc so if you end up replacing a lot it can be cheaper to junk and buy a new one as Muris says.

Personally I'd add that any pc you sell though you should preferably remove and physically trash and junk the h/d. Failing that you should do a low level wipe and low level format of the h/d.

(Call me paranoid but its too easy to get supposedly deleted files and data back - including bank info, credit card data passwords etc. I know I have to recover my wife's often enough rolleyes.gif . Last recover of 'deleted' data was when she lost windows due to a corrupted LSB in the master boot record and Fixmbr didn't work dry.gif . That was fun to recover from wink.gif . Deleted files are not deleted but flagged for overwriting.)

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