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21 posts


# 29349 4-Jan-2009 12:54
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Hi all,

Happy New Year!

OK, here's my problem. Got my PCs shipped over from the UK just before Christmas, all well and good until New Years Eve; I am working away on my PC (nothing CPU intensive, just writing an email) and the power appears to cut off. No problem, I thought - will just try a reboot. But its no go. Nothing happens. The LEDs on the mobo (MSI P6N SLI Platinum) are still on as long as the PSU (a Xilence XP750)  is plugged into the mains. If I try to switch on the PC from the case button, the internal fans will very briefly spin, and the case lights will light up, but then it'll just switch off again.. I'm not getting even as far as POSTing (which leads me to believe its the PSU, I would imagine that if the mobo or a component fried, either I would get an error beep, or nothing happening, but the system wouldn't shut itself down?). So, my questions would be to anyone that may be able to throw some ideas my way - would you agree that its likely the PSU, given the (hopefully clear) description of the problem? Secondly, and alternatively, are you able to suggest a company or individual within Wellington who could help confirm the problem, either by switching PSU's, or may have power testers? At this stage, I may not need to purchase a new PSU, as this one is still under warranty with QuietPC (UK), so I am hoping I may be able to sort out a replacement with them. I've not tried using the PSU from my second, older PC, as it uses the four pin CPU voltage connector, whereas the dead PSU uses the 6 pin job.

Any thoughts/suggestions/advice gratefull received!

Thanks, Leo

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  # 187323 4-Jan-2009 15:46
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It's quite easy to test a PSU, the "paper clip trick" allows the PSU to be started up without it being connected to any of your other hardware. 

1:  Turn off the PSU at the wall and at the back of the PSU
2:  Unplug the PSU cables from the motherboard
3:  Unplug the PSU cables from your other devices
4:  Use the "paper clip" trick to connect the green wire and any black wire on the PSU's 24pin connector. see example
5:  Turn on the PSU

The PSU should start up straight away and not turn off until you turn it off via the switch at the back of the PSU or at the wall.

If your PSU has any old style molex connectors (rather than SATA style connectors) for powering older hard drivers and dvd drivers you can use a regular multimeter to measure the voltage at one of the molex connectors.  Red-Black should be 5v, Yellow-Black should be 12v iirc.

If the PSU appears to be working fine like that, turn it off remove the paper clip.  Reconnect it to you motherboard but not to any devices other than the video card (if it's a video card that requries extra power).  See if you can get to bios with just the motherboard connected.  If that works reconnect devices one by one then test.

Of course it may not be the PSU at all, try removing the video card and re-seating it.  Re-seat the ram and other PCI/PCIE cards.

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  # 187331 4-Jan-2009 16:39
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Thanks for that - tested and it seems to be as I thought - dead PSU (finally figured out I CAN get it to connect up to the older PC, same results). So looks like I'm gonna have to figure out how to get this RMA's back to the UK now...

Cheers, Leo


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  # 187363 4-Jan-2009 20:25
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Most PSU problems are just a blown fuse.  Sadly to get to the fuse which costs next to nothing to replace you have to open the PSU which voids the warranty, an annoying catch 22.

Actually some PSU's have like a delay fuse/circuit breaker.  If you leave the PSU off and unplugged for a few days you may find when you hook it again later it magically is working as normal again.  I'd give that a try first.

Anyway shipping it back for an RMA would take a while, what I'd be tempted to do it pickup a new PSU from a local computer retailer to get your main PC going as normal straight away.  Do the RMA and then when you get the fixed psu back, choose which one you want to keep and sell the other on trademe

I'm a huge fanboi of Corsair PSU's at the moment and recommend them highly.  A CORSAIR 750W TX SERIES is under $200 NZ pesos, a CORSAIR 620W HX MODULAR SERIES is around $180.

Pricespy is a good resource for getting an idea of computer hardware prices in NZ.  One caveat you'll always see the no retail store, no staff type sellers are the cheapest.  I personally prefer to pay a few dollars extra and buy from retailers that actually have a phsycial store or that have been around for awhile eg:,

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  # 187367 4-Jan-2009 20:44
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I'd just gone and ordered the 620, like you say, good reviews. Seems the old PSU is in fact out of warranty, and I've opened it up, sure enough there's a fuse there, but now it's just a case of finding one before I have to confirm the order of the new Corsair!

Thanks for all your help,


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