New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

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I'll spare you the "saga" of trying to fix this computer.

Needless to say I finally diagnosed a motherboard problem and my new
one finally arrived today.  With everything installed carefully it will
turn on but I get a blank screen.  All fans are spinning and half the
components are brand new or known to be working.  Did I get a defective
MB?  Please help!

I've tried:
- 2 different known working hard drives
- 2 known working monitors
- 2 known working memory chips
- 2 known working video cards
- swapping various IDE ports and HD master/slave configurations
- running the HD from IDE 2
- removing all non-essential PCI cards & disc drives
- staring at it and pleading to the computer deities

I get more white noise from this than with the old MB (which wouldn't
even power on) so maybe I can use it to help me sleep.  $250 in new
components is a bit expensive for a gicantic aluminum sound synthesizer
but I'm trying to look on the bright side.

I'm getting by on a friend's old Celeron with no cover, no sound card,
no working USB ports that beeps jarringly at me whenever windows would
normally play an error noise.  Don't know how much longer I can hold



My system:
CPU: Intel Socket 478 2.53 Ghz 533 FSB Pentium
Memory: DDR266 SDRAM 133 Mhz
Video: Nvidia Geforce TI4200 128 MB AGP 8x
HD: Maxtor 160 MB ATA133

I checked and rechecked all the features of the MB for compatibility
before I bought it and again today.

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

Also, no power to my keyboard.

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen wrote:

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question: have you run the mb without the cd roms ,hard drive, and floopy
installed. and minimum memory.

If i were you i would start at the connections ie power, reset button and
led lights and speaker, the speaker would be my priority.

I have had in the past a mb where i had to do the connections on f_panel

Is there a way you can test to see if the speaker is working IE get sound
out of it

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

So I sent my motherboard back, convinced I had a defect.  The new one
arrived today and the exact same thing is happening: won't POST, just
spins fans.  I've been working with minimal configuration (power
switch, Vid card, 1 stick memory, CPU and MB).  I put the new MB in
then tried 1 set of all other components.  Then shut down and switched
everything but the MB and tried again w/ same results.


If a MB craps out, can it damage other components so they no longer
work, even in a new MB?  If so what is most likely to be damaged:
memory, CPU, or video card?

When I originally had problems with this machine I tried putting in a
new CPU and my brother's video card before I replaced the MB.  Maybe
it's possible the old MB fried my new CPU.  Then when I replaced the MB
it still didn't work because both my original and replacement CPU had
been in my old MB?

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

On 10 Oct 2005 19:52:41 -0700, wrote:

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Yes, it is possible, but relatively speaking, not likely.

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Depends a lot on what went wrong.  A gross manufacturer's
defect could do damage to most parts, but something more
simple like a misplaced jumper, dead battery, cracked board
or some surface-mount components missing or knocked off
"usually" wouldn't do any harm to other parts.

If you were sure (as-in, the other parts had been tested
working by you or someone you implicitly trust), AND there
was no potential for damage after last tested (for example,
physical stress to a PCB, or ESD frying something, erasing a
PROM, whatever) these other parts all worked prior to
placing them in the questionable motherboard, the odds are
they still work, providing you arent exceptionally unlucky
and happened to install a heatsink wrong and the CPU burnt
up the first moment system was turned on, or some similar
kind of random mishap but we can have no idea if anything
like that is possible or likely, remotely troubleshooting.

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I'll not say it's impossible, but that seems less likely.
ECS boards sometimes have incredibly picky bios, the brand
of board is yet another variable adding to potential causes.

If present power suppy checks out, jumpers/cables/cards/etc
seem in place, you might see if you can get a different
make/model of board instead.  I"ve forgotten a few details
in this thread and presume you have tried the board outside
of the case, _not_ on an anti-static mat or packing material
as they conduct electricity.

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

On 28 Sep 2005 20:26:03 -0700, wrote:

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Unfortunately, these details that may seem also-ran to you,
are going to be important and unknown to many readers.

In other words, if you only describe the parts that are just
like everyone else's working systems, there's nothing to go

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Based on what?

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Did you try clearing CMOS?
Setting it up in a minimal config (only video, CPU,
heatsink/fan and 1 memory module) on a non-conductive
surface instead of in the case?

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What power supply?  Take voltage readings while it's in the
on-but-not-POSTing state.  If it's a generic or sub-350W
PSU, try a different one.

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

a blank screen tells me it is your cpu that is at fault
have you tried your cpu in a friends computer.

For that is the only thing you have not changed

do you get any error beeps when you start up if not
i would say it is your cpu. If you look in your
user manual it should give you a list of beep codes

question what cpu are you using

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

On Thu, 29 Sep 2005 07:12:23 +0000 (UTC), Darklight

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Untrue, there are many potential reasons why that (no POST
on monitor) will occur, each with it's own chance of
liklihood but the CPU is among the less likely suspects.
Most likely would be motherboard, power, or mechanical
cards/cables/jumpers/etc misconfiguration.

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

Thanks for the comments all.  Here's responses to some of the

Full history: My original MB (ECS P4VXAD) was about 3 years old and
working pretty well but with occasional spontaneous reboots, and
errors).  One day it just shut off and wouldn't turn back on - fans
would spin a couple times and the MB light (internal) would come on but
nothing else.  I hadn't made any recent changes to the system.  I tried
replacing the power supply with a new Antec 450W PS with no effect.  I
tried replacing the CPU with no effect.  So I figured the MB was the
next most likely culprit.  Maybe foolish to get another ECS after
problems with the first but it was a good deal I couldn't resist and
was also the best match for compatibility.  So I installed it with all
the same components in my old MB and it at least powers on now but I
get nothing on my screen.  Because its now powering on I assumed that
my old MB was in fact the problem but that I haven't set something up
right.  Obviously I've checked all the connections.  (I'm also going to
try resetting CMOS on my old MB - I hadn't come across that suggestion
when I first had the problem and assumed something was burned out.
Still doesn't explain why the new one isn't working).

I did try clearing CMOS on my new MB but I'm going to try that again.

I've tried running it with minimal setup but not outside the case.  I'm
not confident I'd know how to do that - turning it on for example?  It
seems unlikely that the problem is related to the case, no?

Powersupply is Antec 450W and only a couple months old.  Actually I got
it well before my computer crashed but I checked the power with Sandra
and it seemed good - much better than my old generic one.

CPU is Intel Pentium 4 2.53 Ghz 533 FSB.  It's new also, don't think it
would be the problem unless its incompatible, but that's something I
checked before buying the MB.  The MB is designed to support
hyperthreading, Prescott CPUs, and FSB up to 800 Mhz, but as I
understand it these are all support options, not requirements (i.e.
those features are all backwards-compatible see ).
 CPU is new so I'm pretty sure it's not that.  I may try my old one
though but I'm wary of switching processors around too much.

I dont' get any error beeps with either MB at any point.

There are only a few jumper settings and the factory-default modes
seemed correct

The only other thing I'm not 100% certain about is the case components
setup (LED and switch cables).  I think I have them in the right spot
but may not have them oriented right.  I couldn't figure out how to
tell which is the + and - ends.  Consequently my leds don't light up
correctly and the speaker may not be set up right.  This is only my 2nd
time building a system and I've forgotten a lot of what I learned the
first time :\  Sorry for noobness.  Still would that cause a
non-POSTing and blank monitor?

Re: New Motherboard and all I get is fan noise and blank screen

On 29 Sep 2005 08:49:45 -0700, wrote:

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That seems reasonable, though it would've been good at that
point to strip the system down to a minimal config just to
try to get it to POST, isolating variables to only essential
(towards POSTing) parts.

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Just my opinion- It wasn't a good idea to get the first
one... they're cheaper for a reason, that the market won't
bear a higher priced for them due to higher potential for
problems in addition to other errta and lesser features in
some cases.

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Using the new Antec 450W PSU or the old one?
Has the Antec been tested working or only assumed so?  What
about the other parts, are there any you could try in
another system?  "Probably" the new PSU does work, but odds
are, eventually someone comes along who has a problem that
goes against the odds.

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Maybe, or the old power supply killed it, or perhaps
something like a video card had been making bad contact in
the board and both the board and the card contacts are
fouled- so another board might or might not be enough.
Basically I'm just suggesting that you bare-bone the system
and carefully consider every part and what you could do to
rule each out - and underclock the system if possible,
trying at least to clear CMOS with AC power disconnected.

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Also check the battery.
Especially with low-end boards, it might be a bios bug.  If
you can get it stable and POSTing a time or two, it might be
handy to have a floppy ready with the latest bios and
flasher on it.. but I'd try running memtest86+ for awhile
first just to get a feel for whether it's stable enough to
expect a successful bios flash.

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Yes, but, any potential problem taken on it's own is
somewhat unlikely- most systems work.  It's just better to
start out with as many variables removed as possible then
work your way up, lest you miss something and the long
process has to start over again.

Running it out of case is pretty straightforward- put the
board on something slightly elevated so the (video) card
bracket can hang down as it should beyond the edge of the
board, and make sure the surface is non-conductive, _not_
anti-static packaging.  Turn it on by using a metallic
object (like a screwdriver tip) between the two power-on
pins that formerly had the case switch connected.  You
should only need contact between them for a fraction of a
second to turn the system on, but perhaps 4 seconds to turn
it off if that's how the bios is set by default.

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What video card?  Some were subject to failure from known
issues like Gainward TI4200, but others could, as well.

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Yes they are only upper-limits, not requirements.

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Try manually setting the lowest frequency available.  That
may leave it underclocked, but as a temporary measure it may
increase odds of getting it posting.

Are you on a time limit for seeking RMA Of this board?
I would consider returning it if possible, if none of the
above helps.

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Unplug all case wiring and try it by shorting the power
switch pins as described previously.  Remove any and all
possible variables.

You "need" only these things connected or installed:

CPU, heatsink/fan, 1 memory module, and video (+ monitor)
You do not need drives, keyboard, mouse, etc while you try
to get it to POST.  These things can be added back later if
the system starts working.

Unplug everything else, except of course the two power
supply plugs to the motherboard.

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COnnecting the power, reset, or LED leads backwards will not
keep the system from POSTing or running.
If the power and reset were backwards, it is only al
cosmetic detail as they can work fine either way, are not
polarized.  The LEDs just wouldn't light up at all, there
would be no damage and it would not prevent the system from

If you had connected wiring to the wrong pins, that might be
a different matter- unplug all case wires for the time being
just to be sure.

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It would be good to have speaker connected to hear beep
tones but only if you can be sure it's right- typically it's
a 4-pin plug, with first and last pin making contact and the
middle two unused/empty.  It does not matter which polarity
it's connected to the extent that it would not prevent
system running and would still make beep sounds.  However,
FWIW, the red wire is positive and black negative.  If
different colors are used you should be able to see the
markings for which is positive on the contacts on rear of
speaker itself.  If you can't figure it out don't worry
about it.

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Blank monitor is a failure to POST or a video card failure.
If only a video card (output) failure then the system would
otherwise proceed as it should, enumerating and a beep and
booting... which doesn't seem to be what's happening.

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