Hi - I've just joind this forum to try to get some answers to a very baffling problem, I've written the wall in order to cover all possible factors that might be relevent - I should also note I've been building PC's for many years and this is the 1st time I have had this..
On Saturday I swapped out an old (PII) mobo for a 2nd hand Mobo/ cpu/ memory bundle (ebay) for a client to update his system. Mobo: GIGABYTE S SERIES (GA-M57SLI-S4 REV 2.0 Bios FF) CPU Mem: AMD 5000 AM2 SOCKET the power supply was also changed for one with more power and SLI ability. Link of sale:Gigabyte Motherboard Bundle + Ram & CPU on eBay (end time 20-May-11 21:45:21 BST)
I should also add that the mobo had been sent out from the seller with the tower heatsink +fan still attached to the mobo with the cpu insitu. When the bundle arrived the tower heatsink (unfortunately with the cpu still attached to the underside) had separated from the mobo, and quite a few pins on the cpu had been bent, some quite badly. I did however manage to straighten them all (I've had bent pins before and no ill effects have been observed) and the cpu was rebedded into the socket, and HS tower re-attched with liquid silver thermal paste.
The mobo was then installed and a 2nd hand PCI-e 6800gt gfx card (an old one of my own and fully working, tested in my own rig before installation) added. The rest of the components stayed the same. As the client uses XP I told him he will have to do a full install of windows as XP is sensitive to changing parts and would not boot up normally as before. As he's local and has done this before I didn't feel the need to do this for him.
Here's where the fun begins....
He called me on sunday to say it that it was "doing nothing", that the monitor was displaying "check cable status". So he brought it back to me and stayed while I looked at it - I hooked it up to my own monitor and switched it on with the case side open, all fans started inc the gfx card (with a green power light on the card as well), power supply and CPU fans, but monitor still displayed "check cable" so I made sure it was fully attached, which made no difference - I also tried the other gfx card socket with no change. As it's an sli board I moved the gfx card to the secondary slot, same thing no signal. I moved the gfx card back into slot 1 and reset cmos using the jumper (just in case this was set as SLI and the single card was confusing it), no change, I took the battery out of cmos and left it for 5 mins or so, put it back in - still no change, no signal nothing. The board has a secondary molex power port for the gfx cards to supplement the power so I plugged one in "just in case".. no change.
Next possibility was it wasn't getting enough power - so I swapped it out for a generic 550w (had been a 2nd hand truepower 450w) same thing - same checks still nothing, so I took out the supply from my own rig and tried that, a 750w still nothing. As I have 2 of the 6800gt's (from my old sli rig) I tried the other one with no success, then as it's an SLI mobo I added both with the bridge as I thought it may be somehow stuck in sli mode or something (right now i'm running out of ideas) and tried again, still no signal.
When I get pc's to work on the 1st thing I do is blow them out with a compressor thoroughly to ensure no dust is anywhere, inc the pci slots, so I was confident it was not a bad connection in the pci-e slot, the gfx card connectors also get cleaned with alcohol so that's not it either, the card itself was tested before and again after all this and it worked fine in my personal rig. Sll components seem to be getting power, and the cable to my monitor is fine.
The client witnessed all of this, and in the end I asked him what he wanted to do, so I put the old mobo back in with his problematic gfx card (old agp with tearing and artifacts, but livable on DT and the reason for the update). Same hdd, kept the newer power supply, and same dvd drive - 1st power on it went straight in to DT (well 6 mins later!) and resumed as it was before.
Frankly I'm stumped, which is a 1st for me, and I would appreciate any ideas you may have. Of course it's possible the board is damaged, however the seller states it's in working order and for now I'll take him on his word, basically what I'm asking is there something I may have missed bearing in mind I've tried 3 different power supplies and 2 different (but matching) gfx cards that have been proved to work normally, with all other components proven to be in full working order... On the subject of the bent pins I have assumed that if there was an issue with the cpu the PC would still POST but halt on error - but that this would still show up on the monitor and that this problem is with the PCI-e or similar.
Any and all (constructive) suggestions will be considered. Thanks for reading