Hardware troubleshooting advice?

10 Jun 2010
Well... I've got an Acer desktop here to fix.

It powered up, fans, hdd's etc... amber light on monitor. I initially suspected the PSU as this is the case 95% of the time. Replaced PSU with a brand new out of the wrapper CX430. Save problem!

I removed the pci-e graphics card and plugged the vga cable into the onboard. Also a common problem for these cards to go... wasn't the problem.

I then unplugged the HDD, DVD drive and tried to power on. Nothing!

However, at this stage... the CPU fan would only spin for a second and then spin down again... I started to suspect the new PSU was dead on arrival.

I then had a suspicion the CPU might be dead as the HSF was clogged with dust and I thought it may have overheated. So I cleaned the fan etc, dropped in a new CPU. Dropped in different ram all together and left the rest unplugged.

It still spun up and down for a second. No beeps etc.

I thought... OK!! I'll try the old PSU again, see if this new one is dead. Put's in the old one and the fan spins up this time and stays powered on. However, still the amber light. I think to myself, maybe the new PSU is duff then!

I do the paperclip test on the CX430 and it powers the fan just fine for a while (different test fan of course)

Soooo... Now I'm wondering... is it the mobo? Or is it a PSU issue? I don't have any other PSU's to experiment with.

I'm thinking, perhaps the CX430 has some sort of protection built in that the cheap PSU doesn't and that's why it wont power up (but it did intitially) So...

Either that or the mobo is away on it.

What's the clever people of General Hardwares' thoughts on this?
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