Capacitors blowing out left and right...

I have a Dell Precision 390 (specs below main text) I run my old 4870 that doesn't support Windows 10. I have a 6870 (both HD series) but when I put it in, some random capacitor blows up.

I wanted to know, is this the graphics card like I think it is, or the PSU? I had some kid at a lan click the red button on the back of the PSU and that's all that happened before I inserted the troublesome 6870.

Along with mysteriously blowing capacitors, the card only works as a display adapter. When I install drivers it either doesn't install the AMD audio whatever, or installs successfully but provides artifacts in BIOS and doesnt ever boot to Windows.

Is the gpu dead? can i fix it? does the PSU have any part to play here?

Note: I've replaced capacitors on this board before, and I will do it again.
Note 2: Please, please, please don't tell me to upgrade, I've heard it before, but I'm FINE with what I have. I only play CSGO, 140 fps is fine for me.
Note 3: AGAIN, DONT tell me to upgrade!!!
Note 4: For the love of god, I've gotten this on every post I make including my system.
Note 5: I can't put any more emphasis on not telling me to upgrade. Specs below.


Standard Dell 0dn075 motherboard
Q6600 Intel CPU
AMD HD 4870/6870 (1gb each)
8gb non branded RAM
Raidmax Hybrid 2 RX-730SS (the red button turns on the LEDs for the fan, I dunno what it does other than that)
Reply to Randomdeath
9 answers Last reply
More about capacitors blowing left
  1. Modern motherboards with PCI-e 3.0 spec are supposed to support up to 70-75 watts of power delivered thru the PCI-e slot; my guess (blown caps) is your board is not quite handling power requirements for some GPUs, not uncommon with older boards...
    Reply to mdd1963
  2. with old parts there were recalls and class action lawsuits on mb and other parts for bad caps. google your pc and words class action or cap recall. if your mb was not on the recall list. with the caps that have pop depending on where they came from your power supply is over volting or under volting parts. at this time with the caps poping there going to be more damage then just the caps.
    Reply to smorizio
  3. First of all, HD4870 is completely supported by Windows 10. There's only one driver (it's on WindowsUpdate) which unfortunately doesn't support any sort of control panel, but it is there and works well in games. If you want to change AA and AF settings you can use the 3rd party freeware RadeonPro (it can be uninstalled after you have set whatever settings you like and they will stay).

    While the 40nm HD6870 is nearly twice as fast as 55nm HD4870, it doesn't use any more power so I'm going to assume your card is just dead. Artifacts in the BIOS suggest the memory is bad, and before you install the drivers the Microsoft Basic Display Adapter never uses >32MB of VRAM or any hardware acceleration features so may not be accessing the bad parts.
    Reply to BFG-9000
  4. mdd1963 said:
    Modern motherboards with PCI-e 3.0 spec are supposed to support up to 70-75 watts of power delivered thru the PCI-e slot; my guess (blown caps) is your board is not quite handling power requirements for some GPUs, not uncommon with older boards...


    This is definitely wrong, I used the 6870 in this system awhile ago for weeks on end. no problem
    Reply to Randomdeath
  5. smorizio said:
    with old parts there were recalls and class action lawsuits on mb and other parts for bad caps. google your pc and words class action or cap recall. if your mb was not on the recall list. with the caps that have pop depending on where they came from your power supply is over volting or under volting parts. at this time with the caps poping there going to be more damage then just the caps.


    The caps were not recalled on this board
    Reply to Randomdeath
  6. BFG-9000 said:
    First of all, HD4870 is completely supported by Windows 10. There's only one driver (it's on WindowsUpdate) which unfortunately doesn't support any sort of control panel, but it is there and works well in games. If you want to change AA and AF settings you can use the 3rd party freeware RadeonPro (it can be uninstalled after you have set whatever settings you like and they will stay).

    While the 40nm HD6870 is nearly twice as fast as 55nm HD4870, it doesn't use any more power so I'm going to assume your card is just dead. Artifacts in the BIOS suggest the memory is bad, and before you install the drivers the Microsoft Basic Display Adapter never uses >32MB of VRAM or any hardware acceleration features so may not be accessing the bad parts.


    They say it's supported by Win10 on the AMD site. But when I try to install the driver for it, the install skips the audio install and fails the whole installation. Lots of other people on the web say the same thing, and only HD 5000 and newer works at all with Win10.

    And, can I not replace memory? I thought I saw memory chip replacements for some other gpu awhile ago.
    Reply to Randomdeath
  7. You can't "install" the Win 10 driver because it's not available for download at the AMD site, only the ones for Win 8.1. You can only allow Windowsupdate to install the only Windows 10 driver, and both the GPU and AMD High Definition Audio Device do get installed automatically.

    Perhaps you are confused because the HD4870 doesn't actually have an HDMI port, only two DVI-I. In any OS, the audio over HDMI for it only works with the DVI-to-HDMI adapter included with the card and not any other adapter. That is not a driver issue but a hardware one because of the proprietary way AMD implemented audio over the DVI.

    Frequently the memory is bad from just a broken solder joint, and you can reflow everything in an oven at ~385F for 10 minutes--if you remove everything that can melt or pull surface-mount devices offcenter while it's fluid. Just google baking GPU for instructions on how to prepare the card.
    Reply to BFG-9000
  8. BTW if you really want CCC for some reason you can force the old Win 8.1 drivers to install by either running it in Windows 8 compatibility mode with administrator rights (YMMV) or like so:

    1: Download the legacy driver 13.1 or 13.4beta and run the installer but close it after it unpacks all the installation files to C:\AMD.
    2: Open Device Manager.
    3: Under Display adapters right click on the adapter used in your system and click Update Driver Software.
    4: Click on Browse my computer for driver software.
    5: Click 'Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer'... in the next menu and Have Disk... on the following.
    6: Click Browse on the pop-up menu and go to: C:\AMD\AMD_Catalyst_13.4_Legacy_Beta_Vista_Win7_Win8\Packages\Drivers\Display\W86A_INF.
    7: Select the first .inf file C7156445.inf - and click open.
    8: Select HD4870 from the list - if there are two of the same ones just click the first - then click Next and the driver should install accompanied with several screen flickers.
    9. Now re-run the legacy driver installer from AMD and have it install just the Catalyst Control Center and any audio devices.
    10. Restart the computer.

    It is important to note that the Driver Version installed this way is 8.970.100.0 from 24APR2013, while the version installed automatically by Windows 10 is 8.970.100.9001 dated 13JAN2015. You will need to follow the usual procedure to prevent Windowsupdates from updating to this driver because that will bork the CCC. It's doubtful the current audio drivers would cause any issues with the old GPU drivers so you may as well allow WindowsUpdate to install those.
    Reply to BFG-9000
  9. Funny. I bring the card and my hard drive to a friends place to get the drivers working and what you said holds true. However, my actual tower is ruined now.

    I replaced the capacitor I saw that was blown, the rest look brand new. No burn spots anywhere. I've tried different cables and cpus and psus and gpus and all.

    The motherboard is gone, and with a system this old I won't bother replacing it. This tower is retired.
    Reply to Randomdeath
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