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PC just died. Sparks from GPU on reboot.

As per the title my pc has gone through a pretty rought time in the last few hours and I could do with some advice on my next steps. This is my first real hardware failure as I've been lucky with this pc for almost 4 years so I'm going to try and provide as much detail as possible.

Motherboard: MSI G43 Z77
CPU: Intel I5 3570k 3.5Ghz boost 3.8Ghz (Overclocked @4Ghz no volt changes)
CPU fan: Coolermaster hyper 212 plus
Ram: 16GB DDR3 1333Mhz (not overclocked)
GPU: GTX 960 2GB
Drives: 1 Samsung 200gb ssd, 1 TB WD HDD and 1 2TB WD HDD
PSU: Corsair builder series 600w bronze

Just finished playing some games and had moved on to watching some stuff on youtube. My pc just randomly instantly shuts off. After 10 or so seconds I try to power it on again it starts for less than a second all the fans start and light up and then powers off again. I move it to a lit area and plug it into a direct socket (before it was connected to a surge protecter). Nothing inside feels hot or smells. I go for one more power up and small yellow/white spark lights off from around the middle of the pc, although it was hard to see the exact area from my position in the front, I instantly flip the switch at the wall. It smells of burning and after 10 or so minutes I remove the GPU to find it smelling of burning with slight scorch marks on the metal heatsink and no other visual damage to the mobo this seems like the cause. This takes 15 or so minutes and I try to power up the pc for the final time with the GPU removed and both Drives disconnected. It starts for 2-3 seconds with fans, lights and then shuts off agan. I've not touched it since.

Thoughts? Did I rush too soon to try and power it on again? Does this seem like a PSU only issue, or have I caused damage to the motherboard/CPU while trying to power it up again? I'm not going to plug this GPU in again after seeing those sparks. (Scorch marks are right next to where the 6 pin PSU power connecter goes into the GPU).

Any advice would be a great help.

Thanks.
Reply to techtrain
7 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about died sparks gpu reboot
  1. Best answer
    The best thing you can do is take out the PSU and GPU and get a new PSU.

    A good quality one and hook it up and see what still works or not.

    Then replace as needed, the GPU and PSU are done for sure so don't use them again.
    Reply to jankerson
  2. jankerson said:
    The best thing you can do is take out the PSU and GPU and get a new PSU.

    A good quality one and hook it up and see what still works or not.

    Then replace as needed, the GPU and PSU are done for sure so don't use them again.


    As I said above GPU is already out and I should be able to request a RMA for it. My next move would have been to put a new PSU in. Thanks for the advice. What are the chances that I've done more damage to anything else mobo,ram,cpu or any of the drives?
    Reply to techtrain
  3. techtrain said:
    jankerson said:
    The best thing you can do is take out the PSU and GPU and get a new PSU.

    A good quality one and hook it up and see what still works or not.

    Then replace as needed, the GPU and PSU are done for sure so don't use them again.


    As I said above GPU is already out and I should be able to request a RMA for it. My next move would have been to put a new PSU in. Thanks for the advice. What are the chances that I've done more damage to anything else mobo,ram,cpu or any of the drives?


    Well I am thinking MB also, but that is just a guess at this point.

    Won't know for sure until you plug another PSU in.
    Reply to jankerson
  4. jankerson said:
    techtrain said:
    jankerson said:
    The best thing you can do is take out the PSU and GPU and get a new PSU.

    A good quality one and hook it up and see what still works or not.

    Then replace as needed, the GPU and PSU are done for sure so don't use them again.


    As I said above GPU is already out and I should be able to request a RMA for it. My next move would have been to put a new PSU in. Thanks for the advice. What are the chances that I've done more damage to anything else mobo,ram,cpu or any of the drives?


    Well I am thinking MB also, but that is just a guess at this point.

    Won't know for sure until you plug another PSU in.


    How can you tell the signs of a good PSU, is it just its efficiency rating? Or does the price pay into it?
    Reply to techtrain
  5. techtrain said:
    jankerson said:
    techtrain said:
    jankerson said:
    The best thing you can do is take out the PSU and GPU and get a new PSU.

    A good quality one and hook it up and see what still works or not.

    Then replace as needed, the GPU and PSU are done for sure so don't use them again.


    As I said above GPU is already out and I should be able to request a RMA for it. My next move would have been to put a new PSU in. Thanks for the advice. What are the chances that I've done more damage to anything else mobo,ram,cpu or any of the drives?


    Well I am thinking MB also, but that is just a guess at this point.

    Won't know for sure until you plug another PSU in.


    How can you tell the signs of a good PSU, is it just its efficiency rating? Or does the price pay into it?


    It's the model, all the makers make sub par units and very good units.

    If you want to stick with Corsair the TX550M would really be the one to get.

    The VS is their low end unit, the CXM is slightly better, but still a budget unit, both are really designed for workstations. Some will recommend the new model CXM (grey label) for gaming boxes, but I won't generally as they are still a budget unit and not designed to be used in gaming machines.

    Starting with the TXM they are made for gaming machines etc.

    That PSU you currently have is a budget unit and it's the old green labeled one at that so I am surprised it lasted as long as it did before cooking your GPU.

    As far as price goes the better units will be higher priced than the budget units, but that goes without saying.

    Good PSU examples:

    Seasonic Focus +, G Series, Prime and X-Series if you can find them.

    Corsair TXM, RMX, RMi, etc

    EVGA G2, G3

    The real bottom line here is the PSU is not the place to look when cutting costs and is the very last thing one ever wants to cut costs on. Now one doesn't have to spend a fortune on a PSU either to get a good one.
    Reply to jankerson
  6. jankerson said:


    It's the model, all the makers make sub par units and very good units.

    If you want to stick with Corsair the TX550M would really be the one to get.

    The VS is their low end unit, the CXM is slightly better, but still a budget unit, both are really designed for workstations. Some will recommend the new model CXM (grey label) for gaming boxes, but I won't generally as they are still a budget unit and not designed to be used in gaming machines.

    Starting with the TXM they are made for gaming machines etc.

    That PSU you currently have is a budget unit and it's the old green labeled one at that so I am surprised it lasted as long as it did before cooking your GPU.

    As far as price goes the better units will be higher priced than the budget units, but that goes without saying.

    Good PSU examples:

    Seasonic Focus +, G Series, Prime and X-Series if you can find them.

    Corsair TXM, RMX, RMi, etc

    EVGA G2, G3

    The real bottom line here is the PSU is not the place to look when cutting costs and is the very last thing one ever wants to cut costs on. Now one doesn't have to spend a fortune on a PSU either to get a good one.


    Just adding some follow up. New PSU arrived and is working well, so far I've been really lucky and my motherboard and all of my drives are working fine. Thanks for the PSU recommendations. I've installed my old gtx 560 while my 960 goes off to rma. Thanks for all the help!
    Reply to techtrain
  7. techtrain said:
    jankerson said:


    It's the model, all the makers make sub par units and very good units.

    If you want to stick with Corsair the TX550M would really be the one to get.

    The VS is their low end unit, the CXM is slightly better, but still a budget unit, both are really designed for workstations. Some will recommend the new model CXM (grey label) for gaming boxes, but I won't generally as they are still a budget unit and not designed to be used in gaming machines.

    Starting with the TXM they are made for gaming machines etc.

    That PSU you currently have is a budget unit and it's the old green labeled one at that so I am surprised it lasted as long as it did before cooking your GPU.

    As far as price goes the better units will be higher priced than the budget units, but that goes without saying.

    Good PSU examples:

    Seasonic Focus +, G Series, Prime and X-Series if you can find them.

    Corsair TXM, RMX, RMi, etc

    EVGA G2, G3

    The real bottom line here is the PSU is not the place to look when cutting costs and is the very last thing one ever wants to cut costs on. Now one doesn't have to spend a fortune on a PSU either to get a good one.


    Just adding some follow up. New PSU arrived and is working well, so far I've been really lucky and my motherboard and all of my drives are working fine. Thanks for the PSU recommendations. I've installed my old gtx 560 while my 960 goes off to rma. Thanks for all the help!


    Glad to hear your MB is still working.

    Looks like you are good to go.
    Reply to jankerson
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