Newbie HTPC build - won't start - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Evening all,

This is my first post, but loads of the forum posts here made me grab all the parts I needed for an HTPC and then sit down to put it all together. Unfortunately, 6 hours later, and I press the button....and nothing happens frown.gif

I've done some rudimentary checking of cables to make sure I wired everything up ok, but to no avail. The spec of the machine is:

Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4-M
PSU: Antec Earthwatts 430W
CPU: Intel i3 2105 (should be backwards compatible with the Ivy Bridge mobo)
Memory 4GB
HD: WD Caviar Green 2TB
Blu-ray drive
Case: Antec Fusion Silver (not the Remote one)

So wired up, press power button and nothing happens - no lights, no fans (not even on the PSU). The PSU switch is on and plugged in.

I've got a mate with a multimeter who'll pop round tomorrow to let me have a fiddle with it - but am I looking at a duff PSU? How would I tell? Does anyone have any idea of where I should start in debugging it? (and is there any more information I need to provide?)

Obviously no software/bios problems that I know of, as I can't get in. But I did pull the CMOS battery for 15 seconds and do a CMOS reset in accordance with the manual. Not sure that did anything mind you.

Thanks for your help
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post #2 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:44 PM
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Did you wire the front panel connection properly? Specifically the power switch?
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post #3 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:47 PM
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First check the switch on the back of the psu if it has one. Also did u use standoffs between the motherboard and chassis tray?

Sent from my Nexus S 4G using Tapatalk 2

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post #4 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:49 PM
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Two of the most common causes for non-powering new builds is the ATX power and RAM seating. There are two power cables that need to be connected to the motherboard, a large, 24-pin cable and a small 4 or 6-pin connector. Both of these need to be plugged in! Also, sometimes RAM may feel properly seated and the clips will both be pushed up, but sometimes it's just not in there right. Try pulling them out and reseating them.
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post #5 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm going to answer this with no ego and simply say that I think so. The manual isn't very clear (it's here ftp://europe.asrock.com/manual/H77 Pro4-M.pdf) on how the power switch needs to line up (horizontal versus vertical in that diagram)

The cable colours also aren't obvious to me on whether they are the + or GND connection. The cable pair is white/black-purple. Any thoughts?
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post #6 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therealbiglou View Post

Two of the most common causes for non-powering new builds is the ATX power and RAM seating. There are two power cables that need to be connected to the motherboard, a large, 24-pin cable and a small 4 or 6-pin connector. Both of these need to be plugged in! Also, sometimes RAM may feel properly seated and the clips will both be pushed up, but sometimes it's just not in there right. Try pulling them out and reseating them.

Thanks for this - I'll go and try re-seating the RAM after this post - I hadn't bothered as I assumed a RAM problem would appear after something happened. The PSU ATX cable is in the slot - pretty sure it is the right way round. The board has an 8 pin smaller ATX connector, but the PSU only has a 4 pin version, which is apparently still compatible, so I've just plugged that in on the Pin 1 side (per my interpretation of the manual.

Cheers.
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post #7 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 02:54 PM
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White and Black are ground. The color wires are +.
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post #8 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Was just about to post that RAM re-seating had no effect. Will now re-check my chassis wiring
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post #9 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, I'm stumped on this one.

The system panel header in the manual is (my numbering added)

1 2 3 4
| PLED + | PLED - | PWRBTN# | GND | |
| HDLED+ | HDLED- | GND | RSTBTN# | DUMMY |
5 6 7 8 9

I connected the power button across 3 and 4 (black on 3, white on 4) . Have tried inverting it, but no effect
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post #10 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:39 PM
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Disconnect the power switch, then take a screwdriver and touch (or lightly scrape) the two bare pins. This will short them out and boot the system. Does this work? Is this the EPS 12V and ATX 24 pin firmly plugged in? Make sure its in fully too.
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post #11 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:41 PM - Thread Starter
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What is the EPS 12V? I haven't seen that on my system... Just the 24-pin ATX and the ATX12V (8/4-pin header)
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post #12 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiddles88 View Post

Disconnect the power switch, then take a screwdriver and touch (or lightly scrape) the two bare pins. This will short them out and boot the system. Does this work? Is this the EPS 12V and ATX 24 pin firmly plugged in? Make sure its in fully too.

Hi Tiddles - had a go shorting the pins with a screwdriver and no effect

The 24pin plug is firmly in - think the hole shapes mean I can't have put it in the wrong way around?

Pretty down about this - first time builder frown.gif still, to be expected, I suppose
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post #13 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 03:56 PM
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EPS is 8 pin, ATX is 4 pin. If its all firmly in, You'll need to breadboard to test.

Take the mobo out of the case, stick it on the anti static bag, then plug in the 24pin, 4 pin, and one stick of RAM in DIMM slot 1. Connect to monitor via DVI. Disconnect everything else. Now try connecting the power switch and booting.
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post #14 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 10:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiddles88 View Post

EPS is 8 pin, ATX is 4 pin. If its all firmly in, You'll need to breadboard to test.
Take the mobo out of the case, stick it on the anti static bag, then plug in the 24pin, 4 pin, and one stick of RAM in DIMM slot 1. Connect to monitor via DVI. Disconnect everything else. Now try connecting the power switch and booting.
DONT put it on an anti-static bag! That pretty silver or black criss-cross is conductive, that is how it keeps the static out.
Place the motherboard on a piece of cardboard or wood.
Also the power and reset switches can be hooked up either way, since they are simple momentary contact switches, polarity doesnt matter.
Pull the battery and clear the CMOS. Your manual will tell you how.
Once stick of memory at a time, in each slot.
Keep us informed!smile.gif
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post #15 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdcrox View Post

DONT put it on an anti-static bag! That pretty silver or black criss-cross is conductive, that is how it keeps the static out.
Place the motherboard on a piece of cardboard or wood.
Also the power and reset switches can be hooked up either way, since they are simple momentary contact switches, polarity doesnt matter.
Pull the battery and clear the CMOS. Your manual will tell you how.
Once stick of memory at a time, in each slot.
Keep us informed!smile.gif

From my experience, using the anti static has zero effects, conductive or not.
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post #16 of 37 Old 10-12-2012, 11:08 PM
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And sometimes people drive intoxicated and make it home safely without a ticket. wink.gif
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post #17 of 37 Old 10-13-2012, 12:09 AM
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And sometimes people drive intoxicated and make it home safely without a ticket. wink.gif

And sometimes you can run across the freeway and not get smeared into a fine paste. So what? PC's are not that fragile. I've never even heard of static doing any damage anyway.
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post #18 of 37 Old 10-13-2012, 01:53 AM
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It depends on where you live. I lived in Wyoming, with humidity regularly in the 20% or lower range. I used to get painfully shocked just from the door handle on my car after a drive. Or after walking across a carpet, it was not unusual to see a large spark jump from your hand to a piece of metal.
Bottom line: It could cause an issue, so why do it when it is just as easy to put a piece of cardboard under the motherboard? Sheessh.
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post #19 of 37 Old 10-13-2012, 06:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdcrox View Post

DONT put it on an anti-static bag! That pretty silver or black criss-cross is conductive, that is how it keeps the static out.
Place the motherboard on a piece of cardboard or wood.
Also the power and reset switches can be hooked up either way, since they are simple momentary contact switches, polarity doesnt matter.
Pull the battery and clear the CMOS. Your manual will tell you how.
Once stick of memory at a time, in each slot.
Keep us informed!smile.gif

What he said.

It is not that easy to kill a PC. Most probably something very simple. RAM misplacement is the first thing to check.

Good time to buy computers and computer parts: NEVER
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post #20 of 37 Old 10-14-2012, 02:51 AM
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As mentioned, do a bare bones power on test. No need for the HDD at this point, just the 2 power connectors. Is the RAM in the correct slots?

Presuming you are shorting the proper power pins on the mobo the CPU fan should power up & spin.

IIRC there is a certain way to check the PSU. You have to jumper 2 pins for it to power up, then you can check the voltages. Otherwise you will not get any readings & think it is not working. You'll have to Google to find the correct procedure.
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post #21 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 09:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all these replies - I had to take a couple of days off from the computer to lay some flooring, but I'll have a try with some of this stuff tonight
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post #22 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 09:59 AM
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Something else to double check... Your CPU fan header is connected to your fan.
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post #23 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 01:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Have had a look now, tried reseating the RAM, etc.

Then I got a multimeter and popped it on the outputs from the PSU. Wasn't getting any voltages from any of the wires - even tried shorting across the power headers to try and make the machine switch on.

Still nothing. Checked the cable to the PSU in another device - that wasn't faulty. So my thinking is that the PSU itself may be a dud.

What I'm going to do next is borrow another PSU from a bloke off work - try to check it the way I did the last one (prove my method is sound!) and then try plugging it onto the board and see if I have more success.

Does this sound like the right path?

Thanks for all the help so far - it's been really encouraging to know that I (hopefully) haven't just managed to break things by putting them together!
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post #24 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 01:37 PM
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Seeing as you have an Asrock board, I wouldn't be surprised if its DOA. Do you have any spare boards to swap in? By all means, try the PSU, but it might just be the mobo.
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post #25 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 01:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiddles88 View Post

Seeing as you have an Asrock board, I wouldn't be surprised if its DOA. Do you have any spare boards to swap in? By all means, try the PSU, but it might just be the mobo.

Since he tested the PSU with a multimeter it sure sounds like he found the problem.
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post #26 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 04:18 PM
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.... So my thinking is that the PSU itself may be a dud....Does this sound like the right path?

Yep! biggrin.gif
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post #27 of 37 Old 10-17-2012, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fritz1985 View Post

Have had a look now, tried reseating the RAM, etc.
Then I got a multimeter and popped it on the outputs from the PSU. Wasn't getting any voltages from any of the wires - even tried shorting across the power headers to try and make the machine switch on.
Still nothing. Checked the cable to the PSU in another device - that wasn't faulty. So my thinking is that the PSU itself may be a dud.
What I'm going to do next is borrow another PSU from a bloke off work - try to check it the way I did the last one (prove my method is sound!) and then try plugging it onto the board and see if I have more success.
Does this sound like the right path?
Thanks for all the help so far - it's been really encouraging to know that I (hopefully) haven't just managed to break things by putting them together!

Don't fear that you've broken anything.

It's unfortunate that something appears to be DOA for you. Both your PSU and mobo are highly reliable in my opinion

A multimeter won't read anything on your psu if you don't have contact between the pins on your main 24 pin cable. The motherboard accomplishes this, but if you're not getting power it's either mobo or psu.

To test your PSU follow the procedure here http://www.corsair.com/en/blog/testing-your-corsair-power-supply

That was for Corsair, but your PSU will follow the same procedure. Also, you don't really have to use a case fan if you can determine that your PSU fan spins when you jump the pins. It's a lot easier to see results of a molex fan though, so that's why they recommend it that way.
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post #28 of 37 Old 10-19-2012, 03:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok, so tonight I did the tests - did the corsair test above on my PSU. And nothing happened and no voltages at the output pins.

The scientist in me wanted a quick check, so I used my friend's FSP250-60HEN PSU and applying the same test gave me voltages at the outputs. SO I'm convinced the test worked and the PSU is duff.

Not sure the borrowed PSU is powerful enough to run the board so haven't tried - have heard doing so would either a) not work or b) screw up the board.

So will be putting in for a new PSU - should I try another Antec Earthwatts or get something else?

Cheers for the test above - has really helped me locate the problem

Fred
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post #29 of 37 Old 10-19-2012, 04:20 PM
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I'd get a Corsair CX 430 v2. Using one now in my office box. Dirt cheap and very reliable.
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post #30 of 37 Old 10-19-2012, 04:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fritz1985 View Post

Ok, so tonight I did the tests - did the corsair test above on my PSU. And nothing happened and no voltages at the output pins.
The scientist in me wanted a quick check, so I used my friend's FSP250-60HEN PSU and applying the same test gave me voltages at the outputs. SO I'm convinced the test worked and the PSU is duff.
Not sure the borrowed PSU is powerful enough to run the board so haven't tried - have heard doing so would either a) not work or b) screw up the board.
So will be putting in for a new PSU - should I try another Antec Earthwatts or get something else?
Cheers for the test above - has really helped me locate the problem
Fred

It would probably be fine, but the chances of you getting a dud PSU and dud mobo are ridiculously small. You'd have to be the unluckiest builder in the world.

I've never tried it, but I've heard that for cpus with power draw < 90W the 4 pin PSU connection is fine. One more thing that I've never researched fully, so it's only hear-say. Other hear-say would indicate this could screw something up, but that could be lots of things.
Quote:
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I'd get a Corsair CX 430 v2. Using one now in my office box. Dirt cheap and very reliable.

I have one, and I wish I could just sell it back. It's reliable and cheap, but not quiet . . . to each their own
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