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Thread: Power Supply and Video Card Problems




  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    My old HP model 7955, 1.5GHz, has a mere 200 watt power supply. I'm getting into video capturing and have started having reboot problems well into the capture process. I was told my problem may be heat related (cpu or ?). Keep in mind, I'm a novice and not a gamer (nothing against you guys). I'm getting into digitizing analog vhs and 8mm tapes and burning the edited product to dvd.....and I need help....and lots of it.

    I've looked at several video cards (to upgrade my nVIDIA RIVA TNT2 (mere 32MB card) because my computer indicated after the second reboot (via a dialog box) that my videocard driver needs to updated). But I was thinking about going with a 128MB card instead. But, here's the problem. Most all new video cards I've looked at require a minimum of 250 watt power supply (for instance the eVGA eforce FX5500 128MB or 256MB does).

    Here are my questions: Can I run a video card that requires 250 watts on my 200 watt power supply without problem? Could this be my reboot problem? Is it difficult to swap out a power supply? Do I have to be concerned about anything in the power supply spec's besides wattage, like voltage and amps? Does my computer's motherboard (ASUS P4B-LA but I'm told it's really P4B-LU???) require a specific power supply with specific voltages and amperage? I need help here to decide what I need to do and why I need to do it.

    I hope this makes sense. If not, please query me about anything you need in order to help me. I want to learn so I will be able to capture, store on hd, edit, and burn old tapes to dvd. I'm using "ADS Pyro A/V Link" with "Adobe Premiere Elements" to do this. I just bought it and am still learning! Adobe is tough to learn! The hardware is straight forward and easy.

    Here's what happens when I use what my "lil ole" HP as it was shipped (no I upgraded the RAM to 512MB and added the 250GB HD....that's it): While I'm capturing video, after about 45 minutes (this time is likely to be different each time I capture) my computer reboots and I lose all of the captured video (it's still on my HD but it's corrupt and useable.....(won't open), so I have to rerun it again). I lost 9GB of video (45 minutes worth) in my first long capture (short captures didn't cause this reboot problem). I'm capturing video to a nearly empty new 250GB 7200 rpm, 8MB cashe WD HD. Keep in mind, I've only captured two video to hd (one 30 minute and 45 minute)....the shorter one didn't cause the reboot....only the 45 minute one.

    Help please....and thanks.....sorry this is so long....but to me, it's worth the effort if I want good advice.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    So far as I know HP did not use proprietary power supplies ... you should have no problem switching to a larger one. Voltages are all generally standard ... if the plug fits then it is prolly the correct one. I would also be looking at increasing airflow. At the very least look for a place to bolt on an exhaust fan.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    It's strange that a 30 minute video will capture fine, this does sound more like a temp issue.

    But a PSU swap is quite easy, your board should be the older, 20-pin ATX variety. Many PSUs now come with 24-pins but are backward compatable with the 20-pin connectors via an adaptor or removable/separate 20/4 pin plugs.

    The power requierments are based on full load, so if you never plan on any 3d apps, you can get by with a lesser PSU, but I wouldn't suggest it. I used to have stability problems until I got a good PSU, now they are a thing of the past. A good PSU is well worth the $$.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    One other thing to consider is that you'll probably have close to $150 stuck into the old system with a new but cheap video card and a PSU. Since your not a gamer and you are able to salvage your old monitor, I'm guessing you might be able to get a cheap new system that will work for what you need it for and at close to the same cost as a new PSU and video card.


    I also don't think you have a heat issue going on unless you have a main fan out ontop of the CPU's heatsink, Mainboard chipset fan (If it has one), GPU fan, or PSU fan, or a bunch of dust just clogging up the heatsink.
    That particular model of HP computer doesn't need much for cooling.
    When your reboot problems started did you change any settings on the system just prior to this problem, or add any hardware or software recently?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    I added a new WD 250GB HD that I save my video avi files to....if I can keep this thing running.

    I took the side panels off and aimed a desk fan at the insides while I captured about 15 minutes of video....temp went up to 40 degrees C. Hard telling what the temp got to when I ran it with the side panels on for a 45 minute capture....when the reboot occurred.

    This computer is 35 degrees just after I turn it on. Using Everest to monitor the cpu and motherboard. Can't see the HD temp's on this evaluation version of Everest. That would be nice to know.

    Maybe the 2nd HD caused my problem....too much for the small PSU????

    I'm going to try a 1 hour capture with the fan on it and see what happens.....I'll let you know.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    it sounds definately like temp. problem to me. feel inside the case. does it feel warm? if not, it could be the cpu cooler not fixed properly. if it feels rather warm, maybe its the psu kicking out loads of heat. replace it with at least 300w, make sure that your one is standard size.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    Quote Originally Posted by Munkul
    make sure that your one is standard size.
    I have an HP Pavilion model 7955 with a small 200 watts PSU that I'd like to upgrade.....the HP has a micro tower and there's precious little space to add anything.

    What are the dimensions of a "standard size" PSU?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Power Supply and Video Card Problems

    Quote Originally Posted by burnselk
    I have an HP Pavilion model 7955 with a small 200 watts PSU that I'd like to upgrade.....the HP has a micro tower and there's precious little space to add anything.

    What are the dimensions of a "standard size" PSU?
    You better check to see if a new PSU will fit the case, some HP cases can't even fit a regular PSU. The dimensions on a standard PSU are 6"W X 5.5"L X 3 3/8" H.
    You should be able to check your temps in your bios.
    You could try temporaly unplugging any hardware you have added and run the system as it was before the problem occured just to see if the new hardware was pushing the PSU over its limits. Ofcourse random reboots could also be cuased by inproper bios settings, O.S. settings, direct X settings, viruses, spyware, drivers, software incompatabilities, failing hardware like a PSU or system ram, ect. just to name a few of the more likely things.
    I suggest you do all the trouble shooting you can before you order new hardware for a system that old. Maybe even a system reformat might be a good idea, that way you can start from scratch.

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