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Old 04-04-2004, 03:41 PM   #1
nataliecohen
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Default DFI P3-1Ghz Board

Hi. I have posted a question about my video card on the other forum, and basically this is somewhat the same type of problem and question. I have another computer with the DFI system board, which still runs fine too (no freezing, no reboots, etc). However, the board seem to have about 5 or 6 caps that looks bulged on the top (not leaking as far I can see). Does this means the board is fine? Are the bulged cap fine?


Thanks for any suggestion
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Old 04-04-2004, 03:58 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to the forums.

I can answer both your posts with one reply........ If the caps are bulging, they're bad! REPLACE THEM ASAP! If one shorts, it can cause severe damage to your device and other hardware such as your CPU and RAM. Both DFI and PNY are known for this problem. Even though they're still running, replace them quick. You got lucky and caught it early before they started causing major instabilities.

If you have any other questions, just let us know.
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Old 04-04-2004, 06:13 PM   #3
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Hi Topcat. Thanks for your answer. I happen to came across this site today, when I was just browsing the internet. Glad that I found this resourceful site. By the way, what I mean by bulged cap is that the top is not totally flat like the other caps)

Quick questions, do you mean the PNY video card and the system board (on another system) caps are bad? And I think so too, but the only thing that puzzles me is how come it still shows video just fine? The same question goes to the other system motherboard, which contained not one but about 5 or 6 of them bulged (the entire systemboard have total of 20 or 30 caps). I first started noticed the problem about 6 to 8 months ago when I was cleaning inside my system for dust :o . So far at 6 to 8 months later both (PNY video and other computer systemboard still runs). I have called both the manufactures (when I first discovered the problem) since I was still under warranty 5 months ago (not anymore), and both tech support of the manufactures (PNY&amp;DFI) refused to setup any RMA for me and they said that "if the video card/systemboard (PNY/DFI tech) are running fine, the bulged caps are not needed to be replaced because they are still good" :|


PS: What does the "bad" cap on my PNY video card does? If you saw the picture, it is one of the only two caps on the entire video card and the "bad" one is on the lower right end of the card. I am not a very techie girl, but to me if something is bad on the video card and systemboard, should the symptoms showed up when it was bad 6 to 8 months ago? (for example, like garbage video output (PNY), system freeze/crashes (DFI)?)


Thanks again.
Natalie Cohen



Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat
Hi and welcome to the forums.

I can answer both your posts with one reply........ If the caps are bulging, they're bad! REPLACE THEM ASAP! If one shorts, it can cause severe damage to your device and other hardware such as your CPU and RAM. Both DFI and PNY are known for this problem. Even though they're still running, replace them quick. You got lucky and caught it early before they started causing major instabilities.

If you have any other questions, just let us know.
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Old 04-04-2004, 06:38 PM   #4
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If the tops of the caps are domed (even if it's very subtle or mild), they are going bad. I've seen systems work for quite some time like that, but failure is eminent!! Their days are numbered, I wouldn't wait to repair it. When a video card fails from bad caps, they can display a number of symptoms such as poor performance, artifacts in the video, or total failure (card/system shows no video). Look on the actual capacitors and tell me the name brand of the caps, that will also be helpful to know.

PNY and DFI are jerking you around, the caps are bad. I wouldn't RMA it anyway, replacing the caps is easy. RMA's also take forever, and that's no guarantee that you'll get a good board back.... I just went round and round with Abit over a few VP6's that took 2 months to get working ones, which I had to recap anyway once they arrived because they used shoddy caps in their replacements. If you don't think you can replace your own caps, I can do it, and so can kc8adu. Feel free to shoot me a PM if you need a hand.
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Old 04-04-2004, 07:26 PM   #5
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wanna bet they are hoping the caps will last long enough to get past the 5 months left on the warrenty?
scumbags!
everyone in the mobo industry knows about the bad cap issues.
guess they hope it goes away.
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Old 04-04-2004, 08:07 PM   #6
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Thanks for all the suggestions and fast too. I will let you know as soon as I know what I am going to do with those two boards.



Thanks,
Natalie Cohen
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Old 04-05-2004, 04:04 PM   #7
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Hi. I would like to thank you again for all the help yesterday.

I end up calling both DFI &amp; PNY directly to the tech dept manager and complained about my now out of warranty (but still works great) boards (Video/Motherboard) and gave them my support issue number that they have gave me 6 to 8 months back. I told them about your site and said that it was a common cap problem that they should have told me before the warranty said bye bye. After about an hour later, they both called me and have (PNY &amp; DFI) agreed that there was a misunderstanding by the support staff when I have called months back (and they have just learned about the cap issue a few months ago). The best thing is that they are sending me overnight the parts today (Newer model;because they do not have the same one anymore) with free shipping label going back for the bad unit. PNY replaced it with a brand new G4 card and DFI replaced it with a newer P4 board with a brand new 3 year warranty.
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Old 04-05-2004, 04:20 PM   #8
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well thats good news!
btw they have known for about 4 years about the crap cap plague.
most manufacturers wont admit it till you pin em down.
supermicro buried their head in the sand till i sent them here to see.
they immediatly rma'd 5 boards for my customer.
but the replacements had the same brand of caps.
we finally said fsck it and recapped them to be safe.
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Old 04-05-2004, 05:19 PM   #9
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Yes, I thought of it too that they don't want to admit to customers that they have know the problems for years

BTW, just pondering, does this cap problem occurs to expensive plasma TV such as Sony? These unit usually cost more than $10,000 for a 50 inch.
Wonder if expensive Plasma TV also uses the cheap caps 8)

I got a friend who have one of the Sony 50 inch plasma tv and the unit went bad 10 months after the date of purchase. Somehow Sony was unable to repair the problem (the tv shows tiny gray color random snow dots when it is first turned on in the morning for the first few minutes and slowly the dots starts to go away and becomes normal when it is warmed up). And my friend end up getting a new Sony XBR-950 as warranty replacement from the original XBR-900.


Thanks,
Natalie Cohen
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Old 04-05-2004, 06:29 PM   #10
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it is quite possible the problem is bad caps.
i have seen some in nec and pioneer sets.
marginal lytics improve as they warm up.
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Old 04-06-2004, 08:34 PM   #11
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Received my replacement systemboard today via Fedex overnight and it seems the new DFI P4 board have different type of caps on this one. Most of them have "K" on top of the caps and a few of them still have the normal "x" on it. Not sure if this these are good caps or not. At least they are all flat 8) Hopfully this will last me awhile. At least before the 3 year warranty they have promised me

I Hired a tech to came by my apt and installed the new board and he formatted my drive and reloaded the OS. Now the system is even faster than before. Maybe it was the format that made it faster 8)

PS: The tech who I hired knows about this cap issue and said that some boards runs for many many years with bulged caps before it will even show any signs of problems, if ever. He mentioned that this is the reason why manufactures usually do not admit it unless if the user complains to them directly at this issue. He also mentioned that the new Apple G5 have this problem as well with lots of caps that can bulge but still runs ok. He have seem many G3 systemboard with bulged caps and still no signs of any effect even after 3 years. :o
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Old 04-06-2004, 08:39 PM   #12
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I bought my first VP6 new back in November of 2001. About 6 months later I first noticed the caps started bulging, and it lived about 6 months with bulged caps before becoming unstable. This was about 3 years ago before I was really aware of the cap problem. I recapped it with new panasonic caps when it grew flaky, and it's still running today, as a matter of fact, it's the web server for this site.

If the caps are bulged, it's not wise to ignore it and hope it doesn't become a problem. This 'tech' sounds a bit lazy to me.... Replacing only takes a half hour or so, maybe a little bit longer for a tech with less soldering experience. I would NEVER let a system leave my shop with bad and swollen caps!! If a system serves a crucial role, I wouldn't gamble on bulging bad capacitors, you WILL lose the bet! Downtime is not an option!

Here's a prime example!
A friend of mine with a Soltek motherboard had bad caps, and ignored it for NINE MONTHS (Pay attention here DUSTOFF!! ).... I get a frantic call about 2 weeks ago, the day before a big LANfest.... "LANfest tournament is tomorrow night, and my system won't run". I drove 200+ miles to recap his board for him so he could game that night. Ignoring it will not make it go away. A board that lives 3 years with bad caps is a total fluke!! That's absolutely NOT normal, and I've never seen that with any device.
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Old 04-06-2004, 11:10 PM   #13
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Hi Topcat. Thanks for the comment. So, regards to the new systemboard that I got for replacement from DFI, quite a few caps now have a "K" mark on the top. Only a few that have the common "X". I looked at my older model board, which I am going to send back, have all marked "X" on top. Are there any good news for the new board (cap wise?)

I am happy to say that all caps are flat on top :roll:


PS: The tech was sent from Compusa, I don't think the store even do board level repair like you smart guys here I think Compusa just change the entire board when something goes wrong. I am currently living in NYC and as far as I know I have not seem any local computer store that actualy does any board level repairs. I remember last Aug, when I had a problem with my 19 inch LCD monitor, they just sold me another one and said it is unrepairable :o and would cost to much to fix it. So they did a trade-in. (Problem was it won't turn on).

PPS: Is your store located near NYC? Just pondering. I am currently in NYC for the next 3 years near NYU because I study there. This is my 2nd year after my high school life. The city here is for sure different than CA and I miss the warm air and sunshine and beach so much 8)


Thanks,
Natalie Cohen
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Old 04-07-2004, 04:56 AM   #14
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post the brands on the caps.
we can tell you if you will have more trouble.
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Old 06-23-2004, 03:39 PM   #15
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:oops:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat
A friend of mine with a Soltek motherboard had bad caps, and ignored it for NINE MONTHS (Pay attention here DUSTOFF!! ).... I get a frantic call about 2 weeks ago, the day before a big LANfest.... "LANfest tournament is tomorrow night, and my system won't run". I drove 200+ miles to recap his board for him so he could game that night. Ignoring it will not make it go away. A board that lives 3 years with bad caps is a total fluke!! That's absolutely NOT normal, and I've never seen that with any device.
Ahaha, it sounds a little different from my end.

(p.s. topcat is the mad recapping god. hail. &lt;appeasement>)
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Old 06-24-2004, 08:08 PM   #16
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HAHAHA Where the hell have u been Chuckie?!? I know those caps are still good!

Good too see ya posting again!
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Old 08-01-2004, 07:12 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nataliecohen
I Hired a tech to came by my apt and installed the new board and he formatted my drive and reloaded the OS. Now the system is even faster than before. Maybe it was the format that made it faster 8)
Of course the PC will be faster, because when someone reformats the HDD and then reinstalls the OS, all of the traces of improper data are gone.
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