Question PC Turns off Burning Smell. Keeps on working for Days.

Feb 9, 2020
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Hi All,

1080ti
i7
SuperNova Gold PSU
MSI MOBO

Built in Late 2016

I've got a strange one for you.

3 Times over three weeks (I game daily for hours) my PC will randomly shutdown and I'll get a moderate smell of Ozone/Burning/Electricity in the air. I don't suspect overheating as I'm playing R6 Siege at 1080p and I've never had heat issues.

There have been 10's of hours of gaming between shutdowns at least.

The first and third time I had to flip the PSU switch off and on to get the PC to start up again.
The second time the machine just rebooted itself but had the same smell/sudden shut off.

I've ordered a new PSU but I have a 4 year old Gold SuperNova at 750w so I'm not sure thats the issue.

I took these pictures of the only "suspect" spots on my MOBO. The 1R0 ( 1RO ?) Resistor? seems burnt. The second picture is of a similar 1RO and although I can see some "marks" they don't seem nearly as pronounced.

Pics here (I hope the link works)


I've bought a new PSU but I'm fearing its the MOBO and I don't want to damage my other components. If I have to buy a new Mobo it is what it is as this is my main hobby these day. I'll be air canning the dust (Dusty but not awful) today or tomorrow.

Thanks for the help all!
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
What are your full hardware specs including the EXACT power supply model and motherboard?

Supernova Gold 750w is loosely the "family", but it is not the model. Is it a G1, G2, G3, G5, G+, etc.?

What did you order to replace it with?
 
Feb 9, 2020
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What are your full hardware specs including the EXACT power supply model and motherboard?

Supernova Gold 750w is loosely the "family", but it is not the model. Is it a G1, G2, G3, G5, G+, etc.?

What did you order to replace it with?
Here ya go! Thanks for the help.

MOBO: MSI Performance Gaming Intel Z270 DDR4 HDMI USB 3 SLI ATX Motherboard (Z270 GAMING PRO CARBON)

Current PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA 750 G3, 80 Plus Gold 750W Compact 150mm Size, Power Supply 220-G3-0750-X1

New PSU arriving today: EVGA Supernova 850 Ga, 80 Plus Gold 850W, Fully Modular, ECO Mode with Dbb Fan, 10 Year Warranty, Compact 150mm Size, Power Supply 220-GA-0850-X1

RAM: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 DRAM 3000MHz C15 Desktop Memory Kit

CPU: Intel Core i7-7700K

GFX CARD: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming OC 11GB Graphic Cards N108TGAMINGOC-11GD

M.2 SSD
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
How long have you had the graphics card?

Have you added or changed any hardware recently?

Sounds like it could definitely be a graphics card issue but really any kind of short with any component could cause this if the protections on the PSU are shutting the system down.

Does the problem ONLY happen while gaming, or does it ever happen even when simply browsing the web or doing other light tasks?
 
Feb 9, 2020
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The Whole System was built in the Summer of 2016

I've only seen it happen while playing games and I can play for 6 hours in a row multiple days in a row and no issue. Then one day it does and I can play another 20 hours without issue.

Its really the burning smell thats freaking me out.

So you think its not really a PSU issue?


No Hardware changes at all since I bought it. I will add that I keep it on the floor on a carpet and general suck at cleaning it out. Although its not as dusty as many computers I've seen (mostly because my case has dust filters.

I'm going to put it up on my desk and keep my eye on it and see if it happens again and if I can locate the smell. Currently I can't see inside my case where it is and the PSU vent faces the dusty floor.

I'm debating on if I should replace PSU or not. I don't mind a new PSU after 4 years.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
On carpet is a BIG no no. That completely blocks off the airflow into the power supply from the bottom of the case. If you're going to have it on the floor, either put it on a clean, flat surface like a piece of wood, or very thick linoleum tiles, or actual ceramic tiles, or something that will not tend to block off airflow through the intake vent in the bottom of the case and power supply.

Or relocate it as you said.

I don't "think it's not a PSU issue", I just don't think that's the ONLY possible issue. I definitely think it COULD be a PSU issue, since complete shut downs are often related to the power supply.

I don't have ANY faith in your replacement model, the EVGA GA, because there are no reviews AT ALL of that model so far and it's impossible to trust any unreviewed power supply. And not just unreviewed, but lacking reviews from a REPUTABLE source like Tom's hardware's Aris, or Jonny Guru, or TechpowerUP, or someplace that does a THOROUGH tear down and full battery of tests.

Simply being an EVGA power supply does not make it good because they have plenty of crap units as well as good ones.

Take a read of this, it might make a few things at least a little clearer in that regard.

 
Feb 9, 2020
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On carpet is a BIG no no. That completely blocks off the airflow into the power supply from the bottom of the case. If you're going to have it on the floor, either put it on a clean, flat surface like a piece of wood, or very thick linoleum tiles, or actual ceramic tiles, or something that will not tend to block off airflow through the intake vent in the bottom of the case and power supply.

Or relocate it as you said.

I don't "think it's not a PSU issue", I just don't think that's the ONLY possible issue. I definitely think it COULD be a PSU issue, since complete shut downs are often related to the power supply.

I don't have ANY faith in your replacement model, the EVGA GA, because there are no reviews AT ALL of that model so far and it's impossible to trust any unreviewed power supply. And not just unreviewed, but lacking reviews from a REPUTABLE source like Tom's hardware's Aris, or Jonny Guru, or TechpowerUP, or someplace that does a THOROUGH tear down and full battery of tests.

Simply being an EVGA power supply does not make it good because they have plenty of crap units as well as good ones.

Take a read of this, it might make a few things at least a little clearer in that regard.

Thanks for the link to the PSU article. Makes a ton of sense. I read this right after I installed the new PSU. LOL. Oh man...anyways I may be the 1st review/guinea pig!

I'm 50/50 on if its the PSU Truthfully.

I appreciate the responses. Such a weird issues. I'm used to hardware dying or at least dying more frequently then every 20-30 hours of heavy usage.

I'll update this post on results in a week or so!

It was like half on carpet/floor if that makes sense but the vent was pretty gross and I'm sure airflow wasn't great. I think temps were fine for CPU/GFX so I'm crossing my fingers that I just killed the PSU due to too much heat. Now its in a better place. Crossing my fingers!

To quote Ivan Drago...."If she dies...she dies." Live and learn I guess.

Thanks so much!
 
Feb 9, 2020
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Welp Guinea Pig I was. Last night while gaming my 850 GA or whatever died. The old PSU still powers the machine on. So you were right! lol. Oh man...of course now we are in a plague so I dont wanna run to the store to RMA it. So I'll just buy a new one I guess with good reviews!

Thanks again!
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
You don't have to go to the store to RMA, but you WILL have to buy a new one if you want to have use of your system right now. RMA is done through the mail to the manufacturer. If it's within the return period for the store, that is different, and that is simply the state required return period for electronics or retail goods in general. If you buy a new PSU you can just RMA the old one to the manufacturer so that at least you'll have a spare unit later.
 
Feb 9, 2020
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You don't have to go to the store to RMA, but you WILL have to buy a new one if you want to have use of your system right now. RMA is done through the mail to the manufacturer. If it's within the return period for the store, that is different, and that is simply the state required return period for electronics or retail goods in general. If you buy a new PSU you can just RMA the old one to the manufacturer so that at least you'll have a spare unit later.
Good point hopefully UPS just picks it up. I actually popped the old PSU back in as it still works. Since its not OC'd anymore nor sitting on a carpet (its sitting on a hard wood surface and dedusted with space below it) I'm going to give it another go.

Prime95'd for an hour no issues. I suspect it actually might be my MOBO having some quirky issue that killed the cheaper PSU but triggers a safety in the Nicer one. Or it could've been that carpet heat.

I'm rolling the dice! I'll RMA that other one and have a backup.

Thanks for the help. Thought it was funny you called it on that other PSU! Good work!
 
Feb 9, 2020
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Alrighty old PSU went out again. Won't power computer on anymore. Swapped that PSU and the OTHER "Dead" one into an old machine. Both work fine...oooof. I'm guessing its the MOBO at this point. Gonna swap it and see if that fixes it. If not may be part out and buy new computer time.

Thanks for the help!
 
In a situation like this might take it out to the bench on minimum components in order to see if it will power on and present opportunity to further troubleshoot. At least you might be able to determine if things like the CPU and GPU are good, as they are valuable on their own right to the secondary market.
 
Feb 9, 2020
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Man what a mess this has become. So..

New MOBO isn't as nice as the old one. But everything powered on fine and ran a little slower but hey no problem still a fast PC that's 4 years old. Well today bam shuts off. Won't power up again.

I swap in the older PSU. Bam works fine. BUT here's the thing I've noticed.

My firestrike has gone down from 21k (Was higher when I first built machine)
To 19k (Old MOBO before sudden death)
to 17k (When I swapped in new MOBO)
and now to 15k after latest shutdown/swap

My user benchmark has gone from 90th percentile GPU to 80 to 70 over this course.

This all makes me thing that the GPU is dying. However, I have NO graphical issue and now bluescreen etc. The machine just dies and won't turn on unless I swap out the power supplies (or maybe just let them sit a while).

In short GPU seems to be the issue but seeing that I have a 1080ti I'm not sure its worth troubleshooting this further.

My ONLY other thought is to get yet another PSU. I was under the impression though that a PSU won't effect GPU performance just if it works or doesn't work.

I'm guessing some sort of "something" is bonking in the GPU causing the PSU to trip.

Anyways....sad panda
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Wrong. Power supply can have VARYING levels of effect on graphics cards, from minor to major, due to fluctuations or low levels of voltage, high levels of ripple, and other substandard conditions with the PSU or the supply of power through the line and circuit.

Even the wrong type of UPS can have an effect.

EVERY problem you can have on a computer, can be imitated or replicated by the power supply, no matter what piece of hardware we are talking about, because they ALL rely on the power supply. System will run at 11.4v, sometimes, but I assure you, nothing is going to act the way it would with 12.2v.
 
Feb 9, 2020
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Wrong. Power supply can have VARYING levels of effect on graphics cards, from minor to major, due to fluctuations or low levels of voltage, high levels of ripple, and other substandard conditions with the PSU or the supply of power through the line and circuit.

Even the wrong type of UPS can have an effect.

EVERY problem you can have on a computer, can be imitated or replicated by the power supply, no matter what piece of hardware we are talking about, because they ALL rely on the power supply. System will run at 11.4v, sometimes, but I assure you, nothing is going to act the way it would with 12.2v.
So I guess at this point what would your recommendation be.

PSU #1 Stopped working randomly then would work.
PSU #2 Stopped working completely

Both PSU's would power up an old desktop

Both PSU's powered the new mobo. Until PSU #2 decided to shut itself off.

PSU#1 Now powering it but again the GPU is benching low.

At a certain point I'd rather just buy a new setup then throw money at the issue.

New PSU again would be 150 which is fine unless it also doesn't work then I have 3 PSU's which I can't really say aren't "damaged"

New GPU is 500+ for the type of gaming I'm looking for.

Throw that in and it doesn't solve the issue and then I'm out more money.

Tempted to buy a gaming laptop as I'm stuck at my desk all day. Anyways weird issue!
 
Feb 9, 2020
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What graphics card is installed in the other system that both power supplies work fine in? Have you tried THAT system, with THIS graphics card installed in it?
I did think about that but its an AMD A10 APU based machine that I tinkered with like 5 years ago. The 1080ti won't even fit in the case lol.

Just tried the other PSU again. Worked fine. Something is telling my PSU's to power off apparently. Considering the decline of 1080ti I'm guessing thats it but yea could be other things for sure.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
If you can pull the motherboard from the APU system, and run it on the bench with the other graphics card installed so that the case isn't inhibiting you from doing that, it might tell you something more. Then again, if you are pretty sure the GPU card is the problem, then perhaps it's an unnecessary step. I'd really rather prefer to see the problem duplicated with the card in some other system first, to verify, before condemning it for sure.
 
Feb 9, 2020
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If you can pull the motherboard from the APU system, and run it on the bench with the other graphics card installed so that the case isn't inhibiting you from doing that, it might tell you something more. Then again, if you are pretty sure the GPU card is the problem, then perhaps it's an unnecessary step. I'd really rather prefer to see the problem duplicated with the card in some other system first, to verify, before condemning it for sure.
One thing I noticed is that the GPU is reporting a temperature of 54c under load...which is obviously not right. I stress tested it and couldn't get past 54c. My current theory is the Temp sensor isn't working correct. The card never kicked the fans in right and triggered a shutdown/dorked the card up.

I'm currently running the card with full fans and an underclock to see if it works. Ran for hours no problems last night...but that's no different then before. Might work for amonth or a week or a day. Good point on pulling the MOBO from the APU machine and benching it.

I may have to do that.
 

mchldpy

Distinguished
Jan 16, 2010
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In post #5 you said " ... and the PSU vent faces the dusty floor."
I guess you know that "Vent" is the intake for air for the PS?
It exhaust/vents out the rear.
It may have just been a typo since you wouldn't knowingly put an intake against the dusty floor.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
In post #5 you said " ... and the PSU vent faces the dusty floor."
I guess you know that "Vent" is the intake for air for the PS?
It exhaust/vents out the rear.
It may have just been a typo since you wouldn't knowingly put an intake against the dusty floor.
Where do you think you would put the intake? Of course it's supposed to face the floor. You don't face the intake of your power supply INTO the case, that's for damn sure. There are of course a few special situations where that might be the best of the available alternatives but for 90% of configurations the vent on the bottom of the case is EXACTLY where the intake on the power supply is supposed to be facing.

Making sure that that vent isn't sucking up dirt, dust, blocked by thick carpet up against the vent and that as is highly recommended your PC case is sitting on a hard, flat surface, is imperative, so that your PSU intake facing down ISN'T a problem.

I'm sure you wouldn't knowingly tell people not to orient their power supply that way so we'll assume you misspoke.
 

mchldpy

Distinguished
Jan 16, 2010
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Darkbreeze said,
" ... Making sure that that vent isn't sucking up dirt, dust, blocked by thick carpet up against the vent ... "

That is exactly what the OP was doing and my post was an attempt to politely say that is not a very smart thing to do. We'll just assume you mistook my attempt at being subtle as a mistaken assumption.
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Well, if that helps you sleep, then ok.

However, this EXACT topic was covered and made a point much earlier in the thread, so your saying it again for the benefit of the OP was specifically redundant. My saying it again, was for clarification regarding the point I was making regarding the orientation of the PSU. So, I think we're pretty clear on that now and we can move on.
 

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