Question Question about replacing PSU

Lv 88 Mog

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Hi, ok so I’ve been having various kinds of problems with my PC and whenever I’ve had problems, one of the most common things people tell me is that possibly my PSU is going bad.

Examples:
  1. Rarely, my PC shuts itself off when trying to wake it from sleep mode. It tries to turn back on and goes through a process of trying to turn on, failing and shutting off, and then trying to turn on again (eventually it always does come on).
  2. My screen freezes occasionally and and Nvidia driver fails. I have to reset my PC (often unplugging from wall) to get the screen to work again.
  3. My touchscreen fan controller has grown so dim over a little over a year that I can’t even read the numbers anymore - this has happened to 2 different fan controllers.
I’ve had people offer all kinds of advice and PSU is always mentioned. I’ve tried most all of the other solutions EXCEPT upgrading the PSU (because of the cost, and not knowing for sure if that is the reason), so I think I’m finally ready to bite the bullet and buy one. Currently, I’m using the Corsair CX600M. When I bought it, someone had told me that pretty much all Corsairs were great, but later I found out that the CX600M was actually poorly rated. I think I don’t need more than 600 (I’ve got a i7, and a Nvidia GTX970, but most of the calculators I’ve checked say that 600 should be enough...) but I’m willing to try just to see if it fixes my problem.

I began by looking at the Corsair RM650x, but in my country, the RM850x is only $8 more on Amazon, and the 750 for some reason is $20 more....so I’m thinking, why not spend $8 more for the RM850X? Is there any negatives to getting the higher watt 850 even if I don’t need that much right now? Seems like the much better deal. I think the RM850X is fairly highly rated, any thoughts?

Any thoughts and opinions appreciated.
 
Aug 9, 2019
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Sure, it's fine to buy an 850 watt psu - although your electricity bill will not appreciate that lol. PSUs will always draw the amount of power needed to supply your system.
 

AllanGH

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Actually, your power bill won't care.

The up-side of switching power supplies is that they only draw as much power from the power mains as is necessary to provide power to the low-side device loads (minus losses in the PSU itself, with lower losses occurring in the higher efficiency PSUs). This is a far-cry from the inefficiency of linear power supply designs, which pull comparatively gobs more power from the mains to achieve the same result on the secondary-side of the equation.

If you are drawing 50W of power from a 200W PSU, and compare that with drawing 50W of power from an 850W PSU, the power required from the mains is pretty-much identical. Less for the 850W PSU if it is an extremely high efficiency PSU, as compareed to the 200W PSU.

So, do not allow fears of high power bills wave you off of choosing a higher rated PSU, particularly if the price point is similar to what you're looking at, now. In all likelihood, you'll probably find that the extra overhead is welcome at a later date...not to mention the fact that PSUs that are not loaded close their rated output last a helluvalot longer than PSUs that are taken to the edge of their nameplate output power.
 

Lv 88 Mog

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Actually, your power bill won't care.

The up-side of switching power supplies is that they only draw as much power from the power mains as is necessary to provide power to the low-side device loads (minus losses in the PSU itself, with lower losses occurring in the higher efficiency PSUs). This is a far-cry from the inefficiency of linear power supply designs, which pull comparatively gobs more power from the mains to achieve the same result on the secondary-side of the equation.

If you are drawing 50W of power from a 200W PSU, and compare that with drawing 50W of power from an 850W PSU, the power required from the mains is pretty-much identical. Less for the 850W PSU if it is an extremely high efficiency PSU, as compareed to the 200W PSU.

So, do not allow fears of high power bills wave you off of choosing a higher rated PSU, particularly if the price point is similar to what you're looking at, now. In all likelihood, you'll probably find that the extra overhead is welcome at a later date...not to mention the fact that PSUs that are not loaded close their rated output last a helluvalot longer than PSUs that are taken to the edge of their nameplate output power.
Thanks for all that info! Ok, so there's no downside to getting the 850 over the 650. Awesome!

And, do you have an opinion on whether or not the PSU is actually the problem? My most recent problem has been the aforementioned Nvidia driver just suddenly "crashing" and my screen freezes (the PC still works in the background, so I can still hear music or video if I'm doing either). Resetting it just causes the screen to go black while the PC loads in the background, but in the RARE case it does load up, then my driver list shows a problem with the Nvidia driver and says it needs to be reinstalled. HOWEVER, a complete shutdown (unplugging from wall) and restart usually loads up fine and shows the driver working again properly. I've tried reinstalling, clean installing, etc. for the driver, but it doesn't seem to be the problem - so someone told me that it was either a PSU problem or a HDD problem. CrystalDiskInfo says everything is great for my HDD.

Also, my touchscreen growing dim would make me think an electrical problem (like, the PSU has enough juice to turn the PC on, but not enough to run the touchscreen? Or not sufficient enough and it's caused the touchscreen to go bad?)....but I've gotten conflicting opinions on that one. IF my PSU was just BARELY covering the load, would problems like that be possible?
 

AllanGH

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The PSU certainly is a possibility, but that's going to be one of a number of possible root causes.

If you can swap your current PSU with another unit, just to test it out, that would help you narrow it down a bit.

If the PSU is under-sized for the loads, it definitely could cause the video card to tank on you, particularly at times of higher loading.

The touchscreen is a low-power item, honestly. Unless it's a finicky thing about power input, I'd imagine that it may actually be a failure of the backlight element for your fan controller. I have seen many of these types of items for sale, along with a goodly number of these same items pulled from the market for "issues"; which could be the same sort of issue that you are experiencing with yours.
 

gn842a

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Most of your symptoms sound PSU related. I'm not sure about the touch screen. Unfortunately this is a problem that needs to be taken care of FAST. The reason being that if it is the PSU, it may destroy other critical components and force you to buy even more parts.

When you do get your new PSU, take out EVERY SINGLE POWER CONNECTOR FROM THE OLD PSU. You can leave the sata data cables in. THE CABLES THAT COME WITH THE PSU, THOSE ARE THE CABLES YOU USE WITH THE PSU. Otherwise you are in danger of destroying every single component of your build.

These days I buy & recommend Seasonic.

One of the things you can do on parts like the touch screen is go to Newegg.com and read the reviews of users for that particular part. Go to the "bad" reviews. Sometimes you some smart comments from people who know what they're doing. That is, they might tell you what's wrong, and whether you can reasonably fix it.

Greg N
 

Lv 88 Mog

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The PSU certainly is a possibility, but that's going to be one of a number of possible root causes.

If you can swap your current PSU with another unit, just to test it out, that would help you narrow it down a bit.

If the PSU is under-sized for the loads, it definitely could cause the video card to tank on you, particularly at times of higher loading.

The touchscreen is a low-power item, honestly. Unless it's a finicky thing about power input, I'd imagine that it may actually be a failure of the backlight element for your fan controller. I have seen many of these types of items for sale, along with a goodly number of these same items pulled from the market for "issues"; which could be the same sort of issue that you are experiencing with yours.
You know, I actually remember - when I first upgraded to my Nvidia GTX970 (maybe 3 years ago), my old 500 watt PSU wasn't powerful enough and my PC wouldn't even boot. So I upgraded to 600...I went with 600 because I had just broken the bank to get the GTX970 and couldn't afford more. So actually, I might be way closer to the maximum then I realized, now that i think about it. And since then, I've also added the touchscreen, 4 fans, and several other USB components (all of which may be low power, but still, if I was already close to maxing it, it might have pushed it over the top). So, perhaps I've been living on the edge for several years now, it seems!

Most of your symptoms sound PSU related. I'm not sure about the touch screen. Unfortunately this is a problem that needs to be taken care of FAST. The reason being that if it is the PSU, it may destroy other critical components and force you to buy even more parts.

When you do get your new PSU, take out EVERY SINGLE POWER CONNECTOR FROM THE OLD PSU. You can leave the sata data cables in. THE CABLES THAT COME WITH THE PSU, THOSE ARE THE CABLES YOU USE WITH THE PSU. Otherwise you are in danger of destroying every single component of your build.

These days I buy & recommend Seasonic.

One of the things you can do on parts like the touch screen is go to Newegg.com and read the reviews of users for that particular part. Go to the "bad" reviews. Sometimes you some smart comments from people who know what they're doing. That is, they might tell you what's wrong, and whether you can reasonably fix it.

Greg N
Thanks for your input! Ok, well I guess I will bite the bullet and go ahead and order. I have been putting it off for over a year (when some of the symptoms started). But I don't want to hurt other components - I've spent a lot of money and time upgrading my PC with my limited knowledge and I'm very proud of it. Haha.

I WOULD get Seasonic, as it would seem as though they are rated best, but they are over $100 more expensive in my country than the Corsair..... sadly.

And thanks for the tip about Newegg. I just checked, and almost half of the reviews mention that the screen went dark after 6mos-1 year. That's too bad, cause I love the design and it's made by the same company whose case I use, so it looked good together.
 
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Lv 88 Mog

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Well, I bought and upgraded the PSU and everything was working great for about 3 days, but then I encountered the problem again of my computer failing to wake up properly from sleep. It tries to wake up, then shuts off, then tries to wake up again, then shuts off, then finally succeeds on the 3rd of 4th try (all of this is automatic, I'm just watching).

So I went to fiddle with the 24-pin, which has worked before, but for the first time, I noticed when adjusting the 24-pin, that the my GTX970 was really warm (my hand just incidentally brushed against it while touching the 24-pin). But my PC had been in sleep mode for over 12 hours, and I hadn't done any gaming or anything even the 12 hours ago. None of the other components felt warm.

I turned on my PC and opened up the MSI Afterburner app and sure enough, the temperature was 50 celsius (122 farenheit). The fans weren't moving at all. So I clicked the fans to auto in Afterburner and they started up and brought it back down to a decent temperature.

Could the GPU overheating be a reason why the PC keeps shutting itself off during wake up? And why would the GPU be overheating in sleep? This particular symptom has been going on sporadically since maybe a year ago....and I've updated the Nvidia drivers many times during that span...the GPU itself is just 3 years old and I hardly ever game or do anything that would require much from the GPU. Any thoughts?
 

gn842a

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Sleep mode is something that Windows has never been dedicated to getting right. I installed my much loathed RX 590 Sapphire Nitro in the upstairs build and even though it held up through tough bench marks (unusual for it), the first thing that happened was that sleep mode no longer worked with the new installation. And the drivers are new and done with DDU uninstaller etc.

In my case sleep mode and the gpu went into a perpetual boot routine where it would start to boot shut down and start to boot again. I didn't do this with the R9-380 that had been in it half an hour earlier. Anyhow I just decided not to use sleep mode up there. The RX 590 has problems that can't be fixed. Not by me anyhow.

For you: yes the gpu can be related to sleep mode problems. BUT, sleep mode problems go way back, as a general proposition. They never did work in XP, and 8.1 was the first system I had where it worked--till I put the RX 590 in.

I'm leaving the 590 in because I figure I'll pull the R9-380 out when it breaks. I would rather move from 590 to older R9-380 than depend on the 590 in any kind of backup situation.

Also 50c isn't that hot for a gpu but it should be cooler coming out of sleep mode. If you want a cool gpu try the 1660 TI I put it in my downstairs build and was amazed to see temps in the entire build fall ten degrees C.

Greg N
 

jonnyguru

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Rarely, my PC shuts itself off when trying to wake it from sleep mode. It tries to turn back on and goes through a process of trying to turn on, failing and shutting off, and then trying to turn on again (eventually it always does come on).
If you have the CX600M as opposed to the CX650M. The 600W version does not have DC to DC for the +3.3V and +5V and does not support modern sleep mode states. On a build that new, you really should be using a PSU with DC to DC

Seriously... That PSU has run its course. It's 7 years old now!!!!
 

gn842a

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If you have the CX600M as opposed to the CX650M. The 600W version does not have DC to DC for the +3.3V and +5V and does not support modern sleep mode states. On a build that new, you really should be using a PSU with DC to DC

Seriously... That PSU has run its course. It's 7 years old now!!!!
Nice call on the psu johnnyguru. I did not know that.
 

Lv 88 Mog

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If you have the CX600M as opposed to the CX650M. The 600W version does not have DC to DC for the +3.3V and +5V and does not support modern sleep mode states. On a build that new, you really should be using a PSU with DC to DC

Seriously... That PSU has run its course. It's 7 years old now!!!!
Thanks! Upgrading the PSU has really seemed to make some things much better! I didn't know that about the PSU. Unfortunately, the problem with waking up from sleep where it sputters, turns itself on and crashes, on and crashes, and then finally on again - it has happened 1 time since upgrading.

Unfortunately, though, now I have a brand new problem. After installing the new PSU, and using for about a week, I SUDDENLY and now having very long boot times for Windows. It goes to the black screen with the Dell logo and the spinning dots, and it used to load within mere seconds. Now it takes several minutes! Also, when playing a game like Skyrim, it takes much longer to load the game, and saving my game used to take a split second, now it stalls for 5 seconds to save.

I'm wondering if the constant crashes that happened up until I changed my PSU have done some damage or corrupted files or something. Again, the GPU appears fine (I've done stress tests and everything looks good, and the screen hasn't frozen since changing the GPU). CrystalDiskInfo still says that my HDD is still in good condition. The temperature reads the same as always.

I did the DISM Restore Health in command prompt, and it got to 44% and then said that an error occurred due to corrupt files and abruptly stopped - then it brought up the sfc/scannow command line automatically. It also ran to 38% and then said "could not perform the requested operation." So, what do I need to do? Is there any way I can get around this without a clean install of Windows or even a refresh, because I always HATE all the follow-up stuff of getting my PC back to where it was (reinstalling programs, settings, etc) when I've refreshed/clean installed before.
 

jonnyguru

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Thanks! Upgrading the PSU has really seemed to make some things much better! I didn't know that about the PSU. Unfortunately, the problem with waking up from sleep where it sputters, turns itself on and crashes, on and crashes, and then finally on again - it has happened 1 time since upgrading.

Unfortunately, though, now I have a brand new problem. After installing the new PSU, and using for about a week, I SUDDENLY and now having very long boot times for Windows. It goes to the black screen with the Dell logo and the spinning dots, and it used to load within mere seconds. Now it takes several minutes! Also, when playing a game like Skyrim, it takes much longer to load the game, and saving my game used to take a split second, now it stalls for 5 seconds to save.

I'm wondering if the constant crashes that happened up until I changed my PSU have done some damage or corrupted files or something. Again, the GPU appears fine (I've done stress tests and everything looks good, and the screen hasn't frozen since changing the GPU). CrystalDiskInfo still says that my HDD is still in good condition. The temperature reads the same as always.

I did the DISM Restore Health in command prompt, and it got to 44% and then said that an error occurred due to corrupt files and abruptly stopped - then it brought up the sfc/scannow command line automatically. It also ran to 38% and then said "could not perform the requested operation." So, what do I need to do? Is there any way I can get around this without a clean install of Windows or even a refresh, because I always HATE all the follow-up stuff of getting my PC back to where it was (reinstalling programs, settings, etc) when I've refreshed/clean installed before.
After you shut down from Windows, are you turning the PC off from the switch on the back of the PSU, turning off a power strip, etc.???
 

jonnyguru

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Thanks! Upgrading the PSU has really seemed to make some things much better! I didn't know that about the PSU. Unfortunately, the problem with waking up from sleep where it sputters, turns itself on and crashes, on and crashes, and then finally on again - it has happened 1 time since upgrading.

Unfortunately, though, now I have a brand new problem. After installing the new PSU, and using for about a week, I SUDDENLY and now having very long boot times for Windows. It goes to the black screen with the Dell logo and the spinning dots, and it used to load within mere seconds. Now it takes several minutes! Also, when playing a game like Skyrim, it takes much longer to load the game, and saving my game used to take a split second, now it stalls for 5 seconds to save.

I'm wondering if the constant crashes that happened up until I changed my PSU have done some damage or corrupted files or something. Again, the GPU appears fine (I've done stress tests and everything looks good, and the screen hasn't frozen since changing the GPU). CrystalDiskInfo still says that my HDD is still in good condition. The temperature reads the same as always.

I did the DISM Restore Health in command prompt, and it got to 44% and then said that an error occurred due to corrupt files and abruptly stopped - then it brought up the sfc/scannow command line automatically. It also ran to 38% and then said "could not perform the requested operation." So, what do I need to do? Is there any way I can get around this without a clean install of Windows or even a refresh, because I always HATE all the follow-up stuff of getting my PC back to where it was (reinstalling programs, settings, etc) when I've refreshed/clean installed before.
After you shut down from Windows, are you turning the PC off from the switch on the back of the PSU, turning off a power strip, etc.???
 

Lv 88 Mog

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After you shut down from Windows, are you turning the PC off from the switch on the back of the PSU, turning off a power strip, etc.???
I choose "shut down" from Windows and just let it shut itself down normally. I do not turn off the PSU switch, or the power strip. I have been doing it EXACTLY the same way, and I have changed nothing, it just suddenly started - not immediately after changing the PSU, but about a week after.

An update on the DISM and sfc/scannow. SFC/scannow wouldn't work, so I tried:

DISM /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth

----> stops around 50% (it got to 75% one time).
----> Error 4448
The WOF Driver encountered a corruption in the compressed file's resource table.

Next, I tried

Dism.exe /online/cleanup-image/startcomponentcleanup
---->100%
---->Error 1812
The specified image file did not contain a resource section.

Next I tried

DISM/Online/cleanup-image/analyzecomponentstore

It gave the same results as above. I tried ALL of these in Safe Mode. I also have run Malwarebytes and CCleaner, and also ran the Windows troubleshooter for Updates in Safe Mode. The Windows Troubleshooter DID find a corruption in Windows Update and fixed it. I am observing my PC now to see how it operates after that.

Also, one of the things that I just remembered - on the day that it started taking longer to boot, I had an instance where my processor lamp just started going like crazy. I just had Chrome open, not doing anything abnormal. I noticed my PC get sluggish, so I opened Task Manager and saw my CPU usage at 100% and the cause was "System Interrupts". It kept causing problems, so I decided to just reboot my PC. After that, things got sluggish. And every day since then, the boot has been longer, and also my processor lamp seems to be way more active than usual. Especially my DISK is constantly at 50% (which is rare, and I commonly check my Task manager, even before problems started.). Typically, "Windows Modules Installer Worker" and "Windows Search Protocol Host" are at the top (which also seems to be new). Fortunately, CPU and MEMORY are mostly back to normal.
 

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