[SOLVED] Screen goes black randomly

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Jan 2, 2022
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Hi,

Until yesterday everything was working fine, PC is several years old. This morning I disconnected the monitor (sent it for repair as it has some dirty panel issue) and might have accidentally pulled the DP cable in a bad way which damaged the cable, however the GPU doesn't seem to have any visible physical damage to it.

Regardless if I use the DP or HDMI port on my GPU, my temporary replacement monitor goes black all the time (it spends more time black than on, but does turn on every few seconds).
I tried using Nvidia Geforce Experience to make a clean install of new drivers and it succeeded (after the express installation failed).
The monitor is currently working fine with HDMI on the onboard HDMI output (as well as with 2 other computers with both DP and HDMI), so the monitor itself is most likely fine.

Is my GPU dead? Is there anything else I can do other than replacing it?
It is a GTX 970, which is currently working well enough for my needs, and with current prices I'd rather postpone any upgrades if I can make this card work again. It would be very strange if it was actually damaged, as again there is no visible damage to the GPU, and the HDMI port (which was not in use recently) has the same issue. The PC is otherwise also old but working well, with an i5-4690k overclocked to 4.2GHz with a decent air cooler.
The fans seem to be spinning fine. The issue starts as soon as the PC boots (although I didn't test in BIOS, only in windows), so I doubt it's some temperature issue.
I'm not sure what could happen to cause such a problem so suddenly, with the only change since yesterday being disconnecting the monitor to take it for repair under warranty (due to dirty panel, it was otherwise working fine).

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Gal
 
Reactions: Mr. Smith
Jan 2, 2022
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Apparently it was a cable issue, after a lot of testing with different connections and my TV and different bitrates, it seemed more and more like cable issue, even though it was happening with 2 different cables which were previously working (with only 1 being possibly damaged recently). A 3rd cable is working just fine so I guess I was unlucky to get 2 cables to break at the same time (1 of them with no visible damage that didn't go through any abuse).
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
Welcome to the forums, newcomer!

You're advised to usse DDU to remove your drivers and reinstall said drivers with the latest off of Nvidia's support site and installing said driver in an elevated command, i.e, Right click installer>Run as Administrator.

As for your issue, we will need to know the rest of your specs. Please list them like so:
CPU:
Motherboard:
Ram:
SSD/HDD:
GPU:
PSU:
Chassis:
OS:

Include the age of the PSU as well.
 
Jan 2, 2022
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Core i5 4690K 3.5ghz (overclocked to 4.2 with minimal voltage increase)
Scythe MUGEN 3 REV B
Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 5
Fractal Design Arc Midi R2 Black
Seasonic X-750 750W 80+ Gold
Hynix Original 8GB DDR3 1600
Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 2TB SATA3
Seagate BarraCuda 4TB Internal Hard Drive HDD – 3.5 Inch Sata 6 Gb/s 5400 RPM 256MB Cache For Computer Desktop PC – Frustration Free Packaging ST4000DMZ04/DM004
Samsung SSD 840 EVO 250GB SATA3 2.5 inch
LG DVD-RW x22 Dual Layer Sata Black
Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 Gaming

All the parts are about 7 years old, except the GPU which I think is about 6 years old, and the 4TB HDD which from 2 months ago.

I tried loading up the bios screen by pressing DEL repeatedly as the PC boots, and I just got a flashing dark screen (like it turns on and off repeatedly but remains black), and as that doesn't load any windows drivers I doubt it's a driver issue. Is there still any point to removing and re-installing drivers if BIOS fails too?

I suppose I should just replace that GPU?

If I must replace it, with the current price situation is it still a good idea to go with a mid-high end GPU or get something cheap hoping the madness will decline in a reasonable time? Will something like an RTX 3060 provide good value for money and work well with my PSU and will it let me at least double my FPS in games that are GPU-limited? I'd rather avoid upgrading the whole PC if I can get away with it, as while old, it runs things pretty well, except Arma 3 in high graphics is a bit slow with around 30 fps in graphic-intense areas. I have a g-sync monitor (the one I sent for repairs) so prefer an Nvidia GPU.
If I must do a more thorough upgrade (will my CPU / PSU be a bottleneck?) can I recycle anything except the hard drives? Maybe the SSD?
Alternatively, my family has a dead PC with a GTX 770 which is probably working that I can use temporarily until prices become sane again.

Of course, if there is any way to save the current GPU, that would be preferable, until sanity returns to the GPU market and upgrading will be more sensible.
 
Last edited:
Jan 2, 2022
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Everything points to the cable, as even onboard display started causing occasional issues and has no display at all when trying to enter the BIOS. Will try a 3rd cable tomorrow, but it would be weird if 2 cables died on the same day... Not impossible though.
 
Jan 2, 2022
4
1
20
1
Apparently it was a cable issue, after a lot of testing with different connections and my TV and different bitrates, it seemed more and more like cable issue, even though it was happening with 2 different cables which were previously working (with only 1 being possibly damaged recently). A 3rd cable is working just fine so I guess I was unlucky to get 2 cables to break at the same time (1 of them with no visible damage that didn't go through any abuse).
 
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