Happy Monday!

Came into work this morning, wiggled my mouse, and waited for the login screen to appear.

Nope.  Nadda.

After a few more attempts, I finally decided that my computer was “hung”, as they say, which would be extremely rare for my work machine.  Those things happen, I guess. Except that’s not what happened.  I held in the power button for about 4 seconds to force it off, but that didn’t work.  I eventually unplugged and re-plugged, but my PC would no longer boot.  Awesome!  And what a fun way to start a new week.

Anyhoo…. I unplugged the system, moved it over to my work bench, and started to “diagnose” as best I could.  I was getting NO power whatsoever, so I started with the power supply.  I had a similarly-spec’ed Lenovo box next to me, so I quickly yanked the power supply, plugged in just the *must have* power connectors on my desktop system, and attempted a power-up.  Nope.  It’s not that.

Next, I disconnected all non-essential devices and attempted to power-up once again.  In my case, this meant removing the add-on video card and disconnecting the (2) hard drives and DVD drive.  Attempt to power-up again, and….. VOILA!  Power.  Sweet power.

Since I’ve established that the PC is functional, it’s time to find the culprit here.  I put everything back in — in case this whole thing has been a fluke — and find that the system doesn’t boot again.  Then I remove devices one by one to see where it chokes.  Upon further troubleshooting, it seems that my system no longer appreciates the company of my PCI-Express video card.  I look more closely at the video card, and what do I find? …

(sorry for the blurry picture there)

I find three capacitors on my video card popped and blown like a Jiffy Pop pan!  Clearly, that won’t due.  So, I wait until I can replace that card with a new one.  In the meantime, I’m back to a single display at work — no extended desktop! — which is a real bummer.

All that said, I’m happy to have this mystery behind me.


33 Responses to “Happy Monday!”

  1. 1 Matt Swann September 15, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    Are there any markings on the capacitor? Shoot me an email, it should be easily to just desolder and replace these guys…

  2. 2 yipcanjo September 15, 2008 at 11:10 pm

    You’re crazy, man! CRAZY!!!!! It’s too late, though, since I “had my way” with the video card already. Let’s just say that co-workers were standing by and I had a railroad spike handy. 🙂

    To answer your question, though, the capacitors say….


    I’ve never been much of a “component-level repair” kinda guy — even back when I worked at Harddrives Northwest. If the part was broken, then it either got RMA’d (if under warranty) or tossed. The time involved to repair the parts were rarely worth it.

  3. 3 kdogg1 September 17, 2008 at 1:07 am

    I think it’s a problem between the keyboard and the back of the chair. Clearly you weren’t using a Flux Capacitor!! With the Flux Capacitor, you get a good 1.21 Giga Watts out of your Video Card. Hunner…must I explain everything to you?

  4. 4 Marcus Taylor September 18, 2008 at 1:14 am

    So I would think you’d be getting a new video card soon. What will you be getting?

  5. 5 yipcanjo September 18, 2008 at 1:28 am

    Good point.

    I went pretty lo-fi, since these are “work” video cards and don’t need to run Quake 4 @ 113.5fps in 1600×1200 resolution! 🙂


    – $29.99
    – 256mb on board
    – Dual video ports
    – Passive cooling

    Also, I’ve always found ATi-based cards to have good 2D performance.

  6. 6 Marcus Taylor September 18, 2008 at 4:51 am

    Methinks you’d be wise not to play Quake 4 whilest on the clock, though it would be amusing if your boss caught you playing it and challenged you to a round or two. “DUUDE, I totally fragged ya, man!”

    And also, completely at random I decided that your boss was a hippy in this scenario, don’t ask me why.

  7. 7 yipcanjo September 18, 2008 at 1:47 pm

    How’d you know my boss was a hippie? 🙂

    “Back in the day” we used to get some serious gaming on whilst at work — occasionally on the clock, I must confess! Quake/Quake2 matches, Half-life, Jedi Knight, Outlaws, Diablo, and a sampling of other games. Good times! Life was relatively care-free back then…

  8. 8 mike September 21, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    i went to google.com and typed in the following:


    You’re story sound similar to mine and then I reached the blurry picture. Then you’re story was exactly like mine same video card and all. I’m not a very well educated computer guy so I’ve spent all day trying to find out what was wrong with my video card. In some weird abstract way you have helped me today to answer the question if I need a new video card, so Thank you over and over again. The only problem is that I have 4 out 6 capacitors listed above that are blown and I have 1 of 3 smaller capacitors that read FZ72 470 16v. As I said before, thank you for indirectly answering my question!

  9. 9 yipcanjo September 21, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    Same exact video card, eh? That’s a bit disconcerting, as I’m sure we have a few other of those same cards around our office. Sounds like a manufacturing defect, though mine was about 45 days out of warranty 😦

    Anyhow…. glad I could help! 🙂

  10. 10 sexyBexy November 9, 2008 at 6:31 pm

    Alright, I’ve got one for you guys.
    I have narrowed my problem down to my video card as well.
    I have a GeForce 6200 LE
    I was curious what I could do about 3 of it’s 6 capacitors that are obviously blown.

    So I googled


    Now I am here. Please, Someone tell me I can purchase 3 of these
    capacitors and and solder them carefully enough to save my PC that I bought used. It had many upgrades, perks and a separate partition/Hard Drive. But I don’t have any of the software that the previous owner had when he custom built this piece of XP crap.

    BTW – Keep in mind I am economically challenged and about to give back the tower I borrowed.

  11. 11 sexyBexy November 9, 2008 at 6:36 pm

    I can’t lose my internet access. Help me 😦

  12. 12 Joe J December 6, 2008 at 12:14 am

    I had the same problem with an AGP video card. 5 of them popped on me.


    – sexyBexy, search on a site called The Cap King. He had good information on how to replace the caps. I’m no good at soldering though so your braver then me.

  13. 13 Standinwave January 21, 2009 at 8:38 pm

    I have Zotac Geforce 8600GTS with exact same problem!

  14. 14 Standinwave January 21, 2009 at 8:55 pm

    The part is a 1500uF 6.3V Aluminium electrolytic in a radial case with 5mm lead pitch – cost less than $1 each. Usual cause is too much heat causing the electrolyte to dry out – they build the cards to a price and longevity of parts is not at the top of their list!

  15. 15 fernicar February 27, 2009 at 2:23 am

    SameCase,JustTwoOfThemBlowsUp, FZ73 1500 6.3v (both)
    Evga nvidia 7600 GT, HeatLooksToBeOneReason,OrDualMonitor…

  16. 16 Jamjam March 18, 2009 at 2:44 am

    Same here – card has been flaky for about two months and finally died. 5 of the 6 1500uf capacitors have popped their tops. I just ordered replacements from Digikey – will post to let you know if it comes alive again or not

  17. 17 studentz April 22, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    Same case. Nvidia 6200 A LE. Those things last for about 2 years ( no warranty ) 😦

    Particularity of my case is that my OS proudly is Linux Ubuntu. I can use the card with mesa driver but no with nvidia driver (for mortals no 3D effects). I though that the problem was the driver, so I spent some time playing with the kernel, xserver and the driver without success (for mortals configure your box only and only for your hardware). I hate to say it but I had to install XP M$, but it did not work too. So I open the box and voila the answer in front of my eyes.


    No all problems are software some are hardware.
    The only use for window is to help me with the diagnosis of hardware problems.
    Solution: software to diagnosis this problems (that would be easy if nvidia make the drivers open source instead of reverse engineering)

    6.3 v


    6.3 v


  18. 18 Simon April 28, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    EVGA Video cards bust their capacitors all the time.
    I’ve had two go on me, another friend of mine has lost 2 EVGA cards the same way. It’s clearly the weak link.

  19. 19 jd June 5, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    Same thing happened to my 7600gt. Six capacitors blew.

  20. 20 Dave June 11, 2009 at 4:43 am

    You guys make me feel all warm and fuzzy since now I know it’s the freakin card. Same card EVGA 7600GT but I’ve got you all beat 5 of 6 capacitors blown FZ73 1500 6.3v. I’ve had the card for 2 years – ok for what I do. Been looking online for replacement capacitors. If I frag the card further….who cares

    Also – emailed EVGA – they may do a one time out of warranty replacement – give it a try.

    I still am going to try and repair.

  21. 21 Simon Rickshaw June 12, 2009 at 1:01 am

    I’ve just had success replacing duff caps in my GEFORCE 6200 VGA 256MB DDR2 DVI-I GRAPHICS CARD.

    The original caps were known as FZ72 and were 1000UF, 6.3V rated.

    I sourced long life (i hope!) good quality (i hope too!) replacement caps from this address:


    After some pondering i decided to go for 1000UF, 10V replacements. (slightly higher voltage value just in case)


    Although i wasn’t overly optimistic about success, at a cost of less than three quid i felt it was a worth while investment, particularly since it breaks my heart and undermines my wellbeing to chuck away items into landfill to add to the piles of toxic junk when with a little common sense, luck and perseverance there’s plenty life still to be had…

    So don’t be put off if you’ve got blown caps!

    I did a rather crude job of soldering the new caps to the board and would recommend scratching off the insulating lacquer around the existing pins to reveal the copper tracks so that a good solder join can be made. the ge force board looks as if it has several layers and in some cases the pins of the capacitors look as if they are soldered to the same section which obviously isn’t right. but if you look closely under a magnifying glass you can see that the pins are independent of each other.

    so if the job is looking rather tricky, one idea would be to carefully retain the legs of the old capacitors by decapitating the body of the knackered caps with a pair of snips and then just soldering directly onto the original legs. or possibly consider commonly connecting the negative legs of the new caps together and fixing to a single point.

    note these are electrolytic capacitors so it is important to have them wired up correctly. in the case of the old FZ72 caps, there is a blue marking on one side denoting the -ve terminal. a new electrolytic capacitor will have a longer leg to denote the +ve terminal while the -ve terminal is usually marked on the side of the cap.

    anyway hope this is of some help to those out there with similar ailments in this miraculous dimension of information! what a joy and relief to communicate and share goodwill rather than merely existing by the potentially abusive and corrupting medium of money!

    Peace and Love and all that from Bonnie Scotland!

  22. 22 cecil November 29, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    same exact card here from that picture. evga geForce 7600 gt. 2 caps blown. just noticed it today after taking my rigg apart because of “nv4_disp display driver stopped working normally” which i originally got about a month back or less. im now assuming that that is the culprit as google says its either hardware failure or a driver problem. but the problem started out of nowhere, had never updated drivers, and hadnt installed anything new or driver altering recently, so it couldnt be the drivers. it then started working again after fiddling for a few days. now im getting the nv4_disp error again and noticed the blown capacitors. will look at radio shack. if not, then frys. last resort online somewhere.

  23. 23 me December 17, 2009 at 2:40 pm

    just replace the caps from ur local electronics component shop. i went down to sayal and got a 1500uf and 100uf electrolytic radial cap and it works perfect so far 🙂

    the voltage has to be equal to or greater than the cap ur replacing.

  24. 24 bill January 20, 2010 at 4:20 am

    gotta Gf6200 agp card with 6(all same size) out of 7 capacitors blown, apparently a heat problem, after about 2 years use.

    Question: will a larger voltage rationg allow for better heat endurance?

    • 25 Standinwave January 20, 2010 at 11:59 pm

      Higher voltage is a bonus if you can get them in same package as they are being ‘stressed’ less in use. They basically seem to be drying out, so quality is important. Sadly, the more expensive ones should be better made and last longer! If you need help sourcing some, please post back, I used to work on military and commercial electronics boards, so could help!

  25. 26 Sean January 22, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    Same thing on HM1050L-C3 Radeon X1050 512MB.
    Three caps blown on 1-21-10

  26. 27 Alberto January 27, 2010 at 11:55 am

    Same thing happened to my 7600gt. 8 capacitors blew (five FZ73 all three FZ72) IT SUCKS!!!

  27. 28 Franko January 28, 2010 at 4:28 am

    Well I’ll be a flea on a hound dog!!! I have a Ge Force 8600 GT card with three FZ73 470 16v and three FZ73 1500 6,3v having popped. To be fair to the manufacturers the desk top was hardly ever switched off (lazyness) and the fan on the card was gunged up with good old South African dust – no wonder the thing popped its caps. The problem is now trying to source the caps and then trying to get handy with the old soldering iron – a mission I don’t relish, so I probably find a guy or doll who can tinker a bit and give it a go

  28. 29 Steve May 1, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    Seems to happen alot. Geforce 8600 here also. I had 2 1500uf fail and one 1000uf. Thanks for all the technical data folks. Thankfully I had 2 of them and only 1 failed. Thought they were SLI but still getting the same frame rates on 1 that I was getting on 2 so……

  29. 30 dbgarza November 13, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    It happened to me as well with my GeForce 6200 512MB AGP card, 1 of the capacitors got busted and the card was just a year old.

    Luckily I still have my old 256 MB card which is what I’m using right now but man I lost a lot of performance 😦

    I’m thinking in buy that capacitor and see if I can get it to work again if it doesn’t works then I’m busted and will have to buy a new card.

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