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Trouble with PC lockups (Screen and Sound stuck), even without GPU


Hey everyone,


I'm having trouble with my PC, which is set up as followed:

  • Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP 1155 Socket
  • CPU: Intel(R) Core i5-3570K CPU @ 3.40GHz
  • RAM: Corsair Vengeance LP DDR3-1600 4x4GB
  • PSU: BeQuiet Straight Power 10 500W 
  • Storage: Samsung SSD 830 Series 256 GB + Seagate HDD ST2000DM006-2DM164 2TB

I also had a Sapphire Radeon R9 290X Vapor-X Tri-X 8GB, which is now broken. The PC does not post with it plugged in, even in different machines.


I'm experiencing frequent lockups that make using the machine for anything other than browsing unusable. The lockups freeze the screen and the sound loops until I restart it. It may happen once a day if I'm just browsing, or every few hours in 2D games, while 3D games lockup in the first hour. 

I have checked the following things:

  • Event Viewer in Windows – Loses the past 20-30 minutes of infos after freezing 
  • Checked cables - Seems OK
  • Temperatures - OK
  • CPU stress test via Prime64 – No lockup after a full night of testing
  • Memtest + Checked each RAM unit one after another
  • Checked voltages in HWMonitor - not sure what to look for here, any tips?

My assumption is that the motherboard somehow fried the graphics card with the lockups. I can't find out exactly though, so I now turn to the internet for help. Do you have any ideas that could help me pinpoint the component causing the problem? If it is the motherboard, would it make sense to just get an old 1155 socket board from somewhere and replace the graphics card?


Any help is highly appreciated. If I forgot anything let me know.

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I assume your OS is on the SSD, i advice to test regarding it as well, as in test to see how the PC works without it, i had similar issues with an Intel SSD myself, and in my case even if would pass all tests with flying colors the moment i got rid of it everything worked out great (i think the controller on it was the issue). Also i assume you did reinstall windows right ? and got rid of the old drivers with DDU.

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I actually did not reinstall Windows yet. Can I unplug the SSD and run Windows on a stick to see if the lockups still occur? I do recall testing it with CrystalDisk and SeaTools recently, which iirc turned out fine. Will double check soon if the lockups still occur, because:


Here's the thing, someone in a different forum suggested plugging in a different GPU. I had an old Gigabyte 8600GT lying around which has been running Team Fortress 2 + Youtube videos for the past 5 and a half hours. This should usually crash within the first hour, but not always so I will definitely keep testing. Assuming this fixed it however, how would that be possible? The lockups occured when the R9 was still working, and then without any GPU installed at all. Why would they now be (possibly) happening less or not at all? I should also mention at this point that I now only have one monitor plugged in via DVI, before that it was one via HDMI and one via DVI.


If the crashes still occur I will probably reinstall Windows. I will not have to use a driver cleaning programm if I do, correct?


Thanks for the insight and I hope ya'll continue to help me out here.

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