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Old August 20, 2012, 03:36 PM
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Default PSU emits high pitched whine instead of giving power

Hello guys, and my apologies if this turns out to be a long post.

I was hoping that somebody out there could give me some input. My computer recently just restart itself for no reason while I was using it. My first thought was some malware or whatever, so I physically disconnected it from the network and continued reading an article I saved; I was supposedly gonna leave it to scan later. But then it shut down again, but this time it didn't power on by itself. In fact, it wouldn't power on when I pressed the switch on my case, so I knew something was up. I tried checking for loose cables, then tried powering it on again. This time I noticed a high pitched whine coming from my case. At first I thought it was a beep code, so I got to searching on my laptop based on the symptoms. I removed the GPU and all the drives - still nada. Tried switching RAM slots - nothing. Its basically down to mobo, cpu, RAM and PSU. However, with no spare parts to swap for these, my troubleshooting is a little limited. I tried to listen where the sound is coming from, since I read it might be a blown capacitor, and strangely enough it sounded like it came from the bottom. So I set the PSU outside the case, fired it up one more time, and indeed it's from the PSU.

Is it safe to conclude now that it's the PSU not working? Like I said, I don't have spare parts to do swap troubleshooting now, so I'm not too sure. Besides, I specifically chose a PSU on the 600w+ range to give myself considerable margin so I couldn't overstress it even if I tried. I'm still not ruling out that it could be something else that's gone bad.

Specs of my rig:

Asrock Z68 E3G3
Core i3 2100 + stock fan
Single stick GSkill RAM 4GB
Seasonic M12II-620w
MSI 560ti Twin Frozr

Short summary of where I'm at now:
-PSU making high pitch whine when I turn the rig on.
-It doesn't whine until I press the power switch on the rig, and it stops whining when I cut the power off from the outlet or toggle off the PSU switch.
-No POST (or no power at all IMO, but I'm not too sure)
-Case fans and HSF not spinning when I turn the rig on
-Surprisingly, the PSU fan isn't spinning either. I don't think my PSU turns its fan off under light load.
-I've had the rig for more than half a year now.

EDIT: Sorry if my post is a little unorganized. And thanks to anyone who took the time to read.
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Old August 20, 2012, 03:46 PM
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Coil whine isn't uncommon with Seasonic units and certain motherboard VRMs, but it normally shouldn't be related to a faulty unit.

Try to see if you can jump start the PSU by itself - unplug everything from the PSU and connect the green wire to any black wire on the 24pin connector and see if the unit will turn on. Then try it with a small load, like a hard drive. Google if you need a detailed/visual guide on how to do this.
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Old August 20, 2012, 04:47 PM
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Havnt you noticed that it only happens when you have some colors on screen ? I notice it aswell with my Corsair and its working fine for more than a year. :p
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Old August 21, 2012, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilya View Post
Try to see if you can jump start the PSU by itself - unplug everything from the PSU and connect the green wire to any black wire on the 24pin connector and see if the unit will turn on. Then try it with a small load, like a hard drive. Google if you need a detailed/visual guide on how to do this.
Can I use a DVD drive to test this out? I was hoping the eject button would work if the PSU was working as it should. I tried the paperclip method, and I can't seem to switch the PSU on. I didn't hear any whine when I inserted the paperclip either. I guess I'll try using a multimeter to see whether current is actually flowing in the paperclip; I have never used this thing before though.
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Old August 21, 2012, 06:06 PM
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Do you have a fan with a molex connector on it? That's my preferred load when using the paperclip method. (Green and black)

Is the PSU still under warranty? If so, and you can't get it working with a load + the paperclip test then it's probably RMA time.
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Old August 21, 2012, 06:13 PM
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Even the best have units that die... sounds reasonably conclusive from what you tried (though not 100%.. would need a spare psu or machine to try it on to be sure)

Hopefully RMAing it will be painless and the only fault..
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Old September 3, 2012, 04:02 PM
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Forgot to update this

I RMA'd the PSU, and after receiving the new one, my rig's back to normal. Thanks to everyone for all the help.

As a side note, this incident reminded me that 2 screw holes on the PSU do not match perfectly with the case's holes (Corsair 400R) when I mount it fan side bottom. Not sure if this is also true if I mount it fan side up. I have a suspicion though that it would align perfectly if my PSU was branded Corsair. I guess that's a 1 point deduction on Corsair's rep, unless this particular Seasonic model doesn't match holes on other cases too.
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