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Windows 7: Either my monitor or graphics card is failing... but which is it?


04 Feb 2012   #1

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
 
 
Either my monitor or graphics card is failing... but which is it?

Hi,

It seems that when I turn on my computer or wake it up from a sleep the image on the screen is vibrating / quivering ever so slightly. However after a minute the image has completely stabilized.

My monitor is a xerox XA7 lcd display which is now 7 years old. My graphics card is a secondhand nVidia GeForce 8600 GT.

What's interesting is that I have an LED TV hooked up to the HDMI out on the graphics card and the image on the TV is always perfect.

So is it my xerox monitor that is failing? Or could it be that just the DVI on the graphics card is failing and the HDMI is fine?

Thanks for your expertise!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Feb 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Duncan,
Can you borrow a friends monitor and test it with your card? Also make and un-make the connections to the card to the monitor to clean and refresh their connections and report back.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Feb 2012   #3

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

If your monitor was an old CRT (as mine was), I would definitely say that your "vibrating" symptom was the monitor itself. I would have to hit the power button to turn the CRT off, let it sit for 15-30 seconds, then power it back on, and it would be alright... for another few minutes or hours or days.

And periodically the "rash" of vibrations would happen repeatedly, and then it would go away for a week.

And as with your story, it was more likely to happen when the monitor came out of power-save mode or when I just turned on the machine and monitor and the CRT hadn't fully warmed up yet.

Anyway it was clearly the old CRT dying. I've now replaced it with a large LCD and of course the problem has disappeared. It was NOT the video card. It was the monitor itself.


But LCD monitors don't work the same way as CRTs. Nevertheless, I would guess it's your old LCD monitor which is failing, not the video card.

You could try the power-off/wait/on sequence I described above, instead of waiting your usual 1-minute after waking up. If these kinds of tricks also solve your problem I would have to speculate it was the monitor that was failing, not the video card.

Video card failures tend to have different kinds of symptoms... such as an array of green spots or square-pixels uniformly distributed over the screen, etc. But the kind of symptom you describe would be a monitor issue, is my guess.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Feb 2012   #4

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
 
 

Thanks for the replys people!

I just turned my monitor off for 20mins or so, but kept the machine awake by periodically wiggling the mouse. Then I turned back on the monitor and sure enough the image was quivering ever so slightly.

So I think that is probably proof that it's the monitor!

I'm asuming that the graphics card is not aware if the monitor is off and was therefore still active all the time the monitor was off thereby eliminating it from the equation.

It would be a nice power saving feature if the graphics card did go so sleep when the monitor is not on and it is not being used. But I'm assuming that this is not the case.

Also thanks for the tip about reconnecting the dvi, I did this but it has not resolved the issue.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Feb 2012   #5

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit SP1
 
 

Just one thought, which you probably already have checked, but just in case....

Your Xerox XA7 more than likely has a different native screen resolution that your LED TV. When you switch from the TV to the monitor, are you certain that the Xerox is set to its native resolution?

I suppose you are using the NVIDIA Control Panel to be sure. Check the resolution and the refresh rate.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Feb 2012   #6

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
 
 

Yes it is definately at it's native resolution and refresh rate, thanks for the idea though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Feb 2012   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

One last thought that you can try because it always works for me.

Step 1) Pick up the device in question and throw it across the room.
Step 2) If it breaks then go out and purchase a brand new item, problem solved.
Step 3) If it doesn't break repeat step #1 till it does.

See you feel better and you've helped stimulate the economy just a little !
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Feb 2012   #8

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by linnemeyerhere View Post
One last thought that you can try because it always works for me.

Step 1) Pick up the device in question and throw it across the room.
Step 2) If it breaks then go out and purchase a brand new item, problem solved.
Step 3) If it doesn't break repeat step #1 till it does.

See you feel better and you've helped stimulate the economy just a little !

Now that all possibilities have been covered, that is probably the best solution!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Feb 2012   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

When you turn it on and it quivers, see if the monitors own OSD (On Screen Display), like a menu, also quivers. If it does, it's the monitor. If the video in the background quivers, but the OSD does not, it's the video source. A Guy
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Feb 2012   #10

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by linnemeyerhere View Post
One last thought that you can try because it always works for me.

Step 1) Pick up the device in question and throw it across the room.
Step 2) If it breaks then go out and purchase a brand new item, problem solved.
Step 3) If it doesn't break repeat step #1 till it does.

See you feel better and you've helped stimulate the economy just a little !

Haha, thanks for the suggestion!!

Unfortunately I think my landlord would object to a monitor shaped dent in the wall. But maybe I could throw it out the window..?.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Either my monitor or graphics card is failing... but which is it?




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