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XG7 waterblock caused 3080 to stop working (No display output)


Geo Ghost
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Hey all.

 

First time poster, long time gamer =)

 

Having a bit of an issue where an XG7 waterblock has potentially caused my 3080-FE to stop working.

 

Bit of background info...

I initially built my PC back in December whilst in quarantine to replace my old machine. The specs are much the same as those in my profile except I used a 1080 FE from my old PC as new graphics cards were going to be impossible to get hold of.

This was my first build from scratch as I'd only upgraded my old PC before.. and I jumped straight in with a HydroX loop for the CPU, with plans to upgrade it to include a GPU waterblock in the future when I could get hold of a compatible card.

System ran flawlessly from the get-go, no issues at all. Managed to get hold of a 3080-FE a couple of months ago and fitted that which too ran without fault.

 

Forward to last week, I was able to get the last parts needed to upgrade the system to a full HydroX loop, and I also decided to change the case to a 5000X which was going to work far better for me.

Refitted everything, attached the waterblock to the 3080 with extreme care, have leak-tested for a length of time to ensure everything was safe, connected up all the cables etc.

 

Upon boot however... no display. Q-code of 94, and VGA lit on the motherboard. Tried a few times to no avail.

Occasionally a Q-Code of AA flags up, but still no display.

 

So far i've tried the following:

  • - Reseating the GPU, both in the riser and for the riser in the PCIe slot.
  • - Trying a different PCIe slot
  • - Checking all the PSU cables are attached.
  • - Using a different PSU cable for the GPU.
  • - Trying different display ports including the motherboard port and DP/HDMI.
  • - Disconnecting various other peripherals and drives to see if any would make a difference.

 

There was one occasion where I managed to get a display and Windows went into a diagnostic repair tool (or something of that name). It recommended a restart to fix an issue, clicked restart, but following that it went back to the same issue again with no display, Q-code 94, and VGA light. I've been able to repeat it again since despite trying.

 

In a last ditch attempt, I reconnected my 1080 to the riser to narrow down if it was the GPU at fault. Booted first time with no issue which I think has ruled out any other problem.

 

 

All in all, everything points to an issue with the GPU after the waterblock has been installed (Typical, it would be after I fitted everything and put the coolant in! :D: haha)

I've read around and seen some places suggesting about a possible short if the screws are in too tight, or the GPU going into a 'shutdown' state if it can't detect a fan plugged in.

 

My next thought is to try and disconnect the GPU and loosen the screws to see if any difference is made, or try putting it back in the original fan assembly.

Although I'm still a relative rookie to PC building compared to most, I've worked on electrics and PCBs before and have been as delicate as I can with the 3080 to avoid any damage.

 

I've emailed Corsair support last night, but wanted to ask the community as well in case someone here has had the same issue and could suggest some extra ideas, or knows what the problem is.

Also on a related note, does anyone have any tips on how to test the boot-up without putting coolant back in and sealing the loop? Would like to do a test-boot before topping the coolant up, but at the same time I'm concerned about overheating in that first minute.

 

Any ideas or advice would be greatly welcomed :biggrin:

Many thanks for your time, and wish you all the best!

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Update:

 

Tried the loosening of the screw method, and managed to get a boot on a second attempt :biggrin: I can only assume it's something with the backplate causing a short if the screws are tightened.

However I'm concerned about it happening again after I've added the coolant once more.

 

Is there any way to prevent it perhaps? Did once if some heat resistant tape might help, but would that cause more issues...

 

 

Also, apologies for the double-posting. I couldn't find the edit button on the initial post :!oops:

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Never tighten the crews fully, never... already leave a bit, think of it like a car tire, those bolts shouldn't be tightened all the way either, same case here :)

 

Thank you Conver :)

I must admit, they are barely finger tight at the moment.

Unfortunately the issue has come back again, despite not changing anything since a successful boot.

 

At a bit of a loss again as I can't tell if that was a fluke that it worked.

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Thank you Conver :)

I must admit, they are barely finger tight at the moment.

Unfortunately the issue has come back again, despite not changing anything since a successful boot.

 

At a bit of a loss again as I can't tell if that was a fluke that it worked.

 

All crews in my setup are only finger tight, nothing more :)

- If the thread got damaged on the first run, then it will always leak, and thread are easily damaged, when tighten just a little bit to much.

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All crews in my setup are only finger tight, nothing more :)

- If the thread got damaged on the first run, then it will always leak, and thread are easily damaged, when tighten just a little bit to much.

 

Ah. Is there an easy way round it?

Didn't tighten them all that much the first time, doesn't feel like the threads are damaged at all.

Weirdly now, without touching the card, it seems to be doing one boot fine, then the next failing, then will sometimes freeze on boot up, and repeat. Did wonder if it was the bracket on the back (vertical mount) but doesn't seem to make much difference.

The riser isn't supported as there is a large gap. had that issue with the previous case as well.

 

Hope I'm giving enough information. Running through things as I go, but not having a lot of luck sadly.

Edited by Geo Ghost
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Did you try setting the gpu to pcie 3 ? that riser cable may be causing issues.

Also, the slightest fingerprints on the pcie contacts on the card can cause malfunctions. i had mine work with 8 lanes instead of 16 because i didn't cleanup after manipulating it.

same story for the riser contacts.

A little wipe down with IPA and it was back to normal

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Did you try setting the gpu to pcie 3 ? that riser cable may be causing issues.

Also, the slightest fingerprints on the pcie contacts on the card can cause malfunctions. i had mine work with 8 lanes instead of 16 because i didn't cleanup after manipulating it.

same story for the riser contacts.

A little wipe down with IPA and it was back to normal

 

Good evening LeDoyen.

 

Thank you for your reply too :) I've given these things a go:

- Tried all 3 slots with the riser so far, to no avail.

- Have cleaned the PCIe contacts on both GPU and riser, still no change sadly.

- I've put the 3080FE back into its original casing and still getting the issue which is strange.

 

However, I just now tried plugged the GPU direct into the motherboard, (slot 2 as some of the cooling pipes are blocking slot 1) and hey presto, we have life again!:D:

Strange thing is though, I was able to get my 1080 working with the riser yesterday without issue - which made me of course rule out an issue with the riser previously. Plus I was getting some boots with the riser and the XG7 as well - usually one in three.

 

Unless the 1080 test turned out to be fluke of course...

 

Would it be worth reconnecting the XG7 again and trying that direct to the motherboard?

 

Thank you again for all your help so far. It's given me a few more options to try whilst working on it. Plus no doubt it might be handy should anyone else have the same issue at some point.

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Risers struggle with PCIE4. there's like half a handful of PCIE4 certified ones in the market.

If i were you i'd stick with direct mounting, and it makes tubing routing easier too.

The bling factor fades quickly and after a while you start to worry more about other details like... stability? :p

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Risers struggle with PCIE4. there's like half a handful of PCIE4 certified ones in the market.

 

A friend of mine asked about something like this last night. About Gen3 or Gen4 risers.

 

When you said setting the GPU to PCIe3, I might have misunderstood. I thought you meant trying to PCIe slow number 3. :!oops:

My apologies. Though I've got some basics down, I'm still a relative rookie to the more in depth things.

 

So if I understand this rightly, I'd need to set the GPU/motherboard itself to run at PCIE3 speeds rather than 4, as the riser can only manage 3. Is that correct? :biggrin:

I feel a bit embarrassed if it was something as simple as that all along.

Thank you again for the help :)

Edited by Geo Ghost
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yes that's what i meant :)

your other card runs at PCIE3 speeds, but the 3080 will default to PCIE4. That could explain why one works and not the other.

The performace hit is negligible, 1 or 2% tops in benchmarks, nothing visible in game.

Or just plug direct and leave it in PCIE4.

For troubleshooting it's always best to connect direct anyway, those risers are a royal PITA sometimes

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yes that's what i meant :)

your other card runs at PCIE3 speeds, but the 3080 will default to PCIE4. That could explain why one works and not the other.

 

Thank you ever so much for the help mate.

 

That was indeed the issue. It's such a small and obvious thing, but I didn't think about it at all before. I guess it showed the same symptoms as the other issue which made it easy to believe it was card related - especially when the 1080 worked instead.

Went into Bios and manually set the first port to Gen3. Test booted several times to check.

 

In all honesty, I didn't really know Gen4 PCIe was a thing - just assumed it was a standard fitting/speed, doh! :!oops:

Still a rookie, but learnt something new I guess :D:

On the plus side as well, anyone else with the same issue can try these steps too and hopefully resolve it quickly.

 

Thank you all again. Have a lovely week =)

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