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Show us your hardware horrors

Show us your hardware horrors

This is what we're looking for. But worse.

If you've been building or fixing PCs for a while, then you'll have probably seen, heard of and maybe perpetrated some degree of dreadful PC hardware horror. That accidental slip of the screwdriver into the CPU pins, a misguided and ill-informed attempt at water-cooling, or a case mod based primarily on duct-tape and spray paint; we've been there, and we feel your pain/shame.

At the time they can be cringe-worthy and heart breaking, or they may just make you want to rage-quit life, but now you can cash in on your traumatic PC building and fixing experiences. We want to see your hardware horrors, from burnt-out GPUs to bug-infested PSUs and beyond.

Up for grabs for the two hardware horrors we judge to be the most heartbreaking, horrifying or hideous is a KFA² GTX 460 1GB graphics card, ideal for rebuilding your shattered dreams as well as your system.

To enter, you can either post your photos of your horror hardware in the comment thread below, complete with an accompanying description, or, if you prefer, email them to us at harry.butler@bit-tech.net.

Winners will be announced on 7 April. Good luck, and please remember to only enter photos that you've taken yourself, and which include hardware that you have permission to photograph.


*LEGAL BIT*
Entrants must hold copyright to all photos they submit. By submitting your photo and/or anecdote, you agree that Dennis Publishing Ltd and its licensees and partners may reproduce it without limitation. This is a non-exclusive license and you retain the copyright. We will select winning entries at our discretion and no correspondence will be entered into. Winners will be notified within 28 days of their selection, which is dependent on our editorial schedule. The competition is not open to employees of Dennis Publishing or participating companies. No cash alternative will be offered. The prizes described are available at the time of publication. Events may occur that render the promotion or awarding of a prize impossible due to reasons beyond Dennis Publishing’s control. We may at our discretion vary or amend the promotion and the reader agrees that no liability shall be attached to Dennis Publishing as a result thereof. Names of winners to date will be available on receipt of a request enclosing a stamped self-addressed envelope to: Competition Manager, Dennis Publishing, 30 Cleveland St, London W1T 4JD. It is a condition of entry that the entrant agrees to be bound by these rules whether they be published or not, and that the decision of the Editor and judges on any matter whatsoever arising out of or connected to this promotion are final. No purchase of the magazine is necessary.

136 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
Spreadie 8th March 2011, 11:27 Quote
What a great idea. I'll have to trawl through my old photos tonight, as I'm sure I have pics of a hamfisted attempt I had at creating some blow holes in an old PC.

This was pre-Dremel and I didn't have the proper cutting bits for my jigsaw. Trying to fix the mess with some acrylic sheet and hot glue did nothing to improve matters.
yakyb 8th March 2011, 11:35 Quote
Just about any Mod i have ever attempted!!
DriftCarl 8th March 2011, 11:48 Quote
im glad its not car mod horrors.
I would not want to show a picture of the engine bay of my very first car when i was young and didnt know any better. Lets just say a full spray can of silver metal paint was used to cover up a larger persentage of engine bay.
dispie 8th March 2011, 11:51 Quote
Well lucky for you guys but shame for me i did not make a picture of the horror i seen last year,

it was a old 800Mhz compaq machine, it smelled really bad already and it would not start up they told me so took it home for a better look. the outside should have been white/gray but was sigarett yellow the side was kicked in and the mouse was a 2 klik with one missing the keyboard was yellow and sticky.

After opening it up and first finding dried up bread peaces, and a lot of black little things in the corner some tor up fabrics, dust and paper underneath the hard disk rack, i put it on the side and got a lamp in there.

I really had a hard time keeping my lunch in, the fabrics and dust were a mice home and well one of them got well splattered bij the PSU fan all over the top off the mainboard, some parts were fried on there really won't go in more details it was the worse thing i ever seen and i seen my share of burn outs and dust bins in the 15years im doing this..

took it back told them to buy a new one, they were suprised i was so quick after a look inside the let me look up a new pc for them and well payed me extra but it will never leave my mind again
[PUNK] crompers 8th March 2011, 11:52 Quote
I once dropped a screwdriver from standing height on a newly built rig, still open and on its side while checked first boot. BANG and then that blue smoke that smells weird, there was a big welt on the mobo where it had landed point first on the board just below the CPU. When i tried to boot (well you've gotta try) would only recognise one stick of ram and behaving rather erratically, eventually it died completely later that day.

I wish I'd had a camera about at the time! it was around 2006 and I was building a 939 system for my sister, I did keep the board for a while to show people but it ended up getting chucked in my last clearout. But I later found that the CPU, RAM, and PSU were fine, just the cost of a new board and a near heart attack then!
tonyd223 8th March 2011, 12:04 Quote
Who had a camera then? All my horrors were before camera phones, and when you get that sick taste in your mouth the last thing you wanna do is take a photo. Before I could drive (so about 25 years ago) I had to load a server into the bosses car (a Ford Granada Scorpio!). I decided to move the car rather than move the server over to it (the car park was a bomb site). But, boss had left the car in 1st gear on hard steering lock and when I turned the key it lurched sideways on top on the car next to it. I almost sh@t myself and the memory still brings back the taste of fear. Didn't get fired though...
Spreadie 8th March 2011, 12:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonyd223
Who had a camera then? All my horrors were before camera phones, and when you get that sick taste in your mouth the last thing you wanna do is take a photo.

Add to that, the fact that you don't really want to advertise just how big a numbskull you were; and you certainly don't want photo evidence.

In hindsight, yes, you can laugh about it. At the time, however, you're either distraught or severely embarrassed.
bob_lewis 8th March 2011, 12:18 Quote
This will be interesting. :)
law99 8th March 2011, 12:44 Quote
WIll you be judging with perfect 20 20 hindsight?
liratheal 8th March 2011, 12:48 Quote
The following is a picture of a companies main connection to their server.

http://i.imgur.com/rtg8Q.png

The story behind that electrical tape based ethernet extension is;

The company in question moved their server across a room - No one knows why - and discovered there were no network points. No fear! They had access to a drill and a few masonry bits, so away they went. Except, they didn't count on the size of the RJ45 plug, so of course, the cable wouldn't fit. Still, no worries, there's some side cutters and tape!

Their speed to the server, unsurprisingly, tanked completely. Yes, the connection is held together with electrical tape, yes the cables are twisted together.

My most head scratching encounter was when I went to a garage to do a physical and data cleanup of the PC's there. I expected them to be filthy, I mean, it is a dirty environment. For the most part, it was just dust colonies. Seriously, they'd developed space travel.

One machine, though, that was off the ground, away from most of the muck, and looked pretty good. Until I opened it. Sadly I didn't have a camera, or a camera phone, but it was literally coated with engine oil on the inside. Now, I don't mean there was a puddle, I mean the oil had become a sticky, matted, affair on everything, as if it had been introduced to the dust and dirt, then painted over every component in the PC. How the machine was still running, I will never know.

Sadly, I don't think I've caused any "meltdown" disasters..
Fanatic 8th March 2011, 13:11 Quote
If I had a photo of my face the day I performed a c:\>del *.* thinking I was on the floppy a:\ it would be win win. I remember the horror sweeping over me as it dawned what I had done to my Dad's ICL workstation. Fortunately it wasn't the infamous deltree or I probaby wouldnt be typing this now!!

Did the most natural thing any 13 year old boy would do and flatly denied doing anything wrong - even though it was nailed on to be me. The joys of DOS 3.3!
Woodspoon 8th March 2011, 13:22 Quote
Heartbreaking
The look on a friends face after he realised he'd just cooked the gpu on his 1 day old 4870 his cash strapped parents had brought him the day before for Christmas and he rather stupidly ran a full furmark test.

He ended up buying a new card later that week and pretending his parents gave that one to him.
Heartbreaking to watch.
WarrenJ 8th March 2011, 13:31 Quote
Warrantee?
GravitySmacked 8th March 2011, 13:38 Quote
I've had a fair few over the years. Never took a picture of them though, I just shed a few tears, binned the offending parts and pretended nothing untoward had ever happened.
battles_atlas 8th March 2011, 13:39 Quote
During my early days of system building I spotted some thermal conducting tape in Maplin, and figured it would be less messy than TIM, so why not give it a shot? So I stuck it down on my brand new, shiney dualcore Athlon, pushed the HSF on top and booted up.

When cpu-z told me that my chip was 85C on windows desktop, I figured something wasn't quite right. So I shut down, open the case, and took the HSF off. Except it wouldn't come off, wouldn't budge an inch. After a good 15minutes I decided the only option was the nuclear one, so with the help of a screwdriver I wrenched the fan and chip with it off the mobo. Somehow the mobo survived, as did the HSF, but the chip didn't like the hammer I had to use to unstick it from the fan...

Turns out thermal tape isn't suited to CPUs.
eddtox 8th March 2011, 13:44 Quote
Come on people, still no pictures!
Anzer 8th March 2011, 13:45 Quote
Once I left the temperature gradient in the oven, by heating lead-free card. As a result, not only external changes, but the death of the GPU.
http://images.people.overclockers.ru/205148.jpg
http://images.people.overclockers.ru/205149.jpg

The second lot I can offer you the remainder of the unfinished custom case, which has become a test case for agp cards.
http://images.people.overclockers.ru/205150.jpg
logonui 8th March 2011, 13:50 Quote
Was backing up a users laptop a few years ago by connecting the hard drive to my main desktop system. Accidentally bend one of the pins over when I plugged the IDE cable in. I'd never seen a flame shoot up an IDE cable before, I tried desperately to power down the machine before it reached the motherboard but I got there about half a second too late. I think the only thing that didn't get fried in that machine was the Floppy drive... explaining to my boss that not only had I killed the laptop drive but my machine as well was NOT fun!
Aracos 8th March 2011, 13:51 Quote
Can I just say....wow long legal bit :P
rinseout 8th March 2011, 14:06 Quote
Got a call from a uni student I knew a few years back "why is my computer making an odd scraping noise?".
I thought it'd just be fan bearing or something, until I saw the fridge magnets on her case...
No pic though, soz.
flibblesan 8th March 2011, 14:51 Quote
Pics or it didn't happen people!

:)
mi1ez 8th March 2011, 14:53 Quote
I wish I had a picture of "the soup incident"!
Woodspoon 8th March 2011, 15:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by flibblesan
Pics or it didn't happen people!

:)

not really much point in some cases, I could post a pic but it would just look like a normal card, a toasted gpu looks pretty much the same as a normal gpu, lol.
warejon9 8th March 2011, 15:14 Quote
Sadly i don't have any pictures, but don't intend to win. I had two things happen. One was my friends computer wouldn't boot up properly. He was quite messy so thought first would open it up. Once opened had found that some ants had moved in a decided to setup their own little colony, which hadn't gone down too well, as they'd been carrying sugar around with them wherever they went due to all the sweets. The sugar had fried and just left black marks all over the place, lovelly.
Another story was, i'd custom fitted a new VGA cooler onto my trusty Nvidia 4700Ti ( it was a 4 series can't remeber the exact model but had 64 VGA RAM PHOAR!). Everything was fine for a long time, then one day it started to artifact and just be generally messed up, untill eventually it wouldn't boot. After taking the card out noticed a brown dust over the heatsink, and realised some of the capacitors had exploded (from what i can recall it happend quite a lot with the older non solid state capacitors)
j_jay4 8th March 2011, 15:17 Quote
I've got a couple of story's but you don't tend to be in the mood to take a photo when you're at the lowest point in your relationship with your latest bit of kit.
I blew up a PSU once. When I was doing my first new build the computer wouldn't boot up and I was trying everything to get it working. I wondered what the red switch on the back of the PSU did, maybe it was on the wrong setting? I flicked it and 240V shot through a PSU that was now set to accept 110V, there was a big blue flash, a bang and then a very sad looking boys face. Luckily none of my other hardware was affected. If I had bought a decent PSU there wouldn't have been a red, blow up PSU button on it, which taught me a great lesson, always buy a good quality PSU and never flick red switches. I got a Tagan after that so it worked out for the best in the end.
My first attempt at cable braiding didn't go too well in the end either. I had painstakingly removed all the molex connectors on my PSU, braided the wires and replaced them, plugged everything back in and then my HD wasn't detected. No bangs or flashes this time, but I had put the yellow and red wires the wrong way round to the hard drive which killed the controller card and cost me another few pennys for a new HD. Nowadays most PSUs come cable braided already so I haven't been tempted to give it another go.
Looking back I think all Hardware enthusiasts should probably go thru an electrician's crash course before touching anything first. Or at least I should of done.
grimerking 8th March 2011, 15:24 Quote
I once overloaded a generic 300W power supply and it melted and fused the ATX power connector to the motherboard. Unfortunately, I didn't have the foresight to take a picture.
chris66 8th March 2011, 15:27 Quote
I remember the very first PC I built (AMD 2500 Barton and Radeon 9700 Pro on an Asus A78 NX mobo-or something like that..)

I bought a JeanTech 450w PSU from PC World (as I 'forgot' about buying a PSU when ordering the other parts..)

I had no idea what the small connector was for on the PSU, so ignored it. Started the PC and a minute or so later - BANG! Smoke everywhere, and the smell! I though my whole new system was toast! What I realised, with hindsight, was the fact that it blew up due to me not connecting the PSU fan connector. The insides of the PSU were melted almost beyong recognition.

I took the PSU back to PC World and got another (they replaced it as faulty!) - and much to my surprise, the PC worked fine!

It may have been a cheap and cheerful PSU by today's standards, but it did protect the PC.
tonyd223 8th March 2011, 16:12 Quote
I was in a warehouse installing a new PC. Needed to run a network cable into the office and decided to drill through the window frame. Not only did the glass shatter, but the power cable which had been clipped to the outside of the frame didn't appreciate the drill trying to go through - melted the drill bit, tripped all power in the warehouse and blew up the drill. How did I survive that! LOL
[GAH] Cheesey 8th March 2011, 16:21 Quote
I went out to attempt to fix a duff Dell PC for my work. Tried to start it up and got nothing. Opened the case up and a cricket jumped out of the case and across the office floor.

Luckily only one cricket was alive as the rest had perished inside the case. Not, however, before crapping all over the motherboard and setting up camp inside the PSU where heads, legs and other insect limbs got stuck in the blades of the PSU fan. I'll be haunted for a few years yet seeing the little heads spinning round as the machine got switched on.

Turns out the employee opposite bought crickets for her pets at home and some escaped.
l3w1z 8th March 2011, 16:22 Quote
I think I have one that wins....

I've bought a macbook.
edzieba 8th March 2011, 16:25 Quote
This came in for repair, the fault being 'It turns off a few seconds after post'. Sure enough, you barely had a few seconds of bios before it shut down. The outside was filthy, but nothing unusual, and I gave it a cursory quick clean before handling it. Little did I know that the inside was far worse than usual.
http://img231.imageshack.us/i/img0022dj.jpg/http://img34.imageshack.us/i/img0023ql.jpg/http://img689.imageshack.us/i/img0024be.jpg/http://img690.imageshack.us/i/img0025myw.jpg/http://img145.imageshack.us/i/img0026tp.jpg/
Yes, that is at least an average plantpot-full of a mix of fine dry soil and ash. The shadow in the corner of the forth image is no shadow, it's a Filth-drift. The impossibly gleaming white outside of the case is actually a grubby brown-grey, the exposure control had to get that low just to resolve the inside of the case.

Turns out the HSF retention bracket had shattered on two corners, allowing the ingress of Filth between it and the CPU, causing the thermal cutout to trip. A new bracket (and a damn good cleaning) later, and the box works perfectly.

I don't know what environment it was operating in, and I don't think I want to know.
skreenname 8th March 2011, 16:26 Quote
The worst I've got is when I was installing a Scythe Ninja Mini, I was trying to get the clips over the plastic bit around the CPU [Lug? Lug sounds silly.] and couldn't get it to work.
So I tried using a screwdriver, it worked.
But when I booted up my PC The temps were WORSE than with the stock cooler.
So I took the heatsink off, replaced the stock CPU, cleaned the mini, checked temps.
Back where they were.
So I go to put the Mini back on and it's not going on by hand again so I use the screwdriver again.
Bad Idea, it slips and I stab some crucial connection on the mobo, killing it instantly.
So long first motherboard.

the only thing other than that is when I was handling my CPU and It slipped out of my hands and hit the table pins first.
Only a few were bent, and I put them back in place and it still works like new.
Scared the piss out of me though.

Another time I was installing XP on a hard drive for my dad, and I ended up with three half instlled copies of XP replacing my OS.

I -really- wish I had some horrifying story.
The Monk 8th March 2011, 16:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by j_jay4

I blew up a PSU once. When I was doing my first new build the computer wouldn't boot up and I was trying everything to get it working. I wondered what the red switch on the back of the PSU did, maybe it was on the wrong setting? I flicked it and 240V shot through a PSU that was now set to accept 110V, there was a big blue flash, a bang and then a very sad looking boys face. Luckily none of my other hardware was affected. If I had bought a decent PSU there wouldn't have been a red, blow up PSU button on it, which taught me a great lesson, always buy a good quality PSU and never flick red switches.

I've done that :(
schmidtbag 8th March 2011, 17:52 Quote
there was a time i worked at this computer repair clinic and a smoker brought in their computer. i wasn't told what was wrong with it, just the fact that it wasn't working. so i plug it in and turn it on and found it to be 100% silent. on top of that, windows would bluescreen. so i open it up and it wasn't very dusty but there was this disgusting smell dark brown gooey stuff with dust particles inside it, and this "tar" was so thick it actually stopped all the fans from moving. since the "tar" stopped the fans, the computer got really hot on the inside and the stuff was burnt on most of the warm surfaces on the computer.
i attempted to clean the fans so they'd move again, but only the cpu fan would begin rotating. i had to replace one of the other fans, and the video card was defective due to overheating.
adidan 8th March 2011, 18:09 Quote
I posted this some time ago. My first mod was unintentional.
http://i1176.photobucket.com/albums/x325/adidan_cpc/DSC00614.jpg

And modded:
http://i1176.photobucket.com/albums/x325/adidan_cpc/DSC00615.jpg

As you can see, I've added a new chip. It's fine when it runs cool, gets a bit unstable when running hot.

Benchmarked with water, tea and coffee.
Azayles 8th March 2011, 18:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidan
I posted this some time ago. My first mod was unintentional.
http://i1176.photobucket.com/albums/x325/adidan_cpc/DSC00614.jpg

And modded:
http://i1176.photobucket.com/albums/x325/adidan_cpc/DSC00615.jpg

As you can see, I've added a new chip. It's fine when it runs cool, gets a bit unstable when running hot.

Benchmarked with water, tea and coffee.
All you need now is two girls and some piano music.
Salty Wagyu 8th March 2011, 18:38 Quote
That case is so f***ing filthy I'm surprised it worked after being cleaned out.

This wasn't a mod as such, I had to take out an old Abit board as it failed. I managed to damage the tip of one screw when I was dismounting it, I ended up having to snap it off instead. The result (click to enlarge):

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/12843960/abit_board_snap.jpg
Lance 8th March 2011, 19:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salty Wagyu
That case is so f***ing filthy I'm surprised it worked after being cleaned out.

This wasn't a mod as such, I had to take out an old Abit board as it failed. I managed to damage the tip of one screw when I was dismounting it, I ended up having to snap it off instead. The result (click to enlarge):

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/12843960/abit_board_snap.jpg

Oh snap! :|
B1GBUD 8th March 2011, 19:18 Quote
I remember a time when my younger brother was doing some troubleshooting for a friend, PC wouldn't boot, so he flicked the switch on his PSU to 110v...... BANG!

A picture of the guys face would have been FTW
Baz 8th March 2011, 19:37 Quote
Some great entries here. Me likey. MOAR!
tranc3 8th March 2011, 19:46 Quote
I suppose this counts? Even if we created the situation...nA0w-LXCkms
13eightyfour 8th March 2011, 19:47 Quote
Ive posted these before, but ill post them again.

This is from a computer that i was told kept shutting down and was generally really slow!
http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=518&pictureid=5416
http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=518&pictureid=5417
http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=518&pictureid=5418
http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=518&pictureid=5419

All from the same comp, its the only computer ive had to put gloves of to work on! and the smell was disgusting
thehippoz 8th March 2011, 20:05 Quote
might be able to dig up a cyrix heatsink.. remember the rig it was in, there was a gi joe sliding around the bottom of the case with a small screwdriver

ok the above poster wins xD
shanky887614 8th March 2011, 20:16 Quote
years ago when i first staretd with pc's i put a ddr1 stick in the wrong way and when i turned it on pop, and then no life in the system,

the board had actually set on fire and black marks over it and the power suply and the motherboard were both fried and ended up having to buy new motherboard,psu and cpu
PureSilver 8th March 2011, 22:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by 13eightyfour
Ive posted these before, but ill post them again. [Unimaginably horrible PC] All from the same comp, its the only computer ive had to put gloves of to work on! and the smell was disgusting

Have you ever just looked at a client's PC, and just said 'F*** off.'?
dark_avenger 8th March 2011, 23:19 Quote
Actually a pic my mate took fixing his mum's PC

http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=1246&pictureid=17313

Had a similar one happen at work where a mouse had crawled into a printer and gotten shorted across the 240v fuse, wasn't very pretty :P
Darkened 9th March 2011, 00:22 Quote
No photos, but this happened in a pc shop where I was working.

We built a rather expensive (at the time) watercooled machine for an upcoming show. It featured an EVGA fully watercooled motherboard, two 8800 Ultras which were also factory watercooled and a lot of other stuff as well.

The show went well and the machine was returned to the shop and it was kept in there as a show piece for the customers.

One day I walked past it and looked at the coolant. It was originally blue and now it was transparent, well the "color" was on the bottom of the reservoir and probably in all of the waterblocks (about 7 of them in the system). Coolant level was also lower than it was before...

I immediately shut it down, carried it away from the shop to the back room. There was a lot of problems with the computer, but one in particular. The person who assembled the machine was in a hurry before the show and the only coolant we had in the shop at that moment was Zalman branded. Not a good move with Innovatek blocks :D

All 7 blocks were corroded, some of them so badly that they had leaked the coolant all over the mobo and the two graphics cards. It was a pretty cool sight when I opened the GPU blocks and they were so corroded that there were "canals" going under the O-rings.

All in all, everything worked even after being wet, but finding air cooling parts for a factory watercooled mobo and cards was really hard.

The impression on my bosses face was priceless after the initial report though :D

Darkened
manowarrior 9th March 2011, 00:52 Quote
The fan stopped working on my XFX HD 4890 and their support team refused to send out a replacement.

So I removed the fan and drilled a couple of holes in the case then screwed a fan over the hole...

http://img502.imageshack.us/img502/955/copyofimage008.jpg

Kinda overkill but it did the job and has been working fine for months now with no problems.
Bad_cancer 9th March 2011, 04:34 Quote
I'm usually very careful when changing parts over and stuff so I don't have many horror stories. but this one time, I had just bought a new hard drive and was proceeding to the installation. I had installed it correctly and now was time to transfer all my precious data from a smaller hard drive to the bigger new one.

When I say precious, I mean precious. So I plug the molex in and turn the PC on, and BANG! flash of light and smoke.

Turns out I had managed to put a molex connector (that connects only one way) in upside down. God knows how. The driver board was burnt with nice shades of yellow.

I had a second Hdd that was the exact same make and model in my dad's pc. So I tried swapping the boards, but apparently the heads had been damaged too cause all I got was a scraping sound form the Hdd.

Bye bye precious data. you should have seen my face :(
sakzzz 9th March 2011, 04:46 Quote
My recent heartbreak... was installing the components in my new case while it laid sideways... Peeked inside to check AND the silver chain around my neck swung towards my ATI 4670(PCB side)....BOOOM....
adidan 9th March 2011, 08:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sakzzz
silver chain around my neck
If there ever was yet another reason not to wear a silver chain that is it. :D
GuilleAcoustic 9th March 2011, 09:40 Quote
It was back in 2001, and no camera on those time. I was fixing a compaq computer for a friend of mine.

The computer was shutting itself down after a few minutes. I immediately though of over heating causing the computer to secure himself by turning off.

I opened the case and OMG !!!! This was not only dust, but a dust forest .... no no no .... it was dust paradise !! Every holes, every heat-sink fins were obstructed, the mobo was lying on a dust bed. There were missing fins on CPU fans. Screws were moving freely inside the case (still a miracle that nothing blew due to the screws making an unwanted contact).

I unmounted all heat-sink and washed them because the air blower wasn't enough to remove the dust, blew all the dust out of the case (I was on the garden, didn't wan't to ruin my bedroom) ... i coughed.

When everything was back in place, I turned the computer on, but noticed that the PSU fans wasn't turning anymore due to long hairs wound around its axis. I removed the hairs from the psu which began to rotate ... and the PSU spitted a thick cloud of dust right into my face ... coughed again.

When everything was back to a clean PC, I came to my friend with the computer .... and saw the desk (sticky), the keyboard (cover with a plastic sheet, itself covered by cigarette ashes), the monitor (yellowish and burned by candles flame) ...

I wish I had a camera ! But I'm still wondering how a computer can be treated that way
tonyd223 9th March 2011, 10:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidan
Quote:
Originally Posted by sakzzz
silver chain around my neck
If there ever was yet another reason not to wear a silver chain that is it. :D

LOL! cue music from a Lynx advert...
tonyd223 9th March 2011, 10:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lance
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salty Wagyu
That case is so f***ing filthy I'm surprised it worked after being cleaned out.

This wasn't a mod as such, I had to take out an old Abit board as it failed. I managed to damage the tip of one screw when I was dismounting it, I ended up having to snap it off instead. The result (click to enlarge):

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/12843960/abit_board_snap.jpg

Oh snap! :|

Winner!
l3v1ck 9th March 2011, 11:25 Quote
Thankfully the worst I've come across when opening someone's PC is a mountain of dust. I've never had the misfortune to see anything serious.
Ontheronix 9th March 2011, 13:12 Quote
How long will this competition be open and is it open for european contestors too ?
blueruin 9th March 2011, 13:30 Quote
Last year I decided to build an Desktop to be used as an HTPC out of the perfectly fine components that no longer met the grade for my Gaming rig. I built these in an old plastic transparent (goldfish bowl) type case that I used to think was cool. For this build I needed a new PSU.

So built the PC everything running fine and I'm installing windows, while I'm waiting I'm absent-mindedly stroking the front of the case with my foot (wearing big sports socks) of course this is right where the USB ports are on the front panel. Next thing there was a modest sounding fizzzit a light whiff of blue smoke and the PC died.

I reckon my sock plus plastic case = way too much static. After much testing this cost me another PSU, new motherboard and invested in a proper HTPC case. No photos because none of the fried components had a mark on them, anyone want a transparent case?
ch424 9th March 2011, 18:03 Quote
There's some impressive ones in the Reg article about it :D http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/11/13/ventblockers/print.html
Valinor 9th March 2011, 18:13 Quote
I had a cheap 300w PSU a while ago in an Athlon 64 X2 system, which was all running fine. Then there was some promotion on packets of mini-rolls, where I got enough packets to get a USB lava lamp (good ol' mini-rolls). I plugged in the lava lamp, turned my computer on and BANG, a nice-but-short light show and the PSU had been overloaded.

2nd failure - trying to replace the stock cooler on my Phenom II X4... The TIM had set to a rubber-like consistency, and was acting akin to glue. I was tugging on the cooler so much trying to get it off the CPU while still in the motherboard that when it finally came out I lost my balance and knocked some of the pins of the CPU against the side of my case, necessitating careful replacement of the pins for the next hour with a screwdriver and plenty of patience. What amazes me is that it's still working after that - those fragile-yet-resilient CPU pins...

And no, I didn't take pictures at the time because I had misplaced my crystal ball and so had no way of fortelling the arrival of this competition.
Cheapskate 9th March 2011, 19:08 Quote
@13eightyfour - I've seen a few like that. Was too busy holding my nose shut to think of snapping a pic.:(
We had one so bad that it had to be taken to the driveway and blasted out with the air compressor. It scared the hell out of me when a ferret-sized chunk of crud jumped out.
Video would have been nice. You could have heard me scream like a little girl too.
Brown= tobacco
Grey= weed
The one I mentioned above involved weed+tobacco+cat.

I do have some trashed house pics that could win this, though... Pity it's 'pooters.
big F 9th March 2011, 21:08 Quote
Over the years I have seen my fair share of user initiated failures, like guy who called me round as his pc was running really slowly after his CPU upgrade, and had some how jammed his old AMD (pre athalon) Cooler on to his nice new Athalon 1200, wit disastrous results, the tennis ball sized ball of compacted dust running around a server at work, the PSU I had that caught fire, but didn't kill the mobo. Most impressive though was my Uncles office PC which I had built for him only months before, His office is quite remote so the internet was until recently dial up. Well one night we had a very large thunder storm, I had loads of calls the next day for cooked modems due to a strike at the top of my road, My uncle phones me as he finds his pc wont dial up after they had a strike on the phone pole outside his work shop, Upon opening it I found his modem was black and all the components were melted on the bottom of the case, Fearing the worse I pulled the card a tried to boot the P.C, it booted first time without any issues, when I put in another identical modem card it dialed up with out any issues. this P.C is still in service 8 years later, complete with its scorch mark in the case.
bulldogjeff 9th March 2011, 21:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by dark_avenger
Actually a pic my mate took fixing his mum's PC

http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=1246&pictureid=17313

Had a similar one happen at work where a mouse had crawled into a printer and gotten shorted across the 240v fuse, wasn't very pretty :P
I thought the mouse went on the desk near the key board. how could i have been so wrong for all these years:(
Baz 10th March 2011, 11:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ontheronix
How long will this competition be open and is it open for european contestors too ?

It's open to April 7th, but we may extend it to a monthly compo if the response is good enough.

Yes, it's open to European contestants.
adidan 10th March 2011, 15:12 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baz
if the response is good enough.
http://i1176.photobucket.com/albums/x325/adidan_cpc/DSC00614.jpg

I don't think anything could be more horrific for a CPC reader. I still have Post Cup Breaking Stress Disorder.

Tea helps though.
hiperboreus 11th March 2011, 06:50 Quote
http://www.tomshardware.com/picturestory/565-dusty-pc-clogged-fan-dirty-power-supply.html for lovely photos. Parallels are remarcable with the subject at hand...
MattyD 11th March 2011, 19:58 Quote
Being one of the first people I knew to own a 3D accelerator card (A 3Dfx Voodoo 1 with 1Mb RAM LOL) only for the chip to go POP and spray hot metal all over the innards of my case when I switched it on was pretty nightmarish. I saved for months to buy it too. Sadly no pics!
GuilleAcoustic 12th March 2011, 13:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyD
Being one of the first people I knew to own a 3D accelerator card (A 3Dfx Voodoo 1 with 1Mb RAM LOL) only for the chip to go POP and spray hot metal all over the innards of my case when I switched it on was pretty nightmarish. I saved for months to buy it too. Sadly no pics!

I had the same with my good'ol voodoo 2 8Mo ... I was playing and then POP, beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep, black screen, smoke and burnt smell.

No GPU heat-sink bach on those time. I remeber that was really tricky to make a voodoo2 feet my computer, always something in the way (in my case that was the CPU being aligned with the PCI slots.

I went out of IRQ too when changing my sound card for a beautiful sound blaster AWE64 (2 requiered and only 1 left ... had to disable a serial port) xD.
Action_Parsnip 12th March 2011, 22:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by manowarrior
The fan stopped working on my XFX HD 4890 and their support team refused to send out a replacement.

So I removed the fan and drilled a couple of holes in the case then screwed a fan over the hole...

http://img502.imageshack.us/img502/955/copyofimage008.jpg

Kinda overkill but it did the job and has been working fine for months now with no problems.


DUDE! I got that excact same card and it has the _WORST_ cooler imaginable on it. Such cheap sh1te it's untrue. The fan started to go (bearing) after a couple of moonths, making a loud and very unhealthy droning sound until it had warmed up (from cold start). That was ages ago though and its just plateued as is; loud and ineffective. 85% typical gaming fan speed, 82 degrees load temps. W@nk XFX just a pure W@NKY job the whole way. Oh and its a non-reference pcb so no software voltage control :/

Why wouldnt they accept the return??????
adidan 12th March 2011, 22:39 Quote
Lol, I don't see any can opener indentations there though you cheat. :)
carpetmonster 12th March 2011, 22:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidan
Lol, I don't see any can opener indentations there though you cheat. :)

Comedy value though. Took that in 2007. The disk drive is a 20GB Maxtor. Should have seen all the internets that spilled out when I opened it up.
adidan 12th March 2011, 22:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by carpetmonster
Comedy value though. Took that in 2007. The disk drive is a 20GB Maxtor. Should have seen all the internets that spilled out when I opened it up.
Nice photo mate, just needs Fray Bentos printed on the casing. :)

So it was you who broke the interwebs and lost me my connection back then... Why, I oughta ....

:D
Mach 13th March 2011, 01:57 Quote
A new tool will make you look for excuses to use it. Such was the case with a new Hakko 808 desoldering tool.

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_UdQdiSb7gT4/SsikG-R1arI/AAAAAAAAHIs/jC7uhG8rY-I/s640/IMG_5790.JPG

A DC-DC converter unconditionally surrendered its 20 pin ATX connector

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_UdQdiSb7gT4/Ssij9oUo51I/AAAAAAAAHIM/OnGdyFJ1-DQ/s640/IMG_5748.JPG

Moving on to bigger targets, a new Zotac 9300 ITX motherboard. The 4 pin connector jumped from the board when threatened with the Hakko 808

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_UdQdiSb7gT4/StKSK0VtOfI/AAAAAAAAIGU/HAu1zwUpheY/s640/IMG_5815.JPG

Bwahhaha, I laugh at warranties. Next up the 24 pin ATX connector.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_UdQdiSb7gT4/StKSObS_FWI/AAAAAAAAIGc/zeY3bZImpgM/s640/IMG_5816.JPG

Mistakes were made. :( Another motherboard for the parts pile.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_UdQdiSb7gT4/StKSQyEBvoI/AAAAAAAAIGk/3RnBN0vKJKE/s640/IMG_5820.JPG

To answer the obvious question, I was reversing the ATX and 4 pin connectors on the motherboard to hide the wire routing.
creative1742 13th March 2011, 12:58 Quote
My friends mom's Dell I was working on, but However it randomly shut-down go figure.

http://i1193.photobucket.com/albums/aa354/Creative1742/IMG00055-20090423-1007.jpg
TARIKK 13th March 2011, 16:37 Quote
Just an hour ago, while I was watching movie, suddenly a smoke came out from the case

It was a Gigabyte EP35c-DS3R, with a Q6600 at stock speed. Didn't understand why :'(
Hope only damage is at the motherboard...

http://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l604/tarikkepce/DSC01094.jpg

http://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l604/tarikkepce/DSC01092.jpg

http://i1126.photobucket.com/albums/l604/tarikkepce/DSC01095.jpg
carpetmonster 13th March 2011, 17:38 Quote
VRM burnout...no heatsinks !
Wicked_Sludge 13th March 2011, 21:48 Quote
^ya where'd your heatsinks go?

also, cool ram!
Mankz 14th March 2011, 04:27 Quote
TARIKK 14th March 2011, 13:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wicked_Sludge
^ya where'd your heatsinks go?

also, cool ram!

Hi,
These motherboards do not have heatsinks, at least Gigabyte thinks that it isn't neccessary :)
Xir 14th March 2011, 13:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TARIKK
Hi,
These motherboards do not have heatsinks, at least Gigabyte thinks that it isn't neccessary :)
not when they're in the airflow of the boxed, downflow cooler, no. :D
As you've chosen to go with watercooling though...

So little pictures, I thought this was a picture contest, not a story contest
BlackRaven 14th March 2011, 14:21 Quote
No pick but I was working in a steel factory around 10 years ago. Anyway I got called on to repair a broken siemens pc that was on the production floor.
Long story short the whole thing was coated in metallic dust.
There was a special card in the pc that was linked in to the production unit. I replaced the pc and got lucky as the board had not failed. PC had to be sourced trough siemens and cost 5000 euro since it was the only one that would work with the card. This thing had been in the production floor for close to 5 years.
manowarrior 14th March 2011, 19:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Action_Parsnip
Quote:
Originally Posted by manowarrior
The fan stopped working on my XFX HD 4890 and their support team refused to send out a replacement.

So I removed the fan and drilled a couple of holes in the case then screwed a fan over the hole...

http://img502.imageshack.us/img502/955/copyofimage008.jpg

Kinda overkill but it did the job and has been working fine for months now with no problems.


DUDE! I got that excact same card and it has the _WORST_ cooler imaginable on it. Such cheap sh1te it's untrue. The fan started to go (bearing) after a couple of moonths, making a loud and very unhealthy droning sound until it had warmed up (from cold start). That was ages ago though and its just plateued as is; loud and ineffective. 85% typical gaming fan speed, 82 degrees load temps. W@nk XFX just a pure W@NKY job the whole way. Oh and its a non-reference pcb so no software voltage control :/

Why wouldnt they accept the return??????

They wouldn't accept a return because it was just out of warranty, doubaly rubbish because it was a Christmas gift one year and it went kaput just before Christmas the next year (thats christmas just gone), HOWEVER it was purchaced in November so I was left in need of a paddle.

They refused to send out a replacement fan because XFX's support is an unfunny joke.
Because the cooler was not a stock one I was unable to use an aftermarket cooling option, so I got handy with my drill.

I'll never purchace an XFX card again.

Moral of the story is gon't go for the cheap option, spend the £20 more for a better card with your perfered chipset.
Xir 15th March 2011, 15:23 Quote
I wouldn't wonder if the fan you bolted on was stronger and quieter than the original.
That's not a mishap, that's a successfull mod ;)
Action_Parsnip 16th March 2011, 23:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by manowarrior
They wouldn't accept a return because it was just out of warranty, doubaly rubbish because it was a Christmas gift one year and it went kaput just before Christmas the next year (thats christmas just gone), HOWEVER it was purchaced in November so I was left in need of a paddle.

They refused to send out a replacement fan because XFX's support is an unfunny joke.
Because the cooler was not a stock one I was unable to use an aftermarket cooling option, so I got handy with my drill.

I'll never purchace an XFX card again.

Moral of the story is gon't go for the cheap option, spend the £20 more for a better card with your perfered chipset.

Ah thanks for explaining!

Yeah my 4870 512mb died pretty much exactly 2 years to the day I bought it, had a budget of £120.00 max to get a replacement, only option at the time was the 5770 - this was a while ago - so I found one of the _very_ last 4890s in the country. Didn't know it was a non-reference pile of poo. Im hoping it dies within the 1 year warranty period so I can get them to replace it with something less awful to listen to.

Is the mod any better than the stock fan??
Wicked_Sludge 16th March 2011, 23:45 Quote
i thought all of xfx's cards had a double lifetime warranty?
Xir 17th March 2011, 08:29 Quote
in the US, maybe ;-)
Pot Of Jam 17th March 2011, 11:16 Quote
I remember at a LAN party we had this guy, wouldn't call him a friend maybe "someone I have come to know". But he was one of these people who talked the talk but when it came to it knew nothing about hardware.

So on this LAN he was installing a new HSF, for reasons I can't remember, but after he installed it and booted up his PC all looked well. Till we could all smell burning plastic... Yes you guessed it, the nonce had left the plastic cover on the HSF. We have a picture of the exact moment it had dawned on him. Classic photography and classic idiocy. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy either!

And Steve if your reading this don't deny it, we have the evidence!
Xir 17th March 2011, 12:40 Quote
well in with the pic, that's what this thread is for!
Pot Of Jam 17th March 2011, 12:52 Quote
Well I'm typing this on my iPad, pics at home so I will post when I have it ;)
.//TuNdRa 17th March 2011, 20:10 Quote
Probably the best abomination (Or hardware win, depending on how you look at it) is the old motherboard in the loft somewhere. The HDD was knocked on it by an ickle me, cracking it in two. What happens? Dad Solders the damn thing together with a chunk of cabling. I still do not know, to this day, what other witchcraft was done to make it work.

I suspect I used to have siblings, though.

Need to go up there with my camera at some point. Perhaps when i'm rifling through for old parts again for whatever reason.
NickCPC 18th March 2011, 09:08 Quote
I tried to fix a no-display 4870X2 about a year ago with the oven method after successfully resuscitating a couple of dead 8800GTs. Set it up as I usually did, stripped everything off the card, laid it face down on 4 small foil balls and fired up the oven. Smelt the solder so knew it was nearly done (i.e. less than a minute to go), but my phone rang. After answering and literally just saying "I'll call you back" i turned the oven off and retrieved the 4870X2 only to see three capacitors simply drop off while being moved to the tabletop, along with the 6 pin plug. I managed to get the plug soldered back on but the caps were a lost cause, and the X2 was dead as a dodo.

Still, worth a shot as it was only £20 off eBay!
.//TuNdRa 18th March 2011, 11:39 Quote
I'm also reminded of the hackery I had to do to one Bitfenix Spectre Fan (200 MM) to get it to fit to those "200mm" fan mounting holes on the side panel of the NZXT Phantom.

Trying to punch through ABS plastic with nothing more than a set of screwdrivers takes friggin' ages.
Xir 18th March 2011, 11:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by .//TuNdRa
Need to go up there with my camera at some point. Perhaps when i'm rifling through for old parts again for whatever reason.

Well, get up there, that sounds like what this is about! ;)
SMIFFYDUDE 18th March 2011, 17:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickCPC
I tried to fix a no-display 4870X2 about a year ago with the oven method after successfully resuscitating a couple of dead 8800GTs. Set it up as I usually did, stripped everything off the card, laid it face down on 4 small foil balls and fired up the oven. Smelt the solder so knew it was nearly done (i.e. less than a minute to go), but my phone rang. After answering and literally just saying "I'll call you back" i turned the oven off and retrieved the 4870X2 only to see three capacitors simply drop off while being moved to the tabletop, along with the 6 pin plug. I managed to get the plug soldered back on but the caps were a lost cause, and the X2 was dead as a dodo.

Still, worth a shot as it was only £20 off eBay!

I've just baked my 8800GTS back to life after reading this.
Nexxo 18th March 2011, 20:19 Quote
http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e314/Nexxo00/DSC_0501Medium.jpg

Yeah, that's smoke coming out of my PC Power & Cooling PSU. The PC kept running though.
Action_Parsnip 18th March 2011, 23:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo


Yeah, that's smoke coming out of my PC Power & Cooling PSU. The PC kept running though.

ye gads ive got a PC Power & Cooling supply!
moo123 19th March 2011, 07:35 Quote
Been following this site but I had to make an account to vent my recent frustrations as soon as I saw this article.

My motherboard went kaputz 2 weeks ago (won't turn on) so I went out to buy an Asus Sabertooth X58 since it was the least expensive board on the market and I didn't want to sink any more money into an end of the line socket.

When I got the system up and running I realized my tower was emitting this annoying whine. Originally I thought it was the PSU but after testing with another unit and seeing the same problem I suspected it was the motherboard. It took me about a week to diagnose the problem as C1E whine (board automatically underclocks the CPU when its not loaded, the fluctuating power draw causes the coils to whine). Seeing nothing of the matter on line, I decided to return the board to the retailer in hopes of getting it replaced. However, they ended up scrutinizing every little detail and managed to find a pin just SLIGHTLY bent and says its considered physical damage and I had to send it back to Asus.

I figured I might as well just turn C1E off and forgo RMAing the board so I put the system back together. As soon as I turn the computer on I see smoke coming out of one of the DIMMs and the scent of burnt IC flooded the room. Turn the computer off, remove the middle DIMM, boots into Windows no problem - with 2 GB of RAM. Turns out another DIMM socket also blew out but there was no smoke.

So now I have a board going back to Asus and hopefully RAM going back to OCZ (who just pulled out of the RAM business). Great, what started out as a broken motherboard might end up costing over 400 dollars in parts and shipping.

http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a325/DNLM/SAM_0167.jpg
.//TuNdRa 19th March 2011, 11:54 Quote
Hokay, Whilst I was up and moving I thought i'd provide a little demonstration:

This, Children, is why you are supposed to use a Dremel:
http://img138.imageshack.us/i/p1000115r.jpg/
Looks fine at first, huh?
The screws that are in tell the same story.
http://img838.imageshack.us/i/p1000111y.jpg/
Then there's the hole where the screw wouldn't fit...
http://img28.imageshack.us/i/p1000114c.jpg/
Yeah. Hand-gouging your way through 1-2 mm of plastic using nothing more than a set of screwdrivers takes friggin ages!

I would take more pictures of the fan off the panel, but because of how hard it was to get the screws in the first time (Because of the diameter of the holes in relation to the screws) I'm not sure I can actually get the screws back out again...

EDIT: Whoops~ Left the camera in 16:9 mode. (Also, is the limit 800X600, or 640X480 for images? Sorry if I've broked it)
andrew8200m 19th March 2011, 12:22 Quote
Heres a few funny ones.. Not funny in terms of cost mind lol.

http://i51.tinypic.com/25i7m9e.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/2s85o2w.jpg

The joys of smashing the end of a 5970.. All you have to do is drop the PC with the card installed.

And the damage to the gigabyte X58 UD5 pci-e slot.

http://i54.tinypic.com/2j5o2ms.jpg



Theres been worse..
adidan 19th March 2011, 13:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Yeah, that's smoke coming out of my PC Power & Cooling PSU. The PC kept running though.
So when you see smoke you take a photo instead of turning it off? :D
JAMF 19th March 2011, 13:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by edzieba
I don't know what environment it was operating in, and I don't think I want to know.
Looks like a heavy smoker's machine. Possibly been standing on the floor for years and not much "hoovering" happened in it's vicinity. (Bachelor?) :D
Fozzy 19th March 2011, 14:46 Quote
I remember when I first bought my Q6600. My previous processor (single core AMD 3200+) had died and I wanted something that would overclock like crazy so I got the g0 stepping.

The first 3 months with the processor My motherboard kept acting funny and eventually died. I was watercooling at the time, so I decided to ditch watercooling all together because it was causing too many problems and I'm pretty sure is what killed my motherboard.

So I bought the best motherboard I could find for overclocking (Some DFI board) and a Big Heatsink that was supposedly the best at the time.

I couldn't figure out why my processor was constantly at 85 degrees and faulted by continuous reboots and bluescreens. for 6 months I tried everything from new drivers, fresh installs, bios updates.... you name it I did it and nothing helped. My processor was constantly cooking.

It wasn't until I decided to go back to watercooling that I removed the heatsink.....I never took off the plastic covering on the bottom of the heatsink.....
Haven't had a problem since.
FDAD 19th March 2011, 14:59 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by liratheal
The following is a picture of a companies main connection to their server.

http://i.imgur.com/rtg8Q.png

The story behind that electrical tape based ethernet extension is;

The company in question moved their server across a room - No one knows why - and discovered there were no network points. No fear! They had access to a drill and a few masonry bits, so away they went. Except, they didn't count on the size of the RJ45 plug, so of course, the cable wouldn't fit. Still, no worries, there's some side cutters and tape!

Their speed to the server, unsurprisingly, tanked completely. Yes, the connection is held together with electrical tape, yes the cables are twisted together.

My most head scratching encounter was when I went to a garage to do a physical and data cleanup of the PC's there. I expected them to be filthy, I mean, it is a dirty environment. For the most part, it was just dust colonies. Seriously, they'd developed space travel.

One machine, though, that was off the ground, away from most of the muck, and looked pretty good. Until I opened it. Sadly I didn't have a camera, or a camera phone, but it was literally coated with engine oil on the inside. Now, I don't mean there was a puddle, I mean the oil had become a sticky, matted, affair on everything, as if it had been introduced to the dust and dirt, then painted over every component in the PC. How the machine was still running, I will never know.

Sadly, I don't think I've caused any "meltdown" disasters..



That scared the crap out of me
And they say to their costumers "We have the most advanced.. etc tect etc.."
Nexxo 20th March 2011, 11:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidan
So when you see smoke you take a photo instead of turning it off? :D

Hey, I'm a geek. :p
Pot Of Jam 20th March 2011, 12:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
well in with the pic, that's what this thread is for!

as promised...

http://i166.photobucket.com/albums/u106/Pot_of_jam/193472_1939785020070_1405761167_32276464_5728926_o.jpg
edzieba 20th March 2011, 14:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by JAMF
Looks like a heavy smoker's machine. Possibly been standing on the floor for years and not much "hoovering" happened in it's vicinity. (Bachelor?) :D
No, smoker's machines generally have a very distinct smell, a yellow/brown tar coating, and the 'fluff' inside is fibrous. This dust was extremely fine and a very dark grey.
moo123 21st March 2011, 09:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by andrew8200m
Heres a few funny ones.. Not funny in terms of cost mind lol.

http://i51.tinypic.com/25i7m9e.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/2s85o2w.jpg

The joys of smashing the end of a 5970.. All you have to do is drop the PC with the card installed.

And the damage to the gigabyte X58 UD5 pci-e slot.

http://i54.tinypic.com/2j5o2ms.jpg



Theres been worse..

http://www.forumspile.com/Misc-OhSnap_Bear.jpg
Ontheronix 4th April 2011, 21:32 Quote
So here it goes ... i have a tendency to torture cpu's, or try to 'mod' them to get a better price/performance ratio. Although i used to, since these experiences i'm more carefull, because if you first destroy a cpu and then buy a new one with the plan to handle it with care, yeah that's kinda stupid. I could have bought a much better one immediately for twice the price of my dead 'overclocking beast'
So lessons well learned :D

Here goes the history from old to new:

The black one is a AMD Duron 1000Mhz, one of the first that would be molested, i once heard that overclocking could boost your performance, and although i can't remenber the exact progress of the story, i do remember that i booted the computer with the cooler on a block of wood, sitting on the VGA card, so it 'touches' the core. So no clamps or tension ... Needless to say, in a matter of seconds, smoke from burning thermal grease was seen :(
Overview of the collection cpu's that are now in cpu heaven:
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996726.jpg
The sanded coin, soldered to the removed IHS brings us to the following story:
I tried to remove the IHS from a E6750, in which i succeeded
But ... the cpu got severley damaged from all the dremel and drill working. Of course it didnt want to boot :(:( I even tried to solder back some small lanes or prints or whatever it is called ... you can guess it never came to life again. :(
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996729.jpg
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996805.jpg
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996806.jpg

This one, i can't remember what exactly had gone wrong with it, but i tried to make a keychain of it. The upper side went ok, just a bit of sanding, but the other side i did with a sanding machine, wich sanded half of the cpu away :(
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996730.jpg

http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996733.jpg

Here's the next one: (laptop socket 479 i think). Obvious one.
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996728.jpg


For the people who think it ends with cpu's ...
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996809.jpg
(It didn't fit in my flight case mod, so i made it fit )

And this is only the top of the iceberg ... here's some other junk i still have lying around from times long ago...
http://pic80.picturetrail.com/VOL952/7205667/13762801/395996808.jpg

For example (not in this picture, i can go and take one if someone wants me to :) ) i tried to extend the socket for the powerplug (socket like this one, but the female one) http://www.wellgainelectronics.com/ProductImages/connector/SINGATRON-CONNECTOR-AC-010%20AC%20SOCKET%20FOR%20IBM%20SW%20POWER%20SUPPLY%20%201PCS%20W2P222.JPG
and ran the powercable directly BETWEEN the motherboard and the backplate of the case, on wich the motherboard is mounted on. I even remember the motherboard being convex, because the cable was a bit to thick.... Imagine what would've happened if the sharp little pins of the motherboard punctured through the insulation of the 220V power cable. :D

As you can see, i destroyed lots of hardware :p So please bit-tech, pimp my pc with that shiny new KFA² GTX 460 1GB graphics card, i promise to never void its warranty :D
Ontheronix 7th April 2011, 19:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by bit-tech
Winners will be announced on 7 April
And the winner is ?
PureSilver 8th April 2011, 00:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ontheronix
And the winner is ?

I think in this competition we can agree that nobody really wins.
Ontheronix 8th April 2011, 10:40 Quote
xD And they gonna keep the KFA² GTX 460 for themselves ? ;)
andrew8200m 8th April 2011, 11:13 Quote
Not many entries tbh.. maybe an extension is going to be announced?
Ontheronix 8th April 2011, 20:15 Quote
And violating their own legal bit ? It would surprise me :|
andrew8200m 13th April 2011, 15:22 Quote
Quote:
*LEGAL BIT*
Entrants must hold copyright to all photos they submit. By submitting your photo and/or anecdote, you agree that Dennis Publishing Ltd and its licensees and partners may reproduce it without limitation. This is a non-exclusive license and you retain the copyright. We will select winning entries at our discretion and no correspondence will be entered into. Winners will be notified within 28 days of their selection, which is dependent on our editorial schedule. The competition is not open to employees of Dennis Publishing or participating companies. No cash alternative will be offered. The prizes described are available at the time of publication. Events may occur that render the promotion or awarding of a prize impossible due to reasons beyond Dennis Publishing’s control. We may at our discretion vary or amend the promotion and the reader agrees that no liability shall be attached to Dennis Publishing as a result thereof. Names of winners to date will be available on receipt of a request enclosing a stamped self-addressed envelope to: Competition Manager, Dennis Publishing, 30 Cleveland St, London W1T 4JD. It is a condition of entry that the entrant agrees to be bound by these rules whether they be published or not, and that the decision of the Editor and judges on any matter whatsoever arising out of or connected to this promotion are final. No purchase of the magazine is necessary.

Says they'll take up to 28 days for announcing the winner.

Having said that, trying to find the article from the main page is near enough impossible.. Maybe it got pulled?

Anywho.. few entries so bad times.
Fordy 16th April 2011, 19:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by law99
WIll you be judging with perfect 20 20 hindsight?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e314/Nexxo00/DSC_0501Medium.jpg

Yeah, that's smoke coming out of my PC Power & Cooling PSU. The PC kept running though.

Yeah, that's a 'shop.
Wicked_Sludge 16th April 2011, 21:25 Quote
even if it is, calling someone out like that is pretty inconsiderate.

what makes you think its chopped?
Fordy 16th April 2011, 21:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wicked_Sludge

what makes you think its chopped?

You say that as if it looks real to you!
Wicked_Sludge 16th April 2011, 21:29 Quote
so...no explanation then....
Picarro 16th April 2011, 21:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordy
You say that as if it looks real to you!

dude - if you are to disrespect one of the most respected members of the Bit-Tech forums, Nexxo, you'd better have some evidence!

Otherwise - this guy will see you to the door

http://monkeyfacenews.typepad.com/.a/6a0120a5c94e03970b0120a948d749970b-800wi
Fordy 16th April 2011, 21:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Picarro
dude - if you are to disrespect one of the most respected members of the Bit-Tech forums, Nexxo, you'd better have some evidence!

Otherwise - this guy will see you to the door

http://monkeyfacenews.typepad.com/.a/6a0120a5c94e03970b0120a948d749970b-800wi



Ha, ok I don't really frequent the forums here so I've no idea who's well respected etc.

I didn't mean any disrespect, if it's a shop, I don't care - it's quite good. If it's not - bad luck! And still pretty funny (albeit not at the time).
Azayles 16th April 2011, 21:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordy




Yeah, that's a 'shop.

Of course, because for a psu to malfunction and emit smoke is impossible, and has NEVER happened before EVER.
Fordy 16th April 2011, 23:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Azayles
Of course, because for a psu to malfunction and emit smoke is impossible, and has NEVER happened before EVER.

Woah, when did I ever say that?

It just doesn't look real to me. That smoke doesn't look right - whether the fan was on or off at the time.


But whatever, if it's real it's real I just thought the guy as joking. I didn't post any pics, so I'm not trying to discount the competition and get a win for myself or anything.


Cheers ;)
Azayles 16th April 2011, 23:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordy
Woah, when did I ever say that?

It just doesn't look real to me. That smoke doesn't look right - whether the fan was on or off at the time.


But whatever, if it's real it's real I just thought the guy as joking. I didn't post any pics, so I'm not trying to discount the competition and get a win for myself or anything.


Cheers ;)
You implied it when you said it was 'shopped. Things that are photoshopped are generally not real, as is the definition, therein lies the implication.
How does the smoke look "not right"?
Wicked_Sludge 16th April 2011, 23:28 Quote
seeing how there is no power cord plugged into the PSU, i would "assume" the fan is off. hence the smoke rolling lazily out of the top of the grill.
Fordy 17th April 2011, 00:12 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Azayles
You implied it when you said it was 'shopped. Things that are photoshopped are generally not real, as is the definition, therein lies the implication.
How does the smoke look "not right"?

Not real was exactly what I meant. What you said was that I implied it "was not possible and has never happened" - that is not the case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wicked_Sludge
seeing how there is no power cord plugged into the PSU, i would "assume" the fan is off. hence the smoke rolling lazily out of the top of the grill.

Good point, I said whether on or off though.



Look guys, as I believe I have made perfectly clear, I don't care whether it's legit or not - I called it out as I though Nexxo was joking, it just seems like CGI smoke, I can't really explain - I've seen my fair share of smoking components, and they've never been so light and wispy.
andrew8200m 20th April 2011, 21:48 Quote
Thread de-rail of justice lol!

Looks like smoke to me,... only say that as thats EXACTLY how the look when they pop and ive seen plenty!
Salty Wagyu 24th April 2011, 01:30 Quote
Any news on this? Thought winners were going to be announced on the 7th
andrew8200m 6th May 2011, 11:56 Quote
This get canned then? :p
Fordy 6th May 2011, 17:16 Quote
Wouldn't blame them, barely anyone actually submitted pictures.
Quote:
Show us your hardware horrors

Not,
Quote:
Tell us a semi-believable hardware horror story
TARIKK 17th May 2011, 10:16 Quote
So really no announcement, if there is a winner, or if this is cancelled ?
I don't think that there will be any objection from anyone if you say sorry guys, but still say something.
adidan 17th May 2011, 10:20 Quote
Mentioning who won the prizes or not would be nice, so too would be to announce the winners of the prizes from Custom PC & bit-tech 2010 Awards (or make them easier to find).

I can't find them anywhere.
Baz 1st June 2011, 15:24 Quote
Not only do I have two winners, but I'll also be resurrecting this compo on a monthly basis! OooooooOOOOoo!
manowarrior 1st June 2011, 23:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baz
Not only do I have two winners, but I'll also be resurrecting this compo on a monthly basis! OooooooOOOOoo!


That is good news, THX for informing us...

Any word on when & where the winners will be announced would be appreciated.

Cheers!
andrew8200m 14th June 2011, 09:35 Quote
Ah thats nice to know, not sure how many months you could run this as pics would surely start to dry up? :p
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