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What is the name of this red circled thing? Why it got burned when I powered on?


I have bought a PC a month ago and it often (1 minute or less) automatically turns off.

Took to the store, they told me it is the "processor". I left the PC there for maintenance and after one month (today) I got the PC back.

When I powered on, went on BIOS, looked at the settings, fixed the clock. Suddenly PC powered off. When I pressed to power on again, I saw a "flame" from the hole of the cooler. I took out of the plug and opened the PC. Some little component was burned and melted (yes). But I don't know what is it. A transistor maybe. You can see what is it on the picture below.


So, what is the name? Is it really a transistor? Why did this thing get burnt? Is it possible that everything is gone too?

I guess it is not processor related. The power supply is the LPZ12-50 500W 12V with automatic 110 or 220 voltage detector

The model of the mobo: Intel dh61crbr


Here is the real photo, sorry for the delay, I was waiting for the battery of camera charge.


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Can you take a close-up photo of this component? – Renan Jul 15 '12 at 1:24
fixed the time and date – Stew Jul 15 '12 at 1:51
i updated the post with the real photo. can you take a look? thank you – Stew Jul 15 '12 at 2:16
As you can see, you have two similar components (one above and one below). I bet they're equal and equal to the one that burnt. – criziot Jul 15 '12 at 2:27
yes, but what they are? do you know the name? why THEY got burnt, and not another component. – Stew Jul 15 '12 at 2:32
up vote 3 down vote accepted

The component is too small in the photo, you need to take a close-up photo to be certain. The only other photos I could find with Google Images were these two: [1][2]

But, it is likely a voltage-regulator (figure 1). A voltage regulator does what its name suggests: it regulates the voltage so that it is regular and steady (which electronic components need). As such, it is susceptible to failure due to spikes and wear-and-tear.

I had an ASUS P4P800 that worked fine, then one day I turned it on and smelled burned electronics. The voltage-regulator on my board had burned and the plastic blistered and bubbled! (figure 2) I had to replace the motherboard, but the CPU, RAM and everything were okay (thankfully). It is also sort of like a fuse, so it should protect the rest of the system from burning out.

Voltage regulator

Burned voltage regulator

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I've found in the technical docs for this board that, in the picture, the area to the top and right of the processor is the voltage regulation area. Synetech is on the right track. – Patrick S. Jul 15 '12 at 1:27
Yeah, it's either one of the MOS switches or one of the inductors. Likely, the capacitors failed first and that caused the regulator to overload trying to compensate. Short answer: replace the motherboard. – David Schwartz Jul 15 '12 at 2:10
i updated the post with the real photo. can you take a look? thank you – Stew Jul 15 '12 at 2:14
@Stew, you can get the part-number from the other ones beside it to be sure exactly what it is (I think I can see a “640” on the top one), but yes, it looks like a voltage-regulator. Like David said, it could be one of the capacitors that failed (unfortunately too common with motherboards), but it doesn’t look like one of the ones in the photo. – Synetech Jul 15 '12 at 2:36
but the motherboard are brand new. this is sad. :( if it is the voltage regulator, maybe this happened because of the power supply or anything related? – Stew Jul 15 '12 at 2:38

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