I have a PC with a Gigabyte GA-945G-S3 rev 1.0 motherboard (Intel 945G+ ICH7 chipset). I got the PC from acquaintance and found out that integrated audio was damaged (noisy, distorted sound). Then I bought a cheap PCI sound card - CMI8738. I installed it and it worked for sometime, then it stopped. The m-board has 3 PCI slots, so I just put the card into the second slot. It worked, so I thought that maybe PCI slot failed (this PC is probably 9 years old). But some time later the card stopped working again. I reinstalled it into the remaining 3d slot. It worked for some time. Then yesterday, while watching youtube video it failed again.

Now I don't have spare PCI slots and I wanted to know whether it is just a coincidence that all 3 PCI slots failed or this card could damage them?

I have Windows 7 and Linux and card doesn't work in both so it must be a hardware problem.

  • sounds like MB , check for capacitors that are bulging even small ammounts. Or PSU problem, check with software how the voltages look, and with oscilliscope how clean the power is. Ok so you might not have the ocilliscope , you could try a different psu. – Psycogeek Jun 19 '16 at 7:39
  • If your fairly sure it is something with the motherboard (which it seems to be), why not just replace it? Cheap socket 775 boards on eBay run under $20 shipped, and really good ones by Asus, ECS, MSI, or Gigabyte run under $40. I am making this as a comment since it doesn't answer your question, but then again that product is probably outside of it's intended usable life span so finding the answer is probably not really relevant. – acejavelin Jun 29 '16 at 19:27

Since it's a PCI device, PCI is a parallel bus -- all the slots will share the same set of core address/data lines, so if you were frying any of those lines on the PCI host controller, all the slots would die. The most convoluted scenario I can think of is that you're somehow killing the clock sent to each slot (since that is sometimes buffered separately for slots), but I think it's more likely that the removal/insertion of the card is stressing / scraping pins, or the cheap card has a latent manufacturing defect from assembly that shows up over time, and your moving the card around affects it.

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My answer is no, unless you want to damage (by force) the PCI slot, they can't damage the slot.

all 3 PCI slots failed or this card could damage them?

Neither choices are correct: PCI slots are most likely still working well.

Noisy, distorted sound might come from grounding loop.

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