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Recently my PC has been randomly restarting. Sometimes it just restarts automatically, other times it just sort of dies, leaving a black screen. Nothing I can do seems to be able to restore it other than manually shutting the system down with the power button and restarting.

I'm by no means an expert, but I've been doing some of my own diagnostics. Firstly I tried testing all the voltages on the PSU, they were all within range, so I don't think that's the problem. Then I tried taking the GPU out (and using the HDMI out of the motherboard instead). This seems to have stopped the random restarts, however I want to be certain that it is in fact the GPU before I bin it and buy a new one.

I don't know enough about hardware to be certain it isn't maybe something to do with the motherboard (or maybe even something else?) causing these issues. Is there some way it could instead be the motherboard output to the PCI slot that's the problem?

Specs:

  • GPU: Nvidia GTX 960

  • PSU: 500W

  • mobo: Asus Z97-AR

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    Normally this kind of issue is because of the PSU. What model is it exactly? I suggest trying another PSU with the recommended wattage for your GPU. – Natsu Kage Jan 28 at 13:56
  • It's a gtx 960, recommended at least 400W, I'm using 500W. Is that alright or could it still be the PSU you think? – SuperHanz98 Jan 28 at 14:00
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    What 500W model exactly? It's usually written on the label on its sides. Some 500W PSU are too weak on the 12V line and can cause issues. – Natsu Kage Jan 28 at 14:14
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    A computer without a GPU uses less power, so the PSU doesn't work as hard. . A new GPU will cost you way more than a PSU, so you should start with that. Buy one at amazon or a supplier with free returns, in case it isn't your issue. A cheap EVGA 500White is good enough for the GTX960. – Natsu Kage Jan 28 at 15:04
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    @Cutter a PSU browning out can, depending on what it is powering, cause a whole host of weird issues. Components can power down and come back up and effectively crash the system while it "seems" to still be up. Watchdog timers can reboot a system that is hung in a weird way, or they may fail as well depending on what has crashed. I agree that the cheapest and best thing to replace first is the PSU. At the very least a good replacement is always a worthwhile update to keep a system going well into the future. – Mokubai Jan 28 at 16:03

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