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November 1st, 2002

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08:26 pm - Latest computer woes
My computer has always made a high-pitched tone that does not appear straight away once you turn it on but starts fairly soon afterwards. There some seem to be two concurrent notes, the second (and higher) of which sometimes seems to come and go. This may just be due to something as simple as interference patterns and my head moving from peak to trough and vice versa. It's definitely from the computer becasue eventually it starts even when speakers and monitor and off. Recently it seems to have got rather louder. I would like to own a volume level meter some day to measure things like this.

On top of that, this monitor seems to be making intermittent noises which can only be described as "sizzling". I am now more worried than before. I shall have to check up on dates, but I guess this is about 35 months old or so; I hope the warranties last for three years. Around the house I think we have two 14" monitors which are capable of 640x480 at 16 colours, but if that's enough for Windows safe mode then it's just about enough for me. (I also had a 15" which would do 1024x768 in lots of colours, but I can't find it. How can one lose a 15" monitor? I suspect I may have let someone borrow it some time ago.)

Accordingly I may be around rather less than usual for a while. Alternatively I might revert to my old PC with the noisier fan and the older software on it, but this isn't something I favour simply because it's only convenient to have all your mail in one place...
Current Mood: back down again
Current Music: high-pitched PC squeak

(3 comments | Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:November 1st, 2002 01:45 pm (UTC)

More data

14" monitor #1 was suspected to be mono-only and doesn't even connect to the PC. (!!) 14" monitor #2, last used on my 286, is up and running and has dumped me into 640x480 hell. Happily it will at least give me 16-bit colour, but the screen is a lot smaller than I am used to.

Unfortunately the intervening visit to Safe Mode (and the resolution change therein) means that my TV tuner app now thinks that the TV tuner is no longer installed. This means that we have gone from a 3-TV house recently, with the breakdown of the almost-20-year-old portable in the front room, to a 1-TV house. 1 TV is not enough.

We also have the data that the view on this 14" monitor has the same annoying lines as on the 19" monitor. So, regardless of whether the 19" monitor is sizzling or not, it looks like the video card is at fault. Damn. (Or maybe it's the power supply which I can't think what to do about. Or maybe it's both cables. Or maybe...)

I am broadly in a "bollocks to the lot of it" mood. Only the prospect of possibly getting my TV tuner app back and so being able to watch TV on my own, without having my parents hanging over me and asking questions pertaining to our radically different levels of understanding of the shows in question, is driving me on at all now.
Date:November 1st, 2002 02:53 pm (UTC)

I would absolutely *hate* to use my old computer (with old software!)...

I hope your computer gets fixed soon!

[User Picture]
Date:November 1st, 2002 06:22 pm (UTC)


Quick version: took out VGA card with TV tuner, put in original (older) VGA card, lines now gone but unfortunately no more TV on this PC for a while.

The full version involved lots of trial and error and beeping. (Not mine, the computer's.) We deduced that the beeping translated to "Your VGA card is not pushed in properly". It was a tricky decision whether to go with the old VGA card which doesn't put lines over the screen or the knackered one which lets you watch TV, but no-lines, no-TV is winning for now.

This isn't a complete solve of the situation as I'd rather like to know why the lines got there in the first place. For now I have only plugged in PC, monitor, keyboard and mouse - not even the speakers. The high-pitched squealing remains and now I do not have music to drown it out. The monitor hasn't sizzled for a while, but I'm not convinced it's completely OK. (I tried testing it on the spare PC downstairs but didn't get too far as the downstairs PC uses a strange type of keyboard with a big plug on the end, something like an old-fashioned DIN plug. The keyboard for that old computer has mysteriously gone missing. Boo.)

At least the lines have gone, which is somewhat of a result. The old VGA card can do the same resolution, colour depth and monitor vertical refresh rate as the one I'm used to, but is noticeably less quick at screen updates - also much slower at scrolling. I may consider getting another video card just like the old one. (Theoretically it's just the card which needs replacement and the breakout box and VCR-related gubbins should remain OK.)

The lack of TV remains a problem. I now have to watch Late Night Poker with the folks and they just don't understand it, even when Barney Boatman does run us through the function of the blessed dealer button.

The most appropriate sound effect to summarise my mood would be somewhere between "Meh" and "Grumblesnarf", as per the Thundercats.

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