MP 1,1-5,1 MP 5,1: Starts dying?

The Spirit

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 23, 2010
60
12
Germany
HI.
My cMP seems to start dying.
I was working on my cMP, when suddenly the screen turned pixeled grey and did not do anything anymore.
Than i tried to reboot, but only a dark screen.
After fiddling around with resetting smc, pram and vram and changing my RTC battery, nothing worked.
But from the fans and everyting else (chime sound), i thought the system seems to boot up normally, but without any image.
So i swapped in my HD5770 connected my 4K monitor via DVI and it booted up again.
The only thing which is not working correct is the resolution, but i think this is a problem of the HD5770 with Catalina.
So my idea was to get a new graphics card, but one day later, i was unable to boot anymore and a folder image with an ? appeared.
After some restarts the os booted again.
So now i not sure anymore if it is really the graphics card or my NVME SSD boot drive or something completely different.
Is there anything else, which i can test?
Thanks a lot,
Andreas
 

throAU

macrumors 603
Feb 13, 2012
6,366
3,829
Perth, Western Australia
Could be a power supply issue that caused display problems initially but is also causing other issues (which incurred corruption to your SSD - maybe it didn't get enough power during a write or something like that).

I'd try to test the GPU and SSD in other machines if possible, but i suspect the root cause may be power supply related - because you have two sort of unrelated failure types at the same time and power is the only link.

Either that or system board failure. Being 10 years old your machine may have failing capacitors on the board (capacitors do not last forever). This will cause power supply issues to various components on the board (e.g., PCIe bus, CPU, RAM, etc.).

Maybe take a look and see if you can find any capacitors on the system board that are either leaking or look swollen.
 

The Spirit

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 23, 2010
60
12
Germany
But it allways boots now. Sometimes to MacOS but sometimes only to the folder image with ?
So i don´t think it is the power supply or am i wrong with my assumption?
 

throAU

macrumors 603
Feb 13, 2012
6,366
3,829
Perth, Western Australia
But it allways boots now. Sometimes to MacOS but sometimes only to the folder image with ?
So i don´t think it is the power supply or am i wrong with my assumption?
Capacitor problems can be somewhat intermittent. They start out intermittent and get steadily worse. They're also something that start to swell/leak/fail with age. Capacitors are used to provide stable clean power to the components in your system.

If you weren't having the display problems i'd point finger at GPU, if you weren't having boot problems and only graphics issues i'd point finger at SSD.

But to have problems with both (seemingly at random), it seems likely either power supply or the mainboard (or power issues on the board due to failing caps).
 
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MIKX

macrumors 68000
Dec 16, 2004
1,725
638
Aussie in Japan
The Spirit

Did you do the NVRAM re-set THREE times consecutively ? There is a difference.

How long since you de-dusted the CPU Tray & everything in that area ?

Both of your GPUs are now really old & non-Metal.

If you want EFI bootscreens & Metal get either a Sapphire Dual-X HD 7970 3gb or R9280X 3gb, both are easy to EFI flash.
 

The Spirit

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 23, 2010
60
12
Germany
@MIKX i did the NVRAM re-set onley one time. what is the difference?
I dedusted the complete cMP about 6 month ago.
My HD7870 is a Metal Graphics Card. Why should there be a problem?
Thanks
 

Coyote2006

macrumors 6502a
Apr 16, 2006
502
230
I had similar problems where the boot ssd wasn't working anymore and I had to reinstall macOS from a backup. At the end a defect mainboard was the cause and I had to replace it (actually found a cheap 5,1 and moved all my stuff to it). From my point of view: it's time to move to the new generation of MacPro soon ...
 

MIKX

macrumors 68000
Dec 16, 2004
1,725
638
Aussie in Japan
@MIKX i did the NVRAM re-set onley one time. what is the difference?
I dedusted the complete cMP about 6 month ago.
My HD7870 is a Metal Graphics Card. Why should there be a problem?
Thanks
The CONSECUTIVE THREE CHIME NVRAM re-set really cleans out everything !

I had an HIS HD 7950 which had the best cooling solution I have seen for a single fan GPU s.
HIS made great cards ! but it died suddenly. My flashed Sapphire Dual-X 7970 3gb. would leave it for dead.

Q : How are you powering the 7870 ( cables? )
Should be . .
2 x Mini 6 pin to 1 X 8pin
2 x SATA to 1 x 6 pin. ( you can move two SATA drives to the DVI Drive bay. )

Q : What are the figures for Graphics Displays in about this Mac / PCI
LINK Width = ? Should be x16
LINK Speed = ? Should be 5.0 GT/s ( in Mojave 10.14.6 )

The BIOS SWITCH should be set to Position #2.
 

Snow Tiger

macrumors 6502a
Dec 18, 2019
854
567
@MIKX i did the NVRAM re-set onley one time. what is the difference?
I dedusted the complete cMP about 6 month ago.
My HD7870 is a Metal Graphics Card. Why should there be a problem?
Thanks
You know you've successfully performed a NVRAM reset when you hear three successive chimes at start up . Its important you reset the NVRAM in this situation .

The flashing question mark means your Mac is trying to find a boot device .

If you can get into a working OS session , go into System Preferences and StartUp Disk and manually select the drive you want as a boot device .
 

tsialex

macrumors 604
Jun 13, 2016
7,662
8,372
Brazil
HI.
My cMP seems to start dying.
I was working on my cMP, when suddenly the screen turned pixeled grey and did not do anything anymore.
Than i tried to reboot, but only a dark screen.
After fiddling around with resetting smc, pram and vram and changing my RTC battery, nothing worked.
But from the fans and everyting else (chime sound), i thought the system seems to boot up normally, but without any image.
So i swapped in my HD5770 connected my 4K monitor via DVI and it booted up again.
The only thing which is not working correct is the resolution, but i think this is a problem of the HD5770 with Catalina.
So my idea was to get a new graphics card, but one day later, i was unable to boot anymore and a folder image with an ? appeared.
After some restarts the os booted again.
So now i not sure anymore if it is really the graphics card or my NVME SSD boot drive or something completely different.
Is there anything else, which i can test?
Thanks a lot,
Andreas
Do yourself a favour and install High Sierra to an empty drive to test your Mac. HD 5770 supports ends with 10.13.6, forget your Catalina disk for the debug phase, a lot of unnecessary complications.
 
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