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A.net Laptop Computer Experts...Help!  
User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1862 times:

Hi guys...heres the story...

I have a Dell Inspiron 8500 laptop, Windows XP, its almost 3 years old...

Basically, the short story is that the monitor on the laptop no longer works...the rest of the computer is fine, but Im forced to hook it up to an external monitor to be able to use the computer (like I am doing right now)...the only anomaly I know of which might be related to this is that a few months after I got my computer, it took a hard impact of some sort (caused by me), and ever since then, when you first turn the computer on, it stays dark until the Windows log-on screen, but otherwise its been fine, until now...

Is this an easily fixable problem, or will I have to spend an excessive amount to get the laptop monitor working again??? Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks
Greg


Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
30 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGordonsmall From UK - Scotland, joined Jun 2001, 2100 posts, RR: 22
Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1850 times:

It'll almost certainly cost more to fix it than it's worth - so my advice is buy a new laptop.


Statistically, people who have had the most birthdays tend to live the longest.
User currently offlineTheCoz From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1849 times:

Laptop screens are expensive. I'd have it checked out by the manufacturer, as it may not be the screen itself, but a separate component. Hopefully a cheap component.

User currently offlineMBMBOS From United States of America, joined May 2000, 2597 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1843 times:

I have to concur. Sorry to break the news. Typically, when a laptop monitor fails, it's a serious problem and one that is expensive to fix.

Three years life from a laptop is a pretty long life. Fortunately, there are some decent laptop sales going on right now.


User currently offlineStuckinMAF From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1823 times:

I concur. The display is the weakest part of a laptop....and the most expensive. The likelihood is that repair cost will be excessive, and replacement will be your most attractive option.

If you are mechanically inclined, you could pop the lid on it to inspect for damage. From the incident you described, you might want to check the flexible PCB that goes through the hinge feedthrough and look for cracks in it. You could order that part yourself and replace it, it's not that expensive. I have actually scraped the coating off of both sides of the break on those and used cyanoacrylate (super glue) to repair them, being careful to line up the exposed conducting surfaces and placing the glue on top of the repair to coat and hold it.


User currently offlineNoelg From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1819 times:

You're talking £400-500 for a new screen - that's about $800 in US money.

On a new laptop it's touch and go whether it's worth it, on an old one you'll just be better off to get a new one (unless you can get one on ebay).

Cheers,
Noel


User currently offlineStuckinMAF From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1807 times:

Quoting Noelg (Reply 5):
unless you can get one on ebay

Whatever you do, DON'T try to get one off eBay! Most of them are lease returns that were bought in large lots and are being sold piecemeal without being tested. The lease units are usually "used and abused" because the owners know they only have to keep them 1-3 years and believe me- they get their money's worth out of them!


User currently offlineAC773 From Canada, joined Nov 2005, 1730 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1795 times:

Quoting Noelg (Reply 5):
You're talking �400-500 for a new screen - that's about $800 in US money.

Hold on. Sounds to me like the screen itself is fine (as far as you know), it's just disconnected. It could be free to fix if you're mechanically inclined, or a couple of hundred if you're not. Even so, the computer was nearing the end of its lifespan anyway, so you may as well save yourself the trouble and get a new one.

Do yourself a favor and *******DON'T GET ANOTHER DELL!!******* I'd recommend IBM (Lenovo) or Toshiba personally. Best of luck!

 bigthumbsup 



Better to be nouveau than never to have been riche at all.
User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1795 times:

Quoting AC773 (Reply 7):
Hold on. Sounds to me like the screen itself is fine (as far as you know), it's just disconnected. It could be free to fix if you're mechanically inclined, or a couple of hundred if you're not. Even so, the computer was nearing the end of its lifespan anyway, so you may as well save yourself the trouble and get a new one.

???

VGA output from his Dells motherboard has nothing to do with the LCD display, It sounds as if the display went kaput.


User currently offlineAC773 From Canada, joined Nov 2005, 1730 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1787 times:

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 8):
VGA output from his Dells motherboard has nothing to do with the LCD display, It sounds as if the display went kaput

That's not what I'm saying. There's a small cable to connect the laptop's LCD to the laptop's motherboard. That's what may have the issue. If the display were broken and it was getting a signal from the motherboard, it likely would display something with cracks and such through the image. It's unlikely that an LCD would just crap out like that.



Better to be nouveau than never to have been riche at all.
User currently offlineBoeingfanyyz From Canada, joined Jul 2005, 991 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1783 times:

Alright, new problem!!!  wink 

Sometimes when I rest my left palm on my laptop to type (Toshiba Satelite), the computer screen will go blank. As well, whenever I run some large programs such as FS and other large files, the computer screen will go blank!

Any suggestions?

Cheers,
Boeingfanyyz  airplane 



"If it aint boeing, it aint going!", "Friends are like condoms...they protect you when things get hard!"
User currently offlineEmirates773ER From Pakistan, joined Jun 2005, 1449 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1771 times:

Let me place my problem here as well. Two days ago I was watching a movie with my laptop connected to the TV via S-Cable and suddenly there was a blue screen with some codes on it, the laptop restarted soon after and would not boot windows. When I tried using the windows installation CD it would give a error during booting, after a couple of hours the computer started giving a blank screen when ever restarted it although the hard drive and all the other components seem to be working. Do you guys think its a mother problem or my CPU module is gone?


The Truth is Out There ---- Face It!!!!!
User currently offlineBoeingfanyyz From Canada, joined Jul 2005, 991 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1768 times:

Yay!!! Let's all post our problems!!!  wink 

We can have a technology-challenged persons party!!!  wink 

Cheers,
Boeingfanyyz  airplane 



"If it aint boeing, it aint going!", "Friends are like condoms...they protect you when things get hard!"
User currently offlineDan2002 From United States of America, joined Dec 2002, 2055 posts, RR: 5
Reply 13, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1764 times:

Get a Mac, the screen wont break when you drop it.




Signed,
Klaus



A guy asks 'What's Punk?'. I kick over a trash can and its punk. He knocks over a trash can and its trendy.
User currently offlineBoeingfanyyz From Canada, joined Jul 2005, 991 posts, RR: 2
Reply 14, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1764 times:

Quoting Dan2002 (Reply 13):
Get a Mac, the screen wont break when you drop it.

For real...?

Cheers,
Boeingfanyyz  airplane 



"If it aint boeing, it aint going!", "Friends are like condoms...they protect you when things get hard!"
User currently offlineEilennaei From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1761 times:

Quoting USAFHummer (Thread starter):
anomaly I know of which might be related to this is that a few months after I got my computer, it took a hard impact of some sort (caused by me), and ever since then,

Try selling it for parts, or continue using the external monitor.

Quoting Boeingfanyyz (Reply 10):
Sometimes when I rest my left palm on my laptop to type (Toshiba Satelite), the computer screen will go blank. As well, whenever I run some large programs such as FS and other large files, the computer screen will go blank!

Any suggestions?

Hook an external monitor to it. If the symptoms disappear do as in the above case.

Quoting Emirates773ER (Reply 11):
Two days ago I was watching a movie with my laptop connected to the TV via S-Cable and suddenly there was a blue screen with some codes on it, the laptop restarted soon after and would not boot windows.

Possibly a hard disk failure, they often go that way "on the fly", but the completely (?) blank screen at boot speaks against it. The exact error message(s) could help.


User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1756 times:

Quoting AC773 (Reply 9):
That's not what I'm saying. There's a small cable to connect the laptop's LCD to the laptop's motherboard. That's what may have the issue. If the display were broken and it was getting a signal from the motherboard, it likely would display something with cracks and such through the image. It's unlikely that an LCD would just crap out like that.

I doubt any mobo jumper cable or switch just let loose when he DROPPED his laptop. Call me crazy but I just think its gone.

Quoting Emirates773ER (Reply 11):
Let me place my problem here as well. Two days ago I was watching a movie with my laptop connected to the TV via S-Cable and suddenly there was a blue screen with some codes on it, the laptop restarted soon after and would not boot windows. When I tried using the windows installation CD it would give a error during booting, after a couple of hours the computer started giving a blank screen when ever restarted it although the hard drive and all the other components seem to be working. Do you guys think its a mother problem or my CPU module is gone?

Sounds like your HD went bye bye. Go into your BIOS when you boot up and disable every startup device except your HD. Or, you can go to a shop and pick up a 2.5inch HD and swap it out and load windows on it and see if that cures the problem. Lots of solutions for this problem


User currently offlineEmirates773ER From Pakistan, joined Jun 2005, 1449 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1756 times:

Quoting Eilennaei (Reply 15):
Possibly a hard disk failure, they often go that way "on the fly", but the completely (?) blank screen at boot speaks against it. The exact error message(s) could help.



Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 16):
Sounds like your HD went bye bye. Go into your BIOS when you boot up and disable every startup device except your HD. Or, you can go to a shop and pick up a 2.5inch HD and swap it out and load windows on it and see if that cures the problem. Lots of solutions for this problem

The screen is totally blank when I start it, I can hear the fan and hard drive running though. There are no error messages, at least I can't see any on the blank screen.



The Truth is Out There ---- Face It!!!!!
User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1748 times:

Plug it to an external monitor via your VGA jack and see if that works. You can also do it via S-Video if you have that in your laptop and hook it up to a TV if you dont have an additional monitor.

User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 19, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 1718 times:

Quoting USAFHummer (Thread starter):
Is this an easily fixable problem, or will I have to spend an excessive amount to get the laptop monitor working again??? Anyone have any ideas?

Screw new laptop unless there are other things about your laptop you don't like but tolerated all this time. Go get an external monitor; unless you travel a lot, get an LCD monitor. Big grin

I planned ahead for the potential replacement of my laptop by getting a 19" analog LCD monitor.



The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
User currently offlineEilennaei From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (8 years 5 months 5 days ago) and read 1711 times:

Sometimes removing the battery for a while cures a laptop freeze. A dead battery can also "hog" the wall power current and disable the computer while it is installed.

User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Reply 21, posted (8 years 5 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1691 times:

Thanks for all the advice guys...right now the comp is in the repair shop getting an estimate...should know tomorrow how much but Im expecting the worst and thus Ive already started to pre-shop for a new one...in my lifestyle, keeping the comp and using an external monitor long term isnt really practical, so I think getting a new one is my best bet...Im looking at the Sony VAIO right now, the really small one (~11 inch screen), cause my Inspiron with its 15 inch screen was way too big to carry around and use in classes (a mistake I realized right after I got it a few years ago), so I want somethin that I can use in class and not break my back in the process...anyone got the small VAIO?

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineScott2187 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 304 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (8 years 5 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1686 times:

new question:

how incredibly difficult would it be to upgrade RAM in a laptop? the 512MB is slowing down my CAD programs.



“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21406 posts, RR: 54
Reply 23, posted (8 years 5 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1683 times:

Depends on the model. Most laptops accept SO-DIMM modules. Check the memory specifications of your computer (memory type, speed, size, mechanical dimensions...), then look for suppliers of such memory modules.

User currently offlineScott2187 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 304 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (8 years 5 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1677 times:

Quoting Klaus (Reply 23):
Depends on the model. Most laptops accept SO-DIMM modules. Check the memory specifications of your computer (memory type, speed, size, mechanical dimensions...), then look for suppliers of such memory modules.

this is what it tells me:

Sony Vaio VGN-FS640

Memory: 512 MB PC-2700, 333MHz, DDR (256 x 2) (expandable up to 1 gig)


so i'm assuming i have to get 2 512MB cards and replace the 256 ones.



“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”
25 Post contains images Lindy : Wow, why did you take it to repair shop? Those Dell models (Inspiron 8500/8600) had connection problem very frequently. Here are the steps how to chec
26 Klaus : Yes, that's what it looks like. There can be different constraints to the mechanical dimensions of the memory modules in addition, so be careful abou
27 Post contains images USAFHummer : Well, a stay of execution has been granted on my laptop...just picked it up from the local authorized Dell repair shop (sorry Rafal, forgot to mention
28 StuckinMAF : YAY!!! Glad it wasn't more serious! That's one of those problems that you could never fix without actually seeing the computer!
29 LOT767-300ER : Told you it wasnt a cable...boo ya.
30 FUMANCHEWD : You crazy kids and your new math! The pound is not 2-1.
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