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6293-652G25Mn -- Stuck in Boot-up NO screen output (native or VGA) After replacing LCD screen

JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

Tinkerer

Hello,
When I cracked the screen of my TravelMate 6293 laptop, I could still use my VGA output connected to an external monitor.
I ordered a replacement screen, the same part number (B121EW09 v.1,  only difference glossy (v.0) instead of matte (v.1), but guaranteed compatible).
As soon as I get the new screen, I connect it, start up and... NOTHING
No screen output at all, no internal nor external screen... The light goes on, the fan works, but I can't see the harddisk working (no led), Windows doesn't seem to start. It just hangs there. (No beep). Rebooting doesn't help, none of the keystrokes I tried did anything.
I tried some of the instant fixes that go around on the net (drain the cmos), but that didn't have any other effect than it going into a repeated reboot (twice) routine before it hangs.
I *really* hope this rings a bell to some one... so far I can't find anything about this specific problem

Somehow it's as if something happened in the BIOS and now it stays stuck since it can't find an output.. (is that possible ?)
One detail I noticed after the initial screen broke, at some point the external screen reverted to a lower resolution.
What I recall happened was that I reconnected the old screen, thinking that was the good thing to do, restarted.... no output at all. Re-deconnected the screen and rebooted... external screen came on, but in lower resolution. Windows would recognize the external screen as '1/2', both 1 and 2 at the same time....

I filmed the reboot routine, hoping maybe the timing could mean something. This is what happens after I switch on the power: (hand-timed so 'relatively' accurate...)
2 s - off; 6 s - ON; 5 s - off; 9 s - ON; 5 s - off; ON (indefinite)
I'm not sure if it did the reboot routine the first time I connected the replacement screen... actually yeah I really think it did.

Thanks in advance for any (all) the help I can get.
JB

«1

FAQ & Answers

  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    >>>As soon as I get the new screen, I connect it, start up and... NOTHING>>>

    Did you remove the battery when doing this? Jack E/NJ
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    >>Did you remove the battery when doing this? Jack E/NJ
    I'm not sure... maybe not, I can't remember. I know I disconnected the battery plenty times afterwards when trying to drain the BIOS, which blurs my memory about this specific point.
    Assuming I didn't, what would have happened, and where should I look for solution(s)?

  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    Remove the charger. Remove the battery. Temporarily disconnect to screen's mainboard connector. Button it back up. Re-insert the battery and charger. Try to turn the machine on. Do you get a BIOS beep code? Does the power LED stay on and HDD LED show any activity as if it's booting? Jack E/NJ
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    Thanks Jack,
    Just to make sure I understand what you said:
    >> Temporarily disconnect to screen's mainboard connector. Button it back up.
    You mean open the back panel and unplug the internal LCD cable at the mainbord side, then close the case?

    Okay, I'll do that tomorrow first thing and report back.
    JB

  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    Yes, unplug the LCD cable. Reinstall the bottom cover because some models have a safety interlock switch that cuts all power to the mainboard if the cover is removed or not installed correctly. I don't think your model has one but it's generally a safer practice to install the cover anyway before applying power.  See if the external screen is functional now without the new internal screen. Jack E/NJ 
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    No luck:
    Still no (external) screen output, no beeps.

    But there is a difference. The reboot loop is different (one extra reboot, hdd comes on for one second during second boot)
    Comparison (in seconds):
    Situation    delay    ON    off    ON    off    ON    off    ON
    #1                 1.5        6       5       9          5       >>
    #2                 1.5        9       5       6 (1)   5       9        5       >>

    Any idea what these timings mean? Is it an error code?

  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    I spoke with an Acer technical support person, but he did not have any info on the reboot-loop timing.
    On his advice I unseated the RAM and booted in order to see what would happen (maybe get it to beep?)
    The only effect it had was changing the reboot-loop (now only one reboot)

    Strangely enough, ever since, the reboot-loop stays like this: one reboot, no hdd, no response
    I also disconnected the CMOS battery - drained the BIOS - reconnected CMOS. This had no effect AFAICS.
    I cannot seem to reproduce the other boot-loop sequences anymore...

    I'm starting to feel a heavy blanket falling over my beloved TravelMate..

    ...ANYONE ????
  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    >>>>>>Did you remove the battery when doing this? Jack E/NJ>>>I'm not sure... maybe not, I can't remember.>>>

    Did you wear a wrist ground? Jack E/NJ


  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    edited July 31
    >>Did you wear a wrist ground? Jack E/NJ

    No. Mea culpa.
    I know this is what separates the pros from the amateurs, the serious from the.. well, me. But I didn't have one nor took the time to make(-shift) one.
    In my 'defense' I should say that it was warm and humid, so not really the conditions for static build-up.

    Am I an *****? (he asked, dreading what he knew would be the answer...)

    JB

    P.S. to the censor-bot: I was talking about a donkey!! Thank you for not ***-ing it out
  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    >>>it was warm and humid, so not really the conditions for static build-up. >>>

    I agree. But no external screen with the LCD disconnected does not bode well for the graphics adapter (soldered to the mainboard). You said earlier >>>One detail I noticed after the initial screen broke, at some point the external screen reverted to a lower resolution. What I recall happened was that I reconnected the old screen, thinking that was the good thing to do, restarted.... no output at all. Re-deconnected the screen and rebooted... external screen came on, but in lower resolution. Windows would recognize the external screen as '1/2', both 1 and 2 at the same time....>>>

    I think the graphics adapter --- or its mainboard connections such as a solder joint ---- got partly damaged at the time the first screen broke. How did the screen get broken? Laptop dropped? Lid closed when an object was laying the KB? Jack E/NJ
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    >>How did the screen get broken?
    Just one impact on the screen with a blunt object, no other damage noticed.

    Could it be the mainboard to LCD cable ? I had some trouble dis/re-connecting it from/to the LCD screen, at one point I accidentally bent it where the cable meets the connector (screen side)...
    If so, how would I test this? other than a replacement cable (might prove hard to find)

    JB

  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    LCD video ribbon cables are cheap & plentiful for this model. https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32891759052.html
    But the cable could only be involved if the battery was still connected when you were fussing with its connectors and receptacles. And not with the cable itself. But indirectly with the graphics adapter if one of the power connectors accidentally or momentarily got grounded to the frame or touched one of the other data connectors in the screen receptacle. This would've resulted in zapping/jolting the graphics adapter and could explain the initial resolution changes to the external screen and ultimate failure of  the external VGA port as well. Jack E/NJ

  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    >>> if one of the power connectors accidentally or momentarily got grounded to the frame or touched one of the other data connectors in the screen receptacle. This would've resulted in zapping/jolting the graphics adapter and could explain the initial resolution changes to the external screen and ultimate failure of  the external VGA port as well.

    hmmm.. so this 'shorting-out' must have happened several times (twice at least, once when the old screen broke, and once when I tried to attach the new screen? Resulting in the graphic adapter progressively frying itself.
    Is there any way to tell this?

    And what about the boot routine timing? Is there any way to find out what this means? And why *no beeps* if there is something wrong?

    I gather that the graphics adapter is hardwired onto/into the motherboard, and thus irreplaceable, resulting in : end-of-story. Is that correct?

    Thanks for your answers.
    JB


  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    >>>Is there any way to tell this?>>>>>>And why *no beeps* if there is something wrong?>>>

    No beep codes could mean the BIOS chip also got fried or lost its mind. We could try two things. First, remove or unplug the CMOS coin cell battery and short its mainboard connectors. This might force the chip into a default state.

    If this fails, we could try  to flash the BIOS with the most recent firmware using the FN+ESC. Download and unzip the BIOS firmware at this link https://global-download.acer.com/GDFiles/BIOS/BIOS/BIOS_v1.16.zip?acerid=633643226225599506&Step1=NOTEBOOK&Step2=TRAVELMATE&Step3=TRAVELMATE 6293&OS=ALL&LC=en&BC=ACER&SC=PA_6

    In the unzipped directory search for a file with a BIN, ROM, or WPH extensiion. Rename it BIOS.WPH. Copy the file to the root directory of a FAT32 formatted USB stick with an LED activity light. It must be the only file in the stick's root directory.  Then with the machine turned off, insert the stick. The press and hold the FN+ESC keys. Then press the power button. Don't let go of the FN+ESC keys until you see LED activity on the USB stick.
    If the flash is successful the machine should shut off on its own. Then cross your fingers and turn the machine back on.

    Jack E/NJ

  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    Thanks, I will try it right away. (and report right back)
    JB
  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    To prevent smoke from escaping, make sure you disconnect the main battery and power supply before shorting the mainboard's CMOS battery contacts.   :)   Jack E/NJ
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    Well. Certainly feel clumsy here..
    in order to disconnect the CMOS, i disconnected the wifi card (had a look at the colors, thought "can't miss, they sit perfectly in place"). But.... when plugging back the wifi card, I realized... I forgot the color sequence (DOH!!) and the order does not seem clear-cut.

    Now I'm sure about the black so there's two possibilities left : B-G-W or B-W-G (TR1-TR3-TR2). I think it was B-W-G but I'm not sure.
    I had a look in the Disassembly Guide, but there.. the color order is totally different (B on the RIGHT, which was the one thing I'm positive was on the LEFT)

    When I follow the cables, the B and W end at similar elements placed symmetrically left and right. The Grey cable ends at a different type of element (looks to be the metal LCD frame and thus would be some sort of ground)

    Now i'm stuck between two logics:
                   1. the B and W are similar and can be interchanged left and right (compare: my laptop (B-?-?) vs. the laptop in the Disassembly Guide (W-G-B)), and G goes in the middle (TR3)
    or,
                   2. since the connectors are all three the same and the order is not physically protected (like a one-way-only type of plug), the order doesn't matter. (...risky)
    Or, should I:
                   3. start with the card inserted but the antennae disconnected?
    or even,
                   4. start without the wifi card at all?

    JB
  • JackEJackE Posts: 17,093ACE Trailblazer
    Here you go. Jack E/NJ


  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    >>>Here you go. (picture)

    Yep, that's the one I found in the Disassembly guide (which differs from my config. as I had the Black to the left).
    If you tell me this is the correct config, then that's what I'll go with then
    JB (t.b.c.)
  • JahboaJahboa Posts: 23Member

    Tinkerer

    Update: First option no luck

    Here's what I did: disconnected CMOS and shorted the two connections on the mainboard. reconnected CMOS, battery, power supply and external VGA monitor.  Sstarted up (without the lcd screen attached, cable disconnected at the mainboard)
    -->same (similar) behaviour as before, one reboot and then --hung--

    I'll be trying the second option now -- cross any fingers you might have lying around...

    P.S. should I or should I not attach the (internal) screen while doing this?

    JB
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