HP Pavilion a1250n modem and PCI slot problem
by kjhiggins - 12/19/05 4:18 PM
This is my first posting here so please bear with me. I have been having a problem with an HP Pavilion a1250n (AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+, 1gb ram, XP Media Center 2005). I first noticed it when the modem would disconnect whenever I ran a cpu intensive program that maximized cpu usage for more than a minute, such as a long computation or even the aquarium screen saver that comes with the system. The modem would disconnect from my dial-up service after 50 seconds and I would be unable to connect until the cpu intensive program ended or I killed it. After many fruitless calls to HP technical support I took it upon myself to investigate the problem and found that if I moved the modem to the middle PCI slot from its default bottom PCI slot it worked fine. I then tested a sound card and another modem in the bottom slot and neither worked correctly although they did in one of the other PCI slots. I exchanged the machine for another of the same model and found the exact same problem. I exchanged yet again and again found the same problem. So it appears the bottom PCI slot is bad in all of these or a large batch of them. All of the machines I had used an MSI motherboard although the HP website now lists an ASUS motherboard in the a1250n's specs. Currently the third machine is at HP for repair (putting in the ASUS motherboard) and it has been there since Nov. 21.
Anyway, I was hoping people with this machine could test for the problem I described. HP claims mine is an isolated case but my experience with three different machines indicates otherwise. The test is easy to do -- set the screen saver to the aquarium screen saver and set an activation time of 1 minute. Dial in to your ISP and wait. If the problem is there, the modem should disconnect within about 50 seconds of the screen saver's appearance.
As a side note, the HP service technician and engineer working on the case have been great but the rest of HP's 'award winning' customer service has been atrocious. They had me describe the problem and gave me the same solutions over and over, they told me they were going to call back and never did, they said a case manager had been assigned but one hadn't, just to name a few of the problems I've had with them.
I appreciate your help.