Fix: Please Power Down and Connect the PCIe Power Cables for This Graphics Card

Peripheral Component Interconnect Express or PCIe cables are power cables used to transmit electricity to a system’s hardware devices, such as high-end Graphics Cards and Sound Cards. They are available in various capacities (6-pin, 8-pin, and 16-pin), depending on the power the GPU requires to run itself.

The error is known to occur due to faults in the power connection or supply to the GPU installed on the PCIe slot.

Causes for Please power down and connect the PCIe power cables for this graphics card

  1. Improper Cable Connection: Loose cable connections or incompatible cables fail to supply the power required by the GPU to function smoothly, leading to the error.
  2. Faulty Power Supply: Power Supply Units transmit power to the hardware devices. Hence, if the power supply unit is not working, the GPU will fail to initialize or operate, leading to an error.
  3. Incorrect PCIe settings in BIOS/UEFI: PCIe settings in the BIOS/UEFI include power management, link settings, etc., which govern the amount of power supplied to the Graphics Card. Incorrect settings can lead to insufficient supply, even if the cables are connected and the PSU works fine.

Fix: Please Power Down and Connect the PCIe Power Cables for This Graphics Card

  1. Confirm GPU System Requirements
  2. Check the Power connection and Power Supply Unit
  3. Use a PCIe connector to power the Graphics Card
  4. Reseat CMOS Battery
  5. Upgrade Power Supply Unit
  6. Use onboard Graphics (Workaround)

1] Confirm GPU System Requirements

The very first step towards resolving the error would include checking the system requirements for the GPU, most importantly, the cable compatibility and the capacity of the power supply unit of the system as detailed below:

  • Verify Cable Compatibility: It is of utmost importance to check the GPU specifications for details on the type of PCIe cable needed for the Graphics Card. Based on the power intake capacity, the correct set of cables (6-pin or 8-pin) needs to be used to connect the card to the PSU.

pcie power cable

  • PSU Capacity: The GPU specifications also include details on the minimum wattage for the Power Supply Unit. If the PSU wattage is lower than the GPU requirements, it may trigger the above error, even if suitable cable types are used.

2] Check the Power Connection and Power Supply Unit

Since the lack of power supply is the most likely cause of the error, checking the power connections and the PSU is significant. The checking process would involve the following:

  • After opening the cabinet, check that the PCIe cable is firmly connected to the GPU and that none of the connectors are physically damaged.
  • Additionally, the PSU needs to be checked using a power tester to see if it’s working fine and, most importantly if it can supply the GPU with the required power.

3] Use PCIe Connectors to power the Graphics Card

A GPU’s power consumption ranges from 75 Watts to 1000 Watts, depending on its processing capacity. Compatible PCIe cables must be connected based on how much power it needs to operate. For example, a 6-pin cable can supply up to 75 Watts of power to the GPU, whereas an 8-pin one can transmit around 150 Watts.

Also, the motherboard’s power supply may not meet the GPU’s power requirements. Hence, the GPU should be connected directly to the PSU using PCIe cables only.

4] Reseat CMOS Battery

If the error appears due to non-functional hardware, the above steps can resolve the problem. However, if the error occurs due to incorrect configuration or hardware conflicts, reseating the CMOS battery can reinitialize the hardware settings, thereby resolving any conflicts.

cmos battery

5] Upgrade Power Supply Unit

Modern graphics cards consume more power than older or integrated ones. Hence, the PSU should be able to deliver the required amount of power. Upgrading the power unit to match the power requirements of the GPU can help resolve the problem. The GPU specifications can be checked to choose a compatible PSU.

6] Use onboard Graphics

If all the above steps fail to resolve the issue, using the graphics card integrated with the motherboard can be tried as an alternate option. It can also help us narrow down the problem and clarify whether the external Graphics card is damaged.

Since the error mentioned above occurs whenever the system is booted, we can try removing the graphics card and then restarting the system. If the system boots successfully without any errors, we can conclude that the Graphics card might be faulty.

Sandip Basu
Sandip has worked as an IT solutions consultant for the last 15 years and specializes in troubleshooting software and hardware.


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