Laptop LED screen only very faintly lit. LED backlight problem or other issue?

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Thread Starter
Mar 3, 2015
I have a Dell Inspiron 17RSE laptop (the SE = special edition of the 17R (7720)). Lightning stroke the router which was connected to my laptop through an Ethernet cable. The laptop was off during the strike, but afterwards the router was fried and the laptop screen did not power on (or so I thought) when the laptop was powered on. I then connected an external monitor to the VGA out, and this works. The graphics card also seems to be picked up correctly inside speccy/HWMonitor/Everest and CUDA acceleration works inside Adobe Premiere Pro, so I guess I can rule out a fried GPU. The monitor Part Number is N173HGE L-11 rev.2 (ChiMei) --- and in Everest it says Manufacturer: HDKPVƒ173HGE --- As I said initially I thought the screen was completely blank, but upon shining a light on the screen I can see an image on the screen, just very faint (btw the display brightness is set to max). I then looked for the LCD power inverter, but realised the screen is a LED screen so there is no inverter. So I'm thinking it could be a burned out fuse near the LCD connector cable on the motherboard itself, or the LED backlight is burned out.
What do you think?

Other changes in my laptop state since the lightning strike:

1) the laptop seems to overheat when running Adobe Premiere Pro -- which is set to use GPU acceleration. Using HWMonitor it seems to be the CPU, not the GPU, that overheats and all 8 threads of the CPU are fully utilised (say for instance during encoding -- not sure if this is supposed to be GPU accelerated). On GPU accelerated effects like Warp Stabilization of Premiere Pro, the GPU strangely seems underutilised while the CPU is working hard. The motherboard fan does come on but the CPU and frame heats up to 80degrees Celsius and around there the laptop restarts. With a laptop cooler it hovers around 70degrees Celsius under full load and 50 degrees Celsius idle. Now I'm not sure what the GPU load and CPU temperatures were before the lightning strike, but the laptop never had overheating problems before. Btw the laptop power settings are set to performance and all these readings are with the power connector plugged in.

2) very seldom (say once every 20 uses) the speakers on the laptop make a faint popping sound once or twice and I had an instance where the 3.5mm audio jack output did not work. Not sure if this is merely coincidental.

Tech Support Guy System Info Utility version
OS Version: Microsoft Windows 8.1, 64 bit
Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-3630QM CPU @ 2.40GHz, Intel64 Family 6 Model 58 Stepping 9
Processor Count: 8
RAM: 16244 Mb
Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, -2048 Mb
Hard Drives: C: Total - 156202 MB, Free - 9026 MB; D: Total - 953867 MB, Free - 142147 MB; Z: Total - 30403 MB, Free - 30256 MB;
Motherboard: Dell Inc., 04M3YM
Antivirus: AVG AntiVirus Free Edition 2014, Updated and Enabled
Feb 9, 2015
A fuse would make sense. Seems like you know what you're doing, so take the thing apart locate said fuse and put a multimeter across it, see the resistance.
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