A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo..

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo

Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
plugin agp card is used.

I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms are
typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of system
mem is corrupted. Ok, I've got cheap memory, but use a plugin agp card
and it's solid as a rock - seems a little unfair.

Asus uk tech support are patient & helpful, but basically they say go &
buy premium memory, which memory you ask, as there is currently no
approved memory list for this board. He suggests I visit my friendly local
retailer and try premium memory brands until I find one that works.

After a long call (friday afternoon) the support guy's resolve falters; he
says:

1. This board was never intended for public sale
2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
simple, fully integrated boxes.
3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has been
tweaked to work with.
6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board

I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is now
solid, cheap memory and all.

Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big name
and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.
--
fred
17 answers Last reply
More about a7n8x official asus memory fussy mobo
  1. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <xbWcKVAyBTiAFw92@y.z>, fred <not@for.mail> wrote:

    > A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo
    >
    > Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
    > why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    > shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
    > plugin agp card is used.
    >
    > I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    > underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    > memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    > graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms are
    > typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    > stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of system
    > mem is corrupted. Ok, I've got cheap memory, but use a plugin agp card
    > and it's solid as a rock - seems a little unfair.
    >
    > Asus uk tech support are patient & helpful, but basically they say go &
    > buy premium memory, which memory you ask, as there is currently no
    > approved memory list for this board. He suggests I visit my friendly local
    > retailer and try premium memory brands until I find one that works.
    >
    > After a long call (friday afternoon) the support guy's resolve falters; he
    > says:
    >
    > 1. This board was never intended for public sale
    > 2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
    > simple, fully integrated boxes.
    > 3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
    > 4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
    > memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
    > 5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has been
    > tweaked to work with.
    > 6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board
    >
    > I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
    > guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is now
    > solid, cheap memory and all.
    >
    > Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big name
    > and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.

    Strings I found in the 1001 BIOS. The same strings are in the 1002 BIOS.
    I don't see anything to suggest a PC3200 stick is getting special
    treatment, just the -6 (PC2700) sticks listed below. Presumably
    other sticks are adjusted according to the contents of their
    SPD (for better or worse). You can find these with a hex editor -
    I couldn't get AMIBCP to accept the ROM files.

    NT5DS16M8AT-6 Nanya 128MB PC2700 DDR
    NT256D64S8HA0G-6 Nanya 256MB PC2700 DDR
    MPMA82D-68KX3-MAA Kingmax PC2700 memory 128MB
    MPMA82D-68KX3-MBA
    MPMB62D-68KX3-MAA Kingmax PC2700 memory 256MB
    HYS64D32300GU-6 Infineon PC2700 memory 256MB
    HYS64D64320GU-6 Infineon PC2700 memory 512MB
    NT512D64S8HB1G-6 Nanya 512MB PC2700 DDR

    I checked a A7N8X/VM 1009 BIOS and it has the same module part
    numbers in it, all except the last one.

    This page has a memory table at the bottom. Note this is not for
    the VM/400 board and does not imply the same memory would be
    "special" in any way. I only mention this if you want to
    discuss this table with your Asus tech support guy.

    http://usa.asus.com/products/mb/socketa/a7n8x-vm/overview.htm

    Under the circumstances, I think your workaround, an AGP card,
    is the right one. Virtually any AGP card will have better
    performance than the integrated graphics, and the AGP card
    isn't stealing bandwidth from the memory controller, so you'll
    get a (very slight) performance boost when doing normal
    computing.

    As for the rationale for why the board was produced - no OEM
    requested this board. Asus just floods the market with every
    chipset they can lay their hands on. Chip makers produce reference
    motherboard designs, helping to reduce the work that Asus has
    to do to bring a board to market. And, if the board or chipset
    turns out to be a flop, Asus tries to sell them anyway. In
    cases where a design is prematurely withdrawn from the market
    (P4S8X), you won't get a swap for another model, to replace
    whatever isn't working properly. So, I don't think there
    is any "high minded" intent with respect to what boards they
    produce.

    (For the less than stellar boards, most home users will tire
    of returning the boards under warranty and either crush the
    board with a hammer or throw it in a dusty corner of the room.
    And, the more unscrupulous home users will Ebay the board to
    the unsuspecting noob.)

    HTH,
    Paul
  2. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    >1. This board was never intended for public sale
    >2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
    >simple, fully integrated boxes.
    >3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
    >4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
    >memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
    >5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has been
    >tweaked to work with.
    >6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board
    >
    >I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
    >guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is now
    >solid, cheap memory and all.
    >
    >Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big name
    >and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.

    I never dreamed ASUS would release a board with a BIOS that did
    nothing. For $20 less the Biostar M7NCG 400 does everything. I am able
    to run Gold Dragon RAM on the A7N8X-VM400 but with no overclocking
    abilities the board is useless to me.
  3. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    not@for.mail wrote:
    > A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo
    >
    > Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
    > why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    > shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
    > plugin agp card is used.
    >
    > I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    > underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    > memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    > graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms are
    > typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    > stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of system
    > mem is corrupted.

    I have the same problem.

    I very recently bought the parts to build a budget PC for a friend. I
    am using the integrated graphics card on the motherboard.

    I bought two sticks of 256mb 333 MHz Corair Value Select RAM. Using
    both or either of these sticks gives memory corruption on the display
    and either a lockup or a BSOD after a short time - a few minutes.

    I then took a 256mb 200 MHz Crucial Technology stick out from my PC and
    tried that; no problems. (However, I've not tried running video; just
    installing software.)

    I think it unlikely that *both* sticks of Corsair memory are broken. It
    may be that this is indeed a motherboard issue. This will be extremely
    annoying because I have already built the PC, installed and configured
    Windows and application/network/utility software. If this is a
    motherboard issue, ASUS' reputation with me will have taken a serious
    knock - I used to think they were reliable and I bought their boards,
    accepting their ASUS' generally higher prices, because of this.

    Anyways, I will return the RAM and try replacements. If they also fail,
    then I will be confident the RAM is not at fault. Then it will be a
    case of returning the motherboard and buying an alternative.

    --
    Callas
  4. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    > won't be making that mistake again.
    Get an Abit mobo. They rock!

    --
    Pepe
    Milano, Italy
  5. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <nospam-2304041230070001@192.168.1.177>, Paul
    <nospam@needed.com> writes
    >
    >Strings I found in the 1001 BIOS. The same strings are in the 1002 BIOS.
    >I don't see anything to suggest a PC3200 stick is getting special
    >treatment, just the -6 (PC2700) sticks listed below. Presumably
    >other sticks are adjusted according to the contents of their
    >SPD (for better or worse). You can find these with a hex editor -
    >I couldn't get AMIBCP to accept the ROM files.
    >
    >NT5DS16M8AT-6 Nanya 128MB PC2700 DDR
    >NT256D64S8HA0G-6 Nanya 256MB PC2700 DDR
    >MPMA82D-68KX3-MAA Kingmax PC2700 memory 128MB
    >MPMA82D-68KX3-MBA
    >MPMB62D-68KX3-MAA Kingmax PC2700 memory 256MB
    >HYS64D32300GU-6 Infineon PC2700 memory 256MB
    >HYS64D64320GU-6 Infineon PC2700 memory 512MB
    >NT512D64S8HB1G-6 Nanya 512MB PC2700 DDR
    >
    >I checked a A7N8X/VM 1009 BIOS and it has the same module part
    >numbers in it, all except the last one.
    >
    >This page has a memory table at the bottom. Note this is not for
    >the VM/400 board and does not imply the same memory would be
    >"special" in any way. I only mention this if you want to
    >discuss this table with your Asus tech support guy.
    >
    >http://usa.asus.com/products/mb/socketa/a7n8x-vm/overview.htm
    >
    >Under the circumstances, I think your workaround, an AGP card,
    >is the right one. Virtually any AGP card will have better
    >performance than the integrated graphics, and the AGP card
    >isn't stealing bandwidth from the memory controller, so you'll
    >get a (very slight) performance boost when doing normal
    >computing.
    >
    >As for the rationale for why the board was produced - no OEM
    >requested this board. Asus just floods the market with every
    >chipset they can lay their hands on. Chip makers produce reference
    >motherboard designs, helping to reduce the work that Asus has
    >to do to bring a board to market. And, if the board or chipset
    >turns out to be a flop, Asus tries to sell them anyway. In
    >cases where a design is prematurely withdrawn from the market
    >(P4S8X), you won't get a swap for another model, to replace
    >whatever isn't working properly. So, I don't think there
    >is any "high minded" intent with respect to what boards they
    >produce.
    >
    >(For the less than stellar boards, most home users will tire
    >of returning the boards under warranty and either crush the
    >board with a hammer or throw it in a dusty corner of the room.
    >And, the more unscrupulous home users will Ebay the board to
    >the unsuspecting noob.)
    >
    >HTH,
    > Paul

    Thanks for your most insightful comments, they encouraged me to have
    another look at the problem but without further success. I'd like to take it
    further but it's taking too long for me to work on it without being paid.

    Thanks for the introduction to AMIBCP, a shame it won't accept the files.
    Word of warning to aspiring downloaders of this prog, the crazyape page
    on stormforce claiming to be the repository of AMIBCP has malware in the
    link to v7.51.03 which tries to install a premium dialler if it is accessed with
    javascript/activeX enabled. When accessed without these enabled, the true
    prog is downloaded so I doubt the user was aware of the malware (popup
    ad?), but I have raised a complaint anyway.

    Well spotted on the string search. I had seen the recommended memory
    on the VM variant, but just wasn't prepared to pay the premium price for
    what was not a performance critical application, thinking I would detune in
    the bios if necessary - oops. My thoughts are much as this guy's, a
    system builder with similar problems:
    http://www.abxzone.com/forums/showthread.php?s=d14d45fbfc26ad5abcc
    675c4bbae45e1&threadid=67997

    The video card was an easy fix for me (Generic GeForce4MX 440 8xAGP)
    and at 31GBP I didn't squeal too much at the extra expense - certainly
    cheaper than a couple of sticks of premium 256M at today's prices.

    Next time I will dig a bit deeper before committing, more haste, less
    speed.

    Ta,
    --
    fred
  6. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <MPG.1af48e2b712398bc98968a@news-east.giganews.com>,
    Callas <callas@summerblue.net> writes
    >not@for.mail wrote:
    >> A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo
    >>
    >> Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
    >> why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    >> shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
    >> plugin agp card is used.
    >>
    >> I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    >> underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    >> memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    >> graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms are
    >> typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    >> stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of system
    >> mem is corrupted.
    >
    >I have the same problem.
    >
    >I very recently bought the parts to build a budget PC for a friend. I
    >am using the integrated graphics card on the motherboard.
    >
    >I bought two sticks of 256mb 333 MHz Corair Value Select RAM. Using
    >both or either of these sticks gives memory corruption on the display
    >and either a lockup or a BSOD after a short time - a few minutes.
    >
    >I then took a 256mb 200 MHz Crucial Technology stick out from my PC and
    >tried that; no problems. (However, I've not tried running video; just
    >installing software.)
    >
    >I think it unlikely that *both* sticks of Corsair memory are broken. It
    >may be that this is indeed a motherboard issue. This will be extremely
    >annoying because I have already built the PC, installed and configured
    >Windows and application/network/utility software. If this is a
    >motherboard issue, ASUS' reputation with me will have taken a serious
    >knock - I used to think they were reliable and I bought their boards,
    >accepting their ASUS' generally higher prices, because of this.
    >
    >Anyways, I will return the RAM and try replacements. If they also fail,
    >then I will be confident the RAM is not at fault. Then it will be a
    >case of returning the motherboard and buying an alternative.
    >
    >--
    >Callas

    Sorry to hear you have the same problem, but relieved that I am not having
    finger trouble. This guy is a system builder and has still had major probs:
    http://www.abxzone.com/forums/showthread.php?s=d14d45fbfc26ad5abcc
    675c4bbae45e1&threadid=67997

    You may wish to copy my quick fix of the video card as mine cost only
    31GBP - it won't take long in time expended to pay for that. I used a
    generic GeForce4MX 440 8xAGP which I think uses the same engine as
    the onboard video. I hated to make the onboard video redundant but now
    that I have it working, those qualms are completely forgotten. Just to be
    sure though, my system was rock steady with video acceleration turned
    off, memtest86 clean for 12hrs & prime95 crash free for about the same. I
    wouldn't rely on this fix otherwise.

    HTH
    --
    fred
  7. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <c6ebs9$avel8$1@ID-121762.news.uni-berlin.de>, Giuseppe
    Carmine De Blasio <ltkojakLEDITA@hotmail.com> writes
    >> won't be making that mistake again.
    >Get an Abit mobo. They rock!
    >
    Sadly my hindsight goggles were broken in a recent accident ;-/
    --
    fred
  8. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    So, how do you run your 400MHz RAM at 333MHz? I'm curios.
    There's almost nothing one can tweak in the BIOS, in terms
    of timing.

    I can't agree more the board is fussy. Mine is an older
    version A7N8X-VM, and I'm consider to buy a replacement main
    board, say a Gigabyte or something. Anyway, I'd owned more
    than 10 Asus main boards, A7N8X-VM is the only one make me
    disappointed, I was thinking that it was a bad sample. But
    it does give me quite some headache.

    My 2 cents.

    Stephen Wong @ Hong Kong


    On Fri, 23 Apr 2004, fred wrote:

    > A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo
    >
    > Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
    > why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    > shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
    > plugin agp card is used.
    >
    > I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    > underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    > memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    > graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms are
    > typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    > stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of system
    > mem is corrupted. Ok, I've got cheap memory, but use a plugin agp card
    > and it's solid as a rock - seems a little unfair.
    >
    > Asus uk tech support are patient & helpful, but basically they say go &
    > buy premium memory, which memory you ask, as there is currently no
    > approved memory list for this board. He suggests I visit my friendly local
    > retailer and try premium memory brands until I find one that works.
    >
    > After a long call (friday afternoon) the support guy's resolve falters; he
    > says:
    >
    > 1. This board was never intended for public sale
    > 2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
    > simple, fully integrated boxes.
    > 3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
    > 4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
    > memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
    > 5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has been
    > tweaked to work with.
    > 6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board
    >
    > I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
    > guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is now
    > solid, cheap memory and all.
    >
    > Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big name
    > and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.
    > --
    > fred
    >
  9. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    A friend of mine bought one of these as well, his fix was if you use the
    onboard graphics use only one stick of ram. Dual channel only seems to work
    if you install an AGP card. He had no problems at all with it once he was
    using a single stick.

    "Stephen SM WONG" <wongsm@netvigator.com> wrote in message
    news:Pine.LNX.4.58.0404271011490.5158@localhost.localdomain...
    > So, how do you run your 400MHz RAM at 333MHz? I'm curios.
    > There's almost nothing one can tweak in the BIOS, in terms
    > of timing.
    >
    > I can't agree more the board is fussy. Mine is an older
    > version A7N8X-VM, and I'm consider to buy a replacement main
    > board, say a Gigabyte or something. Anyway, I'd owned more
    > than 10 Asus main boards, A7N8X-VM is the only one make me
    > disappointed, I was thinking that it was a bad sample. But
    > it does give me quite some headache.
    >
    > My 2 cents.
    >
    > Stephen Wong @ Hong Kong
    >
    >
    > On Fri, 23 Apr 2004, fred wrote:
    >
    > > A7N8X-VM/400 - it's official, Asus' most memory fussy mobo
    > >
    > > Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was
    probably
    > > why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    > > shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when
    a
    > > plugin agp card is used.
    > >
    > > I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    > > underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    > > memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    > > graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face.
    Symptoms are
    > > typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    > > stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of
    system
    > > mem is corrupted. Ok, I've got cheap memory, but use a plugin agp card
    > > and it's solid as a rock - seems a little unfair.
    > >
    > > Asus uk tech support are patient & helpful, but basically they say go &
    > > buy premium memory, which memory you ask, as there is currently no
    > > approved memory list for this board. He suggests I visit my friendly
    local
    > > retailer and try premium memory brands until I find one that works.
    > >
    > > After a long call (friday afternoon) the support guy's resolve falters;
    he
    > > says:
    > >
    > > 1. This board was never intended for public sale
    > > 2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
    > > simple, fully integrated boxes.
    > > 3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
    > > 4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
    > > memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
    > > 5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has
    been
    > > tweaked to work with.
    > > 6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board
    > >
    > > I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
    > > guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is
    now
    > > solid, cheap memory and all.
    > >
    > > Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big
    name
    > > and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.
    > > --
    > > fred
    > >
  10. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <Pine.LNX.4.58.0404271011490.5158@localhost.localdomain>,
    Stephen SM WONG <wongsm@netvigator.com> writes
    >So, how do you run your 400MHz RAM at 333MHz? I'm curios.
    >There's almost nothing one can tweak in the BIOS, in terms
    >of timing.
    >
    >I can't agree more the board is fussy. Mine is an older
    >version A7N8X-VM, and I'm consider to buy a replacement main
    >board, say a Gigabyte or something. Anyway, I'd owned more
    >than 10 Asus main boards, A7N8X-VM is the only one make me
    >disappointed, I was thinking that it was a bad sample. But
    >it does give me quite some headache.
    >
    >My 2 cents.
    >
    >Stephen Wong @ Hong Kong
    >
    Hi Stephen,

    VM/400 only supports 333MHz mem max so it defaults to 333 even when
    you put in 400MHz memory. I'm thankful for that small bit of sense in the
    bios rather than some 'not supported' beep message. I think your VM (not
    /400) did support PC3200 at the full 400MHz, albeit a limited range of
    qualified memory.

    This is my first Asus & probably my last. If I need to iron out problems with
    little support from the mfr, I'd prefer not to pay a premium for the privilege.
    I'll take my chances on the cheapies in future.

    If I do any further playing with this board it may be by reprogramming the
    profile of the EEPROM on the memory sticks - as a round about way
    fooling the bios into making timing changes. Don't ask me how yet, it's just
    an idea ;-)
    --
    fred
  11. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <54ljc.44251$iX1.738178@news20.bellglobal.com>, zzipper
    <zzipper@NOOSPAMMMMsympatico.ca> writes
    >A friend of mine bought one of these as well, his fix was if you use the
    >onboard graphics use only one stick of ram. Dual channel only seems to work
    >if you install an AGP card. He had no problems at all with it once he was
    >using a single stick.
    >
    Made no difference to my setup, memtest86 was error free with the two
    256M sticks for a good 12hrs and prime95 stable for about the same with
    onboard graphics but with acceleration turned off . There appear to be no
    hard & fast rules, other than that the memory is right on the edge on this
    one.
    --
    fred
  12. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    zzipper@NOOSPAMMMMsympatico.ca wrote:
    > A friend of mine bought one of these as well, his fix was if you use the
    > onboard graphics use only one stick of ram. Dual channel only seems to work
    > if you install an AGP card. He had no problems at all with it once he was
    > using a single stick.

    This didn't work for me. One stick, Corsair Value Select 256mb 333MHz,
    failed in exactly the same way as with two sticks.

    --
    Callas
  13. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <408F9365.1A7793FD@tasmail.com>, petersj@tasmail.com
    writes
    >I have a problem with this board which may be unrelated, but then
    >again...
    >
    >I am using two sticks of Kingston 256Mb value ram and an Athlon XP2200+.
    >When the computer is first started-up the cpu temperature as reported by
    >the BIOS fluctuates wildly, like: 23C, 45C, 44C, 97C, 2C, 26C, 42C, 50C,
    >109C (these are examples of the reported temps in Celcius once a
    >second). Of course the ASUS C.O.P. protection cuts-in and turns off the
    >system. Obviously these temperatures are not what's really happening
    >with the CPU - there's no way it can fluctuate that rapidly.
    >And yes, I've re-seated the heatsink with new thermal compound, used
    >bigger fans on the heatsink, etc, etc.
    >Using a single stick of ram instead of two gave no improvement.
    >If the computer manages to run a few minutes without the C.O.P.
    >switching it off, the cpu temperature reporting in the BIOS stabilises
    >at around 45C. This indicates to me that something on the motherboard,
    >ram or CPU is stabilizing and that it is an elctronic problem rather
    >than thermal.
    >
    >Any clues as to what's going on please?
    >
    First of all, this is not my area of expertise, but here is my best shot:

    The rapid fluctuations in reading suggest that this is not a problem with
    your heatsink (or memory), but a fault in the CPU temp sensor or in the
    mobo monitoring chip/connections. I don't think there is anything more you
    can do other than RMA the board/cpu. Try the CPU in another board or
    another CPU in the mobo to narrow down the fault.

    You may get more help by stating a new specific thread or by doing a
    google groups. My quick search suggests that all modern Asus/AMD
    boards use the same 'COP' mechanism, so there should be plenty of info
    out there.

    HTH
    --
    fred
  14. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    I have a problem with this board which may be unrelated, but then
    again...

    I am using two sticks of Kingston 256Mb value ram and an Athlon XP2200+.
    When the computer is first started-up the cpu temperature as reported by
    the BIOS fluctuates wildly, like: 23C, 45C, 44C, 97C, 2C, 26C, 42C, 50C,
    109C (these are examples of the reported temps in Celcius once a
    second). Of course the ASUS C.O.P. protection cuts-in and turns off the
    system. Obviously these temperatures are not what's really happening
    with the CPU - there's no way it can fluctuate that rapidly.
    And yes, I've re-seated the heatsink with new thermal compound, used
    bigger fans on the heatsink, etc, etc.
    Using a single stick of ram instead of two gave no improvement.
    If the computer manages to run a few minutes without the C.O.P.
    switching it off, the cpu temperature reporting in the BIOS stabilises
    at around 45C. This indicates to me that something on the motherboard,
    ram or CPU is stabilizing and that it is an elctronic problem rather
    than thermal.

    Any clues as to what's going on please?

    fred wrote:
    >
    > In article <Pine.LNX.4.58.0404271011490.5158@localhost.localdomain>,
    > Stephen SM WONG <wongsm@netvigator.com> writes
    > >So, how do you run your 400MHz RAM at 333MHz? I'm curios.
    > >There's almost nothing one can tweak in the BIOS, in terms
    > >of timing.
    > >
    > >I can't agree more the board is fussy. Mine is an older
    > >version A7N8X-VM, and I'm consider to buy a replacement main
    > >board, say a Gigabyte or something. Anyway, I'd owned more
    > >than 10 Asus main boards, A7N8X-VM is the only one make me
    > >disappointed, I was thinking that it was a bad sample. But
    > >it does give me quite some headache.
    > >
    > >My 2 cents.
    > >
    > >Stephen Wong @ Hong Kong
    > >
    > Hi Stephen,
    >
    > VM/400 only supports 333MHz mem max so it defaults to 333 even when
    > you put in 400MHz memory. I'm thankful for that small bit of sense in the
    > bios rather than some 'not supported' beep message. I think your VM (not
    > /400) did support PC3200 at the full 400MHz, albeit a limited range of
    > qualified memory.
    >
    > This is my first Asus & probably my last. If I need to iron out problems with
    > little support from the mfr, I'd prefer not to pay a premium for the privilege.
    > I'll take my chances on the cheapies in future.
    >
    > If I do any further playing with this board it may be by reprogramming the
    > profile of the EEPROM on the memory sticks - as a round about way
    > fooling the bios into making timing changes. Don't ask me how yet, it's just
    > an idea ;-)
    > --
    > fred
  15. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    > Careful when using this mobo with integrated graphics (which was probably
    > why you wanted to buy it). Memory timings when system memory is
    > shared with the integrated graphics processor are far tighter than when a
    > plugin agp card is used.
    >
    > I'm running cheap & cheerful 400MHz ram at 333MHz and figured the
    > underclocking would leave me a healthy timing margin. It does, 24hrs of
    > memtest86 and 12hrs of Prime95 suggest it's solid, but run anything
    > graphics intensive, like a movie, and it falls flat on it's face. Symptoms
    are
    > typical of interaction between graphics & system accesses, corrupted
    > stripes in the display, then the inevitable crash as a crucial area of
    system
    > mem is corrupted. Ok, I've got cheap memory, but use a plugin agp card
    > and it's solid as a rock - seems a little unfair.
    >
    > Asus uk tech support are patient & helpful, but basically they say go &
    > buy premium memory, which memory you ask, as there is currently no
    > approved memory list for this board. He suggests I visit my friendly local
    > retailer and try premium memory brands until I find one that works.
    >
    > After a long call (friday afternoon) the support guy's resolve falters; he
    > says:
    >
    > 1. This board was never intended for public sale
    > 2. It was produced at the request of large OEMs to satisfy the need for
    > simple, fully integrated boxes.
    > 3. It is their most memory fussy board ever.
    > 4. When the pet OEMs ran into memory problems they were asked which
    > memory they would like to use and the board/bios was tweaked to suit.
    > 5. There is no publicly available list of the memory that this board has
    been
    > tweaked to work with.
    > 6. A user tweakable bios is not in the pipeline for this board
    >
    > I'm not prepared to take the risk of buying more memory without a
    > guaranteed fix so I'm using the known fix of a plugin agp card. It is now
    > solid, cheap memory and all.
    >
    > Thought I'd make life simple this time, pay the premium, buy the big name
    > and go for integrated graphics, I won't be making that mistake again.
    > --
    > fred

    I'm just trying to put a system together with one of these boards too.
    I have formatted the hard drive and get halfway through Windows XP Pro
    installation, and the system just reboots, then the message "setup is
    restarting" appears and it's back to "39 mins to go".
    Thiis is the first thread I have looked at regarding this board, so will it
    be the cheap and cheerful memory that's causing this as well? (I
    deliberately bought 333 and not 400 because I read that the onboard graphics
    preferred 333).

    Peter
  16. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    In article <CoUjc.178$9H5.53@newsfe3-win.server.ntli.net>, Peter
    <suburbia99@lineone.net> writes
    >
    >
    >I'm just trying to put a system together with one of these boards too.
    >I have formatted the hard drive and get halfway through Windows XP Pro
    >installation, and the system just reboots, then the message "setup is
    >restarting" appears and it's back to "39 mins to go".
    >Thiis is the first thread I have looked at regarding this board, so will it
    >be the cheap and cheerful memory that's causing this as well? (I
    >deliberately bought 333 and not 400 because I read that the onboard graphics
    >preferred 333).
    >
    >Peter
    >
    This forum entry is a fair summary of the current situation with this board:
    http://www.abxzone.com/forums/showthread.php?s=d14d45fbfc26ad5abcc
    675c4bbae45e1&threadid=67997

    Perhaps try a run of memtest86 overnight to see if you have any chance of
    making it work. If it doesn't run clean then that would be a good excuse to
    rma the whole lot and start again with another mobo - hopefully you bought
    all the bits from the same retailer.
    --
    fred
  17. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

    > >
    > >I'm just trying to put a system together with one of these boards too.
    > >I have formatted the hard drive and get halfway through Windows XP Pro
    > >installation, and the system just reboots, then the message "setup is
    > >restarting" appears and it's back to "39 mins to go".
    > >Thiis is the first thread I have looked at regarding this board, so will
    it
    > >be the cheap and cheerful memory that's causing this as well? (I
    > >deliberately bought 333 and not 400 because I read that the onboard
    graphics
    > >preferred 333).
    > >
    > >Peter
    > >
    > This forum entry is a fair summary of the current situation with this
    board:
    > http://www.abxzone.com/forums/showthread.php?s=d14d45fbfc26ad5abcc
    > 675c4bbae45e1&threadid=67997
    >
    > Perhaps try a run of memtest86 overnight to see if you have any chance of
    > making it work. If it doesn't run clean then that would be a good excuse
    to
    > rma the whole lot and start again with another mobo - hopefully you bought
    > all the bits from the same retailer.
    > --
    > fred

    Thanks for that Fred. In the end I returned the generic memory and bought
    "Crucial" instead. Needless to say it is now running flawlessly.
    Thanks for your reply.

    Peter
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