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Can't POST w/ RAM set to 1066 w/ Foxconn A7GM-S 2.0 -- Checksum Error

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April 14, 2009 2:00:22 AM

Hi --

Built a new system with the Foxconn A7GM-S 2.0 motherboard. I updated the BIOS to version P02 through LiveUpdate to get it to recognize a Phenom II 3.0 GHZ procesor properly. I purchased 2 sets of WINTEC AMPX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory -- a total of 8GB in 4 DIMMs. The RAM is apparently "EPP" which means it is supposedly 800MHz RAM but sent from factory able to be easily set to 1066 using the EPP Profile. CPUZ reflects this, but I can't figure out how to use the EPP profile in the motherboard BIOS.

I was able to start up and install Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit. However, the RAM registered at 800 speed rather than 1066. I read that I would need to overclock the RAM to reach the advertised 1066 speed, and switched the DRAM speed setting from 'AUTO' to 'MANUAL' - 533. Also in the BIOS, I increased the voltage to the DRAM by 400mV (around 2.25 volts), since I know it would need increased voltage.

After doing so, the motherboard would not POST. It gives me a CMOS Checksum Error and forces me back into BIOS to change it before I can boot I tried multiple configurations of voltage, even around 1.9v and 2.25v... No POST. Setting the DRAM clockspeed back to AUTO or even Manual -- 400 in the BIOS allows me to boot fine.

I tried to leave the voltage at AUTO and change the clock speed and got the same issue, so it seems to be the 533 clock speed setting that is creating the CMOS error. The motherboard BIOS is up to date and supports 1066 RAM through the advertised specs (apparently through overclock)

I want to use the RAM at the advertised 1066 speeds, but am at a loss at how to start the system. As it stands, I am stuck with 800MHz with slower than usual clock speeds (the motherboard can set speed but apparently it is well known that this model can't tweak the actual LATENCY TIMINGS on -any- RAM)... I am wondering if there is a workaround for the ratio to change these settings... Can you please help me get my board to POST with the RAM at advertised spec? Do I have any options or am I forced to find other RAM? Is there a way I can tweak the FSB/RAM ratios in the BIOS in order to get the RAM to run at 1066?

I just shot off emails and support requests to both Wintec and Foxxcon but fear I will be stuck shelling out another $100 for RAM... Providing the RAM is no good, do you think that "real" (non EPP) 1066 RAM would work or would I be better getting high quality 800MHz RAM (e.g Geil Black Dragon) I can't even set the timings on this motherboard and the timings that this RAM is loading aren't great, even at 800MHz.

Please get back to me ASAP.

Thanks!


Complete Specs:

Case:
NZXT ROGUE Crafted Series (Red/Black) (MicroATX)

PSU:
OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W (ATX12V)

Motherboard:
Foxconn A7GM-S 2.0 (MicroATX)

Processor:
AMD Phenom II X4 940 (3.0GHz Quad Core)

RAM:
8GB (4 x 2GB) Wintec AMPX DDR2-1066

Storage:
2x SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 HD103UJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s HDD (RAID1 array for data integrity)

Video Card:
MSI R4830-T2D1G OC Radeon HD 4830 (1GB 256-bit GDDR3)

Optical Drive:
LG GGW-H20L 6x Blu-Ray Burner/DVD±RW + HD DVD-ROM Combo Drive (Super Multi Blue)

3.5" Drive:
Rosewill RCR-FD201 12-in-1 Internal Card Reader w/ Floppy Drive

Miscellaneous Hardware:
SYBA PCI to Firewire 1394a 2+1

Cooling:
Xilence XPF120.R.PWM Pulse Width Modulation Fan (system fan/case exhaust w/4-Pin System Fan Extender Cable)
4x Rosewill RFA-120-RL 120mm 4 Red LEDs Case Fan (push/pull setup)

Operating System:
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Ultimate SP1 64-bit
April 14, 2009 4:16:00 AM

I don't think you can run 4 sticks at 1066 with AMD, and it really makes very little difference over 800.
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April 20, 2009 2:11:16 AM

I am running ocz 1066mb memory pc 8500 and I too could not get pc to boot.I had to only instal 2 mb and then instal my os then after all updates to installed os i could get pc to start and add the rest of ram.. It is the only way I could get mine to start.
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April 26, 2009 1:34:51 PM

Hi,

I'm also having problems getting my system stable on 1066 ram. You may also need to increase the northbridge voltage as well, I did on my MSI P7N Diamond mobo. The ram I used is OCZ Gold PC8500 4gigs.

This did get the thing past post but the system still aint stable, although it will run games and so on okay, just crashes every so often. The benchmarks I did showed absolutley minimal performance gain over 800, so feeling like a kick in the teeth really, especially since neither the mobo manufacturer or the ram manufacturer can't be bothered to support their products with sufficient documentation, either with the product or on their web pages. Instead, you have to trawl through hundereds or thousands of posts on forums by similarly confused amateurs (and some experts, but how do you know which is which?).

I might just leave the ram on 800 to avoid hitting the reset button every so often and accept the fact that I wasted £40 (or I can work a bit harder to find the advice that suits me and my system!)


Hope this helps :D 
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