Extreme issues - suggestions?

Hello All,

Let's just say I'm at my wit's end with my issue. I am getting random shutdowns on my system. And when I say shut down, I mean it goes from happy browsing and playing games to straight of in a split second. Here is my build:

Case: NZXT Zero full tower

MB: ASUS Crosshair II Formula

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 940 Deneb, 3.0Ghz (NOT OC'ed)

Heatsink: Scythe 120mm Sleeve Andy Samurai Master

RAM: Corsair XMS2 DDR2 800 (2x2GB) (running 4-4-4-12 @ 2.1v)

GPU: 2x XFX Geforce 8800GTS (G92) (NOT OC'ed)

PSU: Kingwin Mach1 1000W

HDD: Samsung 7200RPM 500GB / WD 7200RPM 500GB

DVD: ASUS 20x DVD+/-R Burner

KB: Logitech G11 Keybooard

Mouse: Logitech G5 Laser Mouse

OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit

And here is what I've done:

-I thought at first that it might be the hard drive, since there was a strange sound coming from my case whenever I'd boot up, and it SOUNDED like it was the hard drive. I replaced that with a new one (the WD drive on my list).

-The sound kept appearing, and I finally found it was coming from my power supply. I thought that maybe the supply was being overtaxed (I previously had a Thermaltake Toughpower 700W supply). I replaced that with the 1000W beast on my list.

-The sound went away, obviously, but my system kept shutting off. It was always random, too, but when it first started it would shut down after weeks, and then days, and now hours. I was able to have my system up for about 1 - 8 hours, and there was no pattern to when it would shut down. I tested it running games, just doing menial stuff like browsing the internet or using Office products (Word, Excel, etc). I even left it in the BIOS one day and it still shut down. Also did this in Safe Mode (with and without networking).

-I thought it might be one or the other video cards, for some reason. So I've pulled them both and tried them in different slots. Shut down still occurs.

-I've tried moving my Memory around, and using one stick (I've tried both separately). Shut down still occurs. I ran tests on my memory, too, just to make sure, and it always came back with 0 memory issues.

-Recently, in the past couple of weeks, my system stopped starting at all. I'd go to hit the power button on my case, and nothing would happen. I could see the board getting power, because things lit up on it, but the power button would not do anything. I started pulling hardware, piece by piece, and was finally able to get it to start after I pulled the sound card (I'd pulled both video cards before that, so when the system finally booted again it had neither the video cards or the sound card). After this I plugged things back in, piece by piece, and tested powering it up after each piece. Each time it would power up properly. I thought that a cable might have somehow been hitting the video card and causing an issue, so I re-arranged some cables and zip tied the crap out of them, so now no cable is touching anything anywhere.

-I was able to power the system back on again, and it ran great....for about an hour....

I've run through the event logs and everything else I can think of. There are no errors in the events logs to show a problem. It just shows the entries from where the system was powered back on.

-I've sat and watched the temps on the CPU, MB, Video Cards, everything. Nothing was overheating at the times it died the few times I sat and watched. The case itself has 7 120mm fans in it, and they are all working fine, so there's plenty of airflow.

-I've updated the BIOS to the most recent version, although I don't remember off the top of my head what version that is. I DO know that the problem was there even before I updated to the most recent BIOS, though.

-Everything was used in a previous setup that included an ASUS M2N-SLI deluxe board and an AMD dual-core processor (2.9Ghz). That setup worked flawlessly, until the day I pulled it all to put the new Motherboard and processor in.

I'm seriously at my wit's end here. I'm going to pull the sound card again tonight, since that's what triggered it to start working again yesterday, and leave it out, to see what it does. I'm thinking that I'm going to have to contact ASUS and get an RMA. They claim a 3-year warranty on it, and I purchased the board back in April of this year, so let's hope that holds up. I haven't been able to get around to really digging into it before because I haven't really had time to.

Anyone else have any suggestions? I'm seriously out of ideas at this point, and I don't want to think that I spent $200 + on a faulty board. I got this board because of its claim to be able to run dual SLI @ x16 speed, instead of both cards at x8. If this doesn't get fixed, either by myself or by ASUS, I'm going to have to go with another board. Any suggestions there would be appreciated, too.
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More about extreme issues suggestions
  1. You seem to be having sparatic issues that are all over the map. There could be a million things wrong with your unit.

    I would say grab another board, as your issues seems to point more towards the motherboard than anything else.

    When you get the new board up and running, run Prime95 and let it run for at least 24 hours. If it is stable after that long, it's good to go. If not, then something connected to the motherboard is sparatically going bad, in which you would have to torture test all components for a day
  2. Hmmm, I have an idea. Very hard to find, but this happened to me a few years ago. I had a short. What happened was I ordered an assembled computer (way back before I built them) and it came stock with this problem where it would randomly shut off. It turns out at the factory when they screwed on one of the case fans, they pinched the wire in between the fan and the case. Pinched it enough to pierce the insulation on the wire, and it would ground itself out on the case. The power supply does the right thing and shuts off. While it is tedious, I would open up your system, and check EVERY wire in it, make sure they aren't pinched, cut, or anything else.

    That being said, I would also remove the cpu heat sink, clean it, re-apply thermal paste, then re-mount. You said the temp on the cpu is fine so the heatsink is probably mounted on correctly. However, I've had issues where there was "too much pressure" on the cpu, and that would cause a similar problem. I don't know if it was a mobo issue, or a cpu issue, but the heat sink was on too tight and it would cause a similar problem, even though temps were fine. Good luck man.
  3. I'll try these suggestions. Honestly I do think it's the board, too. Like I said before, I love the board...when it works properly!

    I'll try taking off the heatsink later and checking the wires for shorts and what not. I've been pretty careful about any wires/cables that I have installed. zip tying them back so that they're not in the way, and making sure they all have room to move (i.e. not zip-tying them to strangling pressures).

    I'm pretty sure this will end up as an RMA with ASUS, and I really, really hope they're serious about that 3-year warranty. Although I took a look at their RMA page and they want everything short of a blood sample from me. I can say that probably 80% of that info they want I can't retrieve, because I can't boot up at the moment. We'll see how it goes.

    Thanks for the suggestions!
  4. Well...I've had enough tinkering of my own. Going to RMA it back to ASUS and see what they can do. If nothing, then I'm going with another board manufacturer. My buddy has a Gigabyte board, he says it's great. Maybe I will give them a shot...
  5. I don't blame you if you've been burned......but I love asus. I would give it another shot.
  6. It might just be the board itself. I've had other ASUS boards and never EVER had a problem. I'll wait and see what they say about it. I don't want to jump to conclusions, just frustrated out of my mind at this point with this issue.
  7. UPDATE:

    RMA's the board back to ASUS. Received a replacement board on Christmas Eve (verified by new serial #). This board works like a charm. It's been going strong all weekend. I'm sure now that whatever problem I was running into was the product of a faulty board, not any of my other hardware.

    Thanks all, for your help!
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