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Same again - i7 build won't boot with new mobo

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  • Homebuilt
  • Intel i7
  • Motherboards
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
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December 10, 2009 3:29:55 AM

Hi there,
A while back, I bought the parts for a nice i7 920-based system. I ran into problems and RMA'd the motherboard... apparently EVGA agreed that there was a power problem on the motherboard. I posted the problem on this forum first.
Got a replacement motherboard from EVGA today and hooked everything up. Guess what? Same exact problem. Either I've got two bad motherboards or something else is going on.

Here's the first post from my first thread:

Quote:
I recently put together an i7 system. The system won't POST--and by that, I mean that I get nothing. All of the fans and SATA devices spin up, but the motherboard doesn't make any noise and it doesn't give an error code.

Here are the specs:

Core i7 920 w/ stock HSF (cleaned off standard thermal paste and applied AS Ceramique)
EVGA X58 SLI Micro motherboard
3x 2GB OCZ Platinum DDR3
Cooler Master UCP 700w PSU
ASUS HD4890
Cooler Master Storm Scout case
WD Caviar Black 640GB
generic SATA DVD burner

I had most of this build together and in the case by the time the CPU and GPU arrived in the mail. I carefully installed the CPU and GPU and tried to boot. The fans and SATA devices all seem to be working, but the GPU had three bright red LEDs. Thinking it was the graphics card, I pulled it and tried to boot again to see what the motherboard would tell me. Again, everything spins up but otherwise nothing--no beeps, no POST code. Two things to note--the motherboard does have a blue standby LED that comes on when it is plugged in and off, and a yellow LED near it that, according to the manual, indicated functional memory slots. This is lit when I try to boot the machine. There's also supposed to be a green LED that is lit when the system is powered on, but I haven't seen it yet. Also, all of the fans in my case are powered directly from the PSU and not the motherboard.

When pulling the GPU gave me nothing, I tried removing the motherboard entirely to rule out a short in the case. I've also tried resetting the CMOS both with the button on the motherboard and by pulling the battery. I think I've ruled out faulty memory; each stick and three different slots (and no memory) gives me the same result.

I was also having an issue with the system speaker--the plug seemed a bit flaky, but it should be properly connected. Not hearing anything from it leads me to suspect the motherboard.

And I've gone over the checklist--everything is connected properly, everything is seated properly, and all of these parts are brand new.

What else can I do to isolate the problem? Do you think it's the motherboard?


Same problem. Either EVGA didn't test the motherboard or found a problem with it because they sent me back one with a different serial number. I realize two dud motherboards is unlikely but possible, but.. really? What else could possibly be causing these problems?

Thank you for your help.

More about : build boot mobo

a b B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2009 3:44:07 AM

Have you tried a different PSU? It's a shot in the dark, but it's always possible. I wouldn't really expect two dud boards in a row, especially from EVGA, but I'm sure it is possible. I'd either try your PSU in a different machine, or a different PSU in yours, just to rule that out first.
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December 10, 2009 3:49:57 AM

jack_attack said:
Have you tried a different PSU? It's a shot in the dark, but it's always possible. I wouldn't really expect two dud boards in a row, especially from EVGA, but I'm sure it is possible. I'd either try your PSU in a different machine, or a different PSU in yours, just to rule that out first.


I should be able to do this in a few days when I visit my parents, who built a new 775 system last year. Could the power supply have damaged the motherboard? I don't see why EVGA would send me a replacement if the board I sent them tested as OK.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2009 6:11:40 AM

Well, the board they sent you didn't test ok, since they sent you a new one, theoretically. I'm not sure if they even really test them, but maybe someone with some insider experience can enlighten us. I think your best bet would be to use the PSU from your parents' build and try that, since it's known working. I would suggest not putting your PSU in their build, because then you might be just introducing the root problem of your machine to theirs. Technically, your PSU could have caused some damage. I've heard of it one time, and it actually resulted in a bad CPU. I couldn't tell you how likely that is though.
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December 10, 2009 3:43:07 PM

PSU I bet.
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a b B Homebuilt system
a b V Motherboard
December 10, 2009 3:52:35 PM

^Yeah could be. Could also be CPU or something else got killed due to PSU or ESD.
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December 10, 2009 4:49:19 PM

jack_attack, definitely... I'm not putting that power supply in anything else until I know it's okay.
The PSU is my prime suspect right now because that makes most sense.
Forgive me if I'm beating a dead horse here, but if a bad CPU was my only problem, wouldn't the motherboard still turn on properly and display an error code?
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a b B Homebuilt system
a c 89 V Motherboard
December 10, 2009 5:04:59 PM

You said you tried each stick of RAM, but did you try them in the right RAM slots? X58 boards require you to put the RAM in the slots starting with the one further away from the CPU. That would be the red slots in your case.

The red lights on the GPU aren't a good sign. That indicates the GPU isn't powered correctly. Do you have both the 8-pin AND 6-pin PCI-E power connectors plugged into the GPU?

Do you have the 8-pin CPU power connector plugged into the motherboard? The connector is black and easy to miss. The connector is located near the CPU socket between two heatsinks.
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December 10, 2009 5:20:53 PM

"I think I've ruled out faulty memory; each stick and three different slots (and no memory) gives me the same result. "

it could be the RAM problem because all tries have the same result as NO MEMORY, maybe all the RAM sticks are bad? have u try different ram set?

about the no error code, it happened to me a few times when i first assemble the machines, it didnt show error code, but removing parts(RAM always the first) and put them back... usually fix things up
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December 10, 2009 6:36:55 PM

shortstuff_mt said:
You said you tried each stick of RAM, but did you try them in the right RAM slots? X58 boards require you to put the RAM in the slots starting with the one further away from the CPU. That would be the red slots in your case.

The red lights on the GPU aren't a good sign. That indicates the GPU isn't powered correctly. Do you have both the 8-pin AND 6-pin PCI-E power connectors plugged into the GPU?

Do you have the 8-pin CPU power connector plugged into the motherboard? The connector is black and easy to miss. The connector is located near the CPU socket between two heatsinks.


Give me some credit :p  I know how to install memory. First try was with all of the RAM installed in the proper slots (red). I did find that someone had written about a problem with an EVGA X58 motherboard that they were able to work around by only using a certain RAM slot..I tried this at the time without success. Unless all of my RAM is bad, it's not the memory. Then again, if this really is a new motherboard, maybe I should try the memory again.
The thing that makes me certain it's the motherboard or a power problem is the lack of any activity at all on the built-in diagnostic screen on the motherboard. From what I understand, that screen should light up immediately when the power comes on.
And yes, all of the cables are plugged in, both GPU and CPU.
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a b B Homebuilt system
a c 89 V Motherboard
December 10, 2009 6:58:29 PM

I didn't mean to discredit you. A lot of the people who come here with problems like yours are obviously not as technically minded as you. All the things I mentioned in the above post are very common mistakes made by many people making their own PC.

I've just had very long drawn-out troubleshooting threads going with people who swear that they've been through the checklist and everything is plugged in correctly. Most of the time they've forgotten to plug in the CPU power even though it's #2 on the checklist. :) 
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December 10, 2009 8:52:18 PM

No worries :p  Sometimes I try to help with some of the more obvious issues in these forums. I know what it's like.

So, I just got off the phone with EVGA. Apparently, the motherboard I RMA'd actually tested as OK. Once they get the part, I assume they look it over for obvious damage and send you a replacement. They didn't actually test my old board until after a replacement had been shipped... and then they didn't bother to tell me that my problem was not related to the motherboard.

Shame, EVGA, shame. Could have saved me a headache.
In fact, they didn't even email me about the RMA ever. I only got emails from UPS about the status of the package.
To their credit, though, it didn't take long at all to speak with someone on the phone who was friendly, knowledgeable, and understandable. That was nice.

Anyway... power supply is the only thing left that could be causing this type of problem. Cooler Master's customer support sucks (live web chat only, and not available during stated hours) so I'm going to see if this machine works with another power supply tomorrow, when I can get my hands on one, and RMA the PSU if need be.
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