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Freezing PC (Possible fix: Ram voltage)

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January 8, 2010 3:37:57 AM

So I have been having freezing problems with 3 separate Mobo/Cpu/Ram combination and I have no idea what the problem is.
Here is my current hardware as it stands

- Logisys Area 51 Black ATX Window Case
- Removed side window fan
- Corsair 650w HX
- AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition
- Asus M4A785TD-V EVO
- Mushkin 4gb HP3-10666 2x2GB
- EV3A GTX 260
- Samsung 2494HM @ 1920x1080px
- WD 500gig Caviar Black

All new, everything tests okay with testing software. (memtest86 and others)

Sometimes the PC freezes when copying files from an additional drive that is not connected right now (I have a 500 GB Seagate 7,200RPM drive, 36Gb 10,000RPM WD drive that is a few years old, 1Tb WD external My Book 2.0)

Sometimes it freezes when watching a video through a web browser, or video program, and looking at a web page online.
Copying files seems to make it freeze more then anything else.

I have never had it freeze while actually playing a game, like CS:S, or Crysis, but I get tons of freezes in windows doing random things, or copying/moving files from harddrives.

I thought a BIOS update fixed it... but I was wrong
I thought a AMD driver fixed it.. but I was wrong
I thought the NVIDIA cards had a problem with this ATI based chipset, it still freezes without ever having a Nvidia card in the system and a fresh install even using the onboard video.
I have ran a system stress test from JAM software for over 1 hour making the CPU temp rise up to 52 degrees, and no freezing at all.

But I get random freezing in windows at the stupidest time and I have no idea why.

I thought it was my power bar... but I was wrong, replaced same thing
I thought it was my outlet in the wall... but I was wrong, tried at my brothers house across town and it still freezes randomly..


1st system that froze:
-Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H w/ Radeon HD 4200, DualDDR3 1600, 7.1 Audio, Gigabit Lan, 1394, Hybrid CrossFireX, HDMI
-AMD Phenom™ II X4 945 Quad-Core 3.0GHz w/ 8MB Cache (Retail Box, Socket AM3)
-Mushkin 4gb HP3-10666 2x2GB

2nd system
-NEW Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H w/ Radeon HD 4200, DualDDR3 1600, 7.1 Audio, Gigabit Lan, 1394, Hybrid CrossFireX, HDMI
-NEW AMD Phenom™ II X4 945 Quad-Core 3.0GHz w/ 8MB Cache (Retail Box, Socket AM3)
-NEW Mushkin 4gb HP3-10666 2x2GB

Since having the 3rd system, I have upgraded from:
-Antec Earthwatts 500 PSU to Corsar 650HX
-Phenom™ II X4 945 3.0GHz w/ 8MB Cache to AMD Phenom™ II X4 955 Black Edition 3.2GHz w/ 8MB Cache
-5Mnt old Seagate 500Gb, 7,200RPM HDD to (2-3)year old WD 36Gb 10,000RPM HDD to brand new WD 500Gb 7,200RPM Caviar Black


Any ideas? Any links? Any drivers to update? AFAIK everything is the latest.
I have tried with the drivers that come in each version of Windows,
I have tried with the drivers that came with the MB on CD,
I have tried with the latest drivers from the manufactures website for the board/cpu.
I have tried Windows XP 32 bit, Windows XP 64bit, Windows 7, Windows 7 64bit
All with the same result, random crashing IN Windows...


:fou:  :fou:  :fou:  I could not be more upset over the current situation.
I don't even care if 2, or 3, or every harddrive is wrecked, or another part is, I just want to know what the hell it is so I can replace it and start to use my damn PC without a handicap.

I tried to upgrade my PC by spending only $400 a month ago to give my brother my old CPU/RAM/Mobo since his was old and crappy. I have been dealing with freezing issues with these 2 setups before this current setup.
All parts were exchanged/sold to get what I have now.

Thanks in advance for any help!
January 8, 2010 6:11:31 AM

Could a wireless USB/keyboard having the wrong or a regular Microsoft driver installed be the problem? That is the only part that has remained from the system from 1-3 besides the case.
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January 8, 2010 12:05:39 PM

Just a guess, but it could be that Seagate drive. They had freezing problems not too long ago.
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January 8, 2010 8:31:28 PM

I have discovered another person with the same motherboard and same issues.
Can play games like CS:S or DOD:S for hours with no problems, but random freezing happens when transferring files.

I think it has to do with the voltage my ram was running at, I looked it up and it says 1.7-1.8V, so I set it to 1.755 in the BIOS and it has been fine since.

but I have only used it a little while, so I am unsure yet.
Hopefully that is the issue, it solved the problem for the other guy with same issues.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 8, 2010 9:06:52 PM

If you're using DDR3 that takes anything other than the standard-issue 1.5V, that would be my first guess. It's a little odd that it would let you play certain games no problem and freeze during mundane tasks, but that can be the nature of RAM voltage problems. If it's not getting enough juice, it can freeze at just about any time for just about any reason, although you will often see some consistency in the things that trigger it o.n any one particular machine.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 8, 2010 10:50:30 PM

ricky you've solved your own problem there, the freezing was because the RAM was being overvolted and thus creating errors in the memory modules. You won't find the problem when playing games as the overvolted state will have been beneficial due to the high amounts of data throughput generated by the games but in normal states it would have suckered the system. Hopefully your voltage correction will have cured it, but keep on the look out as you dont know what the overvolting has done to the DRAM chips in the modules, they may be more likely to blow out now so be vigilant. And capt-taco, standard DDR3 voltage is 1.65v unless otherwise stated by the manufacturer.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 8, 2010 11:43:41 PM

Griffolion said:
And capt-taco, standard DDR3 voltage is 1.65v unless otherwise stated by the manufacturer.


Yeah, but most motherboards I've seen always want 1.5V by default, and are about 50-50 at autodetecting anything else.

Whichever one is technically the "standard," 1.5V is by far the one I've had the least trouble with in terms of just getting the machine to work.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 9, 2010 12:18:31 AM

Griffolion said:
And capt-taco, standard DDR3 voltage is 1.65v unless otherwise stated by the manufacturer.

Actually, Capt_taco is right. The DDR3 standard voltage is 1.5v. You should do some research before calling somebody out.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DDR3_SDRAM

"DDR3 memory provides a reduction in power consumption of 30% compared to DDR2 modules due to DDR3's 1.5 V supply voltage, compared to DDR2's 1.8 V or DDR's 2.5 V."

Intel chips have a max voltage rating of 1.65v. Voltages higher than that can damage the on-board RAM controller, but the DDR3 standard is still 1.5v.
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January 9, 2010 10:31:43 PM

The ram I have calls for 1.7-1.8volt.

The freezing definitely appears to be directly related to the RAM voltage.
I had the PC up and running all day yesterday in Windows transferring files and such @ 1.8V
But the PC would freeze within 10 minutes of playing Crysis.

I have since set the RAM voltage to 1.7v and everything has been fine since.
In windows doing anything possible so far, no freezing.
In games, CS:S, Crysis, no freezing @ 1.7V

So to sum up.
I had Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H and Asus M4A785TD-V EVO freezing at random times in Windows XP 32/64bit & Windows 7 32/64bit mostly while transferring files using Mushkin HP3-10666 High Performance DDR3 SDRAM, 4GB Dual Pack @ stock auto detect voltage (which would be 1.5v AFAIK) But I was able to play CS:S for hours no problem.

I could not find the exact memory I have on Mushkin's website, but the retailer where I purchased the memory has the voltage specs listed(URL below) showing 1.7-1.8V
http://www.memoryexpress.com/Products/PID-MX24504%28ME%...

Besides that, I now have my year or so old EV3A GTX 260 216 running @ 690/1480/1250
and the Phenom II 955 BE running @ 3.92Ghz, 19.5 Multiplier, 1.4750V


Just a thought, but does the 'random freezing' in windows point to RAM since it would freeze at a 'random' time? :pt1cable:  lol
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January 19, 2010 11:14:45 PM

Best answer selected by ricky86.
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