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Power issue? Or defective component?

Last response: in Systems
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January 18, 2010 8:45:32 PM

Components:
* ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
* 2 x GIGABYTE GV-N275SO-18I GeForce GTX 275 1792MB 448-bit GDDR3 Video Card
* Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920
* CORSAIR DOMINATOR 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TR3X6G1600C8D
* Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
* LG 22X DVD Burner SATA Model GH22LS50
* Thermaltake SpinQ Performance Series cooler
* BFG Tech EX-1200 BFGR1200WEXPSU 1200W Continuous Rated at 40°C ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready
* Thermaltake ArmorPlus(Armor ) VH6000BWS Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case
* Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Situation:
I'm an amateur builder and this is my first SLI system. The ASUS motherboard manual recommends at 1000W for SLI builds. I initially had a 1000W PSU. I was able to install the OS, but afterward I would experience random BSOD. Thinking the system didn't wasn't getting enough power, I disconnected one of the video cards and the system appeared to be running fine. I replaced the PSU with a 1200W and re-inserted the video card. The BSOD was not resolved and continued to happen randomly, i.e. I could not consistently replicate the problem. During one troubleshooting session, the monitor flickered and the Windows Aero theme switched to Basic and I could not re-activate the Aero effects. Additionally, one line on one of the BSODs read "MEMORY CONTROLLER." I went into BIOS and discovered that only 2 of the 3 DIMMs were being recognized. I assumed the motherboard wasn't receiving the power it needed, so I disconnected the 230mm fan in the case. I have not experienced the BSOD since, but have not strained the computer yet. I will install the video game Crysis on it tonight.

My question is: Isn't 1200W enough to run this system including the fans? If so, does anyone have any suggestions as to what the problem may be. I'm willing to troubleshoot as much as I can, but I don't have spare parts to swap in.

Your help is appreciated.

R
January 18, 2010 9:12:48 PM

Yes 1200w is more than enough for your system. Sounds like a RAM problem. Did you set your timings and voltages correctly?
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 18, 2010 9:23:10 PM

1200W is plenty. 1000W should have been plenty, for that matter. There's no way that's the problem.

Definitely agree it sounds like the memory is the issue, and voltage is always at the top of that list. Your RAM takes 1.65V, and I bet your motherboard wants 1.5V by default. So adjusting that manually is a good place to start.

If that's not it, it's possible one of the RAM sticks was just defective. You can try booting it up with one stick in at a time and see if you can identify the bad stick that way. Or you could just run Memtest.
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January 18, 2010 9:32:38 PM

Thanks for the quick responses. I don't typically change any timings or voltages. I just stick with the default whenever I can since I don't really know what I'm doing in that regard. I will make sure the RAM voltage is correct and test tonight and get back to you.
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January 18, 2010 9:36:21 PM

If you overclocked check your RAM multiplier as well. To run at 1600 you would need 1.65 for the voltage and 8-8-8-24 timings.
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January 18, 2010 10:57:59 PM

One last bit: Re-reading my explanation, I neglected to mention that all three DIMMs were recognized after disconnecting the fan. Not sure if that changes anyone's assessments.
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January 19, 2010 4:26:43 AM

OK, here's what's happened so far: On my first boot (without the side panel fan connected) I went into the BIOS to check on the RAM voltage. The first thing I noticed was that only 2 of the 3 DIMMs were detected again -- even with the 230mm side panel fan disconnected, so that more or less proves it wasn't a power issue. The DRAM Bus Voltage was set to Auto.

I then removed all of the DIMMs and inserted them one at a time in the first slot, booting with only one DIMM to see if it was bad. Each one booted fine and Windows appeared to be stable. I inserted all three DIMMs and went back into BIOS and set the DRAM Bus Voltage to 1.64 -- I'm only allowed to increase/decrease voltage by 0.2 increments so I couldn't hit 1.65 and I was warned that anything above that could permanently damage the CPU.

The system booted fine and I installed Crysis. I maxed out all of the settings and played without a hitch. I quit, rebooted and still no issues. I hope my problem is solved.

Will update you again if there's an issue. Should I be concerned about the 1.64V for my RAM?
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January 19, 2010 2:27:08 PM

1.64 is fine, the only reason you would want to up it is if they were unstable. My board is the same, I run at 1.66, should be fine but its a personal choice as *technically* its over spec. But no need to change it if you are stable now. Do a memtest and you can be pretty certain. I'd also do a prime95 burn in and watch temps just to be sure. I usually really only do prime95 for like 30 mins before I decide its stable, but a lot of people like to do it overnight.
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January 21, 2010 5:30:23 PM

Well, haven't done the memtest or the prime95, but I experienced another BSOD that mentioned pagefile -- I can't be sure since it flashed by quickly. Anyway, during post I noticed that the memory was being recognized as 1066 instead of 1600. So I went into BIOS and changed the frequency from Auto to 1600. So far the system appears to be stable again. This system is actually a gift for my father so I don't always have access to it.

Will update everyone if there are future issues.
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