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Stability Issues - Please Help!

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March 2, 2010 8:22:37 PM

Does anyone have any idea why my computer is having stability problems? Games like Far Cry 2 crash after a bit of play, usually about 10-15 min.

I have run Prime95. When running blend I have errors in 10 min. or less. I ran small FFT's for 2 hrs with no errors, so I think I can rule out my CPU.

I ran Memtest86+ on three different occasions each for 8+ passes. Only one out of the three did it find errors, and in only one test of one pass. No other errors. I read that Memtest is not always right so I disregarded the errors.

My specs:

CPU - i7 920
CPU cooler - Coolermaster V8 (idle - 38c, load - 63c)
RAM - OCZ Obsidian 1600 MHz (BIOS set up as OCZ suggests for RAM) 6GB (3x2GB)
Mobo - Asus P6T
PSU - OCZ ModxStream 700W
Graphic - Galaxy GTS 250
Case - Coolermaster HAF 932
Screen - AOC F22
HD - Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB

Any suggestions would be helpful?

More about : stability issues

a b B Homebuilt system
March 2, 2010 9:02:04 PM

It sounds like you don't have the voltage set right. That's the usual cause of that kind of problem.
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March 2, 2010 9:07:46 PM

Which voltage? Vcore? Ram?

QPI/DRAM Core Voltage - 1.35 V
DRAM Bus Voltage - 1.64V
Those came from OCZ forum for my RAM

Vcore is set to Auto and fluctuates from .94V to 1.2V depending on load.

Thanks for the help, but I need a little more specificity. Which voltage and what should I set it to?
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 2, 2010 9:13:50 PM

I was talking about RAM voltage, but it sounds like you had that sorted before the problem started.

Have you ever run the RAM at a different voltage, CAS or speed setting?

And has it always had the problem?

The only thing I can really think of to try in this case would be to run CPUz and look at the different modes it pulls up for the RAM. Then pretty much try one of the other ones.
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March 2, 2010 9:25:03 PM

I tried the RAM voltage at every increment from 1.35 to 1.4 V. Didn't help.

Tried the RAM at BIOS everything default, which set it at 1066. Tried at 1066 with 9-9-9-24 88 2T settiings (which is what OCZ suggests except with 1600). Tried RAM with 1333 9-9-9-24 88 2T. Nothing helped. Some seemed worse.

Don't know enough about tweaking to mess with CAS setting. If you have a suggestion I'll try it.

Had the problem from day one, which is about two months ago. I've spent the last two months reading every post, forum, tech help I can and tried all their helps. Finally had to post my own as I ran out of resources.

I did notice in CPUz that under the SPD tab it has something called Timings Table. I don't know what it is but it has different timings such as 380 MHz 5-5-5-12 19 1.5V, and 609 MHz 8-8-8-19 31 1.5V. Should I try one of these settings?

Thx for the quick response time.
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 2, 2010 11:16:07 PM

It looks like you've got the RAM voltages backwards. The core RAM voltage should be set to whatever the RAM is rated at. That's usually 1.65v.
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March 3, 2010 2:57:19 AM

No. It is right. This is what OCZ forums say for the Asus P6T mobo's. The DRAM Bus Voltage is Asus BIOS for DRAM voltage. It is supposed to be 1.65V, but the Asus BIOS increases in increments of .02V, so it is either 1.64V or 1.66V. The 1.66V gives you an annoying error message about being dangerous for i7s so I stuck with the 1.64V. OCZ says either is OK.
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March 3, 2010 1:11:42 PM

I ran Memtest86+ again last night. 8 passes, no errors. That is 3 tests with 8+ passes on all three modules with no errors. I've also tested each module individually, no errors. It is not my RAM settings as I would get errors if those were wrong.

It is not my CPU as Prime95 Small FFTs test runs fine for 2hrs, no errors.

I think it might be my mobo, but I don't know how to test that. Anyone have a test for the motherboard, or more specifically testing my northbridge chip?

Any other ideas about what my hardware issue might be?
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 3, 2010 1:48:53 PM

I wouldn't be so sure that the RAM settings are correct just because you don't get any Memtest86+ errors. Memtest86+ is great at detecting faulty RAM, but is not very good at detecting incorrect RAM settings.

The fact that one of your first three runs of Memtest86+ returned errors isn't looking good for your RAM. Failing the blend test in Prime95 also indicates a RAM problem. Properly functioning RAM will be able to run for very long periods with NO errors. I've returned RAM that returned a single Memtest86+ error in a 12 hour run. My stability issues have been virtually eliminated since switching from OCZ to G.Skill RAM on all my recent builds.
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March 3, 2010 2:00:06 PM

I got the RAM settings off of OCZ forum. They are correct as far as OCZ is concerned. Do you have any suggestions on how to tweak the RAM settings that might make it more stable?

I tried adjusting the QPI/DRAM (aka QPI/Vtt) at every increment from 1.35V up to 1.4V. Didn't help. I tried inputting other timings off of the CPUz JEDEC tables. Problems got worse. I tried messing with a few of the timings settings, but don't really know where to start or how to test methodically. Too many options. Do I start by raising or lowering? Do I start with CAS# or tRFC?

Give me a definitive, try this in this method and I'll give it a go. Thx.
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 3, 2010 2:04:45 PM

I'll give you a definitive answer, but I don't think you'll like it. Return that RAM and get a higher quality kit from Corsair or G.Skill. This is the typical behavior I've come to expect from OCZ RAM. I don't think any amount of fiddling is going to get that RAM stable.
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March 3, 2010 3:17:20 PM

Thx for the definitive answer. I think I'll first see if I can find a way to test my system with someone else's RAM to see if the issues go away.

Thanks, again.
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 3, 2010 3:52:36 PM

After seeing OCZ DDR3 RAM I won't be using it again. For DDR2 they were great, I'm running some in my main computer now. (and I got that 4 gig set for $30) But I guess something happened and they've started slipping. Just look at reviews on newegg for them.

I don't know where G.Skill came from but they have had their stuff end up in alot of builds because it's pretty good stuff and cheaper than corsair.
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