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Memtest Crashes with 4 GB RAM

Last response: in Motherboards
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January 19, 2011 6:00:34 AM

*** Can a Mod please move this to the memory forum? I tried to post it there but it ended up here ***

Hi. I have a somewhat older MOBO - MSI P6NSLI Platinum. For a couple months I have been running 4GB in the machine without issue. Then, one day when playing Everquest 2 the game crashed on me with a Windows error. Over the next few days, the crashes went from 1/day to 1/10 minutes in-game. Suspecting memory, I fired up memtest x86. To my surprise the test rebooted my computer after only about 5 seconds. I've seen memory errors before, but never had the program crash and reboot the computer. Suspecting my Crucial Ballistix RAM, which I've had problems with in the past, I yanked those 2 sticks leaving my 2 Mushkin. Ran memtest again, and all is well. So I jumped on newegg and got me 2 more Mushkin sticks, put em in and BAM, memtest is crashing again. If I put either of the 2 sticks in either of the 2 open RAM slots, giving me 3 sticks total, memtest runs to completion w/o error or crashing. If I put the 4th stick in, I crash.

What could this be? Can this in any way be related to my PSU? Reason I ask is that I had a similar problem with my P6NSLI Diamond board - that board eventually could only run 1 stick of memory (or I think 2 if they werent in the same channel). Seems suspicious that I would have 2 boards with the same problem, so I'm looking for other causes.

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January 19, 2011 12:40:52 PM

the motherboard could be going. up the NB voltage and look at the FSB voltage.
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January 20, 2011 4:01:02 AM

1) Doesn't it seem odd that I am having a similar problem with 2 different motherboards? Could it just be coincidence?

2) How much can I safely tweak voltages w/o fear of frying things?
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January 20, 2011 2:34:46 PM

I am not sure, but you may try changing dual-channel mode to single-channel mode, ganged mode to unganged mode, setting RAM timings manually and reducing memory speed/multiplier/divider before going on to change voltages. If you have overclocked any of the chips, revert back to normal- or underclock. See if it helps. I'll be waiting to know the outcome. :) 
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January 27, 2011 10:16:16 PM

Ok...will have to try to set aside some time one night to give this a shot. Lotta things mentioned here that I'm only vaguely familiar with.
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