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ASRock M3A770DE- Won't POST/Boot

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March 18, 2011 5:22:13 PM

I have recently purchased a mothebroard, ASRock M3A770DE. I have a new motherboard on the way now, but if at all possible I would love to save the extra money and just get this thing to work.

I bought it open box from newegg. !!!!EDIT!!!! I have noticed the North Bridge Heatsink is loose.. Previos buyer seemed to have knocked it loose or it simply is just poorly fastened (Has platic push rods on corners). IS there any way to fix that or is it simply broken and done for? (End Edit)

Simply put, I have been unable to get it to boot or even POST. Screen remains "asleep" at all times.

I have tried the following:

2 DIMMs of RAM, 1, then the other, every combination of DIMM placements. Even no DIMMs.

CPU is Phenom II X2 555 BE.

I have tried with GPU (GTS 250 1GB Core Edition), without I have not as it has no onboard video and I wouldn't be able to do anything. But the GPU works with BOTH of my other old (faulted) boards, so I don't see any issue with that.

I am using a 580W 20+4, with 4 pin CPU power supply.

I have considered trying varying BIOS updates, but I cannot do that since I cannot get it to POST.

I noticed that it requires BIOS version 1.10 or above to use my CPU, but I cannot verify BIOS version and the only older CPU I have which would be compatible has 2 broken pins and is nearly impossible to "fiddle with" to get to work.



Does anyone have any suggestions? I am using all but the RAM/CPU in this computer right now, so I can verify they all work. My personal belief is that the motherboard was simply DOA, but it spins up and just stays that way, no Beep, no Post, no Boot/
a c 156 V Motherboard
March 18, 2011 6:04:32 PM

"Open box" means that it was tested at newegg before they resold it.

Work systematically through our standard checklist and troubleshooting thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-read-postin...
I mean work through, not just read over it. We spent a lot of time on this. It should find most of the problems.

If not, continue.
The following is an expansion of my troubleshooting tips in the breadboarding link in the "Cannot boot" thread.

I have tested the following beep patterns on Gigabyte, eVGA, and ECS motherboards. Other BIOS' may be different, but they all use a single short beep for a successful POST.

Breadboard - that will help isolate any kind of case problem you might have.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/262730-31-breadboardi...

Breadboard with just motherboard, CPU & HSF, case speaker, and PSU.

Make sure you plug the CPU power cable in. The system will not boot without it.

I always breadboard a new build. It takes only a few minutes, and you know you are putting good parts in the case once you are finished.

You can turn on the PC by momentarily shorting the two pins that the case power switch goes to. You should hear a series of long, single beeps indicating memory problems. Silence indicates a problem with (in most likely order) the PSU, motherboard, or CPU. Remember, at this time, you do not have a graphics card installed so the load on your PSU will be reduced.

If no beeps:
Running fans and drives and motherboard LED's do not necessarily indicate a good PSU. In the absence of a single short beep, they also do not indicate that the system is booting.

At this point, you can sort of check the PSU. Try to borrow a known good PSU of around 550 - 600 watts. That will power just about any system with a single GPU. If you cannot do that, use a DMM to measure the voltages. Measure between the colored wires and either chassis ground or the black wires. Yellow wires should be 12 volts. Red wires: +5 volts, orange wires: +3.3 volts, blue wire : -12 volts, violet wire: 5 volts always on. Tolerances are +/- 5% except for the -12 volts which is +/- 10%.

The gray wire is really important. It should go from 0 to +5 volts when you turn the PSU on with the case switch. CPU needs this signal to boot.

You can turn on the PSU by completely disconnecting the PSU and using a paperclip or jumper wire to short the green wire to one of the neighboring black wires.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FWXgQSokF4&feature=yout...

A way that might be easier is to use the main power plug. Working from the back of the plug where the wires come out, use a bare paperclip to short between the green wire and one of the neighboring black wires. That will do the same thing with an installed PSU. It is also an easy way to bypass a questionable case power switch.

This checks the PSU under no load conditions, so it is not completely reliable. But if it can not pass this, it is dead. Then repeat the checks with the PSU plugged into the computer to put a load on the PSU.

If the system beeps:
If it looks like the PSU is good, install a memory stick. Boot. Beep pattern should change to one long and several short beeps indicating a missing graphics card.

Silence, long single beeps, or series of short beeps indicate a problem with the memory. If you get short beeps verify that the memory is in the appropriate motherboard slots.

Insert the video card and connect any necessary PCIe power connectors. Boot. At this point, the system should POST successfully (a single short beep). Notice that you do not need keyboard, mouse, monitor, or drives to successfully POST.
At this point, if the system doesn't work, it's either the video card or an inadequate PSU. Or rarely - the motherboard's PCIe interface.

Now start connecting the rest of the devices starting with the monitor, then keyboard and mouse, then the rest of the devices, testing after each step. It's possible that you can pass the POST with a defective video card. The POST routines can only check the video interface. It cannot check the internal parts of the video card.
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March 18, 2011 6:50:20 PM

Quick question.. "Insulated Surace" would consist of what?

And out of the entire list.. I've only seen one possible suggestion I missed.. I think I may have a single stand-off left behind from the Micro ATX board I had before. So far I'm at the end of breaboarding and have already done all these, but I'm still reading in the other tab.

I'm saving a text document to my iPod so I can run through it all again anyways just in case.

Btw about power supply.. I have a 580W, shouldn't that be enough for this rig? It seems more than enough to me, and I know it works because it's running the PC I'm typing on right now.
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