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Asus Sabertooth P67 (revision B3) socket clamp damaging the CPU

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June 30, 2011 7:01:05 AM

Hi

I purchased an Asus Sabertooth P67 motherboard (B3 revision) 2 days ago alongside an Intel Core i7 2600K CPU (Sandy Bridge).

I have been working in the IT industry since 2003 so I am well-seasoned with computers which makes this issue/concern even more alarming and validates it as a genuine problem area on Asus' behalf.

While installing the CPU I ensured that it was facing the correct direction and that it was seated correctly into the socket (2 CPU notches aligned with the 2 socket notches). I then closed the clamp and ensured that it was caught underneath the catch pin protruding from the motherboard. Last but not least I closed the lever arm to and hooked it under its securing catch.

The concern I had was the amount of force that had to be used to secure the clamping mechanism. I won't say it was enough force to break anything but definitely more force that say an LGA 775 socket would require. I did notice online that other people have experienced this issue too. Here is an example: http://forums.overclockers.com.au/showthread.php?t=9187...

I installed the cooler thereafter and eventually booted up the PC and installed the OS without any issues. Only after closer inspection did I notice that the CPU temperature was a bit higher than what I would have expected (60-70 degrees Celsius) with average load. I decided to remove the cooler and inspect it as well as the CPU and socket too.

I could not immediately see an issue and thus decided to remove the CPU to clean the thermal compound to reapply the compound and install everything else again.

This is when I noticed the issue. The socket clamp pushes down on the left and right side of the CPU using 2 contact points (flanges) on the clamp. These contact points (flanges) from what I have seen in the past generally only gently "scrapes" the CPU and leaves a faint mark on both sides of the CPU. In my case it left 2 clearly visible notches/dents on both sides of the CPU's metal protective cap.

The CPU is still functional and everything but it is concerning that the clamp that is used on my specific Asus Sabertooth P67 motherboard somewhat "damages" the CPU. I have read online that a couple of people have experienced this issue as well. After closer investigation I did confirm the clamp on the socket as the culprit. By inspecting close-up pictures online I noticed that Asus uses different manufacturers (e.g. Foxcon, Lotes etc) for the CPU socket, clamp & clamping mechanism.

The one that I have has a very narrow "flat" side on the 2 flanges in comparison to other photos I noticed that have a broader "flat" side on its flanges' contact points to the CPU. These narrow flat contact points on my motherboard's clamp flanges basically "chews" into the metal cap on the CPU because of its small/narrow contact point instead of just gently "scraping" the CPU's metal cap as the broader flat contact point would do using another manufactured (say Lotes) socket clamp.

I think my supplier Asus themselves may assist in exchanging the motherboard for another one that the clamp is different, however I doubt that the supplier or Intel will replace the CPU with those 2 notches/dents on it caused by a problematic CPU socket clamp.
I have included pictures to illustrate what I explained

What am I to do? Please help or assist in any way. Thank you in advance.
a b V Motherboard
June 30, 2011 3:12:31 PM

that link brings me to a topic about RAM.

and i think you did somethng wrong
July 1, 2011 8:42:45 AM

r3xx3r said:
that link brings me to a topic about RAM.

and i think you did somethng wrong


I did NOT do something wrong. I am a well-seasoned IT Support technical representative for many years now and I know what I am doing.

I confirmed that Asus does in fact use different clamps for their CPU sockets as illustrated here: http://www.overclock.net/intel-cpus/998025-cpu-ihs-scra...

As far as the temperature issue is concerned - the app I was using (Core Temp) was reporting incorrectly. A newer version fixed it.

All in all I will end up living with the marks on the CPU caused by this non-Lotes socket (presumably Foxcon)



Related resources
July 6, 2011 4:39:18 AM

Hello, I'm a seasoned PC builder and I also have a Sabertooth P67 Mobo... I also noticed the extreme force needed to install the cpu onto this motherboard as well as the higher temperatures. Being a gamer I have had my games stutter and even cause a system crash which was not expected from an build such as mine. I'm very disappointed in the performance in my system which should have no problem running the games i'm playing. Im also at a loss of what to do, I think I'm going to contact ASUS about this problem and request a fix and possible reimbursement for the damage to my CPU.

My stats are:
ASUS Sabertooth P67 Mobo
Intel Core i5 2500k 3.33GHz
Corsair Vengeance 8GB PC15000 DDR3 1866MHz RAM
ULTRA X4 850W POWER SUPPLY
WD Caviar Black 1.5TB SATA HD 7200/64MB/SATA-6G
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64Bit

a c 107 V Motherboard
a b Ĉ ASUS
a b à CPUs
July 6, 2011 2:58:10 PM

testctv said:
I did NOT do something wrong.

You did do something wrong -- the link in the first post goes to a post about RAM. You might be a seasoned professional, but you are not beyond making a mistake. :p 

You're getting temps of 60-70ºC where -- in the BIOS, in Windows? With what program? And what cooler are you using?

jvicaai said:
Being a gamer I have had my games stutter and even cause a system crash which was not expected from an build such as mine. I'm very disappointed in the performance in my system which should have no problem running the games i'm playing. Im also at a loss of what to do, I think I'm going to contact ASUS about this problem and request a fix and possible reimbursement for the damage to my CPU.

Your crashing problem could be easily attributed to a sub-standard Ultra power supply. Or even a fault with the graphics card, which you failed to list in your specs.

You are unlikely to get any kind of fix or refund as the CPU isn't damaged. I'm quite sure you're not the first one to try. The Sabertooth mainboard is very popular, and they would have issued a recall had there been a widespread problem with it.
July 7, 2011 3:33:07 AM

Yes there is damage to the CPU, there are two wide scratches or notches on the sides of the CPU caused by extreme pressure...

Sorry I forgot the Vid Card, it is a Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 1GB GDDR5
a c 107 V Motherboard
a b Ĉ ASUS
a b à CPUs
July 7, 2011 6:43:51 AM

There is very slight damage to the mounting tabs on the heat spreader -- those are designed specifically to be there to withstand force like that. That's not actual damage that would break the CPU, and it won't decrease performance or anything. Your crashing problem is caused by something else.
July 7, 2011 11:07:32 PM

I've contacted my retailer and i've already got my mobo packed up and ready to go back, but i do want to make sure its not something else, i've been getting the blue screen of death whenever i'm doing something that is taxing to the computer and i'm also getting high temperature readings in the bios. the blue screen flashes something about a recent hardware change, i can't read it all before the computer restarts but thats what I can tell. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

One other note, is it possible it could be caused by a loose sata power connection to the HDD, i'm wondering if this could be the cause because my case design does not leave much room between the side and power plugs on the hard drive *side mounted Hard drives*, when i put the case back on it might be twisting it but i've already got my mobo out of the computer so no way to test.

EDIT:
I've put my mobo back in and hooked everything back up, tried running games again and still got crash, well, after updating bios and all relevant drivers I ran memtest and found that my RAM is not copying information correct, got error after error...

Not sure if my ram is flaud or not but after I get some much needed time away (sleep) from this problem I believe I will find my solution in the RAM somewhere
August 10, 2011 7:47:04 PM

UPDATE:
After lots of hard searching I took my computer over to a friends house and hooked it up.... worked great... What was the problem? Power, at home I had it hooked up to a UPS, unhooked it from the UPS onto a strip and plugged that directly into the wall and problem solved..
August 10, 2011 8:19:13 PM

Check my post, had same problem with a cheaper Socket 775 version
I've been using high end asus mobos for am3 and they are great but can't say the same on intel. If my cpu is ok, i'll return this n pick a gigabyte one
!