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New problems and bottlenecking?

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Last response: in Systems
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December 21, 2010 7:18:21 PM

Ok, I'm have a few problems, so lets start with the basics. Here is my build I have been using for a while, and it has been working fine.
Processor
Intel Core 2 Duo Processor E4400
Processor clock
2004 MHz
Physical / logical processors
1 / 2
# of cores
2

XFX nvidea GeForce 9600 GT

Operating system
64-bit Windows 7 (6.1.7600)
Motherboard
MICRO-STAR INTERNATIONAL CO., LTD MS-7235
Hard drive model
Memory
4096 MB
Module 1
1024 MB OCZ 7 @ 400 MHz
Module 2
1024 MB OCZ 7 @ 400 MHz
Module 3
1024 MB OCZ 7 @ 400 MHz
Module 4
1024 MB OCZ 7 @ 400 MHz

313GB Seagate ST3320620AS ATA Device

I had a 450W PSU in the case that I had.

So here's what went wrong !
I decided it was time for a new GPU upgrade, I bought the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460. It required a 450W psu minimum, so I thought I'd buy a shiny new modular PSU so I could get more watts and be on the safe side. So I purchased a Coolmax CUG-700B 700W RT.
I installed both, and noticed I had trouble booting up my system. First I wouldn't get any mobo beeps. So I tried only plugging in each component to my PSU one by one to see what was wrong. Turns out my harddrive sata connection was the problem somehow. My guess is either the cable is finicky, or the connection is loose because my hard drives sit in the case sideways, and I don't have a 90 degree sata cable, so the case door would put pressure on the cable and press it down.
So after a few tries, the mobo would either not beep, or it would give me long series of beeps. Then finally, it worked, I don't know how, I don't know what I did, but it turned on and worked fine. Then this morning, I tried to go power it up, and I got the long beeps again. Powered it down, tried a 2nd time without playing with anything, and it worked fine. I'm SUPER confused on what to do with that? Any suggestions?

My next problem, is my new card seems to be really sluggish. I am wondering if my CPU is just bottlenecking it hardcore, or what. It probably is, but it seems like I'm almost getting worse results than I had with my 9600gt.
I ran 3dMark 11, and my result was P2287 3DMarks (whatever that means) Here's link: http://3dmark.com/3dm11/249516

I know I'm probably asking the obvious, but is my bottleneck just killing me at my RAM and CPU?

Thanks for any help!

More about : problems bottlenecking

a b B Homebuilt system
December 21, 2010 8:55:52 PM

have an extra SATA cable for your drive? (the one you mentioned being bent at the wrong angle? (At least try removing it from the drive in question when the system won't post..)

As for the new video card, you cant simply remove the old card, and install the new one (not that you did that, but I should make no assumptions); at the very least, I'd delete the old driver, all references to the 9600GT in device mngr, and/or reinstall the latest driver package.
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December 22, 2010 3:19:59 AM

Also, your CPU, if you don't overclock it, might bottleneck your GPU. If you plan on doing SLI, it will definitively bottleneck it.
For the POST problem, it really looks like a bad connection to me. Have you verified that the connectors are plugged in ok ? that the metal pins are not sticking out of the plastic connectors ?

You could also check your motherboard manual for the signification of the beep code. It would really help for the diagnostic.
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Related resources
December 22, 2010 2:33:25 PM

Coolmax PSU's are not known to be the better in the business, please link the exact model of the PSU.
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December 26, 2010 10:18:07 PM

My PSU is this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I know it probably wasn't the best choice, but I wanted something around $80 that have more watts and was modular.

As for the cables. I switched out the two I own (one from the dvd player). Still no difference, I even ordered 2 new cables to test those as well.
A new thing that has been happening I've noticed, is that my computer will start up fine every-other time! So every morning, the first time I boot it up, my mother board does its complaining beeps, so I power down. Then the second power up, it runs like a champ. I need to find my mobo manuals to check the beep charts, that has been the wrench in my system lately, not being able to track those down.

As for my CPU, I can tell it is kinda dragging everything else down. When I play games on good playable settings, I check my CPU monitor, and it's usually running at +95%. I am a noob when it comes to overclocking, but I'm willing to try, because it's an older cpu anyways, and if I blow it up, then I could justify ordering a new one.

So...any tips on overclocking would be awesome, and/or any advice to a good top of the line cpu for a 775 LGA socket.

Oh and yes, the drivers were wiped and new ones installed, I didn't have problems with that, but thanks for checking.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 26, 2010 11:26:20 PM

Time to start over then. First, put all the old parts back in and make sure you don't have any problems with the original system. Then start with changing out one part at a time. Start with the PSU of course, if you want to dump the pos coolmax HERE is a OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ700MXSP 700W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply for only $60 after MIR. While you have all the parts out and have clear access to your plugins make sure your sata connections are good and secure. When you get the psu in it see how that works. If it works ok then move on to the video card, If not then the next step would definitely replace the PSU with a more recognized brand/model. Once you get that working with no problems we can move on the replacing the GPU. I would take mdd1963 suggestion and remove the video drivers before you remove the card and have the driver disk installed in the cd/dvd player when you restart with the new video card installed.
As far as bottlenecking goes, yes, with the new, upgraded PSU and GPU it's more a matter of the new parts being made for today's quicker/faster systems so of course the other components are going to be slower. It sounds like you are on your way to a system upgrade.
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December 27, 2010 1:02:30 AM

I did all those things, with all the old parts EXCEPT for the PSU. I tried booting up every piece of hardware one by one and it was the hard drive. I purchased a new hard drive, I've fully cloned the old one (because I can't fresh install W7, its a long story). Now I'm must waiting for my new sata cables, and then I'll switch the new drive to the master, format the old one and use it as media storage. But I have a haunch that it's not the hard drive that's causing my system to not boot up.
I'm thinking its the PSU, maybe on the first boot up it doesn't transfer power correctly? I don't know, but it is for sure every other system power up. I could turn my computer on and off 10 times, and it will boot up fine every other time. It's very strange. Could it by the PSU?
Would Newegg take this PSU back just because I don't like it and give me credit to buy a better one?
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 27, 2010 1:21:26 AM

Especially if you have used the old card and the new power supply and it's doing the same thing you should test that psu as suggested. I think that's the best way to test the psu - remove it and install the old one and see if it works. You can try it with the new video card in it, it might work as long as you don't try anything GPU intensive. 450w is most likely a maximum wattage requirement so it might work. But the best way, (without psu testing equipment), to test it is to take it out and try the old one. If it works then you know that's the problem and Newegg shouldn't have any problem accepting it for an exchange.Especial
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December 27, 2010 9:57:48 PM

*facepalm*

I plugged in my old PSU. It was a scary experience because my new gpu needs 3 6-pins, and my old PSU didn't have those. So I used the standard 4-pin to 6-pin cable converters, and each 6-pin needed 2 x 4-pin. So I didn't have enough cables to power up my 2nd HDD or my DVD drive.

And as I feared, my computer booted up without a hitch. So I guess I've got to RMA the new piece of crap PSU and try out the OCZ one.

Thanks guys

Any other tips on overclocking the CPU?
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 27, 2010 10:33:52 PM

Well, sorry but glad. Sorry you have to replace it but glad you at least now know and can fix the problem. If you start a new thread for the overclocking you'll get some better advice on that.
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December 28, 2010 11:20:52 AM

As I stated before, Coolmax PSU's are junk, basically the only PSU's that you'll want to consider for quality are listed below:

Corsair
Enermax
Seasonic
Antec (earthwatts series)
PC Power & Cooling
OCZ (only some models)

If it were me, I would go with a Corsair 750TX or 850 TX and not have to worry about a PSU in a LONG time...
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