Resurrecting an A7V33 with Athlon 1.8Ghz

This is my first post here, so please don't laugh at the specs. I know this is older MB and CPU. I just rebuilt my home PC (i5) and swapped my old P4 with my Dad to get some old parts he had laying around. The intent is to just load Ubuntu and get some familiarity. Hopefully, you are not still laughing at the age of the parts.

My problem is simple. Nothing works. I have removed all cards and RAM, so I simply have a 350W power supply, the Asus A7V333, and Athlon CPU in the case. I have the power, power switch, and speaker hooked up. When I press power, the system comes to life (fans move), but no beeps. I had tried 2 different video cards and neither gave a signal to the monitor. The lack of beeps leads me to assume POST is not running, but I really have no proof.

One friend suggested to replace the mother board battery (including resetting the CMOS). I tried that and still nothing. I had wondered if the thermal paste wasn't done well enough (by me), and I should be redoing that next, but I have screwed that up before and well, it got through post before it started to overheat. So, I am not expecting that to be different.

I hate getting beat by hardware, so any suggestions would be appreciated. The MB or CPU might be dead, but I was not ready to give up yet.
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  1. Welcome to Forums!!!
    I suggest:
    1. If you have two RAM sticks, try to boot with one at a time to eliminate any possibility of RAM going bad.
    2. Disconnect all componets - reassemble the whole unit
    Good luck!!!
  2. Unfortunately, I have removed RAM and ll the components and still no luck. Redid the thermal paste, reset everything, battery replaced and nada. I am thinking the reserection will be a burial of those parts.
  3. :hello: welcome to the forums.

    Breadboard time. :)

    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.

    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.

    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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