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The never ending Build....

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February 25, 2012 10:37:06 PM

Incoming long story but will try to be as brief as possible. After my last old, old desktop sharted on me, I decided to build my own. With help of a friend, Google, and several forums I picked my parts. My rig was aimed towards gaming and future video editing of clips. My original build was as follows:

ROUND 1
VideoCard:
SAPPHIRE FleX 100314FLEX Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

PSU:
SILVERSTONE Strider Plus ST50F-P 500W ATX 12V v2.3 & EPS 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

CPU:
AMD Phenom II X6 1055T Thuban 2.8GHz Socket AM3 125W Six-Core Desktop Processor

Mobo:
ASUS M4A87TD EVO AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD

Memory:
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBRM

My friend put the parts together and when installing he didnt put the right case screw in ( we are pretty sure of anyways) and the mobo grounded out on the case upon power up. We noticed a burnt smell so we quickly turned it off. Pulled everything out and thats when we noticed the screw along with two solder points on the back of the mobo for the memory, were touching. I Rma'd the Mobo and memory as we thought that might have been toasted cause of the touching solder points on the mobo.

ROUND 2
Got the new MoBo and memory and tried again. We got nothing. Everything powered on but nothing on my screen. No bios no nothing. My screen worked fine. I was getting a red/yellow light (cant remember which) around the memory so I was thinking it was a memory capability issue. I contacted G.skill support and talking with someone who said the memory should work on this MOBO. A week later out of frustration I was trying a few things to try to get it to work. I was running the "MemoryOK!" thing on the MOBO which has a button on the mobo. I was using a colored pencil to touch the button. I set that down and reached for it again but grabbed a pencil with not much of a eraser left and used that end to touch the button not realizing what I had grabbed. Grounded out this MoBo. Yes Im a idiot. TT

Let the stuff sit till I could afford new parts. Finally ordered new memory and and different MoBo:

Round 3
Mobo:
MSI 870S-G46 AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s ATX AMD Motherboard

Memory:
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-8GBRH

We started round 3, put everything together and again nothing to the monitor. No bios, but everything powered, fans running and green light on the mobo with no beeps. I did noticed that when my friend was using the thermal grease he used to much which ran over the cpu a little bit. We tried cleaning it up as much as I could with a razor blade before we installed. We tried everything to try and get a signal to the monitor. Nothing. My buddy tried to take out the memory to see if the MoBO beeped and we got nothing, so he tried unplugging everything it didnt need and it still made no sound. So he was thinking it was another fail mobo.

But I just cant see 2-3 mobo all failing. Im leaning towards the idea that maybe from the very start we damaged the cpu when the board got grounded. And that has been the issue the entire time but I dont have anyone with a AM3 slot computer that I can test my CPU on. (Is there any other way to test a CPU???) So right now Im at the point of RMA'ing this MoBO (JUST INCASE lol) AND ordering a new cpu and trying one last time. And YES, im not having my friend put it together, Im having another guy who works on computers for a living do this. Just so I can be safe.

Just wondering what you guys think? CPU? MOBO? Something else? Is there anything else I can try first before I order my next round of parts....

-Not the Videocard. I had my friend put it in his computer and it works fine.
-Not the monitor, I used the same monitor before and after testing it with my rig, no problems.


Sorry if this in the wrong section, if needed please move the correct area.

More about : ending build

a c 186 à CPUs
February 26, 2012 1:02:26 AM

Try Intel.
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February 26, 2012 1:30:18 AM

Honestly I would rather have this thread have no responses and die out then yours.I bought the AMD CPU because it matched what I was looking for in price and performance. Maybe Intel makes a CPU that outperforms this easy while costing less then 150, at this point its irrelevant to me as I am stuck with what I got to work with.

This is my first build and any helpful suggestions or thoughts regarding my situation will be much appreciated.
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a b à CPUs
February 26, 2012 1:43:16 AM

Take it to a shop and have them test everything for you. You are wasting money destroying parts.
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February 26, 2012 1:55:38 AM

Any idea a price estimate on that? I thought about it and kinda wish I did that around round 2. But now that I'm at this point it seems to me it can only be one of two thing, (or both) the CPU or the mobo. And they would have to be replaced anyways so really it would be more of a waste to take it to a shop to test everything.

Unless there's something else that could be astray.
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a c 215 à CPUs
February 26, 2012 2:09:11 AM

Did you run through the no boot checklist yet?
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-perform-ste...

It covers a large number of issues, and the majority of the time when a system won't boot up its not a hardware failure. There is also a link in there to a site that sells case speakers that you can hook up to the motherboard since i don't believe your board has one built in.
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February 26, 2012 2:11:44 AM

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You might have screwed up the mobo with the razor blade. ITF, use a qtip and rubbing alcohol to clean up thermal paste.
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February 26, 2012 2:40:54 AM

hunter315 said:
Did you run through the no boot checklist yet?
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-perform-ste...

It covers a large number of issues, and the majority of the time when a system won't boot up its not a hardware failure. There is also a link in there to a site that sells case speakers that you can hook up to the motherboard since i don't believe your board has one built in.


Thank you hunter, no I didnt see that sticky. I was looking but this site is rather large and my first time really navigating it.
I was wondering if all mobo have built in speakers for the code beeps. I asked another and he thought they all did but wasnt sure.

@ fb39c4
I was on some other tech site where someone had this same thing and used a razor to get the paste off. The paste was only on the cpu as we didn't install it yet to the mobo. I read later about the q-tip and alcohol or nail polish remover. Thank you though.

We probably look like the dumbest people trying to put a computer together...lol
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a c 172 à CPUs
February 26, 2012 2:58:11 AM

You didn't say what kind of PSU you have. Power supplies, especially cheap ones, are a frequent source of problems.

You are obviously an inexperienced builder. That's not an insult. We all have had a "first build". For some of us it was a very long time ago. :) 

A good first place to start:
Build it yourself:
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/274745-13-step-step...

Second place: the newegg site has a three part build it yourself series. Skip Part 1. It covers parts selection.

For troubleshooting:

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 no luck, continue.

The following is an expansion of my troubleshooting tips in the breadboarding link in the "Cannot boot" thread.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-read-postin...

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 (standby power supply): 5 volts always on. The green wire should also have 5 volts on it. It should go to 0 volts when you press the case power button (this is also a good way to test the power switch and the associated wiring), then back to 5 volts when you release the case power switch. Tolerances are +/- 5% except for the -12 volts which is +/- 10%.

The green wire should be 5 volts whenever the PSU is plugged in and the PSU switch is on. It will drop to about 0 volts when the case switch is pressed and go back to 5 volts after it is released.This will also test the case power switch.

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 (unless you have on board graphics available). In that case, remove any card and connect the monitor cable to the motherboard connector.
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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February 26, 2012 8:23:53 PM

Thanks for all the help jsc. I'll be sitting at home tonight with a monster and going through these 1 by 1. Some of the stuff in the links I have tried. But a lot I have not. ATM trying to find some case speakers now in shops around town. If not I'll have to order one.

Also my psu is a: SILVERSTONE Strider Plus ST50F-P 500W ATX 12V v2.3 & EPS 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
Though if I remember correctly I did try to hook up another psu I have on round 2, and netted the same results. I didnt try hooking it up this time around though.
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