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Quick analysis if CPU is damaged or not.

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May 5, 2012 11:14:19 AM

Hello THG forum members! I figured no better place than to ask here with the guru's who may do this for a living more than I do. I know the components, I'm hoping you know the internals. Recently I purchased the new Z77 Sabertooth motherboard from asus, I went to install the CPU, everything was matched up, perfectly. I've been building PC's since I was very young. So this isn't inexperience, I placed the CPU in centered perfectly lined up, not crooked, just straight and flat gently, matched up the < with the . on the motherboard directing where to put it (bottom left corner LGA 1155) and I aligned it with the marks on the CPU as well, and the notches were all lined up, as soon as I placed it in, I pulled on the latch outward to release, went to push the CPU down with the latch and the safety cover popped up prematurely, I was like hmm... checking to make sure it was still aligned, it was. So I continued. It took A LOT of force to get the cpu pushed in from the latch. It was almost bending the latch bar, All's I heard was metal on metal crunching, I cringed horrendously. I then Let off thinking to myself... this can't be normal? I've installed TONS of CPU's, mostly AMD, but this i7 2700k is the same just reversed, and have to be just as careful with the pins. So I finally got the CPU in went and put the rest of the case together and it wouldn't post, just the red lights for the CPU and the ram were flashing on the motherboard. I then proceeded to call asus after like 40 mins of trying to get it to post.

Here's what asus tried to say "It's because you are using quad channel ram, quad channel ram isn't compatible with a dual channel motherboard" I said yes it is..... he's like no, it's not, that's why your motherboard is not posting, because you have bad/wrong ram. I was like no... you can run quad channel ram in a dual channel motherboard, you just wont get to utilize the quad channel, the guy argued with me for like 25 mins over this. I then called corsair, and he laughed with me at the guy from asus, I was like (Yeah, My last 4 phone calls in the last few years have been this sad). So after using ram from my other computer, to check to see if it was a ram issue (tho we were sure it wasn't) it wouldn't post at all, I then pulled the motherboard out, unlatched the latch, and noticed the motherboard had bent pins, so after that we figured that was probably the conclusion and that the motherboard was trying to use the memok feature of the z77 and doing checks.

I RMA'd the board to newegg, hoping they'll refund, tho I'm pretty sure they wont, but this wasn't an end user fault, I set the CPU in there level, not diagonal, not tilted, not the wrong way first and wiggling it around and smashing the pins everywhere, not like most people who claim the pins were bent tho they messed it up. I honestly had put it in/done it the right way, and I guess if I have to get another motherboard, I have to get another motherboard, I'm Just worried the CPU got messed up and or fried by having it in the motherboard when it wouldn't post, or when the force was being pushed down on the CPU.

So here's the CPU, I'd like your analysis, I know it'd be better in person with a magnifying glass, but it's all I can do.

Sides of the CPU indented from the force needed to get the latch down to the board latch.





bottom of the CPU where the pins hit (some show 2 pin indents in 1 spot) not sure if any of you notice any damage or not. I don't know if the sides actually provide anything useful for the cpu, or if it's just something for heatspreading and for the latch to use to grip.




This one shows the bottom right a little better.

Also there are some grey marks on the side nothing like a burn mark or anything, I think it might be a thermalpaste stain. anyways.. what are the chances of my cpu being ruined from all this? I know how to install, and I'm all about being careful, but I don't know what's damaged and what's not. Thanks in advance.. I hope they let me RMA that board, as it wasn't user end damage. Since I kept the safety latch on, positioned it how it was suppose to be held the CPU by its corners. and lightly set it in flat (again, not crooked or wrongly aligned or mispositioned or sideways or diagonal) it was a flat! placement of the cpu. And this happened.

Anyways sorry for ranting, just hoping if I'm out any $, it's only the 250 for the motherboard, and not 250 for that and 330 for the cpu :/  thanks in advance!

- Also, what are the chances of the CPU being damaged from trying to post the motherboard when I did that earlier, when like 15 of the pins weren't touching the CPU, none right? because it didn't actually post? what about when I pressed the memok button and it tried to sync the ram with the CPU? does it have a safety feature? thanks... I know tons about building, I'm 50/50 about how the components internals work, like memory controllers, FSB, etc I know the basics of how they work, but not like the die in the CPU's and what each part of the CPU does at the bottom where it connects to the pins on the motherboard/vice versa. Anyways! I'm off to bed, will check the thread in the morning.
a c 169 à CPUs
a c 168 V Motherboard
May 5, 2012 1:28:51 PM

The first pic makes it look like you took a hammer to the heat spreader, that is not good at all. If the heat spreader is deformed due to the excessive force that you put on it, you may have broken the seal to the heat generating silicon die. If that is the case (and I hope that it isn't), the CPU is a goner because it won't be able to cool off.

Worse, the solder contacts could have been broken as well.

I hate to say it but it looks like you may be out the CPU too
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May 5, 2012 2:04:57 PM

That is unfortunate. From looking at the processor it does not look damaged on the buisness side imo.
you can only try and put it in a new mobo and hope for the best.

Comming from AMD i found the i7 harder to place into the slots. When you lined it up did you then move the chip around at all? The proccessor kind of drops into the pins when correct and the latch bar simply stops it from moving. When placing the latch bar down there should be little to no force being applied.

You could have been very unlucky and had a mobo with bent pins, Newegg might agree with this and send a replacement.

Goodluck
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May 5, 2012 3:05:50 PM





Here's some pics of both sides, being honest, these pics make it look a lot worse than it is, they are deep, but not tremendously, I was guessing the die is in the center block and that the edges where it handles out like that isn't close to the die, if i look from the top of the cpu, the indents aren't to the center piece yet, just on the handles shaped part of it that comes out, and when i look at it from a direct side point of view, you dont see the indents at all on either side, one indented it enough to just shave some of the silver coloring off and made a little slope of an indent, the other one just looks like a nick.

what's your opinions?

Also, if I do put that CPU in a different motherboard, and lets say it is bad, will it still post? or could it be good enough to post and then fry components? Just being careful, I mean, it looks fine per say from my angle, I mean, I don't like knowing my cpu has indents in it period.. but anyways, Thanks for the replies. I don't think newegg will take any of it back, the motherboard is in right now, it doesn't say approved yet, it's still shipping, should be there on monday. And damaged pins on a motherboard is 99% end user damage and then googling around asus tries to get you to fix it for 70 dollars + shipping. I just want a good z77 board for the ivy chips, hell I might get that same board and an ivy chip or a different one if anyone has any suggestions(that's if they don't send me a new z77 sabertooth) and an ivy chip if the cpu is dead. (I only went the z77 to be more "future proof" new generation of cpu's on z77 but still could use the well tested sandy's until they worked out all the kinks in the new line.
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May 5, 2012 3:25:42 PM

That CPU won't damage a new mobo, but I wouldnt worry about it not working until it doesn't. The case of the CPU is quite thick, the top quarter is basically the heat transfer I believe. The side bits are simply to have the pressure of the motherboard clip.

For your next install make sure after the CPU is in place you cannot "wiggle" it about in the socket, the cpu should not be able to move at all (apart from up and out).

If Newegg does argue your best defence is to say that the Processor did not slot into the pins correctly meaning there was a pre bent pin on delivery. The chip was deffinately out of socket as you pushed that retainer clip down.
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May 5, 2012 3:32:33 PM

Yeah I didn't wiggle it around, I (In this order) Pushed the latch down/out/up so it was ready to place the CPU in. I then put the CPU in (centered perfectly). all notches met VERY flush and tightly, the notch on the right and left corner that can only go in 1 way otherwise it's a bit obvious, I even spent like a minute looking at the under side of it, and matching it with the way of the ratio of the pins, and then also looked at the cpu and was talking to myself in my head going ok, that notch is top right, k there's the top right notch, there's the left notch, and there's the pointer showing captain obvious where the CPU goes and has to line up with the motherboard. All was aligned, dropped in, and it was just hard from the get-go.
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May 5, 2012 3:33:08 PM

No, attaching a damaged component to a motherboard will not damage anything. Only exception to this is the Power supply. All it will do is not work with the damaged component.

PS. you are using way too much Thermal paste, next time put on significantly less.
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May 5, 2012 3:39:50 PM

Did the motherboard come with a CPU socket cover? They are supposed to come with a little plastic cover to stop crap from getting in and messing with the socket.
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May 5, 2012 3:47:25 PM

used enough to cover it with a thin layer, only used a tiny pea sized dab. actually a lot less than pea sized, it just looks like a lot because it's stamped the top with the cpu case cover i have it in, and there's some of the cpu that's bare because of how much has been slid to a side. used that much on my AMD PII x4 and it doesn't get above 29c idle with the stock AMD heatsink and only 40c under full load of prime 95 full test for an hour.
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May 5, 2012 3:53:23 PM

jamie_1318 said:
Did the motherboard come with a CPU socket cover? They are supposed to come with a little plastic cover to stop crap from getting in and messing with the socket.
Yeah it did, that's going to be their defense too, tho it doesn't matter if you buy a lamborghini with the hood down, can still have problems from the factory, from what I've been reading tho, I'll have a fun time doing that, since that's why intel insisted on the motherboard manufacturers start making the pins for it because everyone was pulling the "bent pins came this way" thing on intel, so now its up to the motherboard manufacturers, and asus is absolutely horrible customer support, I'm a loyal user for over 15 years with asus, Their customer support knows nothing these days, the guy on the phone the day before said I couldn't use quad channel ram with a dual channel motherboard and that's why it wasn't booting up, because he was just reading the specs from a book and had 0 technical know-how. I'm sorry but you can use quad channel ram in a dual channel motherboard, you just wont use 4 channels. I'm using the same ram he said I couldn't use right now in my AMD machine, all 4 dimm slots filled, quad channel in a dual channel motherboard, seems to be working just fine, fancy that, and corsair also laughed at him and said that in their QVL list for that board there was like 10 quad channel memory listings lol.

I wonder what boards are worth anything these days? asus makes decent products, but without the customer support to back it up, it makes the experience not fun at all, at least with EVGA/corsair they are very friendly, will walk you through anything that doesn't even have to be from their products if it ends up being another product at fault, and they have great warranties. EVGA motherboards any good? Their videocards aren't matched.
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May 5, 2012 4:06:48 PM

most technical support is awful; you basically just have to hope you don't have any problems.

The quad channel RAM thing is probably because they are trained to have you do exactly what they know works. You just have to follow along and do what they tell you. They are the ones who decide if you get to RMA it. Even if Newegg won't, you might get a better Asus rep next time you contact them.
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May 5, 2012 4:19:23 PM

Mountaindew01 said:
Yeah I didn't wiggle it around, I (In this order) Pushed the latch down/out/up so it was ready to place the CPU in. I then put the CPU in (centered perfectly). all notches met VERY flush and tightly, the notch on the right and left corner that can only go in 1 way otherwise it's a bit obvious, I even spent like a minute looking at the under side of it, and matching it with the way of the ratio of the pins, and then also looked at the cpu and was talking to myself in my head going ok, that notch is top right, k there's the top right notch, there's the left notch, and there's the pointer showing captain obvious where the CPU goes and has to line up with the motherboard. All was aligned, dropped in, and it was just hard from the get-go.


You sound very maticulous the way you done it, the only fault I can say is not wiggling it about to check it was seated down correctly. I say push for bent pins/manufacturer error if you need to.
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May 5, 2012 4:35:07 PM

bleechy said:
You sound very maticulous the way you done it, the only fault I can say is not wiggling it about to check it was seated down correctly. I say push for bent pins/manufacturer error if you need to.
Yeah, I try to be meticulous when having close to 700 dollars in my hands between the motherboard and cpu, and since this is my first intel chip since they removed the pins from the cpu and went on the motherboard. I made sure to be ultra careful and even on the z77 motherboard demo video it explained the socket cover and everything, I was well ready to go before i got the board, but when I did get it, I made sure to go over everything a few times, not just flap it open and try to slap it in. Asus is a leading brand in motherboards at the moment, thermaltake/corsair/evga and a few other brands have all commented (but under their breath to not give any major opinions since they don't want to lose their jobs from saying something bad about another company). Like the guy from corsair about the quad channel ram comment said "He sighed and said, He really told you that eh?..." I said yeah.. and I gave my opinion about them, and he was like yeah.. I wasn't going to say anything... lol.

What other brands of motherboards are good these days? I've heard MSI went to the garbage can since the mid 2000's, I think the last board I remember being good from them was in the very very very early prime of the 64 bit chip era. I've seen some good reviews on gigabytes. and they are about the only well known brand next to EVGA, EVGA hasn't been doing motherboards for a while, but they seem to be launching them well and doing good on them, some companies can make a side branch do well, others should of just stuck with what they first started making.
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May 5, 2012 6:13:09 PM

Maybe you were just unlucky.. I agree with you that it is harder to seat newer chips without the pins on them.

I have only ever bought and used Asus boards and fingers crossed have never had a problem apart from the odd first boot problem (I make systems for friends etc). Another good brand imo is Gigabyte, one of my friends bought it and was better than fine.
All the major brands do make good boards with all different features, MSI is popular as they have PCI chips to improve performance, I don't think they are poor quality from the benchmarks and what I've seen.
But there are always some quality problems here and there. I honestly think you may have had a bent pin, I'm sure you would have noticed that the chip didnt "drop" down into the pins or was uneven seeing as you've put rigs together before.
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May 14, 2012 2:49:03 PM

Just a little update, newegg denied the RMA and said it had bent pins, well duh, the whole 4 chat logs I have with your RMA reps were told it had bent pins, and to relay the message to the installation procedures I took and how it was defective. So they denied my RMA, and Asus want's 70 dollar's to fix it, (And I've read horror stories about people sending a board in with bent pins, paying for it, then Having it sent back with worse pins. Same goes for newegg's RMA inspection team, someone said they sent their board in with bent pins and then the board came back with 90% of them SMASHED when only like 4 pins were bent when they sent it in). Nothing like having a 240 dollar paper weight, the pins that were bent when i sent it in were slightly bent, the RMA denial letter said "Bent beyond repair" So we'll see how this looks.

Anyways, ordered a new motherboard, since this one obviously isn't going to do me any good and seeing as I have 1800 dollars in parts sitting here, not just going to let them sit here... the guy from intel saw my CPU pics, and said there shouldn't be anything wrong with the CPU, so we'll see, will post results later today when i get the system up and running when the motherboard gets here.
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May 14, 2012 4:25:47 PM

That's a real shame :(  Good luck with your chip though, not trying to tell you what to do but try watching some vids on installing i7's etc just to get an idea of what might have gone wrong.
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May 15, 2012 1:28:37 AM

So, I got the new motherboard, it went in and posted without a hitch, did the same thing last time, and oh ho ho! new comments on newegg about that board ALSO coming with bent pins and nothing they could do about it, sounds like out of the 50 reviewed and 3 people reporting bent pins sounds like there was a flaw in the line somewhere and needs to be fixed, don't get me wrong, user error does happen a lot, and A LOT more than the people that actually get bent pins from factory. Just sucks when people end up out 250+ dollars.

So anyways, I'm posting from the machine now, I have turbo mode able to reach 4.4ghz stable on air @ 60-66c (that seems hot, but from what I've read that's fine and normal..)and at 1.32-1.33v was the highest prime 95 reached after 4 hours of testing. Thermal Paste still needs a few days to cook in there, that'll lower the temps a few degree's, all in all it looks good. The highest I've seen while doing normal activities @ 4.4ghz was 36c in skyrim with everything maxed on ultra and AA/AF on max, it's a GPU intensive game, but the cpu still has to feed it the data for the frame rates.

So in the end, the cpu worked, hurrah for that at least, trying to figure out why my cpu stays at 1.4ghz till it needs to do something, I know it's in a economy mode, is that good for the cpu to jump like that from 1.4 to 4.4? Anyways, I'll check back a bit later :) 
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a b V Motherboard
May 15, 2012 1:51:35 AM

Mountaindew01 said:
So in the end, the cpu worked, hurrah for that at least, trying to figure out why my cpu stays at 1.4ghz till it needs to do something, I know it's in a economy mode, is that good for the cpu to jump like that from 1.4 to 4.4? Anyways, I'll check back a bit later :) 

If you want to limit how low idle CPU clock can go, simply modify your power-management profile to increase the minimum CPU performance state from something like 10% that it is at by default to whatever you want.

As for harm from jumping from 1.4GHz to 4.4GHz, not much difference. The most likely failure mechanism would be thermal cycling but since the CPU would still go into a much lower-power sleep state when idle even if permanently running at 4.4GHz, it would still cool down and go through thermal cycling without dynamic multiplier change. Whatever long-term longevity gains you might make from slightly reducing the thermal cycle depth, you would probably lose from higher idle temperature.
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May 15, 2012 1:55:55 AM

I'd have to agree, lower temps are better, it idles at 24c atm, nice and cool case, using the raven with the 2 180mm bottom fans and scythe fans for the top and the front pushing 110 CFM and a Frio cooler on the CPU, temps hit around 64ish C at max load on prime 95, I had it hit a max of 68 seems a bit high, I wouldn't know whats safe temp range for these, right now it's OC'd to 4.4, I didn't want to go all crazy to 5.0 + just something that's fine to leave on 24/7 and that is a nice enough OC to utilize the 1600mhz ram instead of 1333. other than that, that's where I want it.

also, 1.32-1.33v is where it peaks currently on that setup on prime 95.
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May 24, 2012 12:26:03 PM

Best answer selected by Mountaindew01.
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February 25, 2013 2:43:53 AM

Bit too much thermal paste on that cpu, but yes if you had checked your temps two pins hitting one contact point will increase voltage through that channel which will raise temps i have seen it before and the result is bent pins and no RMA however.

But then lots of thermal paste as shown in the photo is enough to raise temps, as it acts as an insulator rather than conductor even with a decent water cooler.


if bent pins come on the board on arrival and the mb is not even installed i think it is atrocious how companies can try and get away with having to not send out a replacement or refund the part and cover their backs to make lots of profit by blaming people who not all the time know what they are doing (not always the case) and deny us basic consumer rights. heck if my electric toothbrush breaks within warranty are they going to claim we broke it every time. when you know that its not charging. will they claim we have tampered with or do they like creating absolute rubbish in order for us to buy more from them. when if they had any decency they should refund the guy and he should look elsewhere. other companies will refund or replace (not many) but its time we get a fair deal not just claim all bent pins were broken by us (im sure some companies have spent serious money so that idiots who do break their board and try and claim should not be allowed to claim, but when a board arrives and has not yet had anything installed onto it or put in its case ready for the go then why should customers that receive damaged goods get screwed over

:non:  time companies act with consumer rights laws for legit cases
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February 25, 2013 4:04:51 PM

good news, ASRock accepted, And sent me an RMA for my bent pins please note, if you damaged the pins yourself during installation then no RMA.

Special circumstances apply is all they stated. But i still have to fork out a load of money sending the mb in its original box, although no accessories or anything to the Netherlands so thats still going to cost me £30 but i at least get a new board free of charge (except for postage.
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