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0x000000f4 error, need help diagnosing

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June 3, 2012 2:34:53 PM

Alright, I've tried to fix this on my own for two weeks, and I think I need some help.

Before we start, my system specs:

Mobo: Z77 Sabertooth
CPU: Intel i5 3570K
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100
RAM: Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600 16GB (2 x 8) (Not on mobo VQL)
Main Drive: Intel 520 Cherryville 60GB
Secondary Drive: WD Caviar Black 1TB (SATA 3)
PSU: OCZ ZX850W (80+ Gold)
GPU: currently using GTS 450 until I can get a GTX 680 or GTX 670
Optical: Pioneer CD/DVD Combo
OS: Windows 7 Professional SP1

Now, to the problem and attempted fixes:
Bought the components for a new build, assembled it, loaded windows on my shiny new SSD. As soon as I'm loading drivers from the disk, blue screen. 0x000000f4, 0x3. I thought it might be the ssd, so I ran Intel's toolbox and it came up clean.
I tried running a fresh install on my old socket 775 machine, and it went up through windows updates no problems, so I think I can discount the drive. I reset the SSD to factory spec on my other comp and reloaded Windows. Same error, but I got to windows updates this time. Swapped out the SATA cable and reloaded os. Same error. Removed GPU and tried on integrated graphics. BSOD. Tried removing one RAM stick, than the other. Error Persists. Tried the Ram in the other two slots, to no avail. I've even tried moving the secondary drive to the ASMedia SATA port instead of the main Intel ports. My last BSOD was approx 20 mins ago, when all I was doing was surfing the net. The one before that was while playing Diablo 3 last night. It seems almost random, with no rhyme or reason to the time or what I'm doing.

All drivers on the mobo cd are the most current from Asus' website. I'll try running the drivers off the web instead of disk on the next go-around.

If you like, I can zip up and post the last two mini dumps.

The actual BSOD: 0x000000f4 CRITICAL_OBJECT_TERMINATION (0x3)

Parts under suspicion:
Mobo, CPU, PSU, mobo/RAM compatibility.

Any help at all would be wonderful. I plan to take this dang thing apart and exchange the mobo and cpu today or tomorrow, so any help to rule them out before I do this would be great.
June 3, 2012 2:37:41 PM

Addendum: Sometimes it goes straight to the BSOD, sometimes it'll slowly crash out my other programs. One time I had it kill D3, tell me that explorer crashed, then the system tray items, then it'll show my background only and the mouse. when I try to ctrl+alt+del or anything of the sort, black screen, then blue screen. This has only happened a couple of times out of the multiple BSODs, but I thought it was worth mentioning.
a b B Homebuilt system
June 3, 2012 3:09:33 PM

I would use the chipset drivers on the disk with the board first, I always do that cause you know it's going to be stable.

Whats the exact model of your corsair vengeance?

I would check that your running the correct timings voltage and speed.
Is it running at xmp profile at 1600mhz?

I would not bother replacing your cpu and mobo until you rule out ram.
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June 3, 2012 3:15:46 PM

I was using the chipset drivers on the disk, but it's always a possibility that the disc is corrupted. I was wanting to rule that out.


Corsair Model #: CMZ16GX3M2A1600C10
It's not on Corsair's site, nor is it on the mobo QVL.

I just let the mobo run it at the default spec, since it was running at 1600 Mhz. Should I try manually entering the timings and voltage and see if it corrects the problem?

I have not yet run memtest, since I had tried each ram stick individually and the error was still occurring. What are the odds that both RAM sticks are busted?

Best solution

a b B Homebuilt system
June 3, 2012 3:45:16 PM
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The odds are low. Yes set the timings, speed and voltage according to the sticker on the ram.

Make sure it's set to 1600/1.5v/10-10-10-27 (should be Intel XMP profile)

If that doesn't work try 1333/1.5v/9-9-9-24

I read the first 5 or 6 newegg reviews, seems others have the same issue or won't boot with both sticks issue. Maybe find a less expensive 4x4 kit in 1600/1.5v/cas9
June 3, 2012 4:16:41 PM

I can try that, but that's going to be more money since I don't think Newegg will take these sticks back (they shipped 4-19).

I've reset the RAM using the XMP profile, and verified that it's what the sticker says.

It boot just fine (I can always boot to OS), so we'll see if I can stress test it with some D3 or L4D2 or something.

I'll roll with it until next BSOD, and see if one occurs.

Is there anything I can test in the meantime (CPU, Disks, Mobo, PSU, etc)?
a b B Homebuilt system
June 3, 2012 6:28:35 PM

U could always send the ram to corsair for replacement and then sell the new ones. DDR3 is likely to start going up in price soon so you should be able to recoup most of your money.

Have you tried 1333/1.5v/9-9-9-24? You could also try 1600/1.6v/10-10-10-27, sometimes a bump up on voltage works.

I would run a diagnostic on your hd's too if all else fails but this seems to be a memory problem. That board doesn't seem to like 8GB sticks of some brands. Could be a density issue, some boards will only run with double sided ram. Single sided ram has higher density chips and could be why they are not on the qvl.
June 3, 2012 8:12:27 PM

True about the RAM, I hadn't thought of that.

I'm still trying the 1600/1.5/10-10-10-27 specs, and so far, no blue screen. Even D3 for an hour didn't phase it. (I know, not much of a benchmark, but it's the only way I knew to run a BSOD through, since it's happened the last two times I've played before this. I might try some Crysis 2 or something in a bit.)

I ran the diagnostic for the Intel drive, and it came up green. If it blue screens again, I'm going to try an OS install on the mechanical and see if it does the trick.

I'll keep you posted.
June 5, 2012 10:18:52 PM

Best answer selected by navizero.
June 5, 2012 10:19:27 PM

Two days of no crashes later, I'm confident that the problem is solved. Thanks geekapproved!
a b B Homebuilt system
June 6, 2012 4:09:05 PM

Your welcome!
!