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I've spent months building this PC.. something is very wrong somewhere.

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July 15, 2012 10:41:41 PM

Hi there, I'm new here, but I've read these forums religiously for several months and they've helped immensely. Anyways, I've run into an issue with my current set-up lately and I'm about this far from tearing my hair out. So, my specs are as follows:
Amd Phenom ii x4 b93 processor, running at 2.8 ghz
Cooler Master Hyper 212+ Cpu cooler
16 gbs of ddr3 ram, 2 sticks being samsung and 2 sticks being gskill.
EVGA Superclocked Nvidia Geforce GTX 460 SE v2, with 1 gb of gddr5 and a 192-bit memory bus.
Ocz Agility 3 60gb ssd for games only, connected to a sata 3 controller on my pciex1 port.
Seagate Momentus xt 500 gb hdd connected to sata 2, for windows and documents.
ECS IC780M-A2 atx motherboard
Inland Gold Series ILG-500 500 Watt ATX Power Supply
Diablotek Evo Mid Atx Case, with 5 fans installed and excellent airflow (Not to mention the ocd-level of effort I put into neatly cable-tying the cords so they don't block anything)
Running on Windows 7 home premium 64 bit.

So, this system should be capable of running most newer games on 60 fps at the very lowest.(My monitor is 1080p) However, I've been running into major problems lately and I don't know what the deal is. I recently bought this motherboard for 25 bucks after rebate on newegg to replace my (probably higher quality) GIGABYTE GA-78LMT-S2P AM3+ AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard, mainly because I wanted to move to a full size atx board, I wanted the 2 extra ram slots, and my video card blocked my pci-e1 port so I couldn't use a sata 3 controller there. However, since starting a more or less new build when I ordered the new mobo, everything has started to crap out. For one thing, I used to be able to get my cpu up to 3.5 ghz easily on stock voltage, on the new board it forces me to use a much higher voltage as default (which I can only increase) and gives me almost no overclocking options besides changing the fsb and the memory clock. I've tried to do slight overclocks and it freaks the hell out, so I've decided I'll just have to stay at 2.8 ghz. The overall system lags a lot more than it used to on my old board, which is odd because the hardware hasn't changed. When I attempt to game, I get amazing frame rates (solid 60 on skyrim with vsync on, 93.7 average fps in unigine heaven benchmark. However, about every 10 seconds, any game I've tried will lock up for about 3 seconds and then return to running smooth. During these times, MSI afterburner reports that the gpu usage, core clock, memory clock, and shader all plummit into very low ranges. Also, monitoring my cpu speed with cpu-z at anytime reports somewhere around 95 mhz, which may occasionally raise to a whole 400 mhz when I'm gaming. I've tried every fix I could think of/find online, such as tyring both the stable and beta geforce drivers, updating windows all the way to sp1 with every update since installed, turning on windows basic mode in themes, disabling unnesscary services, running the game in steam offline mode, turning the settings all the way down to the lowest possible and running at 800x600 in windowed mode, and still, it lags horribly on a regular basis. Unplayable is an understatement. I have no idea what to do besides switch back to my old gigabyte board, although I'm not even 100% sure that's the issue, plus I don't want to have to give up 8gbs of ram and faster ssd speeds. My temperatures are great all around, I rarely see the cpu go above 30c and the videocard usually stays somewhere between 40c-60c, even underload. I'm honestly at my wit's end here, and I'm hoping that someone here can offer a solution I haven't yet thought of. Thank you.
a b B Homebuilt system
July 15, 2012 10:51:25 PM

what do you expect from a 25 dollar motherboard, mixed types of SDRAM, and no-name brand power supply?

I hate to be the one to say it but you broke all the basic rules of PC building
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July 15, 2012 10:53:27 PM

you have said what your problem is. you said it started with the new motherboard so get a new motherboard or switch back to the one you had before.
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a c 118 B Homebuilt system
July 16, 2012 12:08:19 AM

I... I.. am at a loss for words. And as a Gemini, thats a rare thing.

Why... would you use a business grade CPU, 16GB of RAM thats mixed, a dirt cheap motherboard, a power supply with no name, and an SSD, the funds of which would have been properly allocated to address the aforementioned issues.

I'm sorry you're having issues with a system you put time and money into, but my god man, that thing is like Frankencomputer.
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July 16, 2012 2:34:09 AM

For one thing, the processor is EXACTLY the same as the phenom ii x4 830, it's just rebranded as "business grade." Hardware-wise it's no different than any other 95w deneb chip, and can be taken very high with only minor voltage increases, on the proper motherboard. I agree that it was probably a poor choice on my part to use 2 different sets of ram, however in my experience, as long as they have the same cas latency, timings and voltage, problems can be avoided. The power supply has done a perfectly fine job of powering my system for the 6 months I've had it, so honestly,I don't think there's any reason to assume it's crap just because it's a generic brand. If it bursts into flames or kills my gpu, I'll get back to you. I agree that it was probably a poor choice to buy a low-end asian board like I did, however, the reviews on newegg really aren't that hideous so I'm still tempted to believe that something else is at fault here. I'm not a moron like so many other people who tend to instantly rush to the internet when they have a problem... I've tired over this stupid issue for week after week and I'm well aware of the things that could be better optimized. I guess it just kind of sucks to only get these facts I know very well repeated in my face, because, honestly, I know what I'm doing, and I was hoping to hear something new. I have a lot of respect for this community, so please don't take this the wrong way, but I would just like to ask if there is any possibility at all that this could be a software issue. If not, how much would the cheapest quality motherboard that accommodates Am3 cpu's and 4 sticks of ddr3 as well as having satisfactory overclocking be? I assume I should probably replace my power supply as well... could somebody recommend parts to replace certain ones of mine so I can get the performance I should be from my cpu and video card? Sorry if this long.Thanks
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a c 118 B Homebuilt system
July 16, 2012 2:57:36 AM

Quote:
For one thing, the processor is EXACTLY the same as the phenom ii x4 830, it's just rebranded as "business grade." Hardware-wise it's no different than any other 95w deneb chip, and can be taken very high with only minor voltage increases, on the proper motherboard.


I know what it is, and the 95w Deneb chip wasn't a good choice for a gaming system in 2012. A 125w TDP w/ C3 stepping, specifically 965/970/975/980 or a 960 Thuban, 1090T or 1100T would have been superior choices.

Honestly the system is just a mess for a gaming rig. I don't know what you're hoping to hear, if you're going to shop around until you get an answer you want to hear, that might make you feel better but its not going to fix the computer. I'm not trying to be a jerk, thats just the way it is.

As far as to whether it could be a software issue, you could always go with the nuclear option and do a clean install of windows.

As far as what parts to replace, start by replacing the motherboard. Don't buy a piece of junk, get something with a little bit of quality, hopefully at some point down the road you can upgrade to PileDriver.


This is a decent board:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Even better, $115 after main in rebate, which is pretty spiffy

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Pick a pair of RAM sticks and ditch the set for now. Don't overclock anything til you see what kind of stability you have.


Quality power supply:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



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a b B Homebuilt system
July 16, 2012 3:09:30 AM

shockvaluejj said:
For one thing, the processor is EXACTLY the same as the phenom ii x4 830, it's just rebranded as "business grade." Hardware-wise it's no different than any other 95w deneb chip, and can be taken very high with only minor voltage increases, on the proper motherboard.


You should never assume that any chip can be taken higher than what it's marketed at. Most can be but there are always a few lemons in every batch. Global Foundries isn't the highest quality producer.

I agree that it was probably a poor choice on my part to use 2 different sets of ram, however in my experience, as long as they have the same cas latency, timings and voltage, problems can be avoided.
said:
I agree that it was probably a poor choice on my part to use 2 different sets of ram, however in my experience, as long as they have the same cas latency, timings and voltage, problems can be avoided.


There are far more timings than simply CAS to worry about, not to mention the tons of minor electrical nuances that can affect stability. RAM sets are designed to work in matched sets for a reason. Most of the time mixing modules with similar settings works just fine but problems do arise quite often, especially on cheap motherboards that may not compute the secondary and tertiary timings properly.


The power supply has done a perfectly fine job of powering my system for the 6 months I've had it, so honestly,I don't think there's any reason to assume it's crap just because it's a generic brand. If it bursts into flames or kills my gpu, I'll get back to you.
said:

The power supply has done a perfectly fine job of powering my system for the 6 months I've had it, so honestly,I don't think there's any reason to assume it's crap just because it's a generic brand. If it bursts into flames or kills my gpu, I'll get back to you.


Low end PSUs will either kill your components immediately or they will kill them slowly over time through crappy voltage regulation and poor transient handling. Cheap PSUs are component killers and I deal with about 4-5 cases per week where crappy PSUs are at fault, trust me on this.


I agree that it was probably a poor choice to buy a low-end asian board like I did, however, the reviews on newegg really aren't that hideous so I'm still tempted to believe that something else is at fault here. I'm not a moron like so many other people who tend to instantly rush to the internet when they have a problem... I've tired over this stupid issue for week after week and I'm well aware of the things that could be better optimized.
said:

I agree that it was probably a poor choice to buy a low-end asian board like I did, however, the reviews on newegg really aren't that hideous so I'm still tempted to believe that something else is at fault here. I'm not a moron like so many other people who tend to instantly rush to the internet when they have a problem... I've tired over this stupid issue for week after week and I'm well aware of the things that could be better optimized.


Trusting Newegg reviews is a mistake, most of them are seeded by the manufacturers themselves. The only reviews that should be trusted come from review sites like Tom's Hardware, HardOCP, Anandtech, TechPowerUp, JonnyGuru, and Guru3D (my apologies to any that I may have left out). If these sites say it sucks, it sucks. If they haven't reviews it yet it most likely sucks until told otherwise. You get what you pay for, always. If you bought a $25 motherboard you can expect $25 dollars worth of performance out of it. The capacitors alone on a good Asus board probably cost that much.


I guess it just kind of sucks to only get these facts I know very well repeated in my face, because, honestly, I know what I'm doing, and I was hoping to hear something new. I have a lot of respect for this community, so please don't take this the wrong way, but I would just like to ask if there is any possibility at all that this could be a software issue. If not, how much would the cheapest quality motherboard that accommodates Am3 cpu's and 4 sticks of ddr3 as well as having satisfactory overclocking be?
said:

I guess it just kind of sucks to only get these facts I know very well repeated in my face, because, honestly, I know what I'm doing, and I was hoping to hear something new. I have a lot of respect for this community, so please don't take this the wrong way, but I would just like to ask if there is any possibility at all that this could be a software issue. If not, how much would the cheapest quality motherboard that accommodates Am3 cpu's and 4 sticks of ddr3 as well as having satisfactory overclocking be?


It's possible that it's a software issue but it's extremely unlikely given the quality of the components that you've purchased. Logic tells me to start with the most likely cause and eliminate sequentially. I couldn't really tell you what makes for a good AMD motherboard though, perhaps someone else here can.


I assume I should probably replace my power supply as well... could somebody recommend parts to replace certain ones of mine so I can get the performance I should be from my cpu and video card? Sorry if this long.Thanks said:

I assume I should probably replace my power supply as well... could somebody recommend parts to replace certain ones of mine so I can get the performance I should be from my cpu and video card? Sorry if this long.Thanks


Yes you should. Any PSU from SeaSonic, Corsair (manufactured by SeaSonic and Flextronics), XFX, Antec, Enermax, LEPA (manufactured by Enermax), and Kingwin will do nicely. If you want the best of the best you should go with SeaSonic for sure.
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July 16, 2012 5:16:49 AM

Okay, thank you for the replies here. Honestly, I'm just going to do my best to swallow my pride and admit that I bought a rather poor quality motherboard. I've actually gotten much more acceptable performance from this phenom ii as opposed to the speeds I got with my fx-4100. I don't have a huge budget right now.. how do you suggest I go about selling this ram, mobo, power supply, and debatably harddrives in order to acquire the funds needed to replace them with better versions?
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