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PC freezes inexplicably; CPU suspected

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January 12, 2013 12:22:55 AM

Occasionally (Once every 1 and a half to 2 weeks in this case), my computer will freeze without warning and stay frozen until I have to do a hard reset. This has happened at least 3 times, maybe 4 since I got my PC in the middle of December. My memory doesn't serve me well, but I'll try to recall each case.

The first was playing Company of Heroes on Steam. Though external devices seemed working, I don't remember checking whether or not they reacted to button pressing. Ctrl + Alt + Delete didn't work, either.

Second time was playing Forsaken World, about a week-ish later. This time was virtually the same as before, except that the game was windowed so that you could see that it was not a program-exclusive freeze up. Again, outside of the display everything seemed to be working fine at face glance.

The third time was a bit different. Another 2 weeks later, after installing Battlefield 3 and playing on multiplayer, the screen went blank. I initially thought that some outside program had a notification pop-up and it was bringing me to the desktop, but about 2 seconds later the monitor flashes "no signal" and all exterior devices shut down. power button and reset button didn't seem to work either. Eventually I had to resort to using the power switch on the PSU.

By the time the fourth incident occurred I knew that something was up. This was just a few hours ago, playing the Sims 3 when all sound immediately stopped and it froze like it did the first time and second. Reset button worked this time around.

I guess it would be safe to assume that this has something to do with either games or processor/graphics intensive activities. During the time of freezing, none of the scenes were particularly graphically demanding, however. My biggest suspect right now is the CPU overheating, but different software gives different readings. Speccy goes between the 50-70C range occasionally topping 80, often jumping by 5-7 degrees in an instant. Speccy's reading doesn't go up when playing games, though. Sometimes it reads 70-something while on desktop with no programs running. Meanwhile, Core Temp is giving me a 15-17C reading while occassionally dropping down to 5C while the ambient temperature is around 20C in my room.

The nature of my processor (It's an APU so graphics and processor are in the same place) probably means that if it's overheating, both are affected.

Other suspected problems include hardware and software, though I'm not too sure on where to start with that.

I have some specs here, if it would make things easier on determining the problem:

CPU: AMD A10-5800K Trinity 3.8GHz (4.2GHz Turbo) HD7660D FM2

CPU Cooler: AMD Original Heatsink and Fan
Memory: KINGSTON HyperX Blu KHX1600C10D3B1K2/16G 16GB(2x8GB) KIT DDR3 1600MHz

Motherboard: Asus F2A85-M/CSM Motherboard AMD FM2

Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 1TB 64MB SATA 6Gb/s (ST1000DM003)

Optical Drive: LG 24X Dual Layer DVD-RW GH24NS72

Integrated Video Card: Integrated AMD Radeon HD 7660D

Case: In Win Mana136 White ATX Case

Power Supply: PRO-POWER 500W Deluxe Switching Power Supply

Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Full Version(English)
a b à CPUs
January 12, 2013 12:25:15 AM

i think it may be ur psu
January 12, 2013 12:30:39 AM

I actually have been looking into my PSU and haven't dug up any information about it so I can't really verify its source. Which gets me all the more suspicious about it.

Any way to find the bad part, given that it's a hardware issue?
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a c 176 à CPUs
January 12, 2013 12:36:21 AM

start wiht open hardware monitor. make sure your cpu temps at idle are in the 30-40c range. if there hotter then that then the cpu heat sink/thermal paste is on wrong. with your mb check that the bios is up to date. use cpu-z read the speed the mb set the ram at for speed and timing. then look under spd tab to see if it matches what the ram is rated for. you can try and run the unreal game demo to see if the gpu is over heating and locking up. there are cpu programs called prime95 that tax just the cpu.
January 12, 2013 12:52:23 AM

smorizio said:
start wiht open hardware monitor. make sure your cpu temps at idle are in the 30-40c range. if there hotter then that then the cpu heat sink/thermal paste is on wrong. with your mb check that the bios is up to date. use cpu-z read the speed the mb set the ram at for speed and timing. then look under spd tab to see if it matches what the ram is rated for. you can try and run the unreal game demo to see if the gpu is over heating and locking up. there are cpu programs called prime95 that tax just the cpu.






I'm sort of new to these things, so I don't really have much experience with finding frequencies and all. Does it look right, and can I correct this if the speeds, etc are wrong?
a c 176 à CPUs
January 12, 2013 9:29:12 AM

make sure asus mb bios is up to date.. F2A85-M BIOS 5107 is the last bios update for it. also look at your memory asus wants two dimms in a2 and b2 if your using one dimm then place it in a2. on page 1-12 shows you what slots are a1 and a2. also in the asus bios make sure it set to standard speed in the bios. the asus overclocker can change the fsb to a rate that can cause random lock ups. the mb not reading the ram speed right right now it should be 800 speed dor ddr-3 1600.
in the advance mode of the bios under memory freq. the default is auto..change it to 1600.
January 12, 2013 12:04:52 PM

check your temps while gaming and run memtest to make sure your ram isnt producing crap. running memtest while putting the pc under load(like with prime 95) is also a good idea.
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