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First Build Help

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Last response: in Systems
February 1, 2013 4:55:15 AM

Hello Everyone,

I'm requesting some assistance on my first build ever. Let me cut straight to the point, I'm breadboarding my new system to make sure every component is properly working. Unfortunately for me, it seems that I have received some DOA components :(  Now i'm stuck with troubleshooting, and it's beginning to look like a lost cause. I shall not give up because there's always a solution to every problem...somewhat.

Anyways back to the subject at hand, when I go to short the power button pin on my motherboard my PSU turns on for about 2-8 seconds and begins a repetitive cycle of turning off and on. During this process the PSU Fan and CPU Fan are cycling on and off, I'm hearing no beeps coming from my motherboard speaker, and no splash screen being displayed on my monitor. I have tried forcing my motherboard to play an error beep with no RAM installed upon boot up and still nothing. I currently have only my CPU, HSF, and PSU connected right now and I'm still receiving a fluctuating electrical current. However, I flipped my PSU's voltage switch from 115 to 230 and was able to receive a constant electrical current with no fluctuations/repetitive on/off cycles. Considering my greenhorn experience with computer building I wasn't sure if this was a "common" solution. This is what I assumed to believe was the solution to my repetitive on/off cycles so I then moved forward with my troubleshooting leaving my PSU on 230 (not sure if this is recommended). I was still receiving no beeps or splash screens from my breadboard set up. So now I'm at stand still here and I'm basically scouring the internet for assistance at this very moment. Future input is much appreciated.

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February 1, 2013 9:36:04 PM

If you are in the US, put your PSU back to 115!

As it's your first build ever I'm going to guess that you didn't push your RAM in hard enough. Pull back the RAM holders and then push the stick in forcefully enough to get them to snap (literally hear the snap!) and make sure they are in there good.

Oh and not all motherboards come with speakers or cases with the speaker connection. Just checking to make sure you have a speaker as you really should hear the RAM beeps.
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February 2, 2013 12:26:04 AM

Thank you for your input. I'm %100 sure that I have fully seated my RAM modules in each DIMM slot. Each module has made an audible click upon insertion. There are no gold threads visible from each slot.

I knew this was the case. However, Switching my PSU back to 115 causes my system to perform repetitive on/off cycles. When I have it set to 230 my system is completely stable (No high fan speeds or anything of that nature). This is somewhat questionable because at first I thought I received a faulty PSU. Fortunately for me I was able to transfer my PSU to a known working computer and the PSU performs completely fine on the 115 setting, and on the 230 setting it makes my working computer kick into higher fan speeds. That probably wasn't a very bright idea on my part, but i wanted to see what would happen and learn from my mistakes.

You are correct about not all motherboards providing a motherboard speaker. Thank god my case actually came with a speaker. I've tried booting up my system with 1 RAM module installed, no progress/no beeps. I've tried forcing my motherboard to make an audible error beep upon boot up with no RAM installed and to no avail, no progress/no beeps.

During this entire process my power supply fluctuates and the system cycles on and off. No beeps are audible (including error beeps), no splash screen comes up on my monitor, GPU fan cycles on and off, and CPU fan cycles on and off.

I have tested my new GPU in another computer and it works completely fine. I am unable to test my RAM modules on my other system because the other systems motherboard does not accept my current RAM's speed/frequency (I would assume this would make my modules incompatible). So I've narrowed it down to 3 components causing this problem: Motherboard, CPU, RAM. Further input/assistance is much appreciated.
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February 2, 2013 3:25:37 PM

Hmm, do you have the standoffs behind the motherboard in the right spots? I'd look for a potential short coming from one of those or if you don't have standoffs put them on! An extra standoff will also cause a short so make sure you have the right amount and are using all of them.

As long as your RAM is the same form factor you can put them into a different motherboard i.e. assuming both motherboards use DDR3 modules. The motherboard will just set the timing to what it supports. For instance my 2133 9-9-9-27 RAM placed into my parents computer will come up at 1333 9-9-9-24. RAM is nice that way.

The cpu is rarely the problem so I wouldn't even bother troubleshooting that. If the RAM works fine in the other computer and you don't have a shorting issue then I'd RMA the motherboard.
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February 3, 2013 12:08:25 PM

Sorry for the late response, but I'm returning with good news! I finally diagnosed my problem...I received a defective MB :( 

Luckily, my city has a local computer shop and I was able to pick up a Gigabyte MB to replace my Asrock MB and guess what...everything works perfectly fine! I received a successful post beep and finally received a splash screen. Hopefully my system stays stable and nothing starts to act up *knock on wood* Crewton, BIG thank you for your input/advice.
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February 3, 2013 12:09:02 PM

Best answer selected by RacketyLoki.
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