New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

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New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:38 pm

Just built a friend a new system. Specs are ASRock Z87 Extreme4, 4770k, 2x8GB GSkill 2400, Samsung EVO 500GB, SeaSonic 650W, and GTX660.
Edit: OS is Windows 7 x64 SP1 updated

It was up and running just fine for about two weeks (with a mild overclock to 4.2 @1.195vcore, most everything else full auto). Today he called me and said he was working on it, and it just suddenly turned off - in his words it 'wouldn't wake up from hibernation'.

It's very strange. The system appears to turn on fine, but will not output anything to the display no matter what. Here's what I've tried:

-(Before I gave him the PC I ran memtest86+ for 24+ hours with 0 faults).

Since getting the PC back from him today I've....
-Cleared the CMOS. I actually have done this multiple times at different points by various methods - by both the jumper and the ASROCK quick cmos clear button. At the very end I even went so far as to make sure PSU was disconnected, drained residual power, and pulled the mobo battery.
-Disconnected all drives.
-Pulled out the PCI-E graphics and tried the built in IGP, then reseated PCI and tried it again. And I also tried all outputs on multiple displays.
-Unseated/reseated RAM, and attempted with only 1 DIMM (each DIMM the system came with, and 2 other known good Corsair DIMMS were all given chances by themselves).
-Changed out the main power cord, and also unseated/reseated all motherboard power connectors.

Throughout all of this the ASRock DrDebug thing has given me various fault codes including: 6A, 61, 63, 68, 69, 71, 72 (Maybe some others but I'm pretty sure they all started with a 6 or 7). Per ASRock's DrDebug chart here: http://www.asrock.com/support/faq.asp?id=334 it seems all of these codes stand for "Chipset initialization error. Please press reset or clear CMOS."

I was going to contact ASRock support, but it appears they're out of the office for chinese Holiday, and I'd like to get the part RMA'ed for him first thing Monday if I can be relatively certain what the culprit it.

So anyone else have a trouble shooting suggestions, or is this just a bad motherboard that I can RMA asap?
Last edited by HorseIicious on Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:44 pm

What is your OS? If it is Windows 8 I can tell you that I've experienced pretty crazy behaviors from it. First of all, try to do your tests will stock values, sometimes even little overclocks mess with your PC.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:45 pm

Jon1984 wrote:What is your OS? If it is Windows 8 I can tell you that I've experienced pretty crazy behaviors from it. First of all, try to do your tests will stock values, sometimes even little overclocks mess with your PC.


Sorry for not mentioning. OS is Windows 7 SP1 64bit fully updated.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 10:45 am

OS doesn't matter if the BIOS debug thing is doing error codes during boot and graphics card doesn't show the POST screen.

As you've already tried different monitors and onboard vs graphics card I'd say bad motherboard. If you have a spare PSU I'd try that first just to make sure that it is not bad power making the motherboard misbehave. I don't think it's the processor as it got through processor boot and memory startup and is only failing once it tries talking to the chipset. I'm assuming you've tested with EVERYTHING unplugged from the board (i.e. no keyboard, no mouse, just a monitor on the IGP), so it's not something external pulling the chipset down.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 10:52 am

Don't use hibernation in Windows 7. Had the same problem and absolutely no issues, except it won't wake properly out of hibernation.

This is what I did to disable it.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/81 ... sable.html
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 11:10 am

Come on, gerbils. It's not Windows. This is a hardware problem like notfred said.

@OP: I have an ASRock board and I had some weird behavior in it, BSOD and then POST fails even after CMOS clears (taking out the battery). I think what fixed it for me was taking out the RAM, disconnecting all power for a minute or two (I forgot if that includes the CMOS battery but why not at this point?), and then booting it with a single stick in a different slot like you tried before.

If patient disconnects don't work, I'd say it's shot. Time for an RMA.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 11:26 am

Duct Tape Dude wrote:Come on, gerbils. It's not Windows. This is a hardware problem like notfred said.


Nearly all sleep issues boil down to OS / misbehaving software or driver / or a bad ACPI implementation in the BIOS/UEFI. Rarely is it due to bad hardware. The very first thing I would do is to fire up a linux distro and see if it exhibits the behavior there (as well the logs will usually point to a bad ACPI implementation if that is an issue).
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 4:08 pm

But this isn't a sleep issue, it's throwing BIOS error codes during boot :roll:
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 4:53 pm

Deanjo wrote:
Duct Tape Dude wrote:Come on, gerbils. It's not Windows. This is a hardware problem like notfred said.


Nearly all sleep issues boil down to OS / misbehaving software or driver / or a bad ACPI implementation in the BIOS/UEFI. Rarely is it due to bad hardware. The very first thing I would do is to fire up a linux distro and see if it exhibits the behavior there (as well the logs will usually point to a bad ACPI implementation if that is an issue).


I am not sure if you didn't read the first post. But the computer won't turn on. He has unplugged it and tried resetting bios and such. It is a hardware issue.

I would try reseating the CPU. Reset the bios again. Do you have other power supplies to try?
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 6:38 pm

Pull the board out of the case and bench. Might have a rogue screw or standoff shorting.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 6:45 pm

I'd go with Gandolf's (see if the PSU has died) or Deanjo's (short somewhere in the box) suggestions during diagnosis.

If neither one of those turns out to be the issue, try to disconnect as many components as possible while making it possible to boot the system (e.g. pull all RAM except for one stick, pull out the video card and use the IGP for testing, disconnect all drives except the boot drive, disconnect all peripherals and USB devices beyond a simple keyboard/mouse, etc.)

If that basal configuration boots OK, then gradually start adding components until you run into the issue.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 7:49 pm

In decreasing order of probability, given the symptoms and what you've already tried:

1. Motherboard

2. PSU

3. Ground-out issue that didn't manifest until a mis-placed motherboard support wore through the non-conductive coating (solder mask) on the underside of the motherboard

4. CPU
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 9:45 pm

I just replaced a bad motherboard two weeks ago and all I can say is, a bad motherboard can cause a lot of weird things to happen. Since you already tried using the IGP instead and tried using only one DIMM (highly unlikely that both DIMMs just died concurrently), it just leaves the PSU and motherboard. Try a different PSU but I highly suspect the motherboard to be the culprit.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 10:47 pm

Thanks for all the great replies everyone.

@notfred - I thought I had tested w/ everything disconnected, but upon reading your suggestion, I re-checked and saw a small Logitech dongle (i know these have given me issue before, so I was hoping it was the issue - but no such luck) - thanks for the idea though.

@Deanjo, Gandalf, chuckula, just brew it! - Thanks for the tips. I have a spare PSU in the closet, so I'll test that tomorrow. mobo standoffs are pretty long on this one, so I doubt it's that. But since I have to pull it for RMA anyway, I'll test for it (and reseat the CPU too). Then it's pretty much confirmed to be a bad mobo if it still fails.

Thanks all for the input. I've built a lot of system for fun, and never had one work for two weeks and die so strangely. I just wanted to get a few extra opinions before I shipped it back (so I hopefully diagnose the faulty piece of hardware correctly).

Thanks again!
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 08, 2014 11:04 pm

HorseIicious wrote:mobo standoffs are pretty long on this one, so I doubt it's that. But since I have to pull it for RMA anyway, I'll test for it (and reseat the CPU too).

When you pull the mobo, count the screws as you remove them. Make sure the same number of standoffs were under it. This is basically what I do (in reverse) when I install a mobo -- I count the standoffs, and if I use fewer screws to fasten it down then I know there's a problem (probably an extra mis-placed standoff under the mobo).
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Wed Feb 12, 2014 7:41 pm

just brew it! wrote:
HorseIicious wrote:mobo standoffs are pretty long on this one, so I doubt it's that. But since I have to pull it for RMA anyway, I'll test for it (and reseat the CPU too).

When you pull the mobo, count the screws as you remove them. Make sure the same number of standoffs were under it. This is basically what I do (in reverse) when I install a mobo -- I count the standoffs, and if I use fewer screws to fasten it down then I know there's a problem (probably an extra mis-placed standoff under the mobo).


Well, I received the new motherboard today. Switched them out, and... SAME PROBLEM. haha, so this is fun.

What I have tried since receiving the second motherboard...

This evening I have attempted many many boots with both boards. Each attempt was made with the board out of the case, only 24-pin main and 8-pin motherboard power connectors plugged in, board sitting bare on anti-static bag on top of my desk, with 1 DIMM populated (I have attempted 4 different known good DIMMS in each board), and with the only external connection being HDMI plugged into the motherboard (and also tried later adding in a gpu for display - but no change). I have attempted using two different power supplies, both SeaSonic's tested and working with other systems and rated for Haswell CPU's. No other peripherals or storage attached, not even a single sata cable plugged in...

These boards have dual bios, so I also attempted switching the jumper for that and, clearing cmos over and over - but still the same results.

Every single time the system fails to post, and the ASRock DrDebug stalls on 63 (one time it froze on 6A - but 20+ other times tonight were all 63, no longer random digits each time).

Just to remind those reading this, the system worked for about 2 weeks, then it suddenly just shut off while the user was in the middle of web browsing - and hasn't been able to post since. System powers on, but just won't post or display anything at all...

So anyway - what do I do now? Is it down to the CPU? Unfortunately all the systems I have in my home are 1155 based, so I don't have any CPU available to pull and drop into one of these boards to test. At this point, though, I just don't know what else it could be...
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:28 pm

Any chance you can test the CPU in someone else's system? A "mild overclock" is unlikely to have permanently damaged the CPU, but yeah I agree signs are now pointing that way.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:47 pm

just brew it! wrote:Any chance you can test the CPU in someone else's system? A "mild overclock" is unlikely to have permanently damaged the CPU, but yeah I agree signs are now pointing that way.


Unfortunately, I don't know anyone local with an 1150 cpu/board. Since I'm completely baffled, and feel like I've done everything else imaginable to test this system - I think I am going to just order another 4770k from Amazon (I have Prime). If the new CPU won't boot, then I'll know there's got to be some other problem. If the new one does boot, then problem solved and I can ship the bad one back since I'm still within 30 days.

I'm hoping Occam's razor doesn't let me down on this one...
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:47 pm

Well, new CPU just got here, and voila, it posts! Just to be sure it wasn't some anomaly, once the system posted, I switched CPU's and tried again. Failed (as expected). Put the new one back in, and it works again. So I successfully narrowed it down to CPU failure (so I guess error code 63 can stand for CPU failure too...)

Luckily I bought from Amazon, so I can just return the faulty CPU for a full refund without much hassle. But wow - I've never experienced a bad CPU before (I thought I had once, but that just turned out to be mobo/ram not playing nicely).

I don't know enough to understand why with such a mild overclock (and good aftermarket cooling), that I would have a failure like this unless it was just an outlier bad chip out of the gate. So I'm very glad to see the new CPU appears to be from a much later batch than the failed one (3334C193 vs 3329B607 for the failed one).

Anyway, thanks again to everyone for all the input.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:55 pm

No way!! I have never seen or even heard of a CPU failure before, except at extreme voltages. Well done!
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:31 pm

Duct Tape Dude wrote:No way!! I have never seen or even heard of a CPU failure before, except at extreme voltages. Well done!


viewtopic.php?f=29&t=84757&hilit=+million

It happens more often than people realize and the "mild overclock" has a substantial impact in helping it along.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:32 pm

The last time I've even seen a CPU failure was the old AMD athlons where there was physical damage as the chip cracked, and before that was the crappy Cyrix processors that had some kind of internal short and caused a thermal runaway and the CPU melted and sparked like crazy. Other Cyrix processors just died for no apparent reason, just won't post anymore.

But for an Intel chip to fail... its quite rare. I've seen it only times when the pin was damaged somehow, from static discharge, or some fault on the motherboard or PSU that caused overvolting.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 3:18 pm

I had a 2600K die out of nowhere (no POST) one day a couple years back. Intel overnighted me a replacement even though I told them it was overclocked when it failed (they didn't care). I doubt overclocking is what killed it, the OC was incredibly conservative and I had very good cooling at the time.

It had run for over a year at the time of failure, and it died while idling. New CPU popped into the board, fired right up like nothing had happened, and still works today (at the same OC).
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Fri Feb 14, 2014 6:04 pm

Duct Tape Dude wrote:No way!! I have never seen or even heard of a CPU failure before, except at extreme voltages. Well done!


Well I've built quite a few systems over the years, and never experienced a bad CPU either until now. And (unless the motherboard was misbehaving) there were no extreme volts or temps reported on this one - so it's very strange.

Ryu Connor wrote:http://techreport.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=29&t=84757&hilit=+million

It happens more often than people realize and the "mild overclock" has a substantial impact in helping it along.


I skimmed that thread, as well as the research paper. I will say the premise of the study, and some of the stuff they talk about is interesting. However, I have to say (sorry!), but to me the meat and gist of the study seems like a pretty useless bit of information... 950k random samples from 2008 and we're supposed to apply that to all PC's in general in 2014? Hmm.

At one point the paper states that OCed chips are more likely to fail faster, then right after it says that for all CPUs in general failure is more likely as base clock speed increases - wonderful. On top of all of this, for me it's a bit difficult to stomach a statistical survey which relies on information from such incredibly random and uncontrolled data sets. I would put more stock if the survey had purchased 10 OEM systems each from various manufacturers, and built 10 "white box" systems by parts from different resellers (and OCed them methodically), THEN started running controlled benchmark loads 24/7 for 8 months - and measured the results (sort've how TR is doing the SSD test). What they did instead was to just look at MS error reports. When they saw the same system return more than 1 BSOD that put that into the group that "is likely to fail twice or more" - um duh! And as it relates to OCed systems - if I'm OCing a system I assume it's gonna crash a few times before I get it stable (more than likely). But from how I understand their logic, they just took any BSOD on an OCed system and used it toward saying it was more likely to crash once it had crashed twice, brilliant... I guess it doesn't matter if the OC is at the user's final 'stable' settings yet (not that they would have any way to tell with their frankendata). I just think the whole paper suffers from some serious logical errors, at best. But I don't know, I just skimmed it and that's what jumped out at me.

Having said that, and even though I've built 50+ systems for myself, friends, and family over the years - I know that's a very small number in the big scheme, and I'm not dumb enough to think I know better than the engineers designing the chips... And, of course, there's no denying that all else being equal an OC will lessen the life span of a CPU. We accept this when we OC.

But I don't think you can contend that overclocking is much of a risk when paired with non-faulty, good quality hardware, and an informed and methodical approach. Otherwise there wouldn't be "K" series CPUs, Intel wouldn't overnight replacements for failed chips (per Waco), and this forum would be overwhelmed with "bad cpu" threads...

It seems like if the study's "recurring failure rate" estimate was accurate I would have noticed it somewhere between overclocking a p120 to 133, an amd3200+ to 2.4, or my current 2500k to 4.2. I mean (it's my parent's now) but I even have an original 2.4 E6600 OCed to 3.00 (still running fine to this day on a 24/7 OC). So unfortunately, it's hard for me to accept a (probably biased) study by MS about BSOD's and hardware failure...


This chip I received was just a dud.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 12:55 am

HorseIicious wrote:It seems like if the study's "recurring failure rate" estimate was accurate I would have noticed it somewhere between overclocking a p120 to 133, an amd3200+ to 2.4, or my current 2500k to 4.2.


It's more intellectually honest to just say, "I'd rather that not be true, so I refuse to accept it."

Five paragraphs of rationalizations against empirical data isn't really necessary.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 1:26 am

Ryu Connor wrote:
HorseIicious wrote:It seems like if the study's "recurring failure rate" estimate was accurate I would have noticed it somewhere between overclocking a p120 to 133, an amd3200+ to 2.4, or my current 2500k to 4.2.


It's more intellectually honest to just say, "I'd rather that not be true, so I refuse to accept it."

Five paragraphs of rationalizations against empirical data isn't really necessary.


I just thought I may help you take a closer look at what you were posting. I know you're a moderator and all, but jumping in a thread after it's basically reached its conclusion and throwing out a link to some outdated (and not very well done) research, and by doing so, insinuating overclocking is ruining CPU's more than people realize is mostly just good old fashioned FUD.

I think everyone here "intellectually" is aware that overclocking ABSOLUTELY makes a system less stable than if it were not overclocked; and absolutely shortens the life of the component(s) compared to if they were not overclocked. So to quote some anecdotal comments I made at the end of my last post and act like I'm ignoring the facts (especially when I specifically cite genuine issues with the study's methodology) makes quite the straw man...

The gist of that study (among other things), overclocking = less stability. SHOCKING! It has no data whatsoever relating to failed CPU's. And I guess I just don't understand its relevance to this thread (but, I'm not that intellectually honest with myself).

Anyway, as I like to say, horses for courses. Hope these four paragraphs were a more entertaining read!
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:07 am

There's a slight chance that the CPU failure was motherboard-related (e.g. it could be feeding more volts to the CPU than it is telling you). Are you using the original motherboard, or the second one? I would at least make sure you're running the latest BIOS.
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Re: New Build - Help Identifying Bad Component

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:20 am

just brew it! wrote:There's a slight chance that the CPU failure was motherboard-related (e.g. it could be feeding more volts to the CPU than it is telling you). Are you using the original motherboard, or the second one? I would at least make sure you're running the latest BIOS.


Thanks for the comment. I actually had the same thought. So when I put it back together I chose to use the new (second) motherboard, and have also updated the BIOS to the latest stable release.
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