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new build reboots every 30-60 seconds; any suggestions?

by jenkinsdpj / November 21, 2009 4:40 PM PST

Just built a gaming machine with the following specs:
Case: Thermaltake Element G
Motherboard: ASUS Rampage II Extreme LGA 1366
Sound Card: Creative Supreme XFI (included with the motherboard)
CPU: Intel Core i7-920
Cooler: Cooler Master 120mm Rifle CPU cooler
Memory: 6 GB Corsair Dominator DDR3 ? SDRAM
Graphics: Gigagbyte Super-OverClocked Nvidia GeForce GTX 260
Power: Thermaltake 800W Toughpower

Hard drives:
1)System ? Kingston SSDNow V-series 128 GB Sata II Internal solid state disk
2)Storage ? 2 x Western Digital 1TB 7200 RPM Sata 3.0Gb/s 3.5? internal hard drives

Optical Drives:
1)2 x Samsung CD/DVD Burner SATA
2)Pioneer Blu-ray Discc/DVD/CD Writer SATA model BDR-205BKS ? OEM

Turned it on and it runs for about 30-60 seconds and then powers off. For another 30-60 seconds I can't turn it back on. Then it turns itself back on again and repeats the cycle.

Already tried mem in 1, 2, 3 stick config and changing slots.
Can't get anywhere close to loading a new Windows 7 system, just doesn't run long enough. Tried tweaking a couple of minor settings in BIOS, can only try 1 or 2 before reboot. No success so far.

Any suggestions?

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 21, 2009 9:48 PM PST

If the CPU heatsink compound is missing I've seen that. So check the CPU heatsink is proper and then call the place you got it from and ask what they want to RMA.

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new build dies - tried HS compound
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 12:52 AM PST
In reply to: If

I painted the heat sink compound myself onto the CPU before installing the rifle cooler. Used a small paintbrush, but kept it thin. CPU reports 32-34 degree C. I did notice during the first hour of diagnostics that at one point the CPU temp was reading 0 deg. I thought that was an indicator, but that problem seems to have gone away. Is it really possible for the CPU to overheat in the first 30-60 seconds under no real load? Do you think it is worth uninstalling the cooler and adding more compound? dpj

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Thin is usually ok.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 22, 2009 1:46 AM PST

But I've never opted to use a brush. I just squeeze it onto the surface and use the applicator tip to spread it around. When the mating surface hits I try to have it go from one edge to another to avoid an air bubble.

If it reboots just sitting in the bios there is something very wrong. It could be as simple (hard) as incompatible ram. I still find many new builders that think if it fits, it's compatible. As an electronics designer I head to the data sheets for voltage and timing to compare that with the BIOS screens but if the BIOS won't stay up then we unplug drives and cards until it does.

There are other chips that get heat sinks. A batch of motherboards did show up with no heatsink on what they call the North Bridge. What a mess.

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new build dies -- last thoughts before RMA?
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 4:19 AM PST
In reply to: Thin is usually ok.

I tried the ASUS forums, but couldn't find any problems which seemed similar. I was hoping that somehow a jumper was at fault. One thing in the BIOS; one of the settings is the number of seconds it looks for IDE before stopping; is there any chance that the problem is I'm using all SATA, with no IDE connected, and it is timing out? Also, wonder if there is any possibility the CPU is seated slightly wrong -- but I always figured it either is seated or not seated; if it's wrong it shouldn't work at all. Any last suggestions? (at least on how to distinguish whether mobo or CPU is likely problem? Thanks for all your ideas and swift responses. dpj

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I've lost count
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 22, 2009 4:43 AM PST

Of out of date BIOS, mismatched memory sticks and cpu heatsinks that the builder swore were on right.

Nothing really points to one or another thing but my ears turn red when it's the one thing I insisted it was not.

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new build - tried to re-seat
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 5:11 AM PST
In reply to: I've lost count

Thanks for the rapid response. I finally took off the heat sink, re-seated the CPU; add some more HS compound and re-attached the cooler. Added the GPU, keyboard, and power to MOBO and GPU (no drives, HDD nor Optical). Ran the manual CPU fan control on high. Same problem, no changes. Not sure how to test the memory without buying more. Bought all parts on line through NewEgg, so can't just run down to the store to trade. Kind of bummed, built this with my daughter as her HS grad present. Live 13 hrs. apart, so trying everything before returning the mobo and/or CPU while still in town. Not sure how long I'll have to wait for NE to send new parts before attempting the build again during Xmas break. By then, the other components are likely to be beyond their RMA dates. Unless you (or anybody) have last tests I can try, do you recommend returning the mobo, CPU, or both? Thanks for the ideas so far.. dpj

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new-build dies -- bios, etc.
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 5:15 AM PST

In the few seconds I can run the machine, I checked the BIOS, it is dated June 2009. All memory came in the same box as a set, so shouldn't be mismatched. Same problems occurs with 1, 2, or 3 sticks, so don't think it is memory related. I double checked the manual to ensure memory in correct slots. Unless the manual is mis-printed, everything is in the proper place. dpj

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Just a note.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 22, 2009 6:29 AM PST
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New Build dies -- try new bios
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 7:23 AM PST
In reply to: Just a note.

Thanks for the link; I'm downloading latest bios (mine came with v.1406 -- official. How do I load bios from the bench test setup in bios? can I load it from USB? I don't have a floppy drive; not sure system would run long enough to upload new bios. I never got as far as trying to OC system; was just trying to start loading Windows and Drivers; It's a new build with clean disks. According to manual, blue slots are A1, B1, C1 for memory modules; those get used first for 1st 3 sticks. manual shows configuration of slots depending on number and cofiguration of memory. dpj

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For BIOS updates.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 22, 2009 10:01 AM PST

If you follow me here in the forums I have yet to tell anyone how. Call me chicken or fish but I defer to the maker's instructions every time.

Hope you understand.

As to the floppy drive, seems to be something we collect if we build systems. I have 2 now. Both USB and old school.

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working away
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 11:24 AM PST
In reply to: For BIOS updates.

Unfortunely, all my spare gear is at my home 13 hours away. The manual implies I can load via USB, I'll see if I can do it that way. I'm still not sure if I can work fast enought to load new bios before the next crash. More research reveals some some people have had problems with the 8 pin CPU power connection; I'll try that first. dpj

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Sounds like a problem related to heat and poor contact
by VAPCMD / November 21, 2009 10:45 PM PST

between the HS Fan and the CPU.

Sure the HS Fan clip/locks haven't come loose ?


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New build dies - HS cliplocks?
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 12:57 AM PST

HS physically screws to the board using a back plate; everything seems secure. Apologies for my next ignorant question... I assume RMA means to Return to Mfr.? Were you suggestng the cooler or the motherboard? Could this be the sign of a bad motherboard? Any strip-down tests I could try to perform? dpj

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Yup....RMA is 'Return Merchandise Authorization' .
by VAPCMD / November 22, 2009 2:48 AM PST

Does the HS Fan start up immediately or during the first 30-60 seconds ?

Have you checked the ASUS Website...specifically the Forum for your MB ?


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new build dies -- bench test
by jenkinsdpj / November 22, 2009 3:18 AM PST

All fans start immediately; the cooler fan has a manual control; I've tried it running on high, no luck. Latest experiment: pulled everything out of the case, bench test (actually kitchen table test) mobo with cpu & cooler (still haven't tried pulling these apart yet) + one stick of ram, + video card, monitor & keyboard. Same problem, no changes. I am starting to think: a) mobo problem, b) CPU problem. The memory says it's recommended for core i7 on the box (Corsair dominator 3x2GB DDR3). Was thinking that last test is to dismantle cooler, re-seat CPU and try again on the bench. Is there any way to distinguish between CPU issue vs. mobo issue? dpj

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Not sure what to recommend at this point but there appear
by VAPCMD / November 22, 2009 8:19 AM PST

to be plenty of posts on the ASUS site regarding this motherboard. At that price point .. they ought to be bullet proof!


I'd pull the HS and check the CPU and socket very very carefully and closely to see if you can spot and problems. If the CPU and the socket show no problems...then I'd go for a MB replacement.

When I see the buyer comments like those found at the link below...I really have trouble understanding why people spend the extra $$ for that MB.

Let us know what you find and how it turns out.


Good Luck.


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new build reboots - resolved - bad power supply
by jenkinsdpj / November 24, 2009 12:21 AM PST

I finally got ASUS tech support on the phone Monday; he had me strip everything off the motherboard except the power supply connected at the 24 pin and 8pin CPU mounts. Fortunately, the Rampage II extreme has a start button on board! Started up, and power supply fan cut off in 40-60 seconds indicating the usual failure. ASUS TS said it sounded like a ground fault, and could either be the motherboard or power supply. Long story short... Picked up new power supply from nearest town (1.5 hours each way), bench tested, success!! re-built the system last night with new power supply, successfully loaded system and software. I've never had a problem with Thermaltake power supplies before, but this one is obviously bad. Will work with Newegg to RMA. All thanks to R. Proffit and VAPCMD for their solid suggestions, and for taking time to lead me through the problem. Apologies for any suggested slurs to ASUS; Rampage II extreme works great! Regards, dpj

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Congrats...always good to hear you got it solved and
by VAPCMD / November 24, 2009 1:16 AM PST

Thanks for the feedback.

Re the cause...what PSU did you get ? TT is a decent brand but like any mfg of PC components, they do occasionally put out defective products.

If you continue to build your own PCs as many of us do, it's always good to have some test equip like a PSU tester to help you eliminate possible causes. There's lots to choose from and here's one with digital readouts.




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