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Thread: Hellish Upgrade

  1. #1

    Default Hellish Upgrade

    As I mentioned in another thread, I had taken my 8600 GTS and memory back to Fry's after a less than stellar performance improvement.

    I got store credit then installed:
    ~ 4gb DDR2 PC6400 RAM
    ~ BFG GeForce 8800GT OC 512mb ($250 on sale at Best Buy!)
    ~ New MSI AM2 motherboard
    ~ AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core Processor 6400+ Black Edition (3.2ghz)

    Tried to do the "Repair XP" trick so as not to have to reinstall everything.
    XP install continued to hang at 37 mins on "Installing Devices". Nothing conclusive in the log files.

    After much hatred and trying everything on tech forums, I just wiped my drive and reinstalled. After about 10 lockups while installing, it finally went through. Again, I could find nothing in the logs to point me to what was failing.

    Get XP installed. It randomly hangs, forcing me to turn reboot. I think I've got bad hardware. Uninstall/Reinstall EVERYTHING. Still hangs.
    I download SpeedFan and see that one of my cores is running HOT (according to SpeedFan). The system locks up around 135F everytime.

    I go and by a $60 Zalman cooling system (heatsync and fan).

    Same thing.

    I call tech support and they say to start swapping out parts, the CPU or Motherboard could be bad.

    I swap out the CPU. Same thing.

    I go to the MSI site and decide to try a BIOS flash through their online LiveUpdate (or whatever it's called). BAD IDEA. Killed the motherboard, lol.

    One little hidden post on an obscure forum also points me to the power supply.

    I go to Fry's and swap out the motherboard for a new ASUS AM2 motherboard this one also is $30 cheaper and has PCI-E 2.0

    I talk to the tech guy and he's like "Oh that 8800 GT will take about 450w by itself" (which btw the first tech guy said would be fine).

    So I get a 650w CoolerMaster that is reg. $90, but after sale and rebate was $5!

    Anyway, I reinstall the motherboard, CPU and new power supply.

    I set up the BIOS and boot into XP, my wife is in the kitchen sacrificing chickens and tapes the baby's fingers crossed.

    XP finds a ton of new hardware, I put in the ASUS driver CD and it installs all needed drivers.... EVERYTHING works!

    What a nightmare. 3 full days work, but now I'm good.
    To summarize: the Athlon 64's just run hot. It was a power problem

    Now to re-setup my 5 box and try it out!

    P.S. Special thanks to Keyclone for sending me a new key so quickly
    Whisperwind - US - Alliance
    5x Human Death Knights - all level 120
    1x Human Paladin for LFD: 120
    Bleeding Hollow - US - Horde - [On the Bench currently]

    5x Orc Death Knights - 1 x 90 + 4 x 60s
    1x Blood Elf Paladin: Level 67 - Healer for 5 man LFD

  2. #2


    thanx for the great story sorrow, it gave me a nice break
    - You put the lime in the coke u nut.

  3. #3


    Glad you finally got it working. I am ordering parts for my new computer, when I finally get around to putting it together I hope I don't run into similar problems.

  4. #4


    Must admit read your woes and my immediate thought was power...
    Currently running 3x City of Heroes under Octopus

  5. #5

    Default WEll..

    I kinda stoped getting motherboards from fry's anymore (other stuff ok), I have had poor luck with their stuffs, and they don't carry some of the better ones.

    Any motherboard under $150 I dont consider either. But I went AM2 also.

    Im moving to the thermaltake power suppies (14 cc fan) exclusivly now, and not even thinking about anything under 650 watts.

    My 6400 is running at 87 C" right now (according the sandra) ... I use the big typhoon from thermaltake.

    28 BoXXoR RoXXoR Website
    28 Box SOLO Nalak 4m26s! Ilevel 522! GM 970 Member Guild! Multiboxing Since Mid 2001!

  6. #6


    Yep, don't skimp on the power supply. Those 350/400W ones you see come free with some cases are usually pieces of shiyat. Once in a while you get a decent one.

    My wife's computer used to shut off and/or restart, and it was because the fan in the P.S. wasn't pulling its weight, causing the case to overheat. Whoever built the thing didn't install an intake fan, so I replaced the P.S. and put a couple of $5 intake fans on the front and side, haven't had a problem since.

  7. #7


    I'm a HUGE fan of Antec power supplies, lots of folks will state overpriced, etc, but their warranty is top and their service fast. I'm running Antec's in all three of my home desktop units and never have a bit of trouble with them.

    The big thing to watch is that all 650w psu's are not created equal, you have to make sure that the 12v and 5v legs can support the wattage your devices will need, it gets pretty technical but I've found that if you stay with some of the bigger names (Thermaltake, Antec, etc) you have no problems. The cheap PSU's however are cheap for a reason!
    [> Sam I Am (80) <] [> Team Doublemint <][> Hexed (60) (retired) <]
    [> Innerspace & ISBoxer Toolkit <][> Boxing on Blackhand, Horde <]
    "Innerspace basically reinvented the software boxing world. If I was to do it over again, I'd probably go single PC + Innerspace/ISBoxer." - Fursphere

  8. #8


    Thanks for the replies all.

    I hadn't originally considered power (although I should have) because the Fry's guy said it would be fine

    Yeah, the PSU came with the case I already had. It was an Antec 450w and just didn't get the job done.

    I don't know why the CoolerMasters were on sale so cheap (reg. $90) but, it seems to be doing well. And hey, if it fails it was only 5 bucks

    I've had no other issues since the motherboard/PSU replacement and I'm getting 40-45 fps on main char and 20 fps on alts (I have them locked to max 20fps). Login and zoning is quick!

    Lovin' it!
    Whisperwind - US - Alliance
    5x Human Death Knights - all level 120
    1x Human Paladin for LFD: 120
    Bleeding Hollow - US - Horde - [On the Bench currently]

    5x Orc Death Knights - 1 x 90 + 4 x 60s
    1x Blood Elf Paladin: Level 67 - Healer for 5 man LFD

  9. #9


    I was going to pick up a 500W for my 8800 originally but after reading quite throughly about the card and its performance, I saw numerous (read: 10 or 15) comments stating that X wattage wasn't enough with plenty of people lamenting computer woes with the card. Wanting to avoid that, I grabbed a 650W myself; it's overkill but it performs beautifully.

    I do not know if you asked here, but I would have told you power almost immediately.

  10. #10


    I wouldn't buy any computer parts at Fry's. Not to mention, their staff don't know jack squat. But then again, I've been a PC tech for over 10 years, so I'm very biased. =)

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