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Off Topic - HELP WITH GAMING PC

Discussion in 'PC Gaming & Rigs' started by Bradford Blade, Jul 20, 2005.

  1. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    Hi to all,

    This is a bit long and slighty OT, but as I'm building the better part of a gaming PC, some of you more knowledgable people out there might be able to help me :lease:

    My predicament revolves around my new motherboard [MSI K8N Platinum SLi] and PSU [Hiper HPU-4S525 (24pin ATX)].

    Having put together all the relevant parts to assemble this PC, I came to building it all up yesterday.

    However, when I came to plumbing in the PSU, I noticed that the motherboard manual stated in a highlighted paragraph at the bottom of the ‘PSU connectivity’ page (quoted exactly as printed):-

    • Power Supply of 450watts (and above) is highly recommended for system stability [not an issue as my aforementioned PSU is 525 watts]
    • For ATX 12V power connection [I assume this is referring to the 4 pin CPU 12V power connector?] it should be greater than 18A [I assume this means 18A or more? And if I’ve understood it correctly my new PSU is 17A]
    • For this model [of motherboard] you must use the power supply that with a -5V pin supply [again, the assumption being that your PSU must have the -5V pin connected, & BTW the emphasis of ‘must’ is in the original]

    Now this where I’ve come unstuck!

    In the past several weeks of trawling websites (manufacturers & retailers) I haven’t once come across any emphasis towards certain PSU’s having/not having this all important -5V pin connection, so when I came to buying my PSU two weeks ago it wasn’t a concern that even occurred to me, nor was it raised at the point of purchase when I enquired as to the suitability of a number of PSU’s (and the retailer gave me plenty of details).

    Well, when investigating my PSU, I discovered to my frustration that this -5V pin WASN’T connected!

    Moreover, I checked the two other 24pin ATX PSU’s in the house (my kids and my wife’s PC’s respectively) and neither of those have this pin connected either.

    So then, I phoned a pal who’d built a couple of his own PC’s and who’d been an invaluable source of help while I was putting together mine, and asked him about this and to my surprise even he’d never come across the significance of PSU’s having/not having this -5V pin! In fact, he went and checked his PSU (in a PC that he’d built himself) and discovered his DIDN’T have this -5V connection as well.

    So I need to identify a few things.

    Firstly, why isn’t this relevance highlighted anywhere if it is supposedly so important for specific motherboards? I mean when anyone buys a PSU it doesn’t ever seem to be emphasised that certain PSU’s have/don’t have this -5V connection (or, indeed, if certain motherboards need/don’t need it), so what’s to stop someone buying a PSU that DOES have this connection and using it with a motherboard that doesn’t support it? Wouldn’t it damage it? And why do certain motherboards NEED this connection when it seems a majority of PSU’s are manufactured WITHOUT this pin connected? How can you tell if a certain PSU does have this pin connected as many sites don’t mention this particular detail in their specs?

    Secondly, how on earth do you find out if a PSU has a 4 pin 12V ATX supply that’s over 18A. I haven’t come across one retailer that supplies such info on their site, and only a very few manufacturers seem to detail this and even then only in a rather vague way. How can you be certain that the PSU you buy is as specific as this one MSI are stipulating for use with their motherboard.

    Thirdly, does anyone else use this motherboard, and if so, what PSU(s) do you recommend?

    Being far from any type of expert, I really expected a new PSU of 525 watts to be perfectly ample for contemporary motherboards, but now I’m faced with the situation that my new PSU is incompatible with this MSI motherboard, when no-one even drew any attention to the fact that PSU’s/motherboards need/don’t need such a specific type connection!

    I mean how important is it that my PSU HAS this -5V connection and a 12V 18A supply? Would my motherboard be damaged if I didn’t use the -5V pin and only the 17A supply?

    Can anyone educate me and get me out of this mess? My sincere thanks in advance for any help offered.

    Best wishes to all.

    LAGAVULIN
     
  2. Cyclone

    Cyclone
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    I upgraded my system a couple of weeks ago, and was comming accross the same issue. Several comments were being made about the -5v line missing on new PSU's.

    Looking into it, it seemed to only effect MSI motherboards, and it's the on-board sound that requires it. If the -5v is missing, then either the sound won't work, or it gets distorted.

    Having said that, there seem to be people with your motherboard (think it's the same) that have no problem using PSU's with no -5V.

    Just had a quick look at the specs of your PSU, and it looks like it's a dual 12V rail PSU. One is rated at 17A, the other at 20A. Now i'm no expert on these things, I would say that you should be covered if the requirement is 12V at 18A.

    At the end of the day, if it was my system I would just try it, and see if it works, i'm positive no damage can be done. If the sound causes a problem, then change the motherboard or find a PSU with -5V (I know some of Antecs have it).


    Links discussing the -5v on MSI boards below:

    http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=869196&page=3

    http://diamondclub.msi.com.tw/eng/forum/viewthread.php?tid=116&fpage=1&highlight=&page=2


    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    :thumbsup: Great Stuff Cyclone,

    I really appreciate this info. Several responses I've had have said that the -5V rail is unused on contemporary motherboards so it is utterly immaterial, but MSI's claim that "...you MUST use the -5V pin supply for this model..." flies in the face of all that.

    However, your explanation of the onboard sound seems to sum up the issue. There HAD to be a reaon for MSI stressing this point and it appears this is it.

    As for the ampage, yeah, ALL of those I've spoken to have said the same, so that really became less of an issue.

    Many thanks again Cyclone and :smashin: for the links mate.

    Very best regards,

    LAGAVULIN
     
  4. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    Hope some of you more experienced people could help me out here.

    Continuing on from the above issues, I'm having a really odd problem with this new MSI K8N Platinum MoBo and seemingly my installed RAM (Samsung DDR400 PC3200 Single-Side 512mb and 256mb respectively).

    Y'see, the MoBo came with a "D-Bracket2" which is a front PCI style slot that cables into the MoBo, but it has the additional feature of combining 4 LED's that attach to the MoBo and act as a 'diagnostic' tool. Simply, the LED's light up in different combos to highlight any particular issues with the system.

    Well, the newly built system - on very first boot-up - kept hanging at the D-Bracket LED indication of "memory detection", which the manual describes as meaning that either the RAM is damaged or not installed correctly.

    This happened several times and I got nowhere, but somehow it decided to kick-in at a later attempt :suicide: Nevertheless, with Windows being booted on a new MoBo it detected 'new hardware' and I had to even restart/reboot a few times with NO problems whatsoever. :thumbsup:

    When done, I turned off the PC for around and hour, and then went back to it to do a little more work, and it now refuses to boot again, repeating the exact same problem of the system hanging at the D-Bracket LED indication of "memory detection". :(

    This seems weird as the RAM, although NOT listed in MSI test reports, works in my other shop bought PC with a MSI MoBo, and it DID work for a short period in this new MoBo (after initially refusing to be detected).

    So what do you think this problem is caused by? Is it the RAM that is simply incompatible and just works haphazardly, or do you think this is a prob with the MoBo?

    Please advise as this is really starting to send me insane :mad:

    Best regards to all,

    LAGAVULIN
     
  5. Ethics Gradient

    Ethics Gradient
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    Have you tried placeing the ram in different slots - have you made sure you haven't put them in a dual-channel slot ( where you put matched pairs of ram only )

    try each stick of ram independantly in different slots - check the seating very carefully and also check slots themselves and look for anything sticking out ... sometimes the the slots connectors get bent out of place and make bad contacts.

    Also check the bios ram timings - try turning down the performance settings ( raising timeings etc ) and test with that ( make a note of the settings as its easy to forget what they are )

    You just need to take a systematic approach and rule out by process of illimination.

    If the system still has probs after all that - then u need to get the board checked / swapped out.
     
  6. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    Thanks for the prompt reply!
    To answer simply, yes. I've tried just single sticks in DIMM1 and matched pairs in the actual matching slots etc.
    I'll check the actual slots themselves, but I'm not hopeful with it being a brand new board.
    Unfortunately this isn't possible coz I can't even get the PC to boot into the bios without the RAM 'working'. But if it does just 'somehow' decide to run again, yes, this'll be one of the first things I'll look at.
    I have an uncanny feeling this is where its leading :thumbsdow

    Thanks again,

    LAGAVULIN
     
  7. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    Firstly, a very big thanks for all the replies posted.

    As said in the title, I got it sorted :D

    So,the remedy??? Well, it seems there WAS some sort of 'short' between either the case & MoBo or the PSU (to be fair I have no idea).

    After reading a post from another forum on Friday afternoon about the probability of a 'short' causing the system to refuse to boot correctly, on Sat a.m. I took out the PSU, the MoBo, the RAM & GPU.

    As was advised in the aforementioned post, I tried booting up the MoBo OUT of the case and it worked fine , so I then tried it fitted to the MoBo slide out panel (but not in the case) and again, spot-on.

    Well, I put it all back together bit by bit, trying boot ups as I went along to determine what might have caused my prob, but I have had NO repeat of the prob whatsoever.

    The only real indication as to what might have been the cause was due to the fact that I noted (on my original build) when I switched on the power to the PSU (via the PSU rocker switch) the PC actually started up (which it had never done before). However, I now get perfectly normal operation. When turning on the PSU switch, it doesn't 'start up' until I press the Power Switch on the front of the PC :cool:

    Anyway, thanks again. I would have never have even considered in a month-a-Sundays that it might have been a 'short'. I was leaning toward the simple notion of either the RAM or the MoBo and it was neither. One to bear in mind for the future :lesson:

    All the best,

    LAGAVULIN
     
  8. overkill

    overkill
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    Lagavulin, which case have you got? My daughters PC has a similiar problem in that unless you set up the case (a Coolermaster ATC220) very carefully it too shorts and won't boot first time. Usually it would boot after a few attempts then crash later on. After making sure there was sufficent gap between the mobo and rail on which the board tray slides, the problem stopped.

    Might be worth keeping a note of this problem if the case are different.
     
  9. Bradford Blade

    Bradford Blade
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    Thanks Overkill,

    I use the Akasa Eclipse-62 (an aluminium case, but with a chromed steel MoBo panel/tray).

    Yes, I actually reckon such an issue is a little more commonplace than imagined but who would even think of such a cause when their PC doesn't boot :confused:

    Most of us would jump to the conclusion it was RAM or a blown circuit etc., not something as simple as a 'short' between MoBo and case :thumbsdow

    But I tell ya, once bitten twice shy :cool:

    However, I've now got another weird prob that I'm starting in a new thread. Hope you might be able to help?

    Best wishes,

    LAGAVULIN
     

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