Need some help setting up my first built PC

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Neoxide
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Hello I'm having an issue booting my newly built PC. The issue is, it will not boot unless I press the MemOK button which fixes RAM compatibility issues. It is an ASUS motherbord: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 and I believe the issue is that the RAM sticks I have are DDR3 1600 which the Mobo only supports up to 1333. So I press the MemOK and it boots the system and tells me to save configured memory settings in the BIOS which I am pretty sure I haven't done correctly since it still won't boot up without me pressing the MemOK button.

When just turning on the Power Spply, the motherboard's green light turns on. The MemOK button doesn't flash to tell me something is wrong with the memory, I just pressed it from reading about memory compatibility issues in the manual and it worked. I've already installed windows 7 and some basic motherboard drivers so far, but my CPU will still only boot when I press the MemOK button. Any solution to make it so i dont need to press that anymore?

Build in Progress:
AMD Phenom II X4 965 3.4GHz Quad-Core CPU | ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 Mobo | 4GB Patriot DDR3 1600 | 500GB Western Digital HDD | Sapphire 6870 GPU | Raidmax Smilodon Case | 750W OCZ ZT PSU

limeDk
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go into BIOS and set you Ram to 1333Mhz

d3uS2029
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How much RAM do you have and are all the RAM slots filled? You can try upping the voltage to 1.6 like I did. Also make sure The RAM is in the correct slots. You can use your motherboard manual to see if you did it correctly.

:.: Intel i7 920 @ 3.8Ghz :.: 12GB Corsair XMS3 @ 1704Mhz :.: ASUS P6T V2 Deluxe :.: ASUS 5870EAH :.: 120GB Vertex 2 (OS) :.: 120GB OCZ Agility (Games) :.: 2x WD Black 2TB (Data) :.: Zalman 850w PSU :.: Lite-On Blu-Ray Burner :.: HP w2207h LCD :.:

Neoxide
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Yes the RAM is in the correct slots, I've tried both ways for dual-channel RAM already. I have 2x2GB sticks. I will try upping the voltage to 1.6 (i think the default is 1.5?). I've set the frequency to 1333 multiple times but it didnt seem to fix the issue, and upon going back into the BIOS to check it reset the settings to (AUTO) from 1333.. I am positive I've saved it at 1333 frequency.

Anyway, one other issue that might be occuring is that my PSU is a temporary PSU that is not powerful enough to run my GPU. It's a 500w PSU that came free with the case and I figure as long as I'm not gaming, and my GPU is not really active it shouldnt matter. I have a 750w psu of actual quality coming in the mail in a few days but that's my only other thought on what could be an issue.

Once again, upon turning on the psu power, nothing happens but the Mobo green power LED comes on. power doesnt go out to anything else until I actually press the MemOK button which starts everything normally as it should.

TheRealMan
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Do not even run your computer on cheap a power supply, its just NOT worth it. its also possible that the instability that you are experiencing could be caused by the psu being unable to deliver clean power(Though, that is not very likely) Have you tried booting with one stick at a time?

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Neoxide
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Thanks for the warning. Yea I've been pretty careful with it, monitoring the power output of the PSU and making sure not to push the limits. My new PSU will be here in a day or two, I will refrain from booting it until then.

And yes I have tried booting it with a single stick of memory and nothing happened.

d3uS2029
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Its definitly the temp 500w PSU you have in there. That should of never been in there in the first place!!

Warrior
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Try update your BIOS. Read on the back of your Ram package and see what the clocks and volts are. Input them and press F10.

Neoxide
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Thanks. I'm going to wait until the new PSU arrives, should be here Wednesday or Thursday. I will try out your advice and make a follow-up post.

eire1274
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Hate to say it, folks... it isn't the power supply. Yes, a cheap PSU is bad, but it won't cause a "no RAM start" issue that can be fixed by pressing the MemOK key.

Please remember that this is a GOOD MOTHERBOARD that can take crappy input voltage and put out relatively stable RAM voltage.

What we are seeing here is a set of memory that the board just doesn't want to over-ride. Even when the RAM is set in the BIOS at 1333Mhz, it STILL identifies itself as 1600Mhz on boot (as all modules do) and is stopping that magical slot in the BIOS from slowing it down in time for the first boot, so the system hangs. Press MemOK, and the change happens forcefully, and we are OK. Likely, the BEST SOLUTION is to get memory that A) is 1333Mhz or slower, or B) meets the motherboard timing controller specification.

Nick McDermott

Neoxide
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@eire1274 First I will install the new PSU when it arrives just to be sure. Then if no other solutions can be found I will purchase the 1333Mhz RAM I should have bought in the first place.

However I don't want to jump to that if I don't have to, so I will test a few things when I get my quality PSU. For one thing, the MemOK has an LED light that should flash upon power-up if the RAM is not compatible. However it does not give me this incompatibility warning, but pressing the MemOK does cause it to boot correctly.

Besides that,my BIOS hasn't saved any of the configurations I have put into it except for boot priority so I wonder if I need to update the BIOS or am doing something wrong (I am pressing f10 and confirming to save the settings but IDK).

So I will try both of these when my stable PSU comes in the mail along with the other suggestions, and then report back to you all. Thanks for the help so far.

Neoxide
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Thanks for the help guys. It turns out it was the power supply. The RAM is still not compatible BUT the motherboard forces it and starts up upon flipping the PSU switch now. So thanks for that. My new psu also allows my PC to boot 5x faster :D

Warrior
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Nice you finally got your rig to work! (I know how A**-tiring trubleshooting a pc is :)

Neoxide
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Well I suppose I still have the issue of my BIOS resetting every time I cut the power from my system. And the front panel power button on my PC doesn't work (doesn't turn off/on in any way). But the rest of my front panel works properly.

d3uS2029
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Thanks for the update. eire1274 is wrong again!.

eire1274
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d3uS2029 wrote: Thanks for the update. eire1274 is wrong again!.

Er, what? I guess I missed something where I said the PSU wouldn't fix the memory issue. And it didn't, as it turns out it was BIOS issues, losing the memory timing. However, I did state that cheap PSUs are a bad thing.

Nick McDermott

Neoxide
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Do you think clearing the RTC via the jumper on the motherboard will do anything? I'm not really sure what that would do however it's the only thing I can think of. It's weird, my CPU would turn on via the PSU power switch only after recently turning it off. But if I am to leave it off overnight it will only boot up via the MemOK button still. Or perhaps something specific I am doing is erasing the BIOS settings or defaulting them or something.

I figure if I could get my BIOS settings to save permanently, I wouldn't ever have this issue. And do you think the 'ASUS EZ Flash 2' will do anything if I mess around with it?

Also searching google has brought me to the possibility of having a failing CMOS battery however the Motherboard is brand new so IDK if that's the issue. Any way to test if it's the CMOS battery?

eire1274
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CMOS batteries are easy to check with a multimeter. Good cells will put out the expected voltages, and anything under that indicates a depleted cell. However, modern lithium cells will usually outlast the motherboard unless the computer is never turned on.

Flashing the BIOS changes the program, not the data you punch into it, and it is obvious that while the power is up the BIOS is passing info on. It is recommended that you have the latest BIOS, though, so if you don't have a BIOS coded "2001" (last released build) you should let the EZ Flash do it's thing.

I'd understand if the crappy PSU was feeding you insufficient voltage in the off state causing problems, but that's what the battery is for.

Thankfully, those batteries are cheap. Any PC store or big retailer like Best Buy would have them. Worth a shot. Hope you can get this fixed!

Nick McDermott

Neoxide
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I've discovered it's not actually a BIOS issue, it's a power button issue. The front panel power button doesn't work, thus I was resetting (turning on) the system every time with MemOK which wiped my BIOS configurations.

So now comes the issue with the power button. I've swapped the power SW leads with the Reset SW leads to see if the system will power on via the reset button and it worked. So the power button on the case is the issue and not the motherboard pins. Right now I am keeping the power connected to the reset button as an alternative because the power button simply won't work. Are there any fixes for this or do you think my case has a faulty power button/connector?

Tivon
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Sounds like you need to RMA the PC Case, or at least contact the company and they might send you a new power button switch to install. What case do you have?

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Neoxide
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Raidmax Smilodon. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811156062

I have no special warranties on the case, however it says in the details that there's a 1 year Manufacturer Warranty for Parts and Labor. I wonder if I can RMA it. If I can't, well I guess I can use the reset button as a power button.