I’m a failure. Have had great luck building my own machines, but now my latest masterpiece, a DFI NF4 Ultra, Athlon 3800+ X2, OCZ 4000+ and nVidia 7800GTX won’t boot at all. It is very flakey what is going on. I’ve had any number of issues:
* The system starts and then all the fans go off. See below, but this means the overvoltage protection at the Power Supply went off. There is more detail below, but the long and short of this is that with the high voltage jumper (JP17) enabled, you can trip the power supply. This then causes the supply to go dead for some period of time and then you can try again. So the fix is to set the JP17 to low voltage and all the standby power jumpers for USB and PS/2 back to their defaults.
* The system starts and I got it to boot, then the when I tried to run memtest, the system cycles. Sounds like this might be due to a too tiny power supply. I was trying to boot with a pair of SATA drives, two DVDs, 7800GTX, 1GB of memory and an X2, I’m not surprised that the system was unstable. Need to get a bigger supply, but in the mean time I unplugged all a DVD and a SATA, in the hopes of booting. Some folks have gotten the Seasonic to start by “jumpstarting”:http://www.dfi-street.com/forum/showthread.php?t=17916&page=1&pp=15 that is shorting the green and black wire together. For me, this turns on the power supply, but it doesn’t work when I put the 24 pin connector into the motherboard (uh oh, did I fry the motherboard?)
* When I booted the last time, I get a flashing standby LED and no DRAM LED. Then sometimes a solid standy LED and no DRAM LED. Then the system starts but I get a all four diagnostic LEDs on. This means the CPU can’t be found and the system hangs. Then you have to do a clear “CMOS recovery”:http://www.dfi-street.com/forum/showpost.php?p=127704&postcount=24 to get back again and pray the system isn’t totally dead.
* Uh oh, think I put the floppy connector into the motherboard backwards! Yikes, that could mean I burned out the motherboard, CPU and everything else. The floppy connector goes directly into the voltage regulator of the CPU, so that is bad. Only way to find out is to get a know good power supply and to try each component I might have burned (memory, disks, DVDs, CPU) in a known good configuration. The CPU is the only issue as it is the only socket 939 motherboard I have.

When it does boot, it either hangs detecting the CPU or doesn’t start at all. If it does start, then the keyboard isn’t recognized. Ugh, I’ve done something wrong. Here are some possible things that might help everyone on the Internet that DFI Forum and “Anandtech”:http://forums.anandtech.com/messageview.aspx?catid=29&threadid=1509413&enterthread=y points to.
“Newegg”:http://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/FeedBack/CustratingReview.asp?item=N82E16817151025 points out that there is a problem with Seasonic’s and the DFI LanParty specifically.
Over at “DFI-Street.com”:http://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/FeedBack/CustratingReview.asp?item=N82E16817151025, the word is that the motherboard draws too much from the standby +5VSB. And several folks have never gotten any of the new model S12 Seasonics to work although other power supplies seem fine.
According to “xtremesystems.org”:http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=65481 and this happens when you try to set the system up to use higher voltages on Dram memory (which I did!) what happens is that on a cold boot, the motherboard applies power to the DRAM from the standby 5V rail and that this is also done at too low a voltage. Some folks report that you have to start with a lower power older RAM, e.g., not the OCX VX, then you can get it all going. Yikes. The fix is that you have to hack around with the jumper at JP17 to make it work properly in high voltage mode with power supplies because of the high VSB requirement. See the strange hack to make it work properly. Otherwise, you have to disable the 5V maximum setting and then you are back to normal voltages.
Also, to be safe, you should make sure everything uses 5V instead of 5VSB. The defaults in this case are right. In my case, even going back to 3.3V maximum didn’t help. I still got a standby light on, but dram light off. And, the thing doesn’t boot at all. The PSU feels like it is just off. Like others, I’ve also had the it spins, but all four LEDs are on which means it didn’t find the “CPU”:http://www.dfi-street.com/forum/showthread.php?t=23723 so I hope I didn’t trash a $400 X2!
Unfortunately, in my case, I turned off the VSB uses from the memory to the other standby uses, so now the problem may be something else like the power supply overprotection needing to get reset. The fact that nothing even starts seems to indicate a power supply problem. Apparently, the power supply overvoltage kicks in and it takes an hour or so for the power supply to reset properly to try again. If you love a risky life, some folks recommend “jumpstarting” by shorting the green and the black wires together. Not for me. I’d rather wait!
So maybe a new power supply is needed. “Extreme Overclocking”:http://forums.extremeoverclocking.com/showthread.php?t=136602&page=1&pp=20 has a zillion sources. As does DFI Forums – Recommended! – NF4 Ultra/SLI Mobos:PowerSupplies also points out the Seasonic 400 watt supply I use is underrated for the 7800GTX.
Apparently, the recommended new models have dual 12V rails and you can get an Seasonic S12-600 that is according to “SilentPCReview”:http://www.silentpcreview.com/article247-page1.html quiet and powerful. I have a 400 watt Seasonic “Super Tornado 400”:http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/reviews/cases/Seasonic_Super_Tornado_1.html, but this post says a 480w power supply is th minimum. “SilentPCReview”:http://www.silentpcreview.com/article166-page2.html loves it and it is PCI Express compliant. However, you essentially need at least “26 amps”:http://www.dfi-street.com/forum/showthread.php?t=10854.
At 12V the Seasonic 400 only has 24 Amps according to “Extreme Overclocking”:http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/reviews/cases/Seasonic_Super_Tornado_2.html although many folks have gotten it to work with lower powered graphics cards.

I’m Rich & Co.

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