Desktop PC finally fixed

The Sandman

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About 15 months ago I bought a new desktop computer - a Hypersonic "Sonic Boom" with P4 2.83 GHz (not Hyperthreaded), 533 Mhz FSB, 1 GB RAMBUS 1066, and ATI Radeon 9700 Pro video card. The machine was just never "quite right" - lots of little glitches like disk errors, BSOD's, freezes, stuff like that. I've been on the phone with Hypersonic several times, and had previously swapped out the power supply, sound card (Audigy Gamer), TV tuner card, and RAID card (replaced Highpoint piece with Promise). These fixes addressed some minor issues but never got at the root of the problem. BTW, the case is a Lian-Li which was only offered by Hypersonc for about a month - turns out they had problems with components coming loose during shipping...

Anyhow, last month I was playing a game when the screen just froze and a continuous high-pitched tone came from the speakers. I hit the reset button - nothing. Powered down, then restarted - the tower would power up but the system wouldn't post. Called Hypersonic, went through the usual BS (me: The computer won't boot up, won't even post - I think it's the motherboard tech: What else is wrong with it? :rolleyes: ), they decided to send me a replacement motherboard, video card, and a tech to install them. I called them a couple of days later for a status check - they told me they no longer had the ATI 9700 Pro cards in stock, would I mind a free upgrade to the 9800 Pro 128. Um, that'll be OK. Then I asked if I could pay the difference between the 9800 Pro 128 and the new 9800 XT (around $150 I think). No, the tech said "that would be taking advantage of us but you can 'upgrade' from your 9700 Pro to the 9800 XT for $350 though". No thanks, I'll just take the free 9800 Pro 128. Well, I get the parts, and lo and behold they sent me the 9800 XT as a free courtesy upgrade...that sure eased the pain of being down for a couple of weeks... :yup:

I swapped out the videocard but the system still wouldn't post - duh, I told them it was the motherboard. The tech came and tore into it -guess what, the CPU was a bit loose in the socket and the heatsink wasn't tightly firmly clamped down. He replaced the motherboard (Hypersonic didn't want me to do it myself) and hooked everything up correctly. I upgraded the soundcard to an Audigy 2 ZS for good measure and we buttoned up the case. She booted right up... :Pleased:

I did have to fiddle with the drivers a bit, but now the system runs the way it was meant to. Yay... :D
 

Morning Radio

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Very cool! Sounds like it was a PIA, but that you made out ok with upgraded stuff.
I had one of my home-office mobos fry on my AMD XP2000+ box. That meant either waiting for mail order, or going to mainland America to get my stuff the same day. I ended up picking up an ASUS 800 FSB mobo, and a P4 2.4c w/Hyperthreading. Man, that thing rocks.
I still need to get a new mobo to replace the fried one, then will put that and the AMD 2000+ in to my wifes box. She will love it, as she still has a 450mhz AMD K6-2.
Glenn

The Sandman said:
About 15 months ago I bought a new desktop computer - a Hypersonic "Sonic Boom" with P4 2.83 GHz (not Hyperthreaded), 533 Mhz FSB, 1 GB RAMBUS 1066, and ATI Radeon 9700 Pro video card. The machine was just never "quite right" - lots of little glitches like disk errors, BSOD's, freezes, stuff like that. I've been on the phone with Hypersonic several times, and had previously swapped out the power supply, sound card (Audigy Gamer), TV tuner card, and RAID card (replaced Highpoint piece with Promise). These fixes addressed some minor issues but never got at the root of the problem. BTW, the case is a Lian-Li which was only offered by Hypersonc for about a month - turns out they had problems with components coming loose during shipping...

Anyhow, last month I was playing a game when the screen just froze and a continuous high-pitched tone came from the speakers. I hit the reset button - nothing. Powered down, then restarted - the tower would power up but the system wouldn't post. Called Hypersonic, went through the usual BS (me: The computer won't boot up, won't even post - I think it's the motherboard tech: What else is wrong with it? :rolleyes: ), they decided to send me a replacement motherboard, video card, and a tech to install them. I called them a couple of days later for a status check - they told me they no longer had the ATI 9700 Pro cards in stock, would I mind a free upgrade to the 9800 Pro 128. Um, that'll be OK. Then I asked if I could pay the difference between the 9800 Pro 128 and the new 9800 XT (around $150 I think). No, the tech said "that would be taking advantage of us but you can 'upgrade' from your 9700 Pro to the 9800 XT for $350 though". No thanks, I'll just take the free 9800 Pro 128. Well, I get the parts, and lo and behold they sent me the 9800 XT as a free courtesy upgrade...that sure eased the pain of being down for a couple of weeks... :yup:

I swapped out the videocard but the system still wouldn't post - duh, I told them it was the motherboard. The tech came and tore into it -guess what, the CPU was a bit loose in the socket and the heatsink wasn't tightly firmly clamped down. He replaced the motherboard (Hypersonic didn't want me to do it myself) and hooked everything up correctly. I upgraded the soundcard to an Audigy 2 ZS for good measure and we buttoned up the case. She booted right up... :Pleased:

I did have to fiddle with the drivers a bit, but now the system runs the way it was meant to. Yay... :D
 

Kathy

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SB-Glenn said:
I still need to get a new mobo to replace the fried one, then will put that and the AMD 2000+ in to my wifes box. She will love it, as she still has a 450mhz AMD K6-2.
Glenn




:cop: Wife gets the tech hand-me-downs?

I'm sure you show her you love her in other ways?

:bigdiamonds:
 

Morning Radio

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Big diamonds? I wish. She did get those when I was a FireFighter. Now that I am a web host... she gets plenty of other "non-cash" rewards..... plus gets to see me often (maybe more often than she would like, at times. :) )
Glenn
:biglaugh:

Kathy said:
:cop: Wife gets the tech hand-me-downs?

I'm sure you show her you love her in other ways?

:bigdiamonds:
 
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The Sandman

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The tech I spoke with on the phone tried to convince me to upgrade my motherboard and CPU instead of just replacing them - this way I would have had to pay an upgrade fee. I would have considered it except that the motherboards for the Hyperthreaded CPU's / 800 FSB's are DDR for the most part, not RAMBUS, so I would have had to toss my expensive RAM and purchase new stuff. That made it less than cost effective. I'll wait for a year, then get a new system with a Prescott CPU, Socket T, DDR-2, and PCI Express.

:yikes:
 

Morning Radio

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The Sandman said:
The tech I spoke with on the phone tried to convince me to upgrade my motherboard and CPU instead of just replacing them - this way I would have had to pay an upgrade fee. I would have considered it except that the motherboards for the Hyperthreaded CPU's / 800 FSB's are DDR for the most part, not RAMBUS, so I would have had to toss my expensive RAM and purchase new stuff. That made it less than cost effective. I'll wait for a year, then get a new system with a Prescott CPU, Socket T, DDR-2, and PCI Express.

:yikes:

Yeah, I hate upgrading and then having to replace expensive stuff. As long as you can get by, and make it run for a while.... stick with the course you are on IMHO.
Glenn
PS..Sorry for taking your thread off topic. :cookoo:
 

Kathy

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I'm sorry too ....
I just had to make sure Glenn's wife was upgraded. ;)

:woohoo:
 

The Sandman

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SB-Glenn said:
Yeah, I hate upgrading and then having to replace expensive stuff. As long as you can get by, and make it run for a while.... stick with the course you are on IMHO.
Glenn
PS..Sorry for taking your thread off topic. :cookoo:
Not only did you take it off topic - you did it while I was typing my on-topic reply... :biglaugh:
 
A

AWS

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You could have upgraded to 3.06Ghz 533 which has ht enabled and still uses rambus. The only 533 that does support ht. I just built my wife one. I was going to go p4e 3Ghz, but, the price of the older 3.06 was almost half of the e model.
 

The Sandman

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AWS said:
You could have upgraded to 3.06Ghz 533 which has ht enabled and still uses rambus. The only 533 that does support ht. I just built my wife one. I was going to go p4e 3Ghz, but, the price of the older 3.06 was almost half of the e model.
Yes - I considered that! But for such a small increase in processor speed, without the bump in FSB, and not really having any applications optimized for HT, the extra coupla hundred bucks and possible need to reinstall XP (I've heard conflicting stories on this) made me decide I should wait for a "real" upgrade.
 

Wayne Luke

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The Enhanced P4's are expensive for very little benefit over the hyperthreaded models.
Just read a performance review on them and they only did marginally better but nothing worth the upgraded cost. Of course the same review had Athlon 64's in it and that smoked anything Intel puts out right now.
 

Wayne Luke

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The Sandman said:
... possible need to reinstall XP (I've heard conflicting stories on this) made me decide I should wait for a "real" upgrade.
XP can be funky about this. My wife had problems with her computer and it needed the motherboard and CPU replaced. After that XP wouldn't activate. Tried to activate it automatically and it wouldn't. Emptied the hard drive, reinstalled XP and it activated immediately.
 

The Sandman

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Since my system crashed without warning I didn't have a completely up-to-date backup - the last one was a couple of weeks old. I don't have any critical data on the system but I still didn't want to lose anything. That's another reason I decided to stay with an identical replacement motherboard and not upgrade the CPU - I figured that gave me the best chance of booting up without significant OS problems. A clean install of XP Pro is no big deal...a couple of hours work...if you have a current backup so as not to lose anything you want to be able to copy back into the fresh OS...
 

The Sandman

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I'll tell you what, whatever the problem was with the motherboard it was holding me back from the beginning - this thing is screaming now. :D
 

floris

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I am glad to hear that it is finally fixed. I know how things tend to stay broke.

My fan needs a fix, and it still isn't. ugh!
The noice is makes is annoying.
 
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