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Fried memories - my fault or bad RAM ?

Discussion in 'PC hardware help' started by _pepexe_, Jul 17, 2007.

  1. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    I have an ASUS A7V8X-X with 1 HD 20GB, 1 HD 40GB, an Athlon XP 2000+, CD-RW drive, and a module of 128 MB 266 (that one was the only one I've got). This PC had some problems with Video Cards so it was always a "second option" in my house. It was not permanently in use.

    Yesteday I bougth a new 512 MB 400 module so I can have it running again in my room. 2 years ago I tried installing a 512MB 400 RAM module with no success. This time I really needed to add more memory. Salesman told me I could install this new RAM branded TITAN (known as "generic memory") along with the 128MB 266 one.

    I did so, when I came home. I left 128 one in the first slot, and placed the new 512 in the second slot. When I turned the system ON, a cloud of smoke came out from the RAM modules. I then immediately unplugged the cord. That smell of burnt platic was not good.

    I removed both RAMs and checked the new RAM for phisical damage. There are none visible. So I could go back and ask for a replacement, because it is warrantied for 6 month.

    I tried placing one by one the RAM modules again. No luck. System powers on giving the LONG and repetitive BEEPs meaning somethings is wrong with MEMORY (am I right?)

    Both modules in every 3 slots give no results but long beeps. I then tried removing a RAM module from other machine, this time a 256 MB 333 to check it in the A7V8X-X. I tried it
    in the 3 slots with no luck at all.

    So now I'm scared. I did not check back the 256MB module where it belongs to (to check if is was fried in the old PC, though I dont think so because no smoke this time). Plus I think I lost my old 128MB 266 RAM, plus the new 512 400 RAM (that I can exchange back). But the worst is I'm afraid I lost my ASUS A7V8X-X motherboard, or maybe it is damaged.

    I'm pretty sure my mistake was placing 2 memory modules that do not match speeds. Am I right?

    What happend? What can I do now?
     
  2. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    You should be able to combine RAM chips with no problem, provided the voltage is the same. If is isn't, that explains the smoke. If it is, you may have just got a bad stick of memory.
     
  3. pcrepair

    pcrepair Regular member

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    Smoke is very inportant to computer components it HAS to stay INSIDE the components if you let it out then normally it FRIES the motherboard
    I would expect you have done just this
    take the ram back and tell them you needed ddr2 and then say 'OH i don't have enough money I'll have to have a refund (or credit note)
    because you have almost certainly fried the ram too
    Sorry never answered the question you probably caused ESD when you put the ram in
    ESD = electrostatic discharge, a major killer of computer components
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2007
  4. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    But he doesn't need DDR2.

    Try and blag a refund by simply saying "it didn't work, can I swap it for another brand?"
     
  5. pcrepair

    pcrepair Regular member

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    lol I know he don't but i was trying to think why he would take it back as no good so they wouldn't test it
     
  6. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    Well, what are they going to do? If they test it and it's been smoked, it isn't going to work is it? They'll therefore rightly replace it.
     
  7. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    Thanks for your comments. I will return the new RAM and change it for something else.

    How can I check if RAM voltages are the same? I want to know if it was my fault or new RAM was defective. May this possibly be caused by an electrostatic discharge I made over the ram modules?? I have changed rams since long, with no problems.

    Also, mnotherboards turns on fine, but give LONG continuous BEEPs. So mybe it has ram slots broken. IS there any way to fix them, in that case???
     
  8. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    I have some weird news. I have just tried the old DDR 128MB 266 RAM into the working PC (the one I'm writing this now) Guess what, it is working. I tried then the new 512MB 400 RAM. It is working too!

    But what seems to be good news, are bad. Because that means my A7V8X-X motherboard is damaged....

    I will appreciate any advice on what to do next. Motherboard turns on fine, but BEEPs as if it hadnt any RAM installed. Is it fixable? What was the cause? I dont want it happen again.
     
  9. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    It probably needs to be replaced, I can;t imagine that smoking memory stick would have done the chipset much good, the sticks may have used a large amount of current at some point, which could have damaged other parts of the board.
    As for the cause, the stick obviously isn't bad. Are you sure that type of memory's compatible?
     
  10. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    Manual says: 3xDDR DIMM Sockets. Max. unbuffered PC2100/1600 non-ECC DDR SDRAM. Note: PC3200 maximum to 2 banks only. PC2700 maximum to 4 banks only.

    New DDR 512MB 400 ram has double side banks. Old DDR 128MB 266 has a single side bank. That would mean that summing up, equals to 3 banks, when it IS LIMITED to 2 banks only when using PC3200 (400). Am I right?

    But the weird thing is, even though that might be the cause of smoke, the ram modules are intact, and working good.
     
  11. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    As far as I'm aware, modern motherboards don't mind about memory types. they'll accept 4 of anything. In that case, I suggest you only put PC2100 in that PC from now on.
    It sounds unlikely for a stick of RAM, but the only time my memory went up in smoke was when a Power supply gave out during an upgrade (I had added two hard disks). Perhaps the small amount of extra power from that memory was enough to push the PSU in that system over the edge?
     
  12. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    The problem is that motherboard is not BOOTING UP! No matter if I put the 128MB module back to the first, second or even unused third RAM Slot, motherboard turns on BEEPING, as if no ram is intalled.

    I may add, the system case was open, laying horizontal in the floor (the floor is covered with a carpet). I dont think it has anything to do.
     
  13. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    Yep, something's definitely screwed there. I suggest replacing the motherboard, and only using PC2100 modules in it from now on.
     
  14. pcrepair

    pcrepair Regular member

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    SO BRAVE
    Well done I would never have risked putting it in a different computer i would have binned it
    you need another motherboard and see if you can change the ram anyway

    sam it's probaly true but i think it's just that new ram is mostly backwards compatible, back in '266' days it often caused problems if you put different speeds of ram in a board
     
  15. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    My socket A board was from the 333 era and it got on fine with 400 memory, but a cheap power supply fried the original 333, and at least one of the 400 sticks failed later on due to being cheap pieces of crap. I bought 2x512MB for £45, back in the days where even a Corsair Value 512MB stick would set you back £50.
     
  16. pcrepair

    pcrepair Regular member

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    'new' ram IS 400 sam and I get mine a lot cheaper than that

    'good' ram is really only needed if you are overclocking otherwise why waste the money :)
    I'm just a general pc repair guy so I don't get many exotic jobs just run of the mill stuff but i been doing it a while and I must be getting better at it cos I have a lot of repeat business.
    but I do remember back in the 'old days' when 3.1 was the new windows

     
  17. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    Lol, I don't remember quite back that for, or at least I do but I didn't own a PC back then.
    The RAM was cheap then, back in Autumn 2004.
     
  18. _pepexe_

    _pepexe_ Member

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    Well, i guess I wil have to spend money AGAIN, now in a new "old" motherboard... I have already bought a GEFORCE2 for it, now this happens... sh*t. This PC is causing me headaches!

    Yes, I was brave when I tried checking supposedly fried RAMs into the working PC. I wish they were fried, not my motherboard!! damn..
     
  19. sammorris

    sammorris Senior member

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    But if they were, you could have fried your other motherboard by testing them.
    We've all had bad luck in our time, my old Athlon XP was an absolute moneypit.
     
  20. GrandpaBW

    GrandpaBW Active member

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    I don't think that there is a person, who posts in these types of forums, who hasn't fried something in their computer. You just did, and you will unfortunately have to bite the bullet like we did.

    Get a new motherboard and associated essentials.
     

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