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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 14th September, 2004, 08:44 PM
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More 8KDA3 squealing/chirping, cool 'n quiet, voltage problems, etc.

Hi everyone,

I'm glad that I've found this board and to see that I'm not the only one having so many problems with the epox 8kda3j/+ boards. I've been troubleshooting this thing for a few weeks straight, and havn't managed to solve my problems. However, I have noticed some interesting results...


First, here's a list of my problems, and what I've found out about them:

1) Chirping/squealing/whining noise coming from the cpu socket area. It's not the fan or anything mechanical. It's exactly the same thing described in these threads:
EP-8kda3j Voltage (Agian), Reboots and whining sound
Another annoying 8kdaj problem.

I've tried just about everything to find the cause of this and correct it. It's really annoying, especially when your looking for a silent system. Most people that I've talked to about this have suggested that the noise may be related to vibrating coils on the MB. I've tried touching each and everyone of these around the CPU socket area in case this would stop the noise, but it didn't.

One interesting thing: I've managed to reproduce the sound very well. All that I have to do is use memtest86. Whereas the sounds used to be random in nature (kind of like a fax modem noise), the noises produced by the MB when running memtest86 usually alternate between two different tones which correspond exactly with the pattern being written/read to the memory. The tones change when the pattern or test changes. This is extremely reproducible. Anyone else notice this? I was originally using a piece of generic 512MB Samsung ram, but sent it back hoping the problem was ram related. Last night I got a stick of OCZ ram, but it didn't solve anything.

I've sent emails to EPOX and they suggest that I send the board back... however, I don't want to do this if it means that I'll get another one with the same problems.

2) Large VCORE fluctuations:

Like so many others, VCORE readins have been a little nuts. With my original PS (seasonic super tornado 300W -- which should be able to handle the amd64 chip since it's a very high quality ps), I was getting fluctuating cores that often dipped below 1.3 volts in windows. I changed case and power supply: I bought an antec sonata case, which came with a 380w ps. Now the VCORE seems a little more stable however, there still are discrepancies. Usdm tells me that it fluctuates between 1.5 and 1.6 volts in windows even though I set it to 1.6V in the bios.

3) Cool and quiet: I thought that the VCORE fluctuations might be due to the cool and quiet thingy, but I don't even have that option in the BIOS! I've read that epox has disabled the cool 'n quiet feature if you are using 2 or more DIMMS, but I'm only using 1. I'm using bios 7/16, and I'm using the middle DIMM slot. I'll try changing the slot to see if it makes any difference. I've read this thread: " Cool n Quiet question on 8kda3j " and it seems as if when you are using 1 dimm only, the cool 'n quiet option should be present in the bios.

4) System instability. I'm getting bad BSOD's (I'm using w2k) of the type:

" ***STop: 0x000000077, 0x00000002, ...
kernel_stack_inpage_error ) "

Looking at microsoft's site, these errors seem to be related to the memory, of page file. I've run cpu tests and ram tests all day and night, and both seem perfectly fine, however the BSOD's still occur when I'm using windows. Especially when running 3dmark2003: I almost never manage to finish the test without a BSOD. My video card is fine (ATI radeon 8500). I've never had any problems with it, and I've checked that it still runs 3dmark on my old system fine.

I've just read here: EPoX 8KDA3J and instability that this might be due to the installation of the NVIDIA IDE drivers that were provided on the EPOX cd. I'll look into it a little more...

Anyway, I just thought that I'd post something to share with you what I've been through with this board in case it might help solve something. Any comments/solutions?

My system specs:

athlon64 3000+ (Newcastle)
epox 8kda3j
512Mb of ocz pc3200 cas2 3-3-6 w/copper heat sink
seagate 7200 120Gb hard drive (I tried both SATA and regular IDE versions)
antec 380 W powersupply (the one that came with the sonata case)
windows 2000, sp4.
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Old 14th September, 2004, 08:53 PM
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What bios version do you use and have you flashed it already?
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Old 14th September, 2004, 08:54 PM
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I hate to say this but the best thing to is to ditch this board and buy a quality board from MSI/ASUS/ABIT etc. I think I'll do this as soon I can afford it.

I guess you can send it in, but I can't see why they would send you a new board as long as they don't admit there is any problems with this board.
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Old 14th September, 2004, 09:02 PM
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sander: I've tried both available bioses. Currently running 7/16.

espent: That's what I'm thinking. I'll see if I can get a refund, but it would certainly be a pain because I bought the board in the states and I'm from Canada... I have to say that this upgrade has been a real nightmare, and that I've wasted way too much time. My previous board was an ABIT BX6 (yes it's ancient--I bought it in 1998), running a tualatin celeron at 1.5 GHz. I've never had any problems with it, and it still runs perfectly...
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Old 14th September, 2004, 09:12 PM
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Do you use the onboard sound? Did you use the latest Nvidia drivers?

Read my thread (First link in your post). In the end I've added a commandline to flash yous bios using the AWDFLASH.EXE tool. You can try this one at your own risk. After you rebooted the system enter de BIOS and make your prefered setting again.

As for the Cool and Quiet.. you should install your DIMM in slot 1 for it to work. I personally like it disabled..
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Old 14th September, 2004, 09:24 PM
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Hi Sander,

Thanks for the reply. I was wondering, did you ever manage to get rid of the squealing sound? As for the VCORE, I just tried the latest BIOS (9/10) and the voltages reported by the windows utility (Usdm) seems more stable (it now only fluctuates between 1.584-1.600V, for a VCORE setting of 1.6V), however the value indicated at the boot screen is still 0.05V off (it says that it is 1.65V).

When flashing the new bios, it said that it was rewritting the bootblock, so maybe they fixed the flash procedure a little?

I didn't notice any other changes yet with the new bios.
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Old 14th September, 2004, 09:48 PM
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I believe 0.05 volt of is acceptable. As long as it's stable It's OK

The squeeling sound is caused by coils. They start to resonate and that's the sound you here. I saw that some mainboards using the same coils, use a kind of insulationmaterial which shrinks when you heat it. I know what it's called in dutch but I really don't know the word in english. Sorry for that. I know you can find it at any electronics-shop.
Anyway.. by using this to tighten the coils they theoretically won't resonate any more..
I have the stuff at my work and I will try it soon. Keep you informed..
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Old 14th September, 2004, 10:10 PM
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That voltage variation is what I have had from the beginning with bios 05/05 which I haven't updated (chicken I know) but it has been absolutely stable running at 230 x 10. So if you are getting that - be happy
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Old 15th September, 2004, 02:37 AM
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Now I have a new problem . While I now seem incapable of reproducing the BSOD's, which is a good thing, my computer now spontaneously reboots. No warning nothing. It's like it just shuts off instantly. It's happened twice this afternoon. The first was with 3dmark03 and the second was when I was purposefully taxing the system: I was making a full format of a 90Gb partition, installing programs, browsing web, and just about to burn a cd.

Anyone else have these spontaneous reboots?


My cpu isn't oveclocked, and neither is the ram. I'm using the 9/10 bios.
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Old 15th September, 2004, 04:27 AM
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I have heard something about Windows XP SP2 causing random reboots with the A64 processor in certain situations. Maybe this is the problem if you are running XP with SP2?? Probably not but I thought I would post it. This is taken from

http://security-protocols.com/module...ticle&sid=2134

"This problem comes into play only on those machines that are configured to enforce Data Execution Prevention (DEP). A 32-bit version of Windows XP SP2 installed on a computer with an AMD 64-bit processor would generally cause such a problem. Hardware that requires the Mpegport.sys driver, would try and run the Mpegport.sys driver from a memory location that is monitored by DEP, receiving a Stop error that is similar to the following:

0x000000FC (ATTEMPTED_EXECUTE_OF_NOEXECUTE_MEMORY)

The computer may restart immediately if it is configured to automatically restart when a system failure occurs."
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Old 15th September, 2004, 05:15 AM
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Thanks for the reply. Although I'm using windows 2000 pro, maybe this still applies? I noticed that the setting "reboot when an error occurs" was enabled, so I disabled it. Maybe next time I'll get an error message.
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Old 15th September, 2004, 01:44 PM
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If you wait a while before your RMA, I would think that you'd have a better chance of getting a rev 2.0+ board.
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Old 15th September, 2004, 04:18 PM
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hmmm... maybe I'll wait a little then. Last night, in a desperate attempt to fix things, I overclocked CPU by 400Mhz. This seemed to have fixed all of my problems! So I'll wait 'till the rev 2.0 before trying to rma and hope that my current board holds up 'till then...
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