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8GB DDR2 RAM Unstability

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Yesterday I installed a second DDR2 RAM kit to have 8GB of RAM. But i'm getting random BSODs even tho i've manually set all the clocks, timings and voltages on the BIOS to a reasonable point where the 2 kits SHOULD run together.
The kits are: 2x2GB of Crucial Ballistix Tracer Reds (DDR2-1000 5-5-5-15 2.0V) and 2x2GB of Mushkin Redlines (DDR2-1000 5-5-5-12 2.0-2.1V).
I set them up at DDR2-1000 5-5-5-15 and 2.0V, but got a BSOD while playing Far Cry 4, so I set them at the same settings but @ 2.02V and that solved the problem, but now, on League Of Legends and on Windows i get random BSODs (Everything Freezes, sound becomes like a loop and sometimes it just stays there freezed and sometimes it gives me the BSOD after the freeze).
I've tried upping the VDIMM up to 2.08V and I still get the BSODs, so right now i'm sitting at DDR2-1000 5-5-5-15 (i would like to run the modules at this speed) and at 2.1V.
But I think I may be doing something wrong. Right now, the Memory OC Charger is Enabled on the BIOS and the Northbridge Voltage is set to Auto (1.1V I guess). I heard that I may need to up the Voltage on the Northbridge? I really don't want to go over 2.1V since the Ballistix Tracers are rated to run at 2.0V and i don't have any type of cooling/airflow going to the modules.

PC Specs (full specs in my Weekend Rig on my sig) :
- Q9300 @ 3Ghz and 1.225V (BIOS) / 1.216 V (CPU-Z Load)
- ASUS P5Q-E 2101 BIOS
- 4x 2GB RAM Modules *all slots populated*
     
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post #2 of 9
I know you say you set the timings to be the same, but you are only setting the primary timings. Counting primary, secondary and tertiary timings there are over 20 settings and your motherboard's bios can only manually set 8 of those 20. All the others are running at their default SPD settings which may be the cause of your problem.

Note that the default SPD timings are read (only) from the memory stick that is closest to the memory controller, and those timings are applied to all the sticks..


You could try swapping the sticks into the opposite channels and perhaps the default timings (that you can't manually set) for the other set will work.
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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

I know you say you set the timings to be the same, but you are only setting the primary timings. Counting primary, secondary and tertiary timings there are over 20 settings and your motherboard's bios can only manually set 8 of those 20. All the others are running at their default SPD settings which may be the cause of your problem.

Note that the default SPD timings are read (only) from the memory stick that is closest to the memory controller, and those timings are applied to all the sticks..


You could try swapping the sticks into the opposite channels and perhaps the default timings (that you can't manually set) for the other set will work.
Oh yes, i forgot those timings, they are all set on auto.
Actually i think I can set almost all of those timings, it's just i don't know what to enter manually to them so i just left them on Auto.
On CPU-Z i can't see the whole timings list, some of the timings are missing:

CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS-tRC-CR
Mushkins: 5-5-5-12-[None]-2T
Crucials: 5-5-5-15-30-2T
CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS-tRFC-CR
Running right now: 5-5-5-15-52-2T
So I guess they are running with even not so tight timings. I will try today swapping the sticks, also i will try to increase Northbridge Voltage and I will see what happens...
     
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post #4 of 9
The trick is that all the timings you can't set manually or that you set to "auto" will be set to their default (SPD) timings.
So, if you set a timing to "auto" then reboot and set it to manual, the timing that you see will be the default setting.
By moving the sticks to the other slots you can get all the default timings for both sets of memory and compare them. Then use the one that works for both which, for most timings, is the higher (numerically) of the two settings.

But, again, for the timings that you can't see the only option is to try each set of memory in each set of slots (after you've done the above) and hope that the hidden timings of one or the other will work with the other.

You could also try just loosening all the timings until you get no errors and the slowly tighten them, but eve if that works you'll be loosing performance compared to having a "matched set" of memory.

Of course the best option would be to buy a 4 x 2 gig matched set of memory.

And your problem may not be memory at all. A bad cable, improperly seated memory, a failing drive, any number of things can cause what you're seeing.

Have you checked Device Manager and Windows Event Viewer for problems? By clicking this is Event Viewer you will be taken to a Microsoft website that explains the error and possible fixes. Sometimes that helps.




There's also a program called WhoCrashed that gives better "plain English" explanations of BSOD crashes.
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post #5 of 9
I had some random BSODs time to time and freezes for several years. Didn't know why, until one day one of the Kingston DDR2 800mhz 1gb sticks had burnt or something)
It was the faulty ram stick for several years which caused many troubles and I had no idea cause it happened randomly and quite seldom.
Same happened to my elder PC. I'm a faulty RAM stick magnet biggrin.gif

(No tests nor diagnostics ever showed any errors btw)
    
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post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

The trick is that all the timings you can't set manually or that you set to "auto" will be set to their default (SPD) timings.
So, if you set a timing to "auto" then reboot and set it to manual, the timing that you see will be the default setting.
By moving the sticks to the other slots you can get all the default timings for both sets of memory and compare them. Then use the one that works for both which, for most timings, is the higher (numerically) of the two settings.

But, again, for the timings that you can't see the only option is to try each set of memory in each set of slots (after you've done the above) and hope that the hidden timings of one or the other will work with the other.

You could also try just loosening all the timings until you get no errors and the slowly tighten them, but eve if that works you'll be loosing performance compared to having a "matched set" of memory.

Of course the best option would be to buy a 4 x 2 gig matched set of memory.

And your problem may not be memory at all. A bad cable, improperly seated memory, a failing drive, any number of things can cause what you're seeing.

Have you checked Device Manager and Windows Event Viewer for problems? By clicking this is Event Viewer you will be taken to a Microsoft website that explains the error and possible fixes. Sometimes that helps.




There's also a program called WhoCrashed that gives better "plain English" explanations of BSOD crashes.

I just tried that program and actually it says that the BSOD probably came from one of AMD's drivers file, so my HD 6950 drivers would be the reason why it BSOD. But I'm not sure about that, since my system has been mostly very stable until i installed the second ram kit. Anyways i will try installing the Crimson Drivers (after running DDU) and see if this happens again. Maybe it's the GPU drivers and not the RAM redface.gif
I will also check all of those timings and compare them later just to be sure. Right now i spent 1 hour at VDIMM 2.1V in BF4 looking for a crash and it didn't crash so i also had hit the correct VDIMM setting too.

Also, +REP for the help and that program. Pretty useful program actually.
     
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post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rututu View Post

I had some random BSODs time to time and freezes for several years. Didn't know why, until one day one of the Kingston DDR2 800mhz 1gb sticks had burnt or something)
It was the faulty ram stick for several years which caused many troubles and I had no idea cause it happened randomly and quite seldom.
Same happened to my elder PC. I'm a faulty RAM stick magnet biggrin.gif

(No tests nor diagnostics ever showed any errors btw)

Both the Crucials and Mushkin modules don't show errors too. I don't think they are faulty.
     
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AMD Athlon 64 FX-60 DFI LanParty NF4 SLI-DR Expert Gigabyte GeForce GT 630 (Fermi) 2x512MB Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR-500 2.5-4-... 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
Some old random SATA drives 2 random drives *unplugged* Arctic Freezer 64 Pro 2x 120mm CM Case Fans 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows XP Professional 17" Medion 1280x1024 thing NGS Z40 w/ White Alps PS/2 Keyboard Tacens Radix VII 600W 
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Cooler Master Mystique 631 Logitech M180 
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OCZ Trion 100 120GB SSD WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD LG Drive CM 412S & MX-4 
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Some old random SATA drives 2 random drives *unplugged* Arctic Freezer 64 Pro 2x 120mm CM Case Fans 
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post #8 of 9
Why are you stress testing with a game?
Prime95 is made for doing that, although I like OCCT better.
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post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

Why are you stress testing with a game?
Prime95 is made for doing that, although I like OCCT better.

Actually, with Prime95 it did pass a 1hour test, but then it would crash while playing games so I was just testing if it was still crashing. Does OCCT have a specific setting to test RAM stability? I've never used OCCT, but i will try it now.
     
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Some old random SATA drives 2 random drives *unplugged* Arctic Freezer 64 Pro 2x 120mm CM Case Fans 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows XP Professional 17" Medion 1280x1024 thing NGS Z40 w/ White Alps PS/2 Keyboard Tacens Radix VII 600W 
CaseMouse
Cooler Master Mystique 631 Logitech M180 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-2400 Acer Inc. IPIMB-AR V:1.02 MSI R6950 Twin Frozr III Power Edition @ Stock 2x4GB G.Skill Rijpaws X @ DDR3-1333 9-9-9-24 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
OCZ Trion 100 120GB SSD WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD LG Drive CM 412S & MX-4 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
Corsair 120mm Quiet Edition Blue LED Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bits Sony 22" TV @ 1360x768 60Hz TargaVisionary 19-3 @ 1280x1024 75Hz 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Genius OEM EVGA Supernova G2 550W NOX Coolbay SX Razer Deathadder Chroma 
Mouse PadAudioAudioOther
Steelseries QCK Sennheiser HD 407 Creative T20 (Serie I) [Audio] Thorens TD166 MKII Turntable 
OtherOtherOther
[Audio] Allen&Heath XONE 23 Mixer [Audio] Behringer A500 AMP [Monitoring] XSPC Dual 5.25" LCD Temperature Se... 
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