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Problem with power connection to ECS nFORCE4M-A mobo

Discussion in 'Motherboards & Memory' started by rawskyb, Oct 3, 2006.

  1. rawskyb New Member

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    I purchased an ECS nFORCE4M-A motherboard recently to go with a new AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ AM2 processor. I have a brand-new 480W ATX/Intel P4 PS. Beyond the power supply connections for the peripherals, there are two main power leads coming from the power supply: A 4-pin "molex" connector arranged in a square pattern and a 24-pin connector, which can actually be split into a 20-pin and 4-pin connector.

    Here's the problem: If I connect both the 4-pin connector and the 24-pin connector to the MoBo, the board seems to power up for about 1 second and then immediately powers off. I only know it's powering up because the various fans (CPU, mobo, case) spin up briefly.

    However, if I disconnect either the 4-pin power connector, or the 4-pin power connector that is part of the 24-pin connector, the mobo will power up and remain powered up. I don't believe I'm getting a full system power up though, since I get no signal to my monitor, nor does the keyboard seem to be getting sustained power.

    I can't seem to get customer support from the mobo mfg (ECS), and the supplier I got this board from is horrible about returning calls (when I call in, they are always "on the phone with other customers").

    I'm hoping maybe someone on this forum can help me out. This is my first venture into building my own PC, and so far I am about several hundred dollars and only have a large paperweight to show for my efforts.

    Can anyone offer suggestions! HELP!!! :cry:

    -Blayne
  2. technicks

    technicks

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    Did you look at this?

    [​IMG]

    And double checked if you connected all the cables in the right way.
  3. Ketxxx

    Ketxxx Heedless Psychic

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    ^^yup, do that :D report back if you have probs still
  4. rawskyb New Member

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    Yes, I've read the mobo manual about 50 times, and that doesn't really help. (So much for RTFM...) The manual states that you should connect both the 24-pin power supply and the 4-pin supply. Oddly, they state you should connect "PWR1" to the "auxiliary case power supply". From what I have read on some various web pages, that square 4-pin connector is for "Pentium 4" processors, and a few sites even state "if you are building an AMD system, leave it unconnected". I suspect that is NOT correct, as this motherboard is specifically for AMD's AM2 socket processors, and includes a connection for this PS lead.

    The other thing that has me questioning the ECS manual is that it states that the 4-pin fan connector on the top of the MoBo is for the CPU_fan1. My CPU fan (the one on the heatsink) only has three pins, which seem to mate up with the MoBo connector that they have labeled "CAS_FAN1". That's where I have connected it right now.

    Would having my various fans plugged into the wrong spots be causing problems?

    I'll take a picture of my connections later this evening and try posting them to this site. Maybe someone can spot a rookie mistake I've made....

    -Blayne
  5. technicks

    technicks

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    Yes. That could cause problems. If i connect my CPU fan to the wrong connector then my system won't boot.
    That's why i asked if you connected al the cables correct.
  6. tigger

    tigger I'm the only one

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    the four pin connector IS for your heatsink fan,the fourth pin is for the pwm on the fan motor,like on p4 cpu fans.if yours only has three,then you can still connect your cpu fan to it.you just need to use one of your other fans 3 pin conectors to get it on the correct way,with one pin unused.it should only go on one way.in my bios i can switch it to pwm or normal(no pwm on fan)mode.

    the cas_fan one is for the front or rear case fan.again on my board,the bios can control the cpu and cas_fan 1 speeds.
  7. rawskyb New Member

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    Ahhh, now we're getting somewhere. I will work on re-connecting these fans in an hour or two when I get home. I will reply back soon with my success or latest failure....

    ;)

    -Blayne
  8. rawskyb New Member

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    So checking the connections, I do in fact have the 3-wire lead from the CPU fan going to the 4-pin connection on the MoBo, and there are plastic parts on the connector that only allow it to mate up one way.

    I do not currently have anything attached to the CAS_FAN1 on the MoBo. The fans that are on my ATX case have larger connectors (like those on a harddrive or CDROM) and won't mate with the MoBo connector pins. Would not having anything attached to the CAS-FAN1 pins keep it from powering up? If so, do I need to modify the fan connectors from my case?

    I'm attaching a photo, in the hopes that this might expose my problem.

    Uggghh, I was hoping we were onto a solution here...

    -Blayne
  9. rawskyb New Member

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  10. rawskyb New Member

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    Does anyone have any ideas on what might be causing this problem? help????:cry: :( :cry: :ohwell:
  11. strick94u

    strick94u New Member

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    I e-mailed ECS the other night and heard back from them within an hour.
    make sure nothing is shorting on the board look behind it too any pci cards installed pull them out one at a time make sure the cables are on the drives right ect ect ect read the manul its probly something very simple
  12. g00fy New Member

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    I seem to be having the same issue with my Old P4 2.4ghz. Recently it just stopped working. The power supply it's running is off an HP i recently baught and gutted for my new system. I'm curiouse if maybe since it was an AMD based system, if the PSU was special for the AMD mobo and processor could it have possibly shorted out the motherboard over the past month it was installed. I know that's pretty out there, but i'm considering it a possibility because i don't know else could be causing the problem on my system since it worked fine for so long.
  13. bruins004 New Member

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    strick,
    It could be that your PSU isn't supplying enough power for your system.
    So therefore, one of the rails can possibly be dead since you have no monitor output.
    First, check your video card, if you can, in another system.
    When that is rules out, it might be the PSU.
  14. sparklewoof New Member

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    dood it looks like your RAM is in the wrong slots. I would try putting it in the slots closest to the CPU first.

    Unless of course, you have already tried that, in which case, ignore this post :)

    -\/\/O0/=
  15. rawskyb New Member

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    I will try moving the RAM and see if that makes a difference...haven't tried that yet.
  16. rawskyb New Member

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    Nope. Just moved both DIMMs to the other two slots (orange slots instead of purple). No change. The thing powers up for about 1/2 a second than shuts down.

    This is really frustrating.:banghead: :banghead:
  17. zekrahminator

    zekrahminator McLovin

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    If this is a fresh build, did you remember the spacers/standoffs/knobs?
  18. rawskyb New Member

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    It is a new build, new PS, case, mobo - everything. The case had standoffs already, I don't know where I would need spacers, or what "knobs" refers to. Can you provide more detail?

    The case is plastic, so it wouldn't be conducting anything regardless, but the mobo sits about 1 inch off the case with the standoffs already.

    I'll probably try removing everything and building it back up again just to check. I have a new video card on the way, just in case that might be part of the problem. (it won't start up with the video card removed completely, so I really doubt it would be the problem.)
    -Blayne
  19. i_am_mustang_man New Member

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    a couple of tips for first boot, which might help, but are not necessarily specific to this mobo:
    try booting outside the case first time (put in this layering order - table\mobobox\foam\antistatic bag\mobo - put the mobo on top of the bag, not in it)
    use 1 stick of ram, some times helps
    don't connect anything to ide or sata or anything, see if bios comes up first (basically you should have mobo, cpu, cpu fan, 1 stick ram, and vidcard, with psu 24pin and 4 pin (and 6pin if your vcard needs))

    try that as long as you are taking it out of the case
  20. rawskyb New Member

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    I followed mustang man's advice and pulled everything apart, removing the mobo from the case, stripping everything off the mobo except for one DIMM and the CPU/fan. I then connected the power supply connections (24 pin and 4 pin), the front panel switch and even connected a fan to CAS_FAN1. No video card installed, no other devices (SATA, IDE, etc - nothing), none of the USB connections.

    I then hit the power button and got the exact same results - the fans spin up for maybe half a second at most, then everything shuts down. If I pull the 4-pin power connection off the mobo, the fans spin up and stay up, but I doubt the board is getting full power, and I don't hear the speaker beep.

    Is it time to return the mobo for a replacement? Could the power switch be faulty? (Though I thought this was just to trigger the on singla to the mobo, which it does seem to do since the fans spin up briefly). I don't want to remove the CPU and heat sink, since it would mess with the thermal grease coating that came on the heat sink. But I suppose if I get a replacement mobo I will have to deal with this anyway.

    Are there any other possibilities I should try?

    -Blayne
  21. greenfrog New Member

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    my ECS board (also an nForce4M-A v1.1) has an issue with the internal speaker header(it causes my computer to restart if hooked up) so maybe you should disconnect the speaker and test it without the speaker. Good luck!
  22. rawskyb New Member

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    I tried to more changes today - I disconnected the speaker (no change), and I purchased a really heavy-duty power supply, thinking that maybe the 480W PS might be related to the problem. The new PS is a 650W from BFG, really heavy unit, 4 SATA connections, dual ATX, etc. Unfortunately, after hooking this up I got the exact same results I've been getting all along.

    I guess it's time to send this board back and try to get a replacement. I don't really have any other options to try.

    -Blayne
  23. rawskyb New Member

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    I had pretty much come to the conclusion that my mobo had a problem, so I went and got an RMA for it last week. In the meantime, I decided to order another mobo so that I could get up and running while waiting for the original to be repaired. So I received the new nForce4M-A (version 3.0 this time instead of v1.1, which was the original one) this past week, swapped the CPU and memory over to it, and tried powering up.

    Guess what?

    Same exact problem. The fans spin up for about half a second, and that's it.

    So that leaves me with only two components I have not tried swapping out - the CPU and the memory. Anyone have any thoughts? Could some sort of memory incompatibility account for this type of behavior? How about a problem with the CPU? Has anyone ever seen or heard of anything resembling this?

    I'm think maybe I should move on to a different mobo, maybe another brand would work better?

    BTW, my memory is a pair of Ramses 1GB DDR2-667MHz PC2-5300 (16C, 64x8), from buyaib.com. It's brand new, with pre-installed aluminum heatsinks on each one.

    -Blayne
  24. francis511

    francis511

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    similar

    ive got a sort of similar prob.when i turn on an asrock board with new hiper psu,everything seems to spin up, but doesnt post!!to get the pc to post,all i have to do is press teh reset button once.tried that ?:rolleyes:
  25. rawskyb New Member

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    Pressing the reset button itself doesn't do anything. But if I press the reset button and the power switch together, the power remains on, at least until I let go of the reset button. I'm not getting a beep or anything from the system speaker, so I don't think it's POSTing.

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