Author Topic: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build  (Read 13928 times)

Ari Altman

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The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« on: March 04, 2014, 01:50:45 PM »
Here's the thread to discuss the "Compact Micro ATX Build" on The Tech Buyer's Guru.

Feel free to start your own threads to discuss your personal builds in this category!
« Last Edit: February 02, 2016, 11:31:58 AM by Ari Altman »

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2016, 11:14:18 AM »
So I decided to take the leap and build my first computer. It will be used for work-related stuff, Adobe Photoshop, solid modeling, but most importantly Call of Duty, Black Ops III. Based on online reviews with similar hardware, the Ultra-Compact Micro ATX build should meet all of my requirements. The only hardware that I'm installing that's different is Corsair's LPX 16GB DDR4 DRAM 2666MHz. So the new hardware has been successfully assembled and Windows 10 has been installed, and everything looks great. This was mid-January.
Fast forward to today: Windows 10 will still not update, every time it starts the installation process the computer crashes (most common error is Memory_Management). It took three tries at reinstalling Windows before I could get Nvidia's Experience application to install and run. After finally getting the motherboard and graphics drivers updated, I proceeded to install Call of Duty Black Ops III (and Steam software). The game loaded, however it crashes quite often, first during intro, second during start of campaign, and last one when attempting to save my progress. I've searched the internet and Microsoft's community for similar issues, but all have failed to fix the problems. The operating system is installed on the SSD drive, I've disconnected the other hard drive for now. My last resort is to disassemble the computer and start sending the hardware back. I hate to do that because it is such a beauty! Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2016, 11:37:55 AM »
So I decided to take the leap and build my first computer. It will be used for work-related stuff, Adobe Photoshop, solid modeling, but most importantly Call of Duty, Black Ops III. Based on online reviews with similar hardware, the Ultra-Compact Micro ATX build should meet all of my requirements. The only hardware that I'm installing that's different is Corsair's LPX 16GB DDR4 DRAM 2666MHz. So the new hardware has been successfully assembled and Windows 10 has been installed, and everything looks great. This was mid-January.
Fast forward to today: Windows 10 will still not update, every time it starts the installation process the computer crashes (most common error is Memory_Management). It took three tries at reinstalling Windows before I could get Nvidia's Experience application to install and run. After finally getting the motherboard and graphics drivers updated, I proceeded to install Call of Duty Black Ops III (and Steam software). The game loaded, however it crashes quite often, first during intro, second during start of campaign, and last one when attempting to save my progress. I've searched the internet and Microsoft's community for similar issues, but all have failed to fix the problems. The operating system is installed on the SSD drive, I've disconnected the other hard drive for now. My last resort is to disassemble the computer and start sending the hardware back. I hate to do that because it is such a beauty! Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Welcome to the TBG Forum, Gradydann!

Glad you like the look of the system. Sorry things have gone a bit downhill since the initial positive experience. Did BOPSIII ever run properly, or did it fail after the initial installation? I'm trying to understand whether the Windows update issue is related.

Because the build changes from month to month, would you mind listing the exact components you have? The CPU, motherboard, and RAM are most important. I don't think this is the SSD or PSU issue, by the way.

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2016, 12:23:07 PM »
Sure thing. Here's the components in my build:

Silverstone Tek Micro-ATX mid tower case
ASRock Micro ATX DDR4 H170M PRO4S motherboad
Intel I5-6600K 3.50 GHz for LGA 1151 CPU
Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4 DRAM 2666MHz
Gigabyte GV-N980G1 GeForce GTX 980 graphics card
Samsung 850 EVO 500GB 2.5-inch SATA III SSD
Toshiba 3.5-inch 2TB 7200 RPM SATA3/SATA 6.0 GB/s hard drive
LG Electronics 14x BDXL Blu-Ray Burner/rewriter WH14NS40
Noctua L-Type Premium Quiet CPU cooler NH-L9x65
EVGA SuperNOVA 550 GS 80+ Gold, 550W power supply

I haven't tried BOPSIII since it last crashed. Attempting to download an ISO using Media Creation Tool but just got an error code.


Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2016, 12:28:54 PM »
Sure thing. Here's the components in my build:

Silverstone Tek Micro-ATX mid tower case
ASRock Micro ATX DDR4 H170M PRO4S motherboad
Intel I5-6600K 3.50 GHz for LGA 1151 CPU
Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4 DRAM 2666MHz
Gigabyte GV-N980G1 GeForce GTX 980 graphics card
Samsung 850 EVO 500GB 2.5-inch SATA III SSD
Toshiba 3.5-inch 2TB 7200 RPM SATA3/SATA 6.0 GB/s hard drive
LG Electronics 14x BDXL Blu-Ray Burner/rewriter WH14NS40
Noctua L-Type Premium Quiet CPU cooler NH-L9x65
EVGA SuperNOVA 550 GS 80+ Gold, 550W power supply

I haven't tried BOPSIII since it last crashed. Attempting to download an ISO using Media Creation Tool but just got an error code.

Let's do a bit of trouble shooting here. That RAM cannot run at 2666MHz on that board, and you mentioned a memory error, so let's see if we can stabilize things. Pull out all RAM,  then insert only a single stick in the second slot away from the CPU. Then go into the UEFI by tapping delete key continuously during boot, and find the DRAM frequency and timings settings. You want DDR4-21233 and 15-15-15-35 as your settings. I can help you navigate the UEFI if necessary.

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2016, 12:49:18 PM »
The DDR4 is correct at 2133, but the other settings are 15-15-36-2N. The "clock cycles" currently set at 36 has a range of 28 to 63 allowable. The last one is command rate. Probably need your assistance navigating these in the UEFI.

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2016, 01:12:37 PM »
The DDR4 is correct at 2133, but the other settings are 15-15-36-2N. The "clock cycles" currently set at 36 has a range of 28 to 63 allowable. The last one is command rate. Probably need your assistance navigating these in the UEFI.

OK, 36 will work too. That's less "aggressive" than 35, which means it puts less stress on the memory subsystem.

I would still go ahead and run one stick at a time and see if you still have the errors in COD or other apps.

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2016, 01:22:47 PM »
I pulled the other RAM stick out and played BOPSIII again. So far it hasn't crashed so fingers-crossed. Thanks a bunch for the input.

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2016, 01:34:07 PM »
I pulled the other RAM stick out and played BOPSIII again. So far it hasn't crashed so fingers-crossed. Thanks a bunch for the input.

Now we're getting somewhere! It could be that you have a bad stick, or perhaps there's some issue with the RAM's compatibility with the motherboard. If you are error-free and can update Windows, we know it was the other RAM stick, or a motherboard issue. Hopefully it's just the RAM, as pulling the motherboard is a lot more difficult!

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2016, 02:46:40 PM »
I will consider myself very lucky if it's just the RAM. When I originally installed them, I had them in configuration A1/A2 instead of A1/B1. Don't know if that could have messed one up or confused the system? Come to think of it, before I placed them in A1/B1, I had left just one in A1 and the computer seemed to work best then. I'll try to install updates again tonight. Thanks again for your help!

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2016, 02:54:39 PM »
I will consider myself very lucky if it's just the RAM. When I originally installed them, I had them in configuration A1/A2 instead of A1/B1. Don't know if that could have messed one up or confused the system? Come to think of it, before I placed them in A1/B1, I had left just one in A1 and the computer seemed to work best then. I'll try to install updates again tonight. Thanks again for your help!

The RAM sticks should always be installed with one empty slot between them. Before returning or RMA'ing anything, make sure to try both dual-slot configurations.

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2016, 08:06:36 AM »
BOPSIII crashed multiple times again yesterday during game play. This was with one 8GB RAM stick in the second slot. Windows also failed to install updates again (it does however successfully install a few, such as Windows Defender, etc., but these installed before the RAM changes also). I've ordered replacement RAM sticks (2133MHz), is there anything else I could try in the meantime?

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2016, 09:03:49 AM »
BOPSIII crashed multiple times again yesterday during game play. This was with one 8GB RAM stick in the second slot. Windows also failed to install updates again (it does however successfully install a few, such as Windows Defender, etc., but these installed before the RAM changes also). I've ordered replacement RAM sticks (2133MHz), is there anything else I could try in the meantime?

Yes. You should download the latest BIOS for the motherboard and flash the board using the utility within the UEFI.

As you'll see, one of the main updates ASRock has been making to its BIOS files since release is to memory compatibility. The issues you're having are almost certainly memory related based on the pattern of crashes (always under load, both in Windows and in games)

Skylake is a new platform, and DDR4 is a new standard. Based on my experience with DDR4 on multiple systems, it's clear that Intel released Skylake in a "beta" stage due to having fallen so far behind schedule, and the unique aspects of DDR4 seem to have been lost in the process.

Gradydann

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2016, 02:48:38 PM »
So I flashed the board with the latest update from ASRock, played & saved BOPSIII without crashing. I was also able to install the latest Windows update for the very first time! I definitely was holding my breath when it reached 99%. Glad to know that not all of problems were due to my ignorance. I was originally going to build the computer around the Haswell chip, but canceled the orders when I saw the prices come down in January. Thanks again!

Ari Altman

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Re: The TBG Ultra-Compact Micro ATX Build
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2016, 02:53:50 PM »
So I flashed the board with the latest update from ASRock, played & saved BOPSIII without crashing. I was also able to install the latest Windows update for the very first time! I definitely was holding my breath when it reached 99%. Glad to know that not all of problems were due to my ignorance. I was originally going to build the computer around the Haswell chip, but canceled the orders when I saw the prices come down in January. Thanks again!

Glad that worked...for now. If you have continued issues, feel free to post back and we'll try something else!

I have to say that Intel's botched release of Skylake really should have gotten a bit more press attention. As far as I know, TBG is the only one that's covered it;)

On a happier note, if it's too late to cancel your new sticks of RAM, you can always add them to your existing system to bump it up to 32GB!