View Full Version : Can anyone help me clear up my thunderbird queries?

10-14-02, 07:58 PM
What you are about to read is a rather sad tale...

I've been using my current Duron 600/Abit Kt-7a for over a year. I've been mostly happy with it...overclocked my old Duron to 800, squeezing every bit of life out of my GF2mx. Am I gamer you ask? Of course. Then why is my system so sad? Well...simply put, college. I have very little money to spend on my favorite machine(my '89 cierra is my 2nd favorite machine.)

Well...after returning to college this year, and subsequently giving my birthday present(MORROWIND!!! WOO!!) a try. I decided it was time to give my old friend a little goose. After reading alot of webpages, I decided that a video card upgrade really wasn't the way to go...so I started looking to upgrade the CPU. Well...I read that the fastest processor I could put in my old motherboard was an AthlonXP 1700+. This is what the motherboard addendum said that came with my board. So I went online and found a good deal for 58.00 dollars including shipping(what a steal!) Well, 3 days later, the chip arrives. I excitedly slam it in, put the heatsink on...and boot it up...only....no post.

I was a tad confused to say the least, I had the latest bios from Abit....everything was seated, and locked. Well...as I later found out via webpage, I own the Abit Kt-7a v1.2. (Thats a hardware revision, not a bios revision) Only the Abit KT-7a v1.3 supports the AthlonXP processor. Well....I was rather pissed at this prospect, and not wanting to return the processor and have to deal with people who speak very little english on the phone, I came up with a plan. A friend of mine on campus had an Athlon T-bird 1400mhz. I thought maybe he'd be interested in switching processors. I mean..after all, he was getting a free upgrade, and I was getting a better cpu. Well...after he had a new heatsink(he insisted on getting one first, who am I to argue?) we traded.

I put the new Athlon 1400 in my computer...and found that it ran very very hot. (180F!!!) So I quickly underclocked it until I had time to take it home and figure out a cooling solution. Upon arriving home this weekend, I got a bigger heatsink, a bigger fan, and adjusted the airflow in my case a bit...then put the whole rig back together. I booted up the computer, and began to check the bios to see how hot it was running. About 2seconds into the bios, the computer locked. I turned it off...and immeadiately smelled something burning.

I took the heatsink off, and discovered that it was seated crooked. A small section on the corner of my thunderbird hadn't been in contact with the heatsink...and had infact boiled the cpu grease. The smell was nauseating. My heart dove....I quickly gave it a clean-up and another thin layer of grease, and put it all back together. This time, when it tried to turn it on, nothing happened. No POST!!!!

To make a very long, and sad story short, I had burned up my Athlon. Now here's my question.....aren't these supposed to have some sort of life-saving turn off mechanism? I once had the clip break on my 600 while I was at class(don't ask why it broke) and had the computer on for the better part of the day without me at it this way. The cpu was fine. WHY, oh why did the athlon burn up? And is there anything I can do? This athlon is quite a bit older, and I don't believe its under any sort of warranty. I don't think my friend can do anything about it seeing as we swapped processors and all. And I'm out a processor that I can't afford to replace...and just after having got a few days into morrowind....its an amazing game to say the least.

Can anyone offer comments, insights, suggestsion? Or perhaps a new processor? :D At least sympathy would be nice.....damn AMD and their exposed cores.

EDIT: And oh yes, I'd have pictures to show everyone of the burnt core, but alas, my digital camera broke recently too...and just after the warranty had run out. Thus is the life this poor college kid.

Thanks all


The Baron
10-14-02, 08:52 PM
If you don't make GOOD contact between the heatsink/fan and the proc with some sort of thermal compound (preferably a variety of Arctic Silver), it's going to explode.

And no, it's the Athlons that fry--P4s apparently just kinda stop, but Athlons fry.

Sorry, dude.

10-14-02, 09:05 PM
read the online guides on how to install a processor. always do that if you not sure what your doing..anyways i just put the arctic silver on the core, and just slap on the heatsink.

10-14-02, 11:18 PM
I guess the next time I get some money, I'm just gonna buy a shim....and some arctic silver and a new processor.

I'll definitely be more careful. I've never had trouble like this with a processor before(I've been building systems on my own since my AMD 5x86-133, my two previous PC's having been pre-built...which was the fashion at the time ;) )

Thanks all,

10-14-02, 11:19 PM
yup great idea :) better safe than sorry.

10-15-02, 12:13 AM
Stupid question, but did you try clearing the cmos via jumper when trying that 1700+? And did you have the 9A bios for your motherboard?

10-15-02, 06:34 AM
Originally posted by Switch
Stupid question, but did you try clearing the cmos via jumper when trying that 1700+? And did you have the 9A bios for your motherboard?

Gah! I have the 1.0 revision of the KT7A, and I VERY THOROUGHLY researched the possibility of running an Athlon XP on a pre-1.3 hardware revision. You can't. The chipset (the KT133A) CAN support it on some mobos, but not on this one, sadly. Unless, that is, you have the 1.3 version.

As for that 1400 T-Bird, I'm pretty sure AMD give krazy instructions for reinstalling a CPU with a new (or even the same) fan/hs. Something along the lines of 'clean the core with solution and reapply the thermal paste' if memory serves :confused: . I'm sorry for your loss. IMHO you should pick up an nForce2 mobo and slap your Duron in that until you can get a 2200+ AthlonXP :D

10-15-02, 09:18 AM
Lemme clear some things up, though I'm not going to type it all over again. It is possible and even a little probable, you've just got to work at it. It took me over 2 hours to get the computer working, half of that time it wouldn't post.

Link (http://bbs.pcstats.com/amdzone/messageview.cfm?catid=19&threadid=63241) -Read the latter half

10-15-02, 07:03 PM
Originally posted by Switch
Lemme clear some things up, though I'm not going to type it all over again. It is possible and even a little probable, you've just got to work at it. It took me over 2 hours to get the computer working, half of that time it wouldn't post.

gratz! (yikes! slight everquest throwback there - sorry).

I wish I'd seen that a couple of days ago! I ordered me a 1.33GHz T-Bird for my KT7A 1.0 on Sunday because I'd (finally, after much research) read that the XP chips required very minor hardwired changes to the KT133A chipset, that only the 1.3 revision possessed :'(

Still, at least I got a funky purple case to put all my funky stuff in now :) AND a luvverly Zalman fan to quieten my system good'n'proper :D

10-15-02, 07:12 PM
So wait...you're telling me with absolute certainty that you've got a 1700xp working on your KT7a?

Let me ask you this if the above was answered yes, what speed RAM are you using?

Thanks switch!

10-15-02, 07:17 PM
I've got a 1600+ @ 1600MHz running in my rev 1.0 KT7A, my ram is PC133 CL2 from Crucial.

10-15-02, 09:59 PM
Alrighty....I'm willing to bet my 100mhz RAM is why the XP wouldn't work.

Perhaps I'll think about getting another one when I have some more money.

Thanks again,

10-15-02, 10:10 PM
Yup, I'd be willing to bet that's what caused the problem.

10-16-02, 11:56 AM
that is major sad, the fact you had a processor that worked swapped it for a lower one then fried that one you have same computer but 50 down.

Bad luck :(