Mixed Holiday Blessings -- Crucial Ballistix on Fritz

BonzaiDuck

Lifer
Jun 30, 2004
15,662
1,421
126
In recent days, I've posted here, touting my success with pushing Crucial Ballistix to low latencies at -- or below -- the 2.2V recommended memory maximum voltage.

Here's the story.

July, 2007 -- I had a disaster with a bad BIOS flash, whereupon I panicked and ordered a spare motherboard. The following day, I got wise, went to www.BIOSman.com, and ordered a new BIOS PLCC chip for ~ $25. I debated about the spare mobo. I even arranged with ASUS for an RMA number. But it turned out that the PLCC chip with my choice of BIOS update fixed the old one. I decided to keep the new board. I contemplated building a separate VISTA-64 system, and didn't want to mess around with a multi-boot configuration, anyway.

The original Striker Extreme board had been set up with Crucial Ballistix DDR2-1000 2x1GB. I didn't buy them to run at that speed, but to run with tightened latencies at unspecified (but lower) frequency.

September, 2007 -- A member here on the "System Memory" forum noted that NewEgg was selling a set of 2x1GB Crucial DDR2-800 modules for $75 after rebate, and whether or not these were "Tracers." I tracked down the model number for both -- the NewEgg Lanfests, and the Crucial Tracers, and discovered that indeed, the LanFests WERE Tracers. My enthusiasm was up, there were extra ducats in my wallet, and I ordered two sets -- still contemplating the VISTA-64 build.

October to November, 2007 -- Our water-cooling guru, AigoMorla, at some time or more than once, noted his frustration with 680i motherboards in general, and how he'd blown one or more sets of Tracers running at 1,000+ Mhz, latencies of 4,3,4,8, and voltage at 2.2V -- the recommended maximum.

In my response to some AigoMorla post, I explained my strategy of running the DDR2-1000's at 704 Mhz and 3,3,3,6,1T. NefariousCaine, another member, had noted that he'd blown a set of Tracers too, but at least Crucial was good on customer support. I said to AigoMorla that I was asking myself this question, as a quote from Clint Eastwood's "Dirty Harry:"

Well . . . . . you have to ask yourself if you feel lucky. Do you feel lucky, punk?! . . . . "

December 23, 2007 -- Preparing to clean up this room for the fam-dam-ily's gathering tomorrow, I shut down my over-clocked system normally. Then, for some reason, I thought I had to check some e-mails briefly, and tried to fire it up.

No cigar. Reset -- no cigar. Unplug everything, and clear the CMOS . . . . No . . . . freakin' . . . . . cigar . . . .

[This s*** is not supposed to happen when you were hoping to make a game available to the family on your premier state-of-the-art system -- to light up their holiday visit. . . . ]

BUT -- I had the other board, all set up with the Tracers, PSU, cheap 7600 PCI-E VGA, and an E6600 processor. Started swapping parts. Was it the VGA? Nope. That left three components -- two of which are still pricey right now. Well -- it could allow me to rationalize replacing a B3-Q6600 with the G0, I thought. But I decided to test the Crucials.

YES!! Yes -- yes- - yes -- yes YE-USSS!!

We swapped in a set of the Tracer (LanFests), and we be back in da bidnis -- an' back in da saddle a-GA-in!

Merry Christmas, Y'all!! [And remember -- even voltage within spec and tighter than SPD/EPP latencies can cause your Crucials to fail . . . .. just tweak and over-clock with prudence during this Holiday Season. And drive carefully, either on the road, or on your simulation formula-racing track.]
 

PCTC2

Diamond Member
Feb 18, 2007
3,892
33
91
thanks for the heads up BD.

I have my Crucial Ballistix DDR2-1066 running at their specified 533MHz (1066DDR) @ 4-4-4-12 2.2v. Luckily... I'm selling it and buying a new computer based off of the P5E3 Asus board and DDR3-1800...
 

BonzaiDuck

Lifer
Jun 30, 2004
15,662
1,421
126
I'd be eager to do the same right now, but a deadbeat tenant being evicted from my house back East has put the kibosh on an aspect of my cash-flow.

That's why this other trouble is actually good news -- I don't have to buy anything to fix it for now. And I'll send my Crucials for replacement after I get an RMA number.
 

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