MSI B350 Board No Longer Works w/ 2x 8GB DDR4 Modules?

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
In a sort of strange occurrence my B350 machine is totally acting up now; I've never had any issues with it before--aside from my 1500X processor being a bit of a turd of an OC'er. Anyway, the board is a MSI B359 Tomahawk Arctic and I can't seem to run two 3200mhz DIMM's anymore though I had always been able to without issue. I'm actually wondering if I have a bad slot because either module works totally fine when alone in either DIMM2 or DIMM 4 slots... but not together @ 3200

The memory is Corsair Dominator Platinum CMD16GX4M2B3200C16 which has been rock solid up until now.

I've updated the BIOS on the board to a more recent version but the problem remains exactly the same. The PC reboots itself like four times rapid fire and then finally reverts the speed to 2133--which sort of solidifies my theory on having a bad slot. I did notice that with both DIMMs installed that the total size was 8GB instead of 16GB... another tell-tale sign that one of my slots is dead or near death. I'm going to do a bit more testing on the memory but I have a feeling both DIMMs are still good, as they have relatively low hours on them.

Any thoughts or input before I replace the board? I think I may still be able to RMA the board.
 

coercitiv

Diamond Member
Jan 24, 2014
6,438
13,017
136
I have a MSI B350 Mortar, which is the mATX version of the Tomahawk. The board had some issues running @ 3200 with early BIOS, in the sense that it occasionally failed memory training and reverted to 2133 MTs, but after a long overdue update made 2 months ago it simply works.

I'm a bit puzzled by your story in the sense that information is somewhat unclear: I can't tell whether this issue appeared before or after the BIOS upgrade, whether the system works fine with default 2133 MHz setting or not, and finally if individual testing of the DIMMs was done at 3200 or 2133 MHz.

As you already know the repeated reboot pattern indicates the system unsuccessfully attempts to train your dragon memory. I don't think this alone signals any potential slot problems, failed memory training is something early AM4 users are accustomed to when talking about 3200Mhz RAM (you can even set in BIOS the max number of system reboots before the system gives up on training the memory and reverts to 2133).

Personally I would attempt the following:
1. Revert BIOS to default values.
2. Activate AMP (XMP). If it allows you to choose between 2933 CL16 and 3200 CL16, go for 2933 CL16 first. Alternatively manually set DDR speed to 2933 after activating AMP.
3. Make sure memory voltage is correctly set to 1.35V. Personally I would go for 1.36V set in manual mode, and for the first stability runs I would just set to 1.38-1.4V to make sure the RAM sticks are happy as kids on sweets.
4. Check SOC voltage. IIRC the Auto setting should increase SOC voltage when activating AMP, but you can still play safe and start with SOC voltage at 1.05-1.1V, then gradually go down towards 1.025V or Auto value.

If your problem is the system can barely work @ 3200 Mhz (successfully trains once in a while), the 2933 Mhz preset combined with higher tolerance RAM and SOC voltages should start working reliably. From there it should become just a finetuning job to get to 3200.

If the system consistently fails to train memory at anything above 2133 Mhz then you should start checking for stability at 2133 Mhz (maybe even try using DIMM1 & DIMM3 instead of 2&4, although that may come with it's separate set of problems).
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
I'm a bit puzzled by your story in the sense that information is somewhat unclear: I can't tell whether this issue appeared before or after the BIOS upgrade, whether the system works fine with default 2133 MHz setting or not, and finally if individual testing of the DIMMs was done at 3200 or 2133 MHz.

Both memory sticks had always worked at full speed with this motherboard out of the box; it's just now not working--so that's why I've recently flashed the BIOS. I would also like to add that a single stick alone works just fine; doesn't cause reboots @ 3200.

Thanks for the advice, I'll give it another shot but considering it was rock solid before regardless of what settings I used... not real confident. I did file an RMA so unless it works again I'll be shipping it back.
 

Shmee

Memory & Storage, Graphics Cards Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 13, 2008
7,567
2,560
146
It is possible also that it could be the memory controller on the CPU is degrading / not stable.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
Both sticks installed get to 2400 and then the system falls on its face if I go any higher. The CPU and RAM debug LED go solid red and the PC becomes totally unresponsive. 3200 or both X-AMP profiles worked fine before and I didn't see a way to turn it on and be able to manually set speed and voltage.

I suppose it could be the CPU. The system has relatively low hours on it so I'd honestly be surprised if the mobo is the culprit. Regardless, I'll send it to MSI since the RMA was approved and, if the same thing keeps happening, I'll be moving the 1700 to this computer in a couple months anyway when I grab a 3700X.
 

Iron Woode

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 10, 1999
30,952
12,467
136
did you actually run memtest+ on the system? It could very well be a failing module.

It could also be a MB issue.

Did you try any other ram modules to see if the problem continues?
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
Yea I'll be running some last memory tests tonight, across two boards, before disassembling. I'll post back anything I find but either DIMM works great on the board but only when they're alone (single channel 3200).

Trust me, I'd much rather keep what I got than wait for an RMA to complete but it is what it is.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
Several passes of Memtest86 v8.1 @ 2400mhz reveal that I have two perfectly working DIMMs, so the board is on its way back--even though I'm not 100% convinced it's the actual problem. Might as well take advantage of the RMA process though; if it ends up being the CPU I'll grab a cheap 2000 series closer to July.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,982
839
136
The motherboard I received back from MSI's RMA department works fine, so I'm guessing an internal component of the original board was to blame. Both DIMMs are detected and run at full speed.

I've been running a modest 500mhz OC on this chipset since it was first assembled so perhaps the sub-par VRM/power delivery just simply burned out over time? The machine didn't have that many hours on it though so I'm wondering if it was just a fluke or if it's just not a reliable overclocking platform.
 

burninatortech4

Senior member
Jan 29, 2014
708
444
136
Glad you were able to get it sorted out. I had loads of RAM and stability issues with my Ryzen Gen 1 release day GA-AB350M from Gigabyte. Sold it after a year and moved to Asrock.
 

kschendel

Senior member
Aug 1, 2018
270
203
116
Glad you were able to get it sorted out. I had loads of RAM and stability issues with my Ryzen Gen 1 release day GA-AB350M from Gigabyte. Sold it after a year and moved to Asrock.

The funny thing is that I'm sure I can find any number of posts from people who had trouble with Asrock's B350 and moved to Gigabyte!