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  1. #1
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    G74sx-a2 (ram+bios question)

    My Laptop G74SX-A2, has acted funny since day one. I would get random blue screens generic 0000000000xa1 code and all sorts of random non-sense. For the most part it did what it was supposed to very very well....recently however I ran into some problems as many have with a game called Guild Wars 2.

    After doing all the normal things, repairing game, re-installing game, completely updating my computer, turning off Intel's turbo boost, resetting my GPU clock speeds....The same things kept accruing and then began more often.

    So i continued trouble shooting my issue....

    While I was using Speccy to take a picture of my laptops performance while playing various games. Searching for an overheating issue as I thought may be the issue... I didn't find any over heating at all. However I did find my memory to be seriously under clocked. We'll i did the sensible thing and I booted from CD using Hirens and proceeded to use Memtest86 to check my ram and of course a few sticks were bad.

    What i wanted to know was, does my Mobo/Bios support 1866? or was the bus speed always getting choked? I feel like when I ran my benchmarks originally the ram was reading correctly. I could have been mistaken.

    While im on the bios thing, Asus live update tells me i need to update my bios and while browsing for these my self i found there is actually 2 more bios versions after my current 201 however the notes seem like the laziest damn bios updates ever. After downloading this the installer tells me my installed version is not the same as rom version, i figure the file name was changed for some weird reason..however i dont wana mess with it. I would just put the flash on my USB but the notes don't seem worthy of the risk, since these MOBO's dont have dual bios....I was just wondering if there was any work around using the actual software provided?

    Back to my memory problem on Speccy the report came back like this:

    Type DDR3
    Size 16384 MBytes
    Channels # Dual
    DRAM Frequency 665.2 MHz <--------------------------
    CAS# Latency (CL) 8 clocks
    RAS# to CAS# Delay (tRCD) 8 clocks
    RAS# Precharge (tRP) 8 clocks
    Cycle Time (tRAS) 23 clocks
    Command Rate (CR) 2T


    I'm rated at 1866, and even though I've removed the bad ram its still like this. When looking through the bios i didnt see any options to change how it sees the ram, or the voltage. Not that my voltage is off because its not but just that aren't these normal options? or is the board supposed to auto-detect?

    I'm just an entry level tech and i don't know enough details to solve these problems. Before i spend money getting back up to 16G's again. I want to be sure of things. Any help is appreciated.

    Here are my general specifications: (Copied from my steam profile ignore the extras)

    ---------------------------------------RIG: Scores---------------------------------------------------

    Republic Of Gamers: ASUS G74SX-A2 (Customized Laptop)
    [3D MARK VANTAGE] [Windows Experince Score 7.3 Out of 7.9]
    --Score: P10769
    ---CPU:18264
    ---GPU:9473

    -----------------------------------RIG: OS / Hardware---------------------------------------------

    OS: Windows 7 Ultimate - 64-Bit

    Display: 17.3' Asus Full HD LED Screen 1920x1080

    Processor: 2nd Gen Intel i7-2960XM, 2.7-3.7GHz (32nm, 8MB L3 cache) (Overclockable + Turbo Boost)

    Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 560M 3GB GDDR5 DX11 (Overclocked)

    RAM: 16GB Kingston HyperX DDR3 1866MHz CL11 Dual Channel Memory

    Primary HD: Intel 160GB Solid State Drive (SSD Serial-ATA II)

    Secondary HD: Seagate 500GB 7200RPM 16MB Cache Buffer (Serial-ATA II 3GB/s)

    Optical Drive: Slimtype 4X Blu-Ray Reader / 8X DVDRW/CDRW Super Multi Combo Drive

    Network Card: Bigfoot Networks Killer™ Wireless-N 1103 (3x3) (With 3rd Antenna)

    ------------------------------------------RIG:GEAR----------------------------------------------------

    Mouse: Logitech G600

    Headset: Logitech G930

    Game Pad: Logitech G13



    Thanks again!

  2. #2
    ROG Guru: Green Belt Array fostert's Avatar
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    A couple things wrong here:
    1) Your memory is clocked correctly: 665MHz at Double Data Rate (DDR) =1333 MHz, which is what the G74's BIOS will clock the RAM down to if it detects 4 sticks installed, regardless of their rated clock speeds. ASUS has not released a BIOS update to deal woth this, and in fact has not explained why the G74 does this, but the problem has been extensively covered on this forum. I think its a safety thing: since 4 sticks will require more power from the IMC to address than 2 sticks, the IMC will get hotter. Higher frequencies only increase temps and hence the problem. Since the IMC is integrated on the CPU, the heatload from the CPU will increase and may overwhelm the notebook's cooling system, which is already finely balanced at stock specs.

    2) You have an Extreme Edition CPU in your rig, which are 55 Watt beasts. You're already beyond the 45W limit that the G74 was balanced around, and you'r likely stressing the cooling capabilities of the G74, and maybe even your power brick. I am not surprised the thing is being flaky.

    If you want 16GB at higher clock speeds, try 2x8GB sticks. My advice is to stick to 1333MHz sticks, and not be fooled by manufacturers touting the high-performance gains from higher clocked memory (i.e.1600 or 1866MHz): it simply does not amount to measureable performance gains over 1333MHz sticks in real world usage of your computer. Only if you are a competetive benchmarker would you want that stuff to give you a few % edge. And no one who owns a G74 as their primary computer is a competetive benchmarker.
    --
    G74SX-CST1-CBIL, i7 2630QM 2GHz
    32GB DDR3 RAM @1333MHz
    GTX560M 3GB DDR5 (192 bit)
    17.3" LED 1920x1080
    Sentelic TP, BIOS 203
    Debian Linux Wheezy (Testing) Kernel 3.2, NVIDIA 295.40

  3. #3
    ROG Guru: Gold Belt Array dstrakele's Avatar
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    http://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread...M-Memory/page2 confirms the downclock behavior discussed by @fostert. I found the benchmark scores reported on Page 1 of this thread obtained with this memory running at 1866 mhz rather unimpressive, so I wasn't surprised no real world FPS increase in gaming could be detected.

    http://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread...xtreme-edition and http://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread...r-Upgrade-King discuss some of the problems encountered when upgrading G Series notebooks to Extreme XM CPU's.

    I recommend following @BrodyBoy's article discussing the use of EasyFlash : http://rog.asus.com/forum/attachment...1&d=1329792574 if you choose to update your G74SX BIOS to version 203. Be aware any problems during a BIOS flash may render your system unusable.
    Last edited by dstrakele; 11-26-2012 at 12:08 PM.
    G74SX-A1 - stock hardware - BIOS 202 - 2nd Monitor VISIO VF551XVT

  4. #4
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    hell yeah.

    Thanks for the info and those resource links guys, ok. I'll leave the 1866 alone, and buy 1333 8X4.

    unfortunately for the moment this is all i have, my g74sx; knowing how often computer hardware goes into the old news section, i tried to give it everything I could to make it viable as my main computer for at least 3 years with its specs, its already been one and it runs things great for the most part but some games and other things make it act up. After I'm done with college ill get a tower, and go all out.

    I'm for sure no competitive bench marker, dunno if i ever will be, still love ROG. Maybe someday with a little more knowledge. and money...lol.
    Last edited by Xorpheus; 11-26-2012 at 06:13 PM.

  5. #5
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    oh yeah, fostert i see you know your ****, and you seem to have 8x4 installed, which ram brand do you trust? I'd like to place the order soon....it is cyber monday. =D

  6. #6
    ROG Guru: Green Belt Array fostert's Avatar
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    I trust Corsair 100%; I once got some Dominator GT sticks with crazy specs (CL7, Clock=1600MHz) for my overclocked desktop, and found one of them failed memtest86+...they immediately granted me an RMA, and sent me not only a new kit of RAM, but a free RAM cooler fan system too. All in the space of 5 days! Fantastic service.

    For 32GB in my G74 I went with four of these sticks: http://www.corsair.com/us/memory/lap...m1a1333c9.html

    E.g. right now they are $35 CDn at these guys:
    http://ncix.com/products/?sku=64472&...acture=Corsair
    --
    G74SX-CST1-CBIL, i7 2630QM 2GHz
    32GB DDR3 RAM @1333MHz
    GTX560M 3GB DDR5 (192 bit)
    17.3" LED 1920x1080
    Sentelic TP, BIOS 203
    Debian Linux Wheezy (Testing) Kernel 3.2, NVIDIA 295.40

  7. #7
    New ROGer Array Zygomorphic's Avatar
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    4x8 GB yes. @fostert is one of the best around here when it comes to laptops. Now $35, you say? How much did you pay for them initially? Something like $400?
    I am disturbed because I cannot break my system...found out there were others trying to cope! We have a support group on here, if your system will not break, please join!
    http://rog.asus.com/forum/group.php?groupid=16
    We now have 178 people whose systems will not break! Yippee!
    LINUX Users, we have a group!
    http://rog.asus.com/forum/group.php?groupid=23

  8. #8
    ROG Guru: Green Belt Array fostert's Avatar
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    Uhhhhh...you had to remind me! Yes, think it was around $400 Cdn for the lot. Blech.
    --
    G74SX-CST1-CBIL, i7 2630QM 2GHz
    32GB DDR3 RAM @1333MHz
    GTX560M 3GB DDR5 (192 bit)
    17.3" LED 1920x1080
    Sentelic TP, BIOS 203
    Debian Linux Wheezy (Testing) Kernel 3.2, NVIDIA 295.40

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