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FF error message building new PC

Posted on 2016-07-25
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Last Modified: 2016-08-08
Hi
I am trying to build a new PC with an MSI motherboard 790FX-GD70 Series. I was hoping to install Windows 10 before the final upgrade this Friday 29th July but have run in to problems right at the beginning.
I have a new Gigabyte graphics card, new hard drive and 16GB of new memory all compatible with the motherboard. But when I try to boot I get no beeps and the motherboard is reporting FF error which the manual status reports “Power on and first initialize CPU”. I have checked the CPU is correctly mounted and tried the graphics card in different slots. I have tried to research the FF error message but cannot find anything conclusive. Do you think it probably indicates a faulty motherboard or CPU? If not is there anything further, I could try?
Many thanks
Matthew
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Question by:medcomputers
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by:dbrunton
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16 Gb of memory?  I suspect that's more than one stick.  Try with only one stick and if that fails try other(s) sticks.  Make sure RAM is in the first slot.

Try without any devices connected to motherboard, hard drive, CD/DVD drive, mouse, keyboard etc.

Also check your PSU has sufficient grunt to handle everything in the machine.

Oh, and are your fans spinning correctly?  And do you have the power connected to either the auxiliary 4, 6, or 8 pin connector on the motherboard?
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by:nobus
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it looks like a motherboard problem
you can test a bit more by using the minimum setup :
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Components/Motherboards/A_1945.html
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by:medcomputers
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Hi guys

I have been trying out some of your suggestions. There are 4 x 4GB memory modules. I have tried with just one, no difference. I have tried with none and just graphics card, no beeps or any difference. The PSU is 600 watts so should be sufficient. All the fans are spinning OK and there is power to 4, 6 & 8 pin connectors. There are blue lights on the motherboard, HDD lights up as well as blu ray drive when switching on but I still get FF error message and no video.

I have not removed the bios battery yet but am beginning to think it must be the motherboard. Is there any sure way of distinguishing between the motherboard and the CPU? The whole system is silent and I have not yet heard any beeps. I have even tried swapping the speaker cable round but don’t think that is the problem. The motherboard looks clean and new and there are no bad capacitors.

I am giving up on having the system ready for the Windows 10 update on Friday but would like to sort the system out in the near future if at all possible. All advice gratefully received.

Matthew
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by:nobus
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ther e is no sure way to distinguissh betwween mobo and cpu - since both need each other
but 95 % are ba d mobo - onlty 5 % is cpu max
so the decision is easy imo
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by:dbrunton
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Return both motherboard and CPU.  Let them sort it out.  I'd suspect the motherboard myself but there's no easy way of telling.
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by:nobus
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what happens when using 1 ram stick, or none at all?
or without disk and cd drives connected?
does it change?
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by:medcomputers
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Hi nobus

As I said in my previous post I have tried all the things you suggest: 1 ram stick and none at all, without disk and cd drive connected but nothing changes, just FF error message. I fear you are right, duff motherboard.
Matthew
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by:nobus
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yep, i agree, but wanted to check
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by:medcomputers
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Thanks guys for your help and comments. I'm looking for a new motherboard. Nobus text on minimum setup was particularly helpful.
Matthew
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by:medcomputers
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I would like to close this question and allocate points but am not sure how to do this in your new setup. Could someone please advise.
Thanks
Matthew
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by:nobus
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i notified a mod to help you out
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by:medcomputers
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Hi nobus & dbrunton

I hope you might be following this thread. I have just realised that there is an additional ATX 12v power connector in the form of an 8 pin block on the motherboard to the rear of the CPU which is used to provide power to the CPU.

I did see this but as my CPU does not have an 8 pin connector but a 6 pin block instead which I assumed would be used by some graphics cards. I always thought the power to the motherboard including the CPU was provided by the 24 pin power connector which is correctly installed. I have now found that I can get a converter to change the 6 pin power connector from the CPU to an 8 pin block which I can then connect to the 8 pin block on the motherboard. Do you think this is appropriate to add the 12v power to the CPU and resolve my problems with the motherboard?

Many thanks

Matthew
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by:dbrunton
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>>  I always thought the power to the motherboard including the CPU was provided by the 24 pin power connector which is correctly installed.

No, it's not.  If you've got a 4, 6, or 8 pin block then that needs supplying.

>>  Do you think this is appropriate to add the 12v power to the CPU and resolve my problems with the motherboard?

Yes.
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by:nobus
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you really need to connect that AUX pwr plug
if needed, there are other adapters , like molex to  8 pin : 4.99$
https://www.amazon.com/EPS12V-Motherboard-Supply-Adapter-Converter/dp/B00DU9BG60
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by:medcomputers
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Hi

Many apologies for delay in replying but I am still trying to resolve this problem. I seem to be fated as my PSU failed a couple of days ago and I have just replaced it with a more powerful PSU of 750 watts which has multiple connections including 8 pin 12v cable for CPU.

Everything is now installed as before but I still fet FF error messages. All fans are working, HDD and DVD working, lights on mobo but no video. Do you think this might now point to faulty CPU? Also, any ideas as to why PSU should suddenly fail? I have never had so many problems one after another when trying to build a new PC, it is usually so straightforward.

I would be grateful for your comments. Many thanks

Matthew
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by:medcomputers
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Thank you Nobus
I have followed your thread and have finally resolved my problem. I think I had multiple issues and then suddenly the PSU failed. I now have a new PSU and found the main problem was a faulty CPU. I have bought a second hand AMD Phenom and the computer now boots into the Bios. After carefully examining the old CPU it looks to me like there are some bent pins. I am not sure how easy it is to see bent pins but as the problem is now resolved that must have ben the cause.
Thank you for all your help.
Matthew
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by:nobus
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tx for the update
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