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DDR3-1600 unable to POST at 1600MHz?


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I have opened a case with Corsair technical support before realizing these forums existed, so I thought it would be beneficial to post here as well.


Here is my issue:


I purchased a 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600MHz kit from a local retailer. The exact part number is CMX16GX3M2A1600C11. Below is the text from my support ticket.


This memory is advertised as DDR3-1600MHz. I am unable to get the system to POST at anything beyond DDR3-1333MHz. The XMP profile in the BIOS shows XMP-1400, which is odd. I have tried manually setting the memory to 1600MHz at voltages from 1.5v to 1.65v (per your website) and timings all the way to 11-11-11-30, but it makes no difference. The system will not POST at 1600MHz regardless of settings. My system is running the latest BIOS also, version 0093 from Intel. The machine is not overclocked.


As you can see from the attached CPU-Z screenshot, it looks liike the SPD settings are correct. I have also attached screenshots form the Intel Visual BIOS.


I am at a loss as to why the memory will not allow my system to POST at 1600MHz. Memtest86+ shows no errors after a 12 hour run at 1333Mhz and 9-9-9-24. Could I have faulty RAM?






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Here are the rest of the screenshots.


When set to manual, I obviously change the timings. I just left them where they were to illustrate what the BIOS defaults to. An additional note, when set to XMP, if I move the slider to 1600MHz, the profile changes from XMP-1400 to Manual. I don't see a way to enable XMP and then manually configure the timings or speed.




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First off , make sure you hae the latest BIOS for your MB. If you don't please flash to the latest stable version.


When you enable XMP you don't need to manually adjust anything. xMP should set the timings and necessary voltages voltages for you. . You may want to to see if XMP is setting the DIMM voltage to 1.65v and if not set that manually.


Are you making sure to save your changes in the BIOS after making your adjustments, and are you getting any errors at POST when trying to POSt at 1600MHZ?


Actually, that RAM would not be suggested for that MB. It is rated at 1.65v at 1600mhz and Intel is pretty adamant about using nothing but 1.5v memory. Some users use it anyway, but there is a possibility of damage to the memory controller within the CPU itself.


BTW the XMP profile showing incorrectly could be a BIOS issue or it may be the modules were not programed correctly. I would bet on the BIOS first.


Do you have the CPU overclocked any?

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Hi Peanutz,


Thank you for your quick reply. I answered most of your questions in my original post and/or with the screenshots.


Yes, I am making sure to save the settings. If I choose the XMP-1400 setting I can boot into Windows and CPU-Z reports the memory running at 700MHz. If I set the memory to 1600MHz with any timings at all, all the way up to 1.65v, my systems attempts to POST (blank screen), reboots and the Intel "Safe BIOS" feature kicks in and prompts me to load defaults due to incorrect BIOS settings.


I agree that voltage may be the issue, but according to Intel's site for this board: http://www.intel.com/support/motherboards/desktop/dz77sl-50k/sb/CS-033217.htm#tested


"1.5V DDR3 SDRAM DIMMs with gold plated contacts, with the option to raise the voltage to support higher performance DDR3 SDRAM DIMMs."


These DIMMs are not on the official Intel tested list nor on the CMTL list.


I stupidly threw the packaging away while waiting for my i7-3770k to arrive, so I'm stuck with this kit and cannot return it to the local store where I purchased the MB/RAM combo. Ugh.

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Well what do you know, my old Samsung 4 x 4GB DDR3-1333MHz memory is capable of running at DDR3-1600MHz @ 1.5v if set to CL11. I installed it, set my BIOS to 1600MHz, set the timings to 11-11-11-30, and my machine is running fine.
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"1.5V DDR3 SDRAM DIMMs with gold plated contacts, with the option to raise the voltage to support higher performance DDR3 SDRAM DIMMs."

Corect, thays a MB option though and you have the option to do so if you want to overclock. But with overclocking comes risk. The Mb options are totally independent of any CPU specifications or restrictions.


It still has me baffled why the XMP profile is not showing correctly in the BIOS. Which it clearly is. I'm wondering if the MB itself is not the issue here and not the memory


But as RamGuy suggested please post a creen shot of CPUz's SPD tab. and well go from there


You can try raising the system agent voltage to 1.15v at 1600mhz and see if that will not let you boot at that speed. If it does not make sure you set it back to default settings. No need to keep or add more voltage than what you need to make it stable

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Thank you for all the responses Gentlemen. The SPD tab of CPU-Z shows the correct XMP profile (it states 1598MHz, but that's close enough to 1600 I suppose).


My Samsung has been running at DDR3-1866 9-9-9-24 1.5v since my last post yesterday, so I'm just going to use the Corsair in my i7-2600 (non-K) Lenovo machine since I can't run RAM beyond 1333MHz in that machine anyway.


Happy New Year!

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