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High pitch noise - CPU or Mobo?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by tarrantx, Jul 23, 2006.

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  1. tarrantx

    tarrantx Thread Starter

    Jul 23, 2006

    I've come to the conclusion that I need to RMA my motherboard or CPU, but I'm not sure which one.

    This is a weird problem. I have an ABIT KN8-SLI motherboard and an Athlon 3700 (San Diego). When I overclocked the CPU too far a high pitch noise would come from the system after a certain amount of time being under load. As soon as this noise started my performance would die - N-Bench would show my CPU as being not much better than a 1ghz chip. I learnt that I could test the high pitch noise problem by running a Prime 95 stress test and, by trying different combinations of voltage, clock, and multiplier settings, I was able to find a sweet spot where the noise would not start.

    Now, however, the noise starts even at stock speeds with all settings at default and, given the associated performance loss when this happens, my system is basically stuffed.

    I have changed the power supply for an ANTEC Truepower 450W, so it's not that. I have tried 4 different sticks of ram, in different dimms, so I know it's not that. I assume it's not my video card, as the nose appears when running CPU stress tests. The video card (7900gt) does not get get hot or show any graphical corruption. The CPU does not get hot for that matter either, and the system is not unstable when the noise starts up, just very slow.

    As far as I can tell, the noise is not coming from the CPU - it sounds like it's coming from the bottom front corner of the motherboard, near the HDDs. As the problem has gotten worse, it has not reduced my ability to overclock the CPU, it has just made the nose happen more easily and at all clock speeds.

    I have turned of cool 'n' quiet in the bios. I'm leaning towards the problem being the motherboard, but I can't be sure. I haven't read any posts anywehere with people having a similiar problem. Does anyone have any advice or suggetstions?
  2. seekermeister


    Jun 20, 2006
    I have no specific ideas, but I would use something like a stethoscope to locate the sound. You might be able to use some kind of non-conductive rod to do this.
  3. Rumpo-Stiltskin


    May 9, 2006
    Most likely one of the drives or a fan........ essentially, a mechanical component.
    Hard drives naturally make a high-pitched whine, generally inaudible to the average PC user.
    Possibly a low-level signal bleeding into your case/motherboard speaker/sounder?

    You'll have to be clearer about the exact nature of the sound......
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