Re: AMD Phenom X4 replaces X2 chip
This could be your lucky day:
I have a comparable ASUS motherboard in one of my machines and I had the
opposite problem--the X2 processor would never perform as it should but as
soon as I dropped in a Phenom II quad core, a very good processor for the
price, everything worked as it should. What I saw is a not uncommon user
experience, judging from postings on the ASUS user boards. You should search
these as there is much useful info to be gained from the experience of
Based on my real life experience with analogous hardware problems:
I would strongly recommend that you upgrade the BIOS and chipset drivers as
I suspect that something is amiss in the basic operation of the motherboard.
In my experience these ASUS AMD2/3 motherboards will run, albeit imperfectly
with results like what your are seeing if the BIOS is not properly installed
or has been corrupted, which can happen with misbehaving RAM sticks, among
other reasons. Fortunately it is very easy to upgrade the BIOS in these
machines through the set-up program using either a CD or a USB dongle. Read
and understand the instructions carefully before you upgrade the BIOS even
though there is a fall back routine if something goes amiss.
In my experience AMD2/3 ASUS motherboards, and the BIOS settings, are very
sensitive to malfunctioning RAM so you should probably first make sure that
your RAM sticks can pass the Microsoft Memory Test (or whatever you prefer)
booting from a CD/DVD--a clean boot in other words. If the RAM is defective
you will still need to reinstall/upgrade the BIOS.
It is more likely there is a problem with the BIOS/chipset drivers or your
RAM or both than the hardware of the motherboard itself but the latter may
be the problem.
When you update the BIOS you will be at the default settings: do not change
anything, apart from boot device order if you have to, until you also
download the latest chipset drivers from the website and reinstall these.
Sadly the ASUS download site is slow and can be hard to connect to but it is
worth the effort.
It may take a few reboots to get everything working.
If you can get the Phenom II running properly, and I think it is just a
BIOS/chipset driver problem, you should be very happy with its performance.
Reinstalling Vista in any form is utterly pointless as you will be
reinstalling out of date chipset drivers and other garf that makes Vista the
underperforming woof-woof that it is. You will then have to also go through
the multi-gigabyte Microsoft "upgrade" process, a form of torture that
should be outlawed by the Geneva conventions.