Shipping and defective stuff from Newegg - if you have high shipping costs this could be a nightmare


J

John

I forgot that Newegg charges you to ship defective item replacements.
Ive ordered two refurbs in the past and they were great my Asus a7n8x
deluxe and a Leadtek nforce with builtin video.

I keep seeing these posts about instability and problems with some of
these boards with built in video. I assumed they were referring to
using FSB 200 which many dont even list in their ads because of
supposed problems when using it and onboard video. The solution is
either start experimenting with various sticks of mem or use a
graphics card if you want FSB 200 or just stick with a lower setting.

However I just got a refurb Biostar M7ncg 400 with Geforce MX 400
built in video the usual thing similar to the Leadtek but a Micro ATX
layout. Massive massive problem.

Now for people who have super high shipping costs - $30 for me for
this and two other items im looking at sending this back via USPS for
$12-15 , PLUS they charge me maybe $25 or so to ship me another refurb
replacement.

Thats $30+45 or so total shipping costs 75 to get one MB , power
supply and CPU. And thats IF the replacement refurb is OK. If iwere
unlucky to get ANOTHER defective board that would over $100 extra in
shipping costs in total. Mindboggling.

So the possiblity of getting a defective item has to figure into any
cost savings in ordering from any place if you have even moderate
shipping costs.

Anyone know of any place thats good that doesnt charge you shipping
costs to replace a defective item? Not sure if anyplace does. Im ight
stick to local places if this turns out to be a major disaster with
shipping costs.

Meanwhile - anyone know of any problems with this board? Ive seen a
thread about the usual - incredibly picky memory at another site. I
was fooled by the positive review at Newegg and my super easy
experiences with the last two refurbs. This one I can get at the bios
ONCE. I set up the basic settings for the CPU XP 2000 athlon and after
that it goes dead . I get massive beeping from errors and get no
video. After that it stays like that unless i clear the CMOS.

I then get to the bios that has reverted to default safety settings
and set the settings agan and the samething happnes. Dead unless I
clear the CMOS. I then started to choose various settings in the CMOS
but the samething happens, Even the "safety settings" it reverts to
after I clear the CMOS will cause it to go dead if I dont change them
and try to reboot again.

My initial thought was picky memory. Ive tried 4 different sticks
including Kingston mem which some posters claimed works great with
this board. Then I tried a video card thinking it was defective
onboard video. Nope. I then took it out of the case and ran it outside
the case. nope. I then tried to find something shorting the board a
small piece of metal or something stuck on the Mb OR an obvious bad
cap or wrong setting on a jumper. Nope.

After hours and hours and hours resetting the CMOS over and over and
over again Im sick of this board.

Might try to send it back to Biostar instead hopefully they cover this
refurb - ASus claimed to cover their refurbs wth warranties. I might
have to wait a month but at least they wont charge me shipping and Ill
only end up in the hole $12-15 shipping each time the cost me sending
the defective boards back to them through USPS.

Another strange thing with Biostar - this model at least I gather even
the new retail units dont come with backplates. Weird . I keep reading
about it in website reviews. My refurb thankfully came complete retail
packaging but with no backplate too. I had to send an hour trying to
cut out extra holes in a backplate I had to make work with this.
 
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K

kony

Meanwhile - anyone know of any problems with this board?

You mean besides the fact that it's a Biostar?
That alone would prevent me from using it.

Ive seen a
thread about the usual - incredibly picky memory at another site. I
was fooled by the positive review at Newegg and my super easy
experiences with the last two refurbs. This one I can get at the bios
ONCE. I set up the basic settings for the CPU XP 2000 athlon and after
that it goes dead . I get massive beeping from errors and get no
video. After that it stays like that unless i clear the CMOS.

Change only a few bios or jumper settings at a time, to isolate which
setting is causing the problem. I would speculate that it's most likely
the memory bus, is "fragile" and needs manually reduced memory timings,
but could instead be anything on that board, including manufacturer
defect, onboard component problem, etc.
I then get to the bios that has reverted to default safety settings
and set the settings agan and the samething happnes. Dead unless I
clear the CMOS. I then started to choose various settings in the CMOS
but the samething happens, Even the "safety settings" it reverts to
after I clear the CMOS will cause it to go dead if I dont change them
and try to reboot again.

Do the safety settings start it as 100MHz FSB & memory?
If so, on first try, set both manually to 100MHz, if possible, and see if
system remains functional.

I will assume it goes without saying that you may need fairly good memory
and power supply.

My initial thought was picky memory. Ive tried 4 different sticks
including Kingston mem which some posters claimed works great with
this board.

I should read ahead more often.

Then I tried a video card thinking it was defective
onboard video. Nope. I then took it out of the case and ran it outside
the case. nope. I then tried to find something shorting the board a
small piece of metal or something stuck on the Mb OR an obvious bad
cap or wrong setting on a jumper. Nope.

After hours and hours and hours resetting the CMOS over and over and
over again Im sick of this board.

Some Biostar boards are fairly colorful, make good dart boards.

Might try to send it back to Biostar instead hopefully they cover this
refurb - ASus claimed to cover their refurbs wth warranties. I might
have to wait a month but at least they wont charge me shipping and Ill
only end up in the hole $12-15 shipping each time the cost me sending
the defective boards back to them through USPS.

Another strange thing with Biostar - this model at least I gather even
the new retail units dont come with backplates. Weird . I keep reading
about it in website reviews. My refurb thankfully came complete retail
packaging but with no backplate too. I had to send an hour trying to
cut out extra holes in a backplate I had to make work with this.

Now I'm confused... Doesn't it use a standard old-style backplate? That
is, it had the analog gameport with audio under it, and only two usb and
RJ45 socket stack next to the PS2 ports? Like this:
http://www.newegg.com/app/Showimage.asp?image=13-138-215-04.JPG
If you don't have backplate to fit the above pictured board, any local
computer shop is likely throwing those backplates away, since they come
with many cases but are used less often these days.
 
J

Jan Alter

kony said:
You mean besides the fact that it's a Biostar?
That alone would prevent me from using it.



Change only a few bios or jumper settings at a time, to isolate which
setting is causing the problem. I would speculate that it's most likely
the memory bus, is "fragile" and needs manually reduced memory timings,
but could instead be anything on that board, including manufacturer
defect, onboard component problem, etc.


Do the safety settings start it as 100MHz FSB & memory?
If so, on first try, set both manually to 100MHz, if possible, and see if
system remains functional.

I will assume it goes without saying that you may need fairly good memory
and power supply.



I should read ahead more often.



Some Biostar boards are fairly colorful, make good dart boards.



Now I'm confused... Doesn't it use a standard old-style backplate? That
is, it had the analog gameport with audio under it, and only two usb and
RJ45 socket stack next to the PS2 ports? Like this:
http://www.newegg.com/app/Showimage.asp?image=13-138-215-04.JPG
If you don't have backplate to fit the above pictured board, any local
computer shop is likely throwing those backplates away, since they come
with many cases but are used less often these days.

Hi,

I've been running two M7NCD Biostar boards for the past 6 months. One
uses an XP2500 (Barton) and the other an Athlon 1600XP chip. They're both
solid. The Barton chip is running overclocked at 400mhz rather than the
standard 333 mhz at 34 degrees C. I had tried one stick of Kingston Value
ram 512 mb of DDR-400 and the system would not even start. That lead me to
believe the mb was at least somewhat picky about RAM. However, it worked
fine with two sticks of 256 mb of DDR-400. It may have something to do
with the density of the chips being used rather than the speed.
Best suggestion I can offer is to start with the board's default settings
and then one setting at a time move up from there to get the most efficient
running timings. Some boards are not terrific overclockers, especially with
a low end board as what we're both dealing. If you enjoy the overclocking
aspect of all this get a higher priced board in the Abit variety.
 
J

John

You mean besides the fact that it's a Biostar?
That alone would prevent me from using it.

Do the safety settings start it as 100MHz FSB & memory?
If so, on first try, set both manually to 100MHz, if possible, and see if
system remains functional.

Yeah. Its bizarre though. It doesnt detect it correctly and totally
goes dead and I have to keep clearing the CMOS to get back into the
bios.


However my NIGHTMARES are over !!!
I stupidly spent one whole day trying to fix it and started thinking I
should try flashing the bios to the newest version. Though I had my
doubts about it fixing the problem it seemed so severe or even if I
could boot up with floppy disk properly and execute a flasher. I was a
bit worred I would screw up the bios flash and end up with a really
dead board.

They have one built into the bios screen - Update bios.
So all i had to do was download the bios with my other PC and after I
did that it WORKED !!!! Boy was I relieved.

Even now though, if you select the wrong the CPU settings FSB and
multiplier though its locked the MB totally seems to get stuck and
will seem like its dead. You have to clear the cmos . No big deal
though. The bios it came with seemed to be really messed up.
All seems well now. So my record so far with refurbs is 100% good so
far.

The experience of wacked out bioses is also 100% . For some reason the
last 6 boards I got even the new ones react really weird and seem to
need time to settle it seems. And for people who dont have experience
with putting stuff together it can seem like a dead board - Im not
kidding. The CPU fan will spin but youll get nothing except maybe a
BEEEEEEEEEEP. No video etc. The other boards even with the right
settings seemed to need a little time to settle down before working OK
- making me think they were possibly messed up boards too but only for
about an hour. This one I think the old bios was gtrossly out of date
or really screwed up. DIdnt check to see what version it was.

Now I'm confused... Doesn't it use a standard old-style backplate? That
is, it had the analog gameport with audio under it, and only two usb and
RJ45 socket stack next to the PS2 ports? Like this:
http://www.newegg.com/app/Showimage.asp?image=13-138-215-04.JPG
If you don't have backplate to fit the above pictured board, any local
computer shop is likely throwing those backplates away, since they come
with many cases but are used less often these days.

The ones I have unfortunately dont have the LAN hole - very close ,
just missing that above the USB ports. I laboriously cut it out with
that weird snipper thing they sell for laughably cutting holes in your
case. The nibbler is whats its called. And if you actually use one to
try to cut a window hole in your panel as they suggest you need
psychiatric help. It would take a month to cut a hole that big.

The probem with the backplate is its really thin so it keeps getting
caught in the nibbler and jamming it up.

What a relief.

I can now say - the Biostar isnt that bad. Its got a lot of features
and I got this for $35 with 400mx level video. The cheapest deal on a
board with 400 mx level video Ive ever seen - even refurbed.

However - flash to the latest bios and let the board detect your CPU.
 
J

John

I've been running two M7NCD Biostar boards for the past 6 months. One
uses an XP2500 (Barton) and the other an Athlon 1600XP chip. They're both
solid. The Barton chip is running overclocked at 400mhz rather than the
standard 333 mhz at 34 degrees C. I had tried one stick of Kingston Value
ram 512 mb of DDR-400 and the system would not even start. That lead me to
believe the mb was at least somewhat picky about RAM. However, it worked
fine with two sticks of 256 mb of DDR-400. It may have something to do
with the density of the chips being used rather than the speed.
Best suggestion I can offer is to start with the board's default settings
and then one setting at a time move up from there to get the most efficient
running timings. Some boards are not terrific overclockers, especially with
a low end board as what we're both dealing. If you enjoy the overclocking
aspect of all this get a higher priced board in the Abit variety.

I flashed the bios and I notice they list something about improving
ram compatiblity. The bios it came with seemed messed up. This was a
refurb. Its FINE now with the new bios I downloaded from their site-
WHEEWWWW.

I was building this budget system for a neighbor a single mother on a
limted budget. I thought I was looking at absorbing the cost $70-100
plus for shipping myself after volunteering to build it for her. Im
already giving her a free new burner , oiptical mouse, modem, etc and
doing everything for free and absorbing the initital shipping costs. I
defintely didnt want to be out another 40-70 bucks.

Its fine now though it still goes bonkers like many boards if you get
the CPU settings wrong no big deal. The new bios works with ALL the
sticks I have . Im suing Centon now. The other bios I got rid of was a
mess. It detected the CPU wrong and if you tried to change any of the
settings it would make the board go dead and even if you set the
settings back to default it would stay screwed up. All is well now.

I get the impression that its not so picky about ram anymore except
maybe the 400 level but you say you arent having any problems so even
that maybe fixed.

This is the cheapest deal ever probably Ive seen - $35 at Newegg
refiurb with 400mx level video, lan. Only microAtx so it has only 3
slots though as you know. They have the regular atx size with 5 slots
but its $45 about the same as the asus with the same chip set going
for $45. I think thats out though. Newegg runs out very quickly of
these refurbs and sometimes will never get them back or it takes
months so who knows they might be gone now.

The reviews talk about a 7.0 and 7.2 pcb board the 7.2 boards have
more OCing options supposedly though I have a 1.0 version board and no
sticker saying its a 7.2 pcb and I do see lots of voltage adjustments
etc in the bios.

The leadtek I bought with the integrated 400 mx level video refurb I
bought for 45 at newegg was a breeze compared to this . This though -
is fine with the new bios but it really goes bonkers if the CPU
settings is off even with the new one for anyone who is new to
building systems. All you have to do is clear the cmos so its still
not that big of a deal but the leadtek is a lot more fault tolerant in
that respect - it would just say error and you could reset the bios
settings , didnt have to clear the cmos.
 
J

John

Now I'm confused... Doesn't it use a standard old-style backplate? That
is, it had the analog gameport with audio under it, and only two usb and
RJ45 socket stack next to the PS2 ports? Like this:
http://www.newegg.com/app/Showimage.asp?image=13-138-215-04.JPG
If you don't have backplate to fit the above pictured board, any local
computer shop is likely throwing those backplates away, since they come
with many cases but are used less often these days.

You are going to laugh but I can count the number of PC mom and pop
stores there are here on one hand. The biggest one I called and they
didnt have any back panels. I assumed COMPUSA didnt have any but who
know maybe they do now. There used to be a lot more mom and pop stores
before Compusa opened in this area.

In this metro area there wasnt one single large PC chain until the mid
90s ! Then Computer City opened and a few years later was bought up
by CompUSA in quick succession. There was a Compusa in the state a bit
earlier way out in the boondocks because of land prices in the 80s
most of the chains which even then came late i think they first came
in the late 80s , first built out in the boondocks.

When you talk about PCs theres one huge Compusa, and a few mom and
pops and thats it. Theres a CC about 15 miles from here and thats
really the only major competition besides Office Max and Depot.

luckily they are building a wal mart a several blocks away and a best
buy too.
 
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K

kony

However my NIGHTMARES are over !!!
I stupidly spent one whole day trying to fix it and started thinking I
should try flashing the bios to the newest version. Though I had my
doubts about it fixing the problem it seemed so severe or even if I
could boot up with floppy disk properly and execute a flasher. I was a
bit worred I would screw up the bios flash and end up with a really
dead board.

If you have a spare old board and another EEPROM of suitable capacity you
can just flash bios in the other board, swap chips and try it. However
it's a bit harder to find old boards that use the 1MB EEPROMS that some of
the newer boards with RAID controller use, but even then, if one removes
the RAID module of the bios it may then fit on the smaller EEPROM.
 

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