BSOD troubleshooting

Perhaps try a different power socket too. Just to be sure :)

If you have overclocks on the CPU and/or memory, I would turn that all off first.

Oh, turning off XMP, any processor enhancements, etc. was the first thing I did.

New power supply cables (and different socket) didn’t help. Going to warranty swap the CPU at this point as I literally swapped everything else.

Reading this thread is making me glad for the first time that I went with a piece of shit Alienware pre-built that overheats the CPU if I play any games on it.

At least it’s stable and doesn’t give me BSODs!

Good lord, that’s a hell of a troubleshooting journey. Dumb question here but are you running clean before firing up a game or similar post-rebuild? By that I mean, trying with just a keyboard, mouse and monitor connected? Could you have something further down causing some sort of bus issue? Not sure about you but I have not just one but TWO powered USB hubs with a ton of devices connected. That’s a lot of things you don’t think about where an issue and interrupt could be the source of something.

Wishing you luck on the CPU swap, Editer.

Just a quick general PSA to never ever mix and match power supply cables, as they are not all compatible between brands or even models and you can fry up your system. Was the new PSU the exact same model as the old one?

CPU failures are pretty rare, so I was going to say that it is much more likely to be the motherboard, but it looks like you already swapped that. Then I was going to say video card, but it looks like you already tried with the integrated Intel graphics. Did you try rolling back your video card driver? Did you try completely fresh RAM?

Although since you’ve already essentially rebuilt the system piece by piece, I’d be ready to write it off as cursed. That really sucks for a new build.


Exactly. Which is why it was the last thing I tried. Final troubleshooting tally:

  1. Change BIOS settings to turn off any MSI performance enhancements and make sure RAM wasn’t on the XMP profiles.

  2. Try one stick of RAM only, then try the other one.

  3. Remove video card and use Intel integrated graphics.

  4. Swap in the identical RAM from my other (rock-stable) PC.

    4a) Wipe drive and try to reinstall Windows 11 (BSOD’d during installs)

  5. Swap in identical Cooler Master power supply (bought another one as it’s always good to have a backup power supply)

  6. Swap in new motherboard

  7. Bought a third SSD so tried to install Windows with just that SSD in the system.

  8. Swapped the power supply cables (which had been neatly wrapped into the case at the factory, which is why I didn’t do that initially) thinking “AHA!” and nearly went Office Space on the thing when it BSOD’d again.

Also checked very carefully to make sure nothing on the case was shorting things out, all cables were properly connected, and everything else. Checked that the cooler was working properly, checked temps in BIOS (32C on CPU), all the usual stuff.

It definitely points to component failure because I hadn’t changed anything in the system when it started crashing, and wiping the Windows install and trying a new SSD eliminates OS corruption from causing the failures. It had been rock-stable since I built it in February.

Intel agreed to RMA the 13700K and I’m paying the $25 for the cross-ship, so we’ll see if that fixes things when it arrives next week. If not, I’m calling an exorcist.

I have a remarkably similar SFF system @Editer . Also my secondary TV PC. NR200P Max case, 4070 Ti, 2TB NvME SSD, but I’m running a B650i AMD board w/ a Ryzen 7800X3D. Hope it’s the CPU, because that is crazy.

I am concerned as @Freezer-TPF mentioned, the old PSU cables were used with the new PSU and motherboard. That could have introduced new issues. 😬

Well hole-eeee-shit.

It WAS the CPU.

While I was waiting for Intel to cross-ship the replacement, I convinced myself that it must be the only other component I hadn’t swapped out, the cooler. Sure, it was 28-32 degrees in BIOS, but maybe it was heating up while installing/booting Windows. Because of course it wasn’t going to be the CPU. This year makes 40 years since I bought my first computer and I’d never had a CPU fail. But let’s try the CPU swap, and then I can order a new cooler…

Swapped in the new CPU, it started up, and stayed rock solid through the Windows install, and setting the PC up.

Everything was still lightly attached for testing/setup, so I put the old CPU back in. Instant BSODs. New CPU back in? Rock stable!

TL;DR: Apparently sometimes CPUs do fail!*

  • Never overclocked, cool case, temps never high under load. Well, damn.

Wow, it’s unreal for the cpu to fail. I missed this post earlier and my first guess would have been mobo, then mem, then cpu. I wonder how many other people have been through this?

Editer, I know someone mentioned your power supply but keep an eye on that if you can. What can cause a CPU to fail besides heat? Voltage variance.

Also, VERY glad to hear it sounds like you’re back up and running?

Glad to hear you’re humming along again. A dead CPU is a rarity! It’s an awesome little system.

Yep, all is running. Re-downloading all of the games tonight and I’ll be doing a burn-in test with Starfield and BG3. :)

Ack, good call on the power supply, Skipper. Half-tempted to swap the replacement back in, but it’s all sealed up and I’m really tired of disassembling/reassembling it at this point! I’ll see how things go…