Mac Pro (4,1 to 5,1) CPU upgrade

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by CASLondon, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #1
    Ok

    Set myself up to start upgrading a long planned cpu upgrade, 2009 8 core up to a 12-core X5680s.

    Read a lot, watched a lot, was very careful/scared about over tightening. I did CPU A, and went to run it with the single processor to test, single stick of ram (stock machine had one each cpu).

    First boot, got the flashing led on front, no chime. Aha, the next step is to tighten each a quarter turn, return tray, try again. This time, got the solid white led, no chime, and got the CPU A diagnostic red light. Oh crap, now I'm thinking there's a big problem.

    Pull the tray, back off each a hair of a turn, and I'm back to NO red CPU A diagnostic light, back to the fast blinking white led in front, no chime.

    I toggle back and forth, and I know I should pull the heat sink and start over, perhaps swapping CPUs just to rule that out, and most importantly, RULE OUT BENT PINS on the socket, my biggest nightmare.

    I'm going to sleep on it before I go back to pull the CPU and inspect, but wonder if anyone else went through any of this, and if there's anything else I'm not thinking of to check before I start over.

    Thanks
     
  2. lexR macrumors regular

    lexR

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    What was the total turns you did? I know its different to all MP's but mine was 3and 6/8 before I whimped out, fans clips connected properly? As I believe a fan not connected will stop the MP from booting, hopefully you have not received bad CPU's might be worth after everything else sticking your old ones back in?

    Keep us updated and good luck
     
  3. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #3
    Did a set of 3 turns, then another turn, total 4, to get the first, flashing led/no boot.

    Added quarter turns or so after that, to get the red CPU A led/steady white in front.

    Backed off in eights. I'm working between the two extremes now in little bits (before I gave up for the night), I wonder about reseating my ram and then in the morning I will pull it and start over, inspecting socket pins (god I hope those are fine)
     
  4. MacVidCards Suspended

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #4
    Sorry it's not going well for you.

    You should search my old posts, I had lots of fun with mine. Key for me ended up putting 2.26s back in and counting turns to undo. The large t handle made this easy.

    And the note about fan connector is important. I popped mine out of the casing.

    I wonder if Apple did the lidless thing to make upgrades less likely.
     
  5. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #5
    Pulled heat sink CPU A, switched processor to other X5680, reseated, counted turns 3 plus 1, now I have joy with CPU A, kind of.

    solid white led in front, no CPU A Red LED of Death, fan spins nice and low.

    But, no start up chime, no video, though machine appears to be powered.

    OH this is fun. What's my next move, adding fractions of turns tighter on CPU A? Is the issue that the RAM isn't recognised yet? Or should I be worrying about back planes, etc?
     
  6. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    Sagittarius A*
    #6
    Go back to the beginning, put your old quads back in and start again. I still do it wrong sometimes and I've done it before. I put a bar through my long driver and use the o'clock method looking from above!
     
  7. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #7
    OK

    Went back to CPU A original quad core, no chime but I booted fine. Now fans run hard, as expected with single. Video out works.

    Going to remove and start again
     
  8. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #8
    OK, since it worked ace with original CPU, went back into do-over mode.

    I assumed that original cpu working meant my backplane, ram, power supply, and cpu socket pins were all ok, but I inspected with a magnifying glass, they LOOK ok.

    Seating one x5680, cleaned and then repasted. Did 3 plus 1 turn on each screw. Fired it up

    Back to steady blinking led - need more turns. Went up by eighth turns, two times, still blinking, one more eighth, got the RED CPU A light again. Back down an eighth, I'm under tight and flashing. No sweet spot where this thing works. Going to start day drinking in a minute.
     
  9. lexR, Aug 6, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2014

    lexR macrumors regular

    lexR

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    Afraid to say this is starting to look a bit like a bad CPU... I'm guessing you have no way of testing the CPU else where? If it boots with old CPU and when you install the new one and minus the size diff I'm guessing it still doesn't boot that's pointing toward bad CPU, my original non heat shield original CPU's were around 5 and 3/4 turns to undo but the new ones were 3 and 5/8 turns until I bailed out, another option is buying a torque driver and setting it at 0.9NM then plus a 1/4 extra turn as per the Mac Pro 4.1 tech manual?

    Sorry to hear your having a nightmare
     
  10. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #10
    Thanks

    As far as I can tell, moving torque only eighth turns at a time, its unlikely I'm way over tightening/crushing pins, right? The margin between flashing white light/no chime (under tightened ) to solid white light/no chime/sometimes red CPU A led/sometimes not (overtightened) is within these eighth of a turn moves. No sweet spot.

    I agree it looks like bad cpu signs, but that is an odd one to me.

    I'm pretty sure I was using the second x5680, and it seems unlikely that BOTH would be bad.

    I did have the firmware up to 5,1 using the netkas tool. Double checked that when I went back to old ones. Booting from old one fine should rule out back plane, ram, psu issues, right?

    I suppose I can drive out to the server refurb business I bought them from and test/replace (nice alternative to an ebay purchase)
     
  11. lexR macrumors regular

    lexR

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    I was going to add that if both time you used same new CPU, that does seem strange to get 2 bad CPU's but then again it could happen, personally if the original fires up and everything works 'as should' that for me would rule out you busting the back board or pins being to compressed etc, maybe others on here could diagnose the flashing led meanings but yeah if your fans are connected, you've allowed for the difference in height, confident with your pressure on the CPU's and the firmware hack went ok then I'm struggling to think of another possible solution :eek:
     
  12. zephonic macrumors 65816

    zephonic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area
    #12
    I don't know if you are aware of this:

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/2800/upgrading-and-analyzing-apple-s-nehalem-mac-pro/10

    TL;DR: thing is, the dual-CPU Nehalems have the CPU's metal casing removed for better heat dissipation and are therefore a fraction of a mm lower than retail units. Anandtech fried their processor board trying to upgrade the CPU's.
     
  13. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #13
    Oh yeah, I'm very aware. That is the point, I can go back to the old CPUs and boot, so I'm ruling out socket damage. Also, I can inspect it with a magnifying glass and don't see anything wrong.
     
  14. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
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    #14
    I'd back them to the server firm you got them from to be tested properly see if they POST or not.

    If you are really stuck and are close to my neck of the woods or clients south of the river I don't mind popping in when I'm passing, though further away I'm blitzed till September.
     
  15. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #15
    While I'm based in London, I'm doing the upgrade here in Chicago where I'm from. I bought the CPUs from a server supplier here locally, where I'll run them back over to test.

    I am trying to decide my next move - try another board/tray, or just return the chips even if they're good and just try another pair and hope they work.

    The other thing I could do is try to put in a single processor tray with upgraded cpu, and just bring the machine back over to the UK as stock and take on the upgrade later
     
  16. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #16
    I had a thought occur to me. Is there any chance there's an issue with the firmware flash to 5,1 that means that these x5680s don't post in my system?

    When I went to system profiler, it shows my machine as a 5,1. I assume that means the EFI is up-to-date to accept the hex core xeons, but maybe that explains why they don't boot in my system? Thoughts?
     
  17. MacVidCards Suspended

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    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #17
    I would say that there is 90% chance that the CPUs are fine.

    I kept thinking my 5680s were dead then I realized me flashing PC used same socket. Tested both and they were fine there. So I knew it was operator error.

    I think you were only using 1 stick of RAM, I think you should use 4. Consider that a sign of not tightening enough is that certain RAM slots don't grt connected. So if the 1 slot you have populated is the invisible one....no boot. If you ever get 5680 booting again, move forward, don't undo it.

    I was certain that I had bad 5680s but in reality it was just improper tightening, they have been fine for awhile now.
     
  18. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #18
    OK, with CPU A alone I gave up.

    Put dual original processors - system is pristine running condition.

    To be sure, I went down to 4,1 firmware, then re-flashed the firmware to 5,1 to make sure there wasn't a corruption there.

    still pristine system

    Went back and installed CPU B x5680, so dual x5680.

    First power button, solid white light, gentle fans, no red light of death on CPUs, but no boot screen and no chime.

    I only have so much hair to pull out, ideas??? Should I give up on these x5680s and return them, assuming they work, but not in my system???????
     
  19. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2011
    #19
    Back to original spec. Thinking of trying to return the cpu and trying another pair.

    welcome any ideas
     
  20. MacVidCards Suspended

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    #20
    I was only able to proceed when i gave up on "b" and just tried "a'.

    When I did get it running at first it would only see 1 or 2 of the RAM slots. Kept tightening incrementally until all 4 showed up.

    Then I moved on to "b"

    Was quite some time before I got a dual boot, then longer still until all 4 slots showed up. Not a fun upgrade but if you get "A" to show up again, DON"T UNDO IT. Just move on to B.

    Do you have access to a Single CPU tray from a 4,1?

    Would be the best way to make sure they work.

    Maybe find a Single CPU 4,1 on CL, buy it as a test machine and sell it again once done.

    The single CPU takes less than 10 minutes to switch, especially since you already have the wrench. It would end the "is the CPU good" uncertainty.
     
  21. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    Sagittarius A*
    #21
    Yes rather far away from me in London all the way over there!

    My o'clock method I should have clarified more - instead of using quarter turns as a guide I use hours as increments for tightening. 90 degrees is three times too much to find that sweet bong music.
     
  22. CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #22
    thanks for replies

    I was thinking I could buy this

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-661-4999-Processor-Board-Quad-Core-Without-Processors-for-Mac-Pro-Early-2009-/201103570650?pt=Motherboards&hash=item2ed2b4f6da

    and do a single processor install to check it. I could also run a 3.46 hex single tray for fun as a option if I didn't sell it on

    Yes, I probably was scared of tightening on too far, as that's obviously the dumbass thing to do. Going from the "too loose" flashing white start straight to he red CPU light near the ram scares me, I didn't want to tighten past having this on plus fan blasting. I was working in hour-two hour of a clock turns, so it seems really hard to find a sweet spot if its there.

    Did anyone else get a red cpu light near the ram when it wouldn't boot yet?

    The ram idea is a good one, I'm sure that's a good idea. I put my 24g (3 of 4 slots) in now, I have to decide whether to have another go tomorrow. I need to decide my next move, given I'm in Chicago for another 3 days, then up in the wilderness for a week, another week in Chicago, and back to London after another week. I may yet take it back with original cpu.

    Also, I'll send that gpu regardless.
     
  23. MacVidCards Suspended

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    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #23
    If you send the 5680s I'll try them in my single CPU board.

    Depends how long you have to return them.

    I'm still too cheap to buy 5690s so I have a W3690 for when I like seeing "3.46" in the CPU speed.

    I would have answer on both chips in less than 15 minutes. (cross country shipping obviously being the issue)
     
  24. 666sheep macrumors 68040

    666sheep

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2009
    Location:
    Poland
    #24
    Looks like you didn't tighten heatsink screws enough.

    You'd need the heatsink as well, what adds another 50 bucks. Buy the whole unit on CL if you can't/don't want to ship CPUs to MVC. This would be cheaper and faster in total.
     
  25. CASLondon, Aug 8, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014

    CASLondon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #25
    Hey, after a bad nights sleep on homesick mexican food and dreaming of crushed pins, I had another go.

    4 sticks ram

    First try, BOOT! CPU A 3.33ghz! But only seeing Ram in slots 3/4! so you were right.

    Going to tighten by the smidge until they show, but things are looking up.

    ARRGH

    pulled tray with CPU A to get 4 sticks of ram, and got back into the bounce btw flashing white front LED and the RED CPU fan blast warning, no more sweet spot. That boot was an illusion, I should have put B on with the ram not showing up on all slots anyway
     

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