I am not writing this post from the new system and now I'll tell you all why.
I received the parts all apparently properly wrapped and sealed and undamaged, and spent an entire afternoon carefully assembling it. When I fired it up, nothing happened. No system beeps. Fans were running. Not a sound, not a peep. BIOS was obviously NOT posting.
I pulled the CMOS battery for a minute, then reinserted it and fired it up again. No change.
I was forced to conclude that I had a DOA motherboard, so I patiently and carefully deinstalled everything, packed up the board, filed an RMA with newegg (it was approved) and shipped it back.
Within a week I had a new motherboard, and this time, instead of reassembling the entire thing, I added only that which needed adding; namely, a system speaker and the power rails (both the main and 12V). Again, nothing. I pulled the motherboard out of the case and placed it inside the cardboard box it came from, to ensure there was no chance of a short between the case and the board. Again, no sound from the system speaker, which should've been tweeting its little circuit off at the lack of essential equipment. Again, I pulled the CMOS battery for a minute then reinstalled it. No change.
I also noticed that, upon trying to reinstall the processor, it was rocking instead of falling into the pin holes solidly as it should. Further inspection showed a very queer set if pins that were bent. Off-center and not where you'd expect them to be bent if the chip was installed incorrectly (which I had not done).
I filed RMAs on both the board and the processor, got approval, and sent them both back.
They sent out a new board and refused to replace the processor despite the queerness of the damage to the pins. I was advised to contact the manufacturer for a replacement.
I just got the damaged CPU back today. I called up the AMD website and registered, then went to put the box label under a magnifier to make sure I copied the OPN and SN correctly off the label before I filed the RMA.
First problem I had. The box clearly states that it's an AMD Phenom II Black Edition. The OPN is for a Phenom II X4 965, which is what it says on the label. Now why don't the box and the label match up? The processor was marketed as an AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX. It is not a Black Edition, though it is a Phehom II X4. This would run me into further trouble trying to file the RMA with AMD. I typed in the OPN, then the SN, and their website said the two did not match with their records.
Does newegg buy parts in big lots? Could this have been part of a bad lot that was recalled? Could this be a fake processor, and that's why the numbers nor the box/product match up?
All I know is I've been screwed and somebody better either replace this processor or refund my money so I can get a new one. Not bothering with the board till I have a clean processor to put into it. I am also suspecting that this chip was damaged somewhere along the line and the damage was hidden by someone carefully bending pins back - only once those pins are bent, they're shot, and it'll just show further down the line. This box has a label that is apparently an AMD sealed box, so was it damaged in creation and became part of a recalled lot, resulting in the OPN/SN combination not being in AMD's site records?
I am hoping AMD can shed further light on this situation, because by golly I am going to have this new system up and running in July if it kills me.
x-posted to personal blog.