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Sazar
07-20-04, 10:50 PM
Since so many people are buying and installing the new AMD Athlon64 based systems into their rigs I thought it might be prudent to have a little write-up to make people's lives easier :)

This is not the be-all end-all of guides, people who have other suggestions/quips please add on to this thread so we can collectively help others getting these systems. Also keep in mind for the most part I refer to athlon64's and athlon FX's as athlon64's cept in the Processor section.

Disclaimer this thread has nothing to do with the general p4 v/s athlon64 debate... please keep that in mind before posting in this thread. That is not my intention and if you are intent on dragging the thread in that direction please consider making a new/separate thread for this purpose if you must.

To make life easier for everyone I will also include a running cost total to allow you to decide what sort of system to go for (the costs are not the bare minimum but close approximations to allow for cost variations, I am not responsible for fluctuations from the time of the writing of this till when you purchase your system)

Power Supply Unit

The P.S.U. is the primary component to keep in mind BEFORE you purchase your motherboard and cpu. This is doubly important if you have a new video card purchase coming up or already have one.

you must have a minimum of 18A on the 12V rail per AMD's specs. With a good enough P.S.U. you might get away with having lower specs. My P.S.U. gives my 27A on the 12V rail. My old P.S.U. was an antec 400W SL unit and gave me 18A on the 12V rail and I had no problems with it.

Some SFF units have no problems running an athlon64 setup with a lower spec'd P.S.U. but again this probably has more to do with the build quality of the device.

A good P.S.U. can run you over $60. upto around $150 for a really good one.

Chipset

There are multiple chipset available for the athlon64 platform. In this small write-up I will be concentrating on chipsets available for sockets 754 and 939 only.

Socket 754

For socket 754 you have the via based k8t800 and k8t800pro and derivatives, nvidia based NF3-150 and 250 and derivatives, SiS's chipset comprising at least of the 755 model and ALi's chipset comprising at least of the M1687.

I have not personally dealt with or seen many sales of the latter 2. Given this fact as well as the fact that I know more about the other 2 chipsets I will concentrate primarily on the via and nvidia solutions.

The nf3-250 and via k8t800pro versions are supposedly available with pci/agp locks and therefore are better solutions for overclockers who wish to push their athlon64 cpu's to their limits. Keep in mind that some versions of the boards have been reported as having floating locks (primarily the cheaper nf3-250's and k8t800pro's).

In my personal opinion I would consider the nf3-250 higher-end derivatives (with GbE) first and foremost before the others. I personally have a k8t800 board and have not had any problems with it. Raw performance is satisfactory and it overclocks well, though not having a pci/agp lock I have no pushed the fsb much above 210mhz for an extended period of time.

I would not recommend the nf3-150 simply due to the fact that it only has an 8-bit upstream HyperTransport bus (HTT) (and speed of 600mhz) instead of full 16bit (800mhz) bus. Overall there will be minor performance losses in many areas but I just don't see a reason to buy this board when the nf3-250, k8t800 and k8t800pro boards have full speed upstream/downstream HTT bus's.

The price for a decent nf3-250/k8t800/k8t800pro board will start around $85 but it might be an idea to shell out a little more for a better board. Consider a budget of between $100-$130

Any of the big boys will be a good purchase.

Socket 939

Unfortunately thus far there are only 2 chipsets and 3 boards out there for sckt 939 in retail. 2 of them are Via chipsets (k8t800pro) and one is based off Nvidia's nf3-250 chipset.

Based on reviews and the experiences of the people on the board I think it is only prudent to recommend the Asus A8V board and the Gigabyte K8N boards. The Abit AV8 board apparently still has problems.

Cost for these boards is obviously higher than their sckt 754 cousins. The starting price is around the $120 range and goes up over $200 for the Gigabyte board on some sites. So I'll just stick $120-$220 as a guideline.

Processor

Finally we get to the processor you say :)

Well there is a good reason for this. It is better to have a good idea of what kind of basic costs and requirements there exist BEFORE you get to the processor because then you can work around the budget you need.

Anyways, as with the motherboards, there are 2 different processor types for AMD's athlon64 lineup. Socket's 754 and 939.

Socket 754

Socket 754 has 2 versions of cpu's, the Newcastle based cpu has a smaller L2 cache at 512KB. The Clawhammer revision has a larger L2 cache at 1MB.

The lineup consists of the 2800+, 3000+, 3200+, 3400+ and 3700+ revisions.

Costs range from around $170 for the 2800+ to a premium of around $650 for the 3700+. So lets say the price variance depending on model is between $170-$650 for the sake of this write-up.

Socket 939

Socket 939 also has 2 revisions. The Newcastle cored version basically consist of the 3500+ and 3800+ models. The Sledgegammer based core is reserved for the FX lineup ONLY

The advantage of the Socket 939 core is that the memory is DUAL-CHANNEL v/s single channel for the socket 754 based setup. This equates to a far larger memory-bandwidth and is apparent in memory intensive applications. Games are not one of these areas that really standout although socket 939 based solutions are generally faster than their socket 754 brethren.

The prices for the socket 939 solutions range from over $460 for the 3500+ to around $780 for the FX-53. For the sake of this write-up lets say the variance is between $460-$780.

The advantage of an FX based setup on this chipset is that not only does it have twice as much L2 cache but it also comes with an unlocked multiplier (as do all FX cpu's. Opteron's for socket 940 as the same as FX's but they don't have an unlocked multiplier).

Socket 939 cpu's also have a higher HTT, running at 1000MHz rather than 800MHz for the socket 754 cpu's but in real world tests this has thus far yielded no tangible differnece in performance. I am also not sure about the 3700+, I will post concerning it after I read some more. It might also have 1000MHz HTT.

I highly recommend getting a socket 939 based solution though you may want to hold up for a bit while the new motherboards come out.

Memory Choices

Memory is important when purchasing your system. Since the athlon64 setup has an on-die memory controller it is a lot more finicky than a regular system (such as an AXP or P4 setup). Most motherboard makers list the types of memory that are compatible with their boards so consider double-checking with them. Athlon64 cpu's also have 2 revisions, C0 and CG.

The C0 revision was the first revision and thus far has had some compatibility problems with certain types of RAM running using very tight settings. CG has a reworked memory controller and allows for better compatibility and hence likely better performance.

I highly recommend getting decent memory. Prices vary a lot here and you should probably be able to use the memory from your current system.

For the sake of this write-up I going to list it as being between $0 - $350 for some of the top brands. Naturally I am assuming you are installing 1 gigabyte of memory.

Purchase round-up

This is the basic PURCHASE guide for an athlon64 based system. I am writing an installation guide right after this in the same thread :)

Total cost for an athlon64 system for power supply/motherboard/cpu and memory is:

Minimum = about $320 (assuming you have your own ram)

Maximum = about $1400 (assuming you get the best everything w/o going for the REALLY exotic memory and psu's)

aaahhh52
07-20-04, 11:06 PM
great article very informative :super:

Sazar
07-20-04, 11:25 PM
This part of the guide covers my views on installing and running and Athlon64 based system.

Disclaimer:

Below follows MY guide to installing an athlon64 system. I have only installed 3 of them thus far so I don't claim to be an expert. I also take the better safe than sorry approach. Athlon64's are generally more finicky during installation than any other system I have had but they do install fine and run well per the steps I follow so hopefully they will for you as well.

Installing an athlon64 retention plate

I will assume for the sake of this writeup that you have somewhat of an idea whats going on inside your case, that you have a decent case (ie an ATX case with the proper connectors and of decent size) and that you will take responsibility for your actions.

First off, BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING ELSE stick the retention plate that comes with either the motherboard or the cpu (or both) onto the underside of the motherboard.

This is important since the requisite amount of force for the heatsink on the cpu comes from the retention plates workings. The force stated in AMD's white-paper is 75lb's on the cpu. I know it seems like a lot but the heatspreader can handle it unless you REALLY push down on the lid (which you should not be doing anyways).

Installing the heatsink

This will vary depending on what type of heatsink you have. Some of them fit fine in the stock retail bracket that comes with the retail athlon64 cpu. Once you figure out how the heatsink is installed, you can install the motherboard. Saves you having to pull the motherboard out once you already have it sitting inside.

Most motherboard makers adhere to AMD's specified "clear zone" around the processor and most heatsinks for the athlon64 cpu fit within this zone. Make sure your prefered heatsink fits and does not damage any of the capacitors around the cpu socket.

Oh, and MAKE SURE you have the heatsink on the right-way :)

Installing the athlon64 processor

Simply drop the cpu into the socket and lock it in place. Simple and painless. Do this before or after you install the heatsink bracket, it doesn't matter much. Just a personal preference and a convenisnce factor.

Once the cpu is in, apply necessary thermal paste and attach heatsink.

WARNING

Some heatsinks that don't use the athlon64 heatsink bracket don't have good installation clips and MAY crack the lid if you screw them down too tightly. Some heatsink makers like swiftech offer spring loaded screws that prevent this from happening. Keep this in mind before you start turning those screws, it could be an unpleasant surprise.

The first boot

Okies, time to fire up the baby.

The first thing to do is the install the memory (preferably only 1 memory clip for starters), the ATX and 12v power-supply connectors to the motherboard, the video card (and its additional power as required) and the front-panel connectors (just for power switch for starters though it doesn't matter much). Also don't forget to plug in your heatsink.

Once these basic devices are in, boot. The setup should boot fine. If it does you are almost good to go. Please refrain from using additional devices such as sound cards, other PCI devices, hard drives and the like. For the most part they should not cause problems and the boot should be smooth but IF the system does not boot you have a lot more to trouble-shoot.

Also those with Audigy cards, specially the Audigy1, please do not install your card when booting for the first time if you can help it. These devices have a pretty good record for causing boot-failures the first time and devices boot fine when they are removed. After the first boot they are generally not a problem but PLEASE try not to boot with the Audigy inserted for the first POST.

If the device POST's fine you are good to go. Install all other peripherals and what not, the extra memory and all other devices and enjoy the device.

Installing Cool and Quiet

Finally we get to my personal favorite gimmick with the Athlon64. This only works with windows mind you.

It has to be enabled in the BIOS (and may not be supported on all motherboards) and then requires a windows driver to work. The windows driver can be downloaded (along with other utilities) from here (http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/TechnicalResources/0,,30_182_871_9706,00.html)

Once it is installed, ensure your Power Management settings are set to Minimal Power Management. To get there for windows XP, simply right-click in the desktop, go to Screensaver tab, click on the Power button and voila. From the drop-down box select the aforementioned item and you are good to go.

Download and install the latest version of cpu-z (http://www.cpuid.com/cpuz.php) to check out your new baby and what speed it is running at. When you minimize cpu-z it will minimize to display the current clock speed.

Cool and quiet will run the cpu at a stock 800MHz and per AMD's whitepaper, the clock-speed can vary upto 30 times per second.

Some games have problems with the way they collect clock speed data and may not run smoothly with cool and quiet enabled. Simply go to Power Management and return the system to Home/Office settings and all will be fine.

The conclusion

And there you have it folks. Hopefully more people will add to the little tid-bits I have put forth, specially pertaining to other motherboards.

I have not included an overclocking guide because I personally don't overclock my computer. I may give it a whirl now and then but I don't as a rule overclock.

Riptide
07-20-04, 11:34 PM
Awesome guide! :beer:

One minor correction... The FX53 skt939 is a sledgehammer, not a clawhammer. :)

Sazar
07-20-04, 11:44 PM
Awesome guide! :beer:

One minor correction... The FX53 skt939 is a sledgehammer, not a clawhammer. :)

edited :)

ta..

I just wrote those 2 over the past hour or so hence I can't vouch for any typos :D

Son Goku
07-21-04, 12:27 AM
eh, you obviously spent a lot of work on it... Happens :D

BTW, I think it would be appropriate, especially relating to the purchasing part to give mention to any hardware which has been exceptionally troublesome (such as in rip's case) so peeps can know what to avoid. Also, anything, such as mobos and what not, that people have had good experience with, and are highly recommended, again such experiences might help.

Perhaps a whole litany of probs might not be needed (unless fixes have been found which could help other purchasers), but a breif mention, to help peeps decide on what to or not to buy. After rip's experiences, I know I would not consider that there Abit board for instance...

Sazar
07-21-04, 06:10 PM
a lovely comparison done between various nf3-250 and k8t800pro socket 939 solutions at anandtech :)

http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=2128&p=1

I highly recommend it...

not surprisingly the nf3-250 based MSI K8N Neo2 takes top honors (it has been well-reviewed thus far...

what is a bit more suprising given the problems riptide has had on these forums is that the Abit AV8 won 2nd place in the testing...

Riptide
07-21-04, 07:17 PM
Well FWIW I'm not surprised they had a great experience with it. I am very skeptical of the motherboards sent to some of these reviewers. I believe they cherry pick them, at least some of the time anyway.

That said, I could be doing something wrong with mine. But hell if I can tell what it is... :)

Sazar
07-21-04, 07:20 PM
<USER ERROR>

:cool:

I dunno m8... I wish I could be there to go over a coupla things :)

I love trouble-shooting and it would certainly help if I was physically present and what not...

that said the board should bloody well work out of the box...

Riptide
07-21-04, 07:34 PM
It works out of the box @ stock speeds. Even @ tight timings, as long as you juice the RAM up to 2.8v. The trouble starts when you try to overclock. ;)

Gator
07-23-04, 09:42 AM
I have something to add to this if it hasn't already been mentioned. It's something people seem to get confused about a lot:

Opteron & Athlon64-FX socket 940 requires ECC Registered DDR.
Athlon64 socket 754 & 939 do not require ECC Registered DDR.

Athlon64 socket 754 & 939 can use any type of DDR RAM as low as PC2100. PC3200 or higher is recommended but not required.

Athlon64 socket 754 does not support dual channel memory mode, but yes you can use memory labeled "dual channel" and it'll work fine. All DDR memory is "dual channel" capable with or without a label saying so.

Athlon64 socket 939 does support dual channel memory mode.

Sazar
07-23-04, 10:32 AM
I have something to add to this if it hasn't already been mentioned. It's something people seem to get confused about a lot:

Opteron & Athlon64-FX socket 940 requires ECC Registered DDR.
Athlon64 socket 754 & 939 do not require ECC Registered DDR.

Athlon64 socket 754 & 939 can use any type of DDR RAM as low as PC2100. PC3200 or higher is recommended but not required.

Athlon64 socket 754 does not support dual channel memory mode, but yes you can use memory labeled "dual channel" and it'll work fine. All DDR memory is "dual channel" capable with or without a label saying so.

Athlon64 socket 939 does support dual channel memory mode.

yah.. that was specifically why i wrote the thinger above wrt ONLY socket 754 and 939... both of these socket types are/will be more prevalent in the desktop arena than socket 940's...

by sticking to just socket 754 and 939 it eliminated registered memory from the equation...

Riptide
09-10-04, 11:42 AM
I'm going to regurgitate a few things I learned about the two motherboards I tried to overclock this FX53 with and also a couple things about the process itself.

A quick rundown of the quirks with the two boards I tried:

Abit AV8 Rev 1.0
*Temperature reporting problems. Temps flip flop by 20-30c with each boot cycle. Abit's temp. monitoring software as well as MBM5 both show this problem in Windows as well.
*CPU multiplier remains grayed out even with unlocked processors like the FX.

Abit AV8 Rev 1.1
*Same temp. reporting problem as reported above. Not fixed in the latest BIOS either. Possibly will not be fixed, the board has been out for a while now.
*CPU multiplier option is now ungrayed and working.

MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum
*Temperature reporting problems. Consistently high temps, over 50c reported in BIOS. May be fixed in latest 1.3 BIOS release.
*When loading RAID drivers during F6/Blue Screen portion of XP setup you need to load both the nforce storage controller driver *and* the RAID driver. If you don't, your RAID0 array will be seen as two separate drives by setup.
*When using Mushkin PC3500 L2 (and possibly any other BH5) you must use 2-3-2 timings or BSOD will result in XP.
*If you use Ghost to create images of your system, you will be unable to back it up with the RAID controller on this motherboard if using RAID0. Ghost sees the volume as two separate drives and not one single volume as it should.
*If using the RAID controller your disc drives will show up under the removable hardware icon in the system tray. You will be stuck with that icon as long as you use that controller and have a drive attached.
*Some users, and I experienced this, have seen the Nvidia RAID controller lose the RAID array. You can reboot and it will come up as having an error. Sometimes it will just hang there trying to detect the array. This is before XP even boots. Hitting the reset switch fixes this. This condition also comes up more often when using high FSB/HTT speeds.
*My K8N Neo2 would not coldboot at high FSB/HTT speeds, necessitating the use of clockgen to get around this when I was trying to o/c.
*The layout of the MSI is horrible. The CMOS jumper is in a spot that is very difficult to get at if you have any PCI cards in slot 4 or 5. Using a long pair of needlenose pliars or tweezers is just about the only way to get at it without removing things from your machine.
*MSI only has 500mv increments for vcore, it would've been helpful to have 250mv steps.
*Overclocking results were better with the MSI then with any of the two Abit VIA boards. I was able to obtain 250x9 Prime stable with the Mushkin PC4000 I had @ the time. 250x10 would pass Prime but required 1.65vcore. Unfortunately 3dmark01 would crash back to the desktop with an error. Increasing AGP voltage and turning fastwrites off did NOT help. This is when I gave up for good.

Phew, that out of the way here are some things I found as I tried to overclock.

I started with the Abit AV8 revision 1.0 and Mushkin PC3500 Level 2. The system would pass memtest at up to 217x12 for over 8 hours. 2-3-2-10-1T timings, 2.8vDIMM. Try and boot into Windows get a BSOD. Increasing vcore up to 1.65v did not help. Dropped FSB all the way back to 208x12 and it would boot, and Prime (w/1.65vcore) OK, but 3dmark03 locked up hard or crashed to desktop complaining about losing focus on the window. AGP voltage increase did not help. Didn't try turning off fastwrites. Had HTT divider set to x4.

Got the AV8 revision 1.1. Setting a multiplier of 13 (200x13=2,600mhz) and the system would not pass Prime even with voltage up to 1.65. I tried 1.7 briefly, it did not help. Tried the same settings as above, 208fsb vDIMM 2.8v and vcore 1.65v. 2-3-2-10-1T. Same thing, system passes Prime but would not run 3d applications without a crash. Didn't try turning off fastwrites. Had HTT divider set to x4 again.

Gave up on the Abit and waited for MSI to come out with their Nforce3 board. Got that installed and was able to get 250x9 stable. Using different RAM, turns out my Mushkin PC3500 was defective. Exchanged for PC4000. At 250x9 it would Prime but for some reason I still had to raise vcore to 1.65v or it would fail. The CPU was not overclocked so I don't know why it was fussy like that. Didn't actually try 3d apps at 250x9 since that was not what I really wanted. The memory did test out OK though. 3-4-4-8-1T, 2.7vdimm. I tried for 250x10, and it did Prime OK but 3dmark01 crashed to desktop or locked. vcore was 1.65, vdimm 2.8, 3-4-4-8-1T x3 HTT divider.
This is when I gave up and decided it just wasn't going to work.

I gave it one more twirl when I put the Abit rev 1.1 back in. I had PC4000 memory this time, that had already tested a-OK. In fact, I was able to Prime OK with the MSI at 260x9 so the RAM is good that high (2.8vdimm). Unfortunately, this new RAM made no difference. The Abit was still extremely unstable when I attempted to push the FSB/HTT. Even at these settings:
3-4-4-8-1T, 2.8vDIMM
240x10
x3 HTT divider
1.65vcore

The system was still unstable and would fail Prime within minutes. Much worse then the MSI. The above settings should've been just fine. But alas, it refused to play nicely. :(
Then I gave up for good. End of story. Overclocking takes more luck then I apparently have.

A few notes:
*If overclocking a higher end AMD64 CPU like the FX, expect it to get HOT when you start adding vcore. Load CPU temps are (approx) 44c at stock voltage/speeds. Adding an additional .15v (1.65vcore) caused load temps to approach 65c! This was with my Zalman 7000cu. The thermalright slk948u w/enermax 90mm did not do much better. PLAN ON WATER if you want to push an FX very far, unless you are real lucky and get a great overclocker.
*Athlon64 boards, or at least socket939 boards, are extremely finicky with regard to RAM. Take two sticks that worked just fine with your canterwood system and they may not overclock at all with your new socket939 machine. In some cases it may take multiple exchanges to find a set of sticks your motherboard "likes". That same set of sticks may not work well in another motherboard of the EXACT SAME TYPE/MODEL. Yes, this is how fussy they are and I am not exagerrating. It can be a real PITA.
*When overclocking there were times I had to add vcore when it would seem to be not needed. At 250x9 my FX53 was actually underclocked vs. stock yet the system would NOT prime unless I added more vcore. This doesn't seem to make much sense but I proved it. Even w/vDIMM at 2.8 it took more vcore before it would pass Prime.
*When overclocking it is a good idea to keep detailed notes of all the voltages/timings/settings for all test runs you have done to start narrowing down what works and what won't. From my experience, combinations that should've worked fine often did NOT. The only way to eliminate the bad ones and figure out what the system will tolerate is to test, test, and test some more. And keep those notes.

Last thing... If I were buying a board right now and had to start over from scratch I would get the Asus A8V rev. 2.00. This board is one of the few out there with no temperature reporting problems and it doesn't seem to have nearly the quirks that the others have. Early revision A8V boards required a beta BIOS to get working agp/pci locks. Fixed this in rev. 2.00. I am not certain the the agp/pci lock works properly with my Abit. At this point I don't care since I'm finished with trying to overclock. ;)

As for nforce3... Gator really likes his gigabyte. I can't speak much of it though as I have no experience with it.

I hope all of this comes in handy for someone at some point. :)

ThunderBob
09-10-04, 02:11 PM
Just a word to say that Abit have a bios on there FTP site for the AV8 (Bios 1.3) that isnt listed on the website. This has sorted out the instability i was having and has also allowed me to get higher oc's on the cpu :)

Would advise anyone with an AV8 to upgrade to this bios AV8 1.3 (ftp://ftp.abit.com.tw/pub/download/bios/av8/av813.exe)

__________________
AMD64 3500+ @2.6
Abit AV8
1GB Corsair TwinX 4000 (2x512)
Gainward 6800 Ultra @445Core/1.2Ram
Creative Audigy 2
2xWestern Digital Raptor 10K in RAID0
Plextor 712A DVDR
Asetek Watercooling(CPU+NB)
DD 6800 Cooler

Riptide
09-10-04, 03:21 PM
Thanks for the heads up, I already had that loaded though. Still unstable if I attempt an overclock. Temps are still screwed up as well.

Sixgunzx2
10-01-04, 04:16 PM
Norton Ghost
If ghosting from an IDE drive to Sata Raid0 you need to go to options and check the _fni feature....this ignores IDE settings and sees your Raid0 drives as a single drive....
If you dont it will see only one drive....not a raid0 setup

LiquidX
10-20-04, 01:30 PM
Excellent write up Sazar, it answerd most of my questions which I was looking for answers to.

bkswaney
10-21-04, 12:43 AM
Nice.... it helped me out. :D

Idoru
10-21-04, 01:23 PM
Anyone opting for an ASUS A8V might find the following BIOS tips helpful:

1. To get my RAM running at the advertised SPD timings of 2-2-2-5, I had to change Memclock Mode to Manual and then set it at 2:1 DDR400.

2. I was still getting a low (4900 rather than 5900) score in Sandra 2004; to resolve that, I had to set 2T Command to Disabled (ignore what the manual says about only two settings Auto and Enabled - if Memclock Mode is set to Manual, the Disabled option will be there).

All other Memory Configuration settings on Auto/default. My board is Rev1.2, BIOS 1003 (w/ Athlon64 3500 & 1GB RAM).

However, someone might be able to tell me what DDR Voltage defaults to when set to Auto...I've run a few cycles of MemTest without any errors, but I suspect I ought to be running 2.8V with my Corsair XMS RAM.

CaptNKILL
10-24-04, 11:08 AM
This looks like as good a place as any to ask this, but its really important for me (and im sure many others) when buying a new nForce board.

With an nForce 3 board, do you guys use the normal sound drivers\nvmixer? Or do you have to use realtek ones? If you use the nvidia drivers\nvmixer, please list the outputs that you have available on the tab where you select "2 speakers", "4 speakers" etc..

This is really important because as of right now, I know the ALC850 (or whatever realtek chip these boards have) doesnt do Dolby DIGITAL encoding. BUT, Im having trouble finding any information about Dolby Pro Logic encoding (which is done through a single analog jack, but gives you 4 channel output). My Soundstorm supports this, in the output selection box its labeled "4 speakers (dolby surround)" and when I select it I get a Dolby Surround - Pro Logic logo at the bottom left corner of the window.

If you guys can test this I'll really really really really appreciate it. This applies to anyone with an nForce 3 chipset motherboard.

BTW, its so important because with my system (along with many many others) theres no way to get surround sound without Dolby Pro Logic output.

Sazar
10-24-04, 12:05 PM
probably gonna spend some time next weekend updating the guide/guides and adding more info.. the tech evolves continually and so must this thread...

anyone else's contributions will be greatly appreciated as well :cool:

gonna bug mike and the mods'/smods if they might be able to squeeze a new/updated guide post near the top of the thread so its convenient...

Son Goku
10-24-04, 07:49 PM
gonna bug mike and the mods'/smods if they might be able to squeeze a new/updated guide post near the top of the thread so its convenient...

If it comes to it, you could always edit your original post (as it's the first in this thread) and place your update at the top. Then just give it a few newlines, and place a line under it like such

------------------------------------------

to seperate the new stuff from the old. If you do this however, you might want to also make a post towards the end, to point out to others that the update is at the beginning of the thread, and hence to look for it there...

CaptNKILL
10-24-04, 10:58 PM
Anyone have an answer to my post above? Anyone that has an nForce 3 can do it, please check.

OCForums_Osirus
11-30-04, 09:19 PM
You might want to edit your Socket 939 section to include the Winchester Core, the 3000+ and 3200+ and 3500+ chips all use the Winchester core.

You might want to also add in the chipset section for Socket 939 the nForce 3 Ultra, and nForce 4 SLI (soon to be released)

kami
12-06-04, 06:19 AM
Few MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum (bios 1.3) notes

1. The FBS-lock does not work on SATA-1 and SATA-2. If you want to overclock using the FSB, make sure to move your HD's to SATA-3 and 4. Also: if you have a drive that enables NQC (like the Maxtor DiamondMax 10), make sure to plug this drive into SATA-3 and 4. There have a been a lot of reports of coldboot failures with these drives on SATA-1 and 2

2. Never, ever enable Optimized/Aggresive timings in the DRAM-configurator. So far it has been the no1 cause for instability on several forums.

3. Dual channel = Dimm1 + Dimm2. Green and purple. Do not place your mem in banks 1 and 3 (like you would do in a Intel based system) if you want dual channel.

4. Fast writes: if you are overclocking your videocard and experience temporarely freezes or other hickups in games, disable fast writes in the bios. This completely resolved my issues with my 6800GT @ 425/1150.

5. If you are overclocking using the HT-frequencies or multiplier make sure HT is running at 1000mhz max. Anything above that will probably cause instability.

6. The AGP-lock only works at 67. If you plan to overclock your FSB, set the ATP-clock to 67. If you don't, you might get system errors due to videocard failure.