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Need advice on a good mobo

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  • Motherboards
  • Cooling
  • Overclocking
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January 19, 2010 12:09:58 PM

Hello :) 

Need some advice on a good solid motherboard capable for overclocking and also to get the best performance out of my current processor. At the moment I have a entry-level motherboard so I haven't overclocked my processor just for safety of my motherboard and cpu, below you will see my specs for my current build.

And I've built this pc myself so I'm no novice :D 

My specs:

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 940 Quad-Core (Black Edition) @ 3Ghz
CPU Cooler: Stock Cooler (Looking into getting a better cooler)
Motherboard: ECS-GF8100VM-M5 (NVidia Chipset nForce 720a)
RAM: 2Gb Single Channel DDR2 SDRAM (PC2-6400 800Mhz)
Case Cooling: Cooler Master Storm Scout w/ two additional fans on the side panel
Graphics Card: NVidia GeForce 8400 GS

I have come accross two motherboards that's taken to my eye, and both are within my budget but can't come to a final conclusion which will do the trick in hand.

MSI 790FX-GD70
Gigabyte GA-MA790XT-UD4P


Though this may be off-subject but will a AM3 socket accept a AM2+ processor as my prcoessor only fits in a AM2+ socket ?

Also any suggestions on motherboards will be greatly appreciated :D 

Thanks in advanced,
benny

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a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 3:06:22 PM

The 790x is a superb overclocker. I used it in a build not too long ago and it screams, specially with the 940....
January 19, 2010 3:08:48 PM

OvrClkr said:
The 790x is a superb overclocker. I used it in a build not too long ago and it screams, specially with the 940....


Any places where I could get it as I live in the UK i've tried Scan.co.uk but no luck...
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 3:25:27 PM

Does your ecs m/b not have a user configurable bios ? There no reason if it does not to experiment now.
January 19, 2010 3:33:01 PM

It does as soon as i fitted the new processor it gave me a new menu to alter the multiplier but, I tried to overclock to 3.50Ghz but can't seem to find the correct Vcore voltage to make it stable. Also I did a stress test on it when I overclocked it using prime95 and it lasted 2 hours and 15 minutes before two cores failed with rounding errors and I've read around about rounding errors and it comes down to Vcore.

Any ideas ?
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 3:45:26 PM

OvrClkr might, he's a AMD guru. Your cpu is 3.00ghz, so go for 3.4, play with things from there. Little multi, and changing fsb ?
January 19, 2010 3:49:09 PM

notty22 said:
OvrClkr might, he's a AMD guru. Your cpu is 3.00ghz, so go for 3.4, play with things from there. Little multi, and changing fsb ?



Any ideas where I would find the FSB on my bios, its the AMI Bios, also would 3.4ghz run on stock voltage ? as default setting for this processor is 1.350v
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 4:00:35 PM

Yes, first off you should see your FSB on the same Bios page as the CPU frequency and voltages. Not sure if 3.4Ghz will run on stock voltage, you need to first make sure your ram timings/voltage and frequency are set as specified by the manufacturer before you do any overclocking, this is necessary for maximum stability. After you take care of the ram you can try upping the multiplier a bit while leaving the CPU voltage on AUTO. But AUTO is not recommended since the board will supply more voltage than needed. My sugestion would be to manually key in all the values instead of leaving them on AUTO. Let me know if you hit a wall =)

Just like notty said, play with your voltages till you find your sweet spot. As long as you do not over-volt the CPU you have nothing to worrry about....

Raising the FSB will also raise the RAM and CPU frequency so don't get carried away since this function does not neccesarily make the overclock more stable, some just like to raise the FSB to squeeze a bit more speed (RAM-wise)....

1.35v should be more than enough voltage for 3.4Ghz ;) 
January 19, 2010 4:10:17 PM

Thank you OvrClkr :)  I'll give it a shot and see what the outcome is and I'll defiantly let you know, shall I run a stress test or not once I've overclocked ?
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 4:37:06 PM

Yes but first I would write down all the values (settings) that you manually key in. This way if you decide to push it a lil further you still have the settings that worked prior to the second overclock. This is neccesary since it is most likely that you will get a BSOD and you will need to revert to the previous settings =)
January 19, 2010 5:19:08 PM

OvrClkr said:
Yes but first I would write down all the values (settings) that you manually key in. This way if you decide to push it a lil further you still have the settings that worked prior to the second overclock. This is neccesary since it is most likely that you will get a BSOD and you will need to revert to the previous settings =)


I haven't done much changing to be honest, other than the voltage which when i enable the multiplier its set at 1.550 which way too high for start so i lowed it too 1.350 default setting, and then change the multiplier to 3.4Ghz. So I'll give a stress test now, any ideas on how long i should leave the stress on for ?
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 19, 2010 6:16:22 PM

bennyy007 said:
I haven't done much changing to be honest, other than the voltage which when i enable the multiplier its set at 1.550 which way too high for start so i lowed it too 1.350 default setting, and then change the multiplier to 3.4Ghz. So I'll give a stress test now, any ideas on how long i should leave the stress on for ?


Try blend testing for at least a few hours. Then later on you can test with LARGE FFT's for another few hours and you should be fine. I normally test for at least 12 hours when I am done with a build, best way to do this is let the PC running at night and check in the morning after you wake up ;) 
January 20, 2010 6:29:20 AM

OvrClkr said:
Try blend testing for at least a few hours. Then later on you can test with LARGE FFT's for another few hours and you should be fine. I normally test for at least 12 hours when I am done with a build, best way to do this is let the PC running at night and check in the morning after you wake up ;) 



Just reporting back :)  And I was successful and I did both tests Blend and LARGE FFT did both for 6 hours and everything went smoothly all cores remained active none failed! So thank you OvrClkr :D 

Now all I need to do is get myself some good RAM in there :lol: 
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 3:17:25 PM

bennyy007 said:
Just reporting back :)  And I was successful and I did both tests Blend and LARGE FFT did both for 6 hours and everything went smoothly all cores remained active none failed! So thank you OvrClkr :D 

Now all I need to do is get myself some good RAM in there :lol: 


Sweet ;) 
January 20, 2010 3:20:41 PM

Any ideas why I can't get my mobo to accept two ram sticks ? only seems to work with one but two it just won't boot not even show bios-post...
January 20, 2010 3:25:47 PM

is that necessary when they are brand new, only brought them today quite odd...
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 3:58:00 PM

yes, just to make sure that you do not have any bad sticks, ram manufacturers will send out faulty sticks every now n then... I have had my share with OCZ in the past.. Now I only buy G.Skill or Mushkin...

Do you have both sticks under the same color?
January 20, 2010 4:00:42 PM

Yeah brought them as a pair not separate, but pc seems to be running alot quicker even with one in although not forgetting the overclocked processor so i'm happy for now but tomorrow i'll look into getting it sorted so i can get playing with 4gigs ;) 
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 4:05:49 PM

What I meant is when you install the ram, both sticks must be under the same color (slot) in order for them to run in dual channel =)
January 20, 2010 4:07:55 PM

Oh sorry lol yeah they both the same colour slots, its one of those boards where you only have two slots mines a micro-atx board.
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 4:22:40 PM

Did you try reseating them, and switching them ? If they both seem to work independently maybe you need a little more voltage or a little timing (less) tweak to get the pair going.
January 20, 2010 4:39:11 PM

I did that quite a lot with reseating them since i brought them took up most of the day til i gave up earlier :| as I couldn't bothered messing with a pc all night lol, that said what voltage/timing would you recommend here's a link to the ram i have:

http://www.pqigroup.com/product2.asp?oid=40&cate1=164&P...

Doesn't really say what the recommended voltage is or it's predefined voltage is, so it doesn't really help...
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 5:12:15 PM

Everest will give you the exact specs of your RAM =)
January 20, 2010 5:37:45 PM

Thank you I'll have a ganza in there and see what I can dig out, thanks again OvrClkr you've been a big help!
January 20, 2010 6:39:15 PM

Thanks,

Just had a look not long ago and shows up a modular voltage 1.8v pretty much same as the bios gives me so why would the bios not be recognizing the two as a pair? But the bios is ok if it's still just by itself, and in the bios i've got the RAM voltage set to 1.88 (default setting)...
a b V Motherboard
a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2010 6:59:22 PM

Ok do this, test with one stick at a time and make sure you test both slots, if both sticks work then it is most likely that one of your ram slots is dead. If one module wont let you boot to windows then it is time for a replacement =)
January 20, 2010 7:03:20 PM

I take it you mean replacement board if so then I kinda knew it would come down to that at some point, not only that I'll be spending more than expected due to the fact that my current monitor is failing and if i have a dead ram slot then god knows how much I'll be spending :( 
January 20, 2010 7:06:01 PM

On that note I think i might just give that test a shot now and see if I get anywhere sooner I know the better, I'll let you know what comes up (hopefully good news rather than bad news)
!