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SSD/Mobo Advice

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December 21, 2011 2:46:07 PM

I have 2x Corsair Force GT SATA 3 drives that I am running on the 2 6g connectors on my Asus Rampage III Black edition motherboard. My problem is intermittent system instability and Corsair told me that the Marvell controllers are very buggy. Is this true and should I consider a PCIe 6g controller and if so, which one?

I also have a new Gigabye 990FX Motherboard and an AMD FX processor which I ran for a while and then reinstalled the ASUS/core i7 extreme. I read a lot of reviews about the FX being a huge dissapoinbtment so so I went back to intel. The upside of the 990FX board is that all the connectors are 6g and it just seems like it might be a better board. The downside is that the AMD FX would probably be trounced by my core i7 extreme (gulftown) unless I overclock it, which isn't outside the realm of possibility since I have a liquid cooling system.

Any advice?

More about : ssd mobo advice

December 21, 2011 4:03:58 PM

pseguin said:
I have 2x Corsair Force GT SATA 3 drives that I am running on the 2 6g connectors on my Asus Rampage III Black edition motherboard. My problem is intermittent system instability and Corsair told me that the Marvell controllers are very buggy. Is this true and should I consider a PCIe 6g controller and if so, which one?

I also have a new Gigabye 990FX Motherboard and an AMD FX processor which I ran for a while and then reinstalled the ASUS/core i7 extreme. I read a lot of reviews about the FX being a huge dissapoinbtment so so I went back to intel. The upside of the 990FX board is that all the connectors are 6g and it just seems like it might be a better board. The downside is that the AMD FX would probably be trounced by my core i7 extreme (gulftown) unless I overclock it, which isn't outside the realm of possibility since I have a liquid cooling system.

Any advice?


wow so i just typed up a long message, went to hit control-c to copy before submitting, needless to say that you saw the result of that! haha, Dang it

SO:

How do you know its a problem with the motherboard?

Corsair Tech Support Script:
"so from what you are explaining, it appears that its obviously a problem with the [Enter Motherboard manufacturer here] Motherboard, i recommend that you call them."

So you call Asus, Asus Tech Support Script:
"Well there are no known issues with this, asus would not sell a sub-par product and its very apparent that the problem is with the [Enter SSD mfg here] Drives and you need to call them, maybe they have updated firmware or drivers."

Basically these low level support are going to try to get you taken care of quickly so if they can pawn it off on the next guy, they are going to do exactly that. Your better off googling around to see if other users have experienced the same thing. as in, are users with your same motherboard having problems with your or any other SSD/HDD? or are users with your Corsair SSD's having problems with any motherboard manufacturer? It seems unlikely that the problem would be ONLY between that specific motherboard and hard drive as there are plenty of SSD's using that sandforce chipset and on the flip side, many motherboards with identical chipsets which is ultimately what it boils down to.

So how did you determine that the problem is the hard drives? When you say "intermittent system instability" what exactly does this mean? Does the computer skip or stutter/lock up temporarily or does it lock up completely requiring you to physically reboot? Does it restart the system on its own or give you a BSOD? Have you noticed any rhyme or reason to the instability? As in can you replicate the problem or does it happen when your using any specific applications/games or when you have any external devices such as an external HDD or Thumb drive? Also you mention 2 drives but do not mention if that means they are configured in a RAID-0/1 or if they are standalone drives as that is very important.
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a c 115 G Storage
December 21, 2011 4:22:43 PM

It's well known that ya get better speeds off the Intel controllers....in fact it was long recommended to use the Intel 3 Gbps over the Marvell 6 Gbps over ta Benchmarkreviews.com

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

P8P67 boards give ya 2 6Gbps ports via P67......one of the main reasons to pick SB over the 1366 boxes sometimes even in workstations.

Quote:
Basically these low level support are going to try to get you taken care of quickly so if they can pawn it off on the next guy, they are going to do exactly that.


Sooooo true ...... their job is not to solve ya problem but to get ya off the phone. One of the reasons, all things being equal, I try and match as many components as possible with the same manufacturer......i.e Antec Case / PSU .... Corsair Case / PSU ..... Asus MoBo , GFX cards, Optical.....Same w/ Gigabyte or MSI ....then they can't toss ya off the phone. I won't give up performance mind you but all things being equal, it has made my life easier when calling TS.
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December 21, 2011 5:12:12 PM

Lol jgutz, I was just going to ask what the heck 'c' meant, lol.

Jack nails it on the head I think. I've been reading the the Marvell controller is garbage. My point is that I have these brand spanking new SATA 6g SSD's and SATA 6g hard drives and putting them on SATA 3g seems like such a waste.

To answer the question of stability, I get random freezes, blue screens, and one or both SSD's not recognized by BIOS until I power off and on the machine. This has happened with multiple motherboards for the Gulftown CPU by the way, which seems to indicate that the Marvell is a PoS.

Basically what Corsair told me was that the AMD 990FX was way better and that I could sacrifice a little CPU performance (FX8150 vs Gulftown) and have SATA 6g or keep what I have and retain a slight edge in CPU performance but suffer slightly in that the drives are all on SATA 3g connectors.

Oh, and forgive my ignorance, but I just thought that since I was buying an Intel motherboard, I was getting Intel controllers. I guess Marvell is a 3rd party solution for them to offer SATA 6g on these things?

Is there a better motherboard that has Intel SATA 6g connectors and is compatible with the Gulftown or should I go in favor of the 8150FX/990FX combo?
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December 22, 2011 12:58:54 AM

So what BSOD are you getting? (GET the 0x000000## where the last 2 hexidecimal digits after the 6 zeros are the important piece)

Also check out your Windows event log, I'm guessing that you would be getting some errors reported here as windows should be able to detect this fairly easily, Check for Event ID: 11 with the Source as "Disk" or "ATAPI" but obviously its not limited to that, just an example.

I'm still not convinced that this is an issue between the controller and SSD, or that this is the only source of your problems. I assume that you used the same RAM with this other motherboard as well, is this accurate? If so it would make sense you experienced the same issues. You used multiple motherboards which is good, but what was the 2nd motherboard? did it have the same chipset and RAID controller? Ohh and you still never specified that you are or are not using RAID with these drives.

Obviously if you do see disk/controller related Events, You probably found the problem but if not; it still sounds like RAM could very easily be a culprit, doesn't let Crucial off the hook but you can easily eliminate RAM with "Memtest86". Also Would you give it a shot with using just 1 of your DIMMs at a time? Then if you get the instability, take that one out and try the next one etc.

I would be willing to put money down on the fact that the "AMD 990FX is better" is not an official stance or partnership between Crucial and AMD but simply a biased opinion by a low level customer service employee! I love AMD and i'm a huge fan/supporter (Have a pair of HP DL385G7's with 8-core Opterons, a couple Fusion/Llano Systems, Tri and Quad core Phenom/PhenomII's etc) but as you can see from my forum signature, even though i prefer AMD, i'm not a fanboy and ignorantly biased.

Your Corsair Force GT's specifically claim they are backward compatible and your standard HDD's, even if they are SATA 6Gbps, cannot max out a 3Gbps connection, So if you find out that compatibility is not a problem or you do fix the problem, I would say take your time and upgrade your system when your ready
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December 22, 2011 6:47:36 PM

Well it's not always a BSOD, sometimes the system just freezes and I have to reboot and then it won't see the drives on the Marvell controller until I power off and on.

Yes, I used this same RAM and I did run memtest on it overnight and it showed no errors. The 2nd motherboard was a Gigabyte X58 board (forgot the model number).

BTW, you keep mentioning Crucial, but it's Corsair. But, yeah I see where you're coming from. They are probably right as far as the chipset and controllers though. the 990FX has all SATA 6g and no SATA 3g controllers at all.

So I guess I am left with the choice of moving the SSD's to the 3g connectors or switch back out to the 990FX/AMD FX 8150 combo. Oh, and I use the drives in RAID0.
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January 1, 2012 6:22:48 PM

Best answer selected by pseguin.
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