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Xeon E5620 compatible X58 motherboard required

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October 31, 2011 11:09:01 AM

Hello :) 

I've acquired an E5620 processor, which as far as I am aware has a reputation for being good for a stable and cool 3.8GHz when overclocked.

Problem is, trying to find X58 motherboards that this will work with right out of the box is proving to be a bit of a minefield for me as a lot of the information on motherboard manufacturers' websites on Xeon support is pretty vague.

I'm currently running an old Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.4GHz Galletin, and whilst I am aware that most of the gumph in this machine will need to go, there is a Modular Tech DAB PCI card that I'd like to use on the X58 board, and if the on-board sound isn't too good I also already have an old Creative Labs Soundblaster Audigy 2 ZS Platinum Pro (complete with the little audio rack box thing) that could be utilised if there was a second free PCI port.

So far I've quite liked the sound of the Asus Rampage III Black Edition because it comes bundled with a PCIe sound card (and bluetooth 3.0 which could be pretty useful with connecting to my iPhone and gives me some wireless keyboard/mice options), although not sure how well the Asus sound card stacks up against say my Fiio F5/F7 DAC/headphone amp solution for example - plus I guess it is a very expensive board!!


Toms Hardware did a feature with a Rampage III Formula being used to overclock a Xeon 5620, so providing the board is supplied with at least the same version of BIOS as that used in that article, then that's at least one X58 board that works with the E5620 - anyone have any other recommendations? (The ASUS P6X58-E Pro and Sapphire X58 Pure Black look nice boards but I don't know anything about Xeon compatibility with these two boards).



Thanks in advance guys :) 
a c 121 V Motherboard
October 31, 2011 6:59:35 PM

EVGA SR-2 :D 

You can run it with 1 or both chips...
a b V Motherboard
October 31, 2011 7:58:53 PM

itzdanielp said:
EVGA SR-2 :D 

You can run it with 1 or both chips...


holy ish, that is a monster board.
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October 31, 2011 8:11:45 PM

Thanks, but the SR-2 is a bit out of my price range - and it won't fit my beautiful Antec P182SE case either :-P (and no PCI slot for the DAB card either!)
November 2, 2011 6:19:51 AM

Right, EVGA lists the Classified3 and FTW3 as being both compatible with the E5620 Westmere.

A Toms' article shows an E5620 being overclocked to 211BCLK for a stable 4GHz on a Asus Rampage III Formula.


Any other suggestions, or are those probably the most suitable three?



a c 121 V Motherboard
November 2, 2011 1:47:08 PM

All three of those are really solid. I don't know for sure if Gigabyte has one, but that would be a brand I would look at as well.
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 2, 2011 3:54:19 PM

While the SR-2 will run the E5620 it's a big mis-match MOBO, and more like (2) Westmere dual 2 x (6-core / 12 thread).

ASUS
P6T WS Professional - http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1366/P6T_...
P6T6 WS Revolution - http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1366/P6T6...
P6T7 WS SuperComputer - http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1366/P6T7...

EVGA 'supposedly' all LGA 1366 MOBO's; see -> http://www.evga.com/support/motherboard/
November 2, 2011 6:04:40 PM

Thanks Jaquith :)  All of the three Asus P6T WS boards lack a PCI card :( . I've emailed EVGA asking for confirmation of E5620 support and minimum bios revision that will work with the board.

Asus Rampage III Formula isn't sold in the UK according to a load of reviews, so may well end up being one of the three EVGA boards (probably the FTW3 if the Classified3 doesn't offer too much for the extra £50) by default.
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 2, 2011 6:38:23 PM

Huh?! Frankly, I had blinders on regarding anything but CPU.

Example P6T WS Professional:
2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (at x16 / x16 mode) ; GPU(s)
1 x PCIe x1 ; most sound cards
1 x PCI 2.2 ; vanilla PCI
2 x PCI-X ; bonus PCI-X

The ASUS Rampage III Formula does NOT support ANY Xeon CPU's -> http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1366/Ramp...

Otherwise SuperMicro LGA 1366 (e.g. MBD-X8SAX-O) - http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/Xeon3000...
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 2, 2011 9:16:45 PM

Don't be Tom's is/was wrong, see the CPU support list above. Sure it can 'seem' like it's working though it be dummied-down. The BIOS lack the correct CPUID information.

Bottom-Line, I would never run it on the R3F!
November 3, 2011 11:54:13 AM

Looks like it was working well enough when they benchmarked it against some i7s though :-/

I think as I'm looking to overclock this Westmere it's going to be one of the two EVGA offerings, either the FTW3 or the classified3 as EVGA list the E5620 as being compatible (although for the price of the classified3 it's getting close to the point where I might as well just throw this Xeon away and get an i5-2500K on a Z68 platform).
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 3, 2011 3:06:22 PM

First, I won't throw it away - I'd sell it e.g. eBay.

CPU and CPUID - CPU's are produced in families of Lithography e.g. an Intel Core i7-990X is Xeon X5690 with the last step in lithography printed with different CPUID and open/closed circuitry. So if the BIOS has a similar CPUID the CPU will probably function. However, since this information is incomplete the CPU functions will be limited or not function optimally.

However, in instances where the 'family' CPUID is lacking it will fail to post e.g. Zambezi.

Examples: Optimization (SpeedStep, vCore, Turbo Boost, Power savings, etc), Functions (VT-x/d, ECC, etc)

You can do whatever you want and stick the Xeon in any MOBO you choose. Simply, it is nothing that I would ever do or recommend. It's your rig and your way ;) 

--

EVGA make great MOBO's! :) 
November 3, 2011 4:31:59 PM

I've never had any EVGA product before, so that's good to know thanks :)  I've always gone for Gigabytes in the past, but from searching the web it seems a bit hit and miss as to whether or not Xeons will work on their X58 boards and it's certainly not officially supported, whereas on the EVGAs it is and both the FTW3 and Classified3 look like very good boards (well, besides the lack of an optical SP/DIF out from what I can see!) so it's just a case of picking the one that best meets my needs :) 
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 3, 2011 5:15:10 PM

Gigabyte does make 'Server/Workstation' MOBO's -> http://b2b.gigabyte.com/products/main.aspx

However, my only building experiences with Xeon are SuperMicro, ASUS and (1) SR-2.

My EVGA is running great with great support. ASUS and Gigabyte are so large that service is akin to bashing your head against the wall. Yep they lack S/PDIF, but where it counts they're damn good! :) 

This is gaming EVGA 170-BL-E762-A1 (4-WAY) and love it -> http://www.evga.com/articles/00501/
November 4, 2011 4:01:24 PM

Sounds like a whole lot of building Jaquith! :p 


The Classified3 is a E-ATX form factor, don't think it will fit my Antec P182SE case, so I guess it's the FTW3 FTW - hopefully this board still allows 211BCLK...
November 4, 2011 4:05:22 PM

Actually, just to be sure I think I'll take a measuring tape to my case over the weekend just to make absolutely certain that the extra 20mm in width can't be accommodated... lol :D 
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 4, 2011 4:46:49 PM

The only reason I mentioned my EVGA 170-BL-E762-A1 is to give EVGA a thumbs-up. Yep, you want to measure and count the PCIe slots in my case, few cases support Extended ATX (EATX) MOBO's...what I quickly noted the Antec P182SE is ATX.

Typically you need a 'Full Tower' case e.g. Corsair Obsidian Series 800D.
November 17, 2011 10:41:41 AM

I think EVGA is probably the way to go, as I get an X58 chipset and Xeon compatability, along with some useful extras like SATA 6G and USB3.

Not had a chance to take my P182SE lid off yet as been away, but there are 7 blanking plate slots at the back so I might just be able to get away with having a Classified 3...

For some strange reason the UK prices of the FTW3 and the Classified 3 are very similar. In fact, if the EVGA 3 SLI is a good BCLK overclocker then even that might be a good option especially as it's not a pricey board.
November 17, 2011 10:47:59 AM

I think EVGA is probably the way to go, as I get an X58 chipset and Xeon compatability, along with some useful extras like SATA 6G and USB3.

Not had a chance to take my P182SE lid off yet as been away, but there are 7 blanking plate slots at the back so I might just be able to get away with having a Classified 3...

For some strange reason the UK prices of the FTW3 and the Classified 3 are very similar. In fact, if the EVGA 3 SLI is a good BCLK overclocker then even that might be a good option especially as it's not a pricey board.
November 17, 2011 9:16:59 PM

ASrock's Extreme 6 officially supports the Xeon E5620 so that's a very cheap option, not sure if it's a suitable board for attempting a decent overclock though...
a c 715 V Motherboard
November 17, 2011 10:23:00 PM

IMO - EVGA is hard to beat.
November 18, 2011 8:34:18 AM

Yes, pretty much everything I hear about EVGA motherboards and graphics cards is very positive.

Just need to work out whether the £155ish 3 SLi board is enough for my needs, or if the FTW3 at £250ish is worth the extra dosh. In fact, the FTW3 retails in the UK at the price of a Sandy bridge I3 and a Z68 motherboard :-/
December 25, 2011 1:50:24 PM

Just an update: in the end I went for an Asus P6X58D-E board which only cost £100 which to me seems excellent value for money. Currently the CPU is running at 3.8 (200BCLK) and the voltage is 1.128 (I think). The current modifier puts the memory at DDR3-1603 according to the bios.

Will have to up the voltage slightly I think, since running an 8-thread Prime95 blend test last night it stopped running on one thread after 3 hours with "FATAL ERROR: Rounding was 0.5 less than 0.4 expected", although the other 7 threads ran fine for about 8 hours and the highest recorded core temperature was 38°C.
a c 715 V Motherboard
January 2, 2012 12:20:44 AM

Sorry, I've been extremely sick over the past week and a half...some nasty bug from a cruise.

The P6X58D-E doesn't support ANY Xeon CPU's. I thought i was clear NOT to listen to Tom's report using the Xeon....

Only the MOBO's that I posted above have the Xeon support.
!