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MSI A88X-G45 GAMING - FM2+ goodness - Page 5

post #41 of 99
i am having an issue with this board and an FX-670K Quad Core CPU (supposed to be a A10 with onboard GFX), i cant get any video from the on-board gfx. When i install a pci-e card it posts no problem. any ideas?
Edited by Randylahey - 3/21/14 at 5:22pm
post #42 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randylahey View Post

i am having an issue with this board and an FX-670K Quad Core CPU (supposed to be a A10 with onboard GFX), i cant get any video from the on-board gfx. When i install a pci-e card it posts no problem. any ideas?

Well since that chip is an "FX" product, and bundled with an HP computer that comes with an R7 240 graphics card, I'm going to put a lot of money on the fact that it is a CPU based on the Kaveri, but one that has a bad graphics module, thus not making it a full APU. Basically, they've snazzed up the name (which I applaud them for) and it's what they were previously calling an Athlon.

To put it simply: I'm quite certain that chip is not capable of graphics output and will require a graphics card, sorry :\
post #43 of 99
Since I got my board last week and have had some time to play around with it, I can make a few observations...

First, I have only 1 fan in use to cool everything, and all it is, is a 92mm 3-blade Delta fan on a Scythe motor and housing (it's a server fan hub but I fried it's circuitry cryingsmiley.gif) running at a lower speed so it isn't a racket (open air system). For a CPU cooler I run a Thermaltake Water 2.0 Pro which uses two 120mm fans, which I run at nearly full speed since they're rather quite and don't have a high-pitch drone which is around 1600RPMs (on both).

With that in mind, the system runs extremely cool! The Rad and it's fans are mounted roughly where a case would have a top fan mount positioned, which is about right above the CPU section, but above the board a couple more inches. IOW it's airflow, which is blowing away from the board, shouldn't really help onboard components too much IMO. That Delta-Scythe fan I have at a very slight angle,with half blowing across the graphics card and the rest blowing down onto the CPU area (some reaching the RAM as well). Under all loads, the VRMs barely heat up which is was I had hoped to be the case smile.gif

Here are my system specs:
A10-7850K which lost it's virginity to this motherboard lol
Kingston HyperX Predator 2x4GB DDR3-2666MHz KHX26C11T2K2/8X (2012 review sample, I used to work at Pro-Clockers)
XMP2666 Profile 11-13-13-31 @ 1.65V
XMP2400 Profile 10-12-12-29 @ 1.65V [This is the one I use]
SATA-II 500GB drive, SATA-III 1TB drive, and a SATA-III OCZ Synapse 32GB (no used as a cache drive as I couldn't register the software) AHCI Disabled - Running in IDE mode
Asus CU-Core HD5770 (currently only using 1, I have a second that'll go in later)
Xonar Xense in the last PCIe slot

I'm new to the Bulldozer architecture, coming off an old A8-3850 system (3870K review sample died cryingsmiley.gif). This means my understanding of what are ideal or safe voltages, and what even their default values are is... well, zero biggrin.gif

I haven't explored baseclocks much, just briefly to test out a speed and timings from the A8-3850 rig. I went straight to 111MHz (lowering other multipliers to offset the overclock) and had no apparent stability problems. Probably thanks to running in IDE mode, but who knows why the other reviewers have such problems if they use IDE mode as well.

DDR3-2400 hasn't been a problem booting thankfully, but it will not wake up from Sleep Mode, which had been my primary means of turning the system 'off' frown.gif

Overclocking with the Genie button works fairly well it seems, and I've gotten an almost stable automatic 4.5GHz out of it on "Gear 2". I think "Gear 1" is 4.3GHz. These chips, even with the GPU disabled, are a bit more voltage hungry on the overclock than I figured they'd be, as that is needing 1.48V to work. The instability could be something else related though, as I've not really tracked it down yet, just am assuming that's the case.

All in all I'm not really liking the Bulldozer Arch so far compared to my old Llano frown.gif The Read and Copy speeds on memory don't seem to scale at all between DDR3-1500 and DDR3-2400, at least not like I would've expected. The Write speeds are just pathetic though and make me cry frown.gif On the latest AIDA64 my Llano got, at only 3.2GHz, NB1000MHz (I always called it 2000MHz), and DDR3-2072 9-10-9-23 C2 was:
Read: 24888MB/s
Write: 21211MB/s
Copy: 21166MB/s
Lat.: 55.8ns

This 7850K at 4.3Hz NB1800MHz (as per BIOS) and DDR3-2400 10-12-12-29 C2
Read: 22324MB/s
Write: 12264MB/s
Copy: 21764MB/s
Lat. 79.7ns

Now, those do improve slightly by increasing the NB to 2000, but unfortunately that doesn't help my Write speeds one bit. Latency goes down and Copy goes up, but that's the extent of it unfortunately. To make matters worse, no matter what I try, anything above 2000MHz will not even POST frown.gif I've tried increasing voltages as well, but since I don't know what really is safe on the CPU-NB, I haven't gone too high.

Like all the other systems, as seems to be inherent due to the chip and not the motherboards, the CPU throttles like a sonofabish when it's running with the iGPU enabled and any sort of stress test is ran. The GPU doesn't throttle oddly, but it reaches max TDP and throttles the CPU down to 3GHz on all cores :\ Doesn't matter what the temp is either, it is usually always <30C and the highest I've managed to get it is 43C. Thankfully when you disable the iGPU this ceases to happen!

Now for my other biggest bummer... It DEFINITELY has some RAM it does not like... I cannot believe how fortunate I am that these HyperX work at 2400 with it's XMP... My previous kit was a KingMax NANO Gamer (which run as cool as these HyperX do... but with no heatsink) which is a 2200MHz kit at 10-10-10, but no matter what I do, I cannot get them to boot at anything above DDR3-1600 frown.gif They'll run @1600 with 7-8-7 timings, and solo sticks @1866 7-8-7... But if you try Dual@1866 or Solo@2133, it won't even POST :\ I can't really find much info on the SLOW_MODE switch, other than it's intended to be used in extreme cooling situations, but one post I read did say it could help with some RAM that doesn't like to boot (granted this was an Intel board). That even close to accurate??

I'm sure I'm leaving stuff out, but I didn't really plan on writing a review, it just kinda happened. lol

So here's the Pros/Cons list off the top of my head:
Pros:
-Looks damn purdy!
-Runs cool as hell
-Diagnostic POST LEDs read out as Temp after POSTing
-Voltage test points (lol big Pro for me, I fried 2 boards probing before frown.gif )
-Free game, really cool case badge, a door hanger!

Cons:
-Only 4+2, though probably will be enough anyways.
-That RAM issue is a huge letdown. A Friend's A88XM-E45 is having issues with her G.Skill as well, but at least hers boots into Windows. (I think it's their lack of putting CR in the XMP, so it Autos to CR1)
-No TDP/APM override (which might be impossible, I'm not sure, but ASUS and GB I believe have it)
-BIOS is definitely lacking in the advanced features
-BIOS is poorly laid out IMO It's a very annoying setup I've found.
-BIOS Voltage readout quite off versus DMM readings at voltage points
-Virtually no AOD memory timing ability, as almost anything changed results in a crash.
-NO OPTION FOR CHANGING THE iGPU'S SHARED MEMORY!! "Gaming" my ass... How can it be labeled that if I can't even select 2GB for the graphics?! Seriously though, ***?!
-Command Center worked once before never again starting. I'll reinstall to see if that helps, but it'll still get a Con.
-Certain crashes (of unknown cause) will prevent the Restart button (front panel in most of my experience) from either working at all or will take a lot of presses before it decides to register, which is not by fault of my button! lol
-Did I mention that the BIOS is seriously needing more enthusiast level features? I don't care if it's in a "secret" menu, GIMMIE GIMMIE!
-Make the SPD displayed read the profile you select :| I select Profile 1 which is 2400 10-12-12 and it reads Profile 2's timings. Or the SPD menu, it's XMP only shows 1 profile, and not even the right timings for it :\
-BClk Jitter, always bouncing around
-DRAM Voltage Set vs Displayed vs DMM Test Point is way off. Set 1.65, Read 1.64, Actual 1.668

Can I recommend this board? Hmm... Having waited since early Jan and paying $145ish shipped with tax ($130 otherwise)....... no. Not right yet. If it comes down to the Gig's Sniper pricing, then maybe. But when they say they "include" a $35 "RAMDisk" option (in Command Center) and a Game that isn't even included on a disc (as I can't download because I live in the sticks) that doesn't justify the price frown.gif

I reaaally want to love this motherboard, and I might with a couple BIOS revisions, but I'm a bit bummed ATM.
Oh and if any MSI board designers read this: Ditch the two LEDs under the Audio Codec's cover and put two red ones up the 88X's heatsink to emit a glow smile.gif Maybe drill out the eyes too, so they shine through red!

If anyone wants to help me OC, guide away! I already accidentally pumped 1.63V through my chip when doing a 4.7GHz run (not used to having CPU VDD, was intending on it being 1.5V lol), so I could use some tips and general safe limits, what to set stuff at, and general limiting factors for what holds overclocks back.
(Turned out longer than I thought....)

EDIT: Additions I forgot to mention, 2 Cons and a Pro. First is the DRAM voltage. BIOS Set @ 1.65V, BIOS Reads @ 1.640V, Test Point Read @ 1.668V. That's not a problem I don't think with most DIMMs, but it's unacceptable IMO. Second, baseclock's jitter, bounces around quite a bit from around 99.8MHz to as high as 101.5MHz :\

Pro: Baseclock is rrreally fine-tuneable, allowing for 0.1MHz adjustments. Not really practical, but still cool smile.gif
Edited by Formula350 - 3/22/14 at 9:35am
post #44 of 99
Nice write up!!!! I want to say I read 1.55V is what you want to stay under. Also - Llano is actually Bulldozer, the 7850K is Steamroller. thumb.gif

After having issues with an Asus A88X-PRO being DOA, I bought this board with high hopes. It's feature packed, but reliability is a concern. I have been messing with it a little bit, but am having problems with the CPU Voltage having really weird fluctuations. I posted a YouTube video of it to show what its doing here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vomfc35qFf8

I verified this using my DVOM and the test points near the 24-pin, this isn't just a BIOS fluke. I also agree and feel that this BIOS is really clunky feeling. They really should have given a manual voltage option instead of only allowing offset. I made the mistake of setting the voltage control to "Auto" and I saw spikes up to 1.59v just idling! And yes that is 65 degrees at IDLE! If I put everything back to auto it drops way down to the 30s.

I also bought the Gigabyte F2A88X-UP4 to play with and the voltage is rock stable on it using the same components. It uses the IR 8+2 phase voltage regulators, so I wonder if that has something to do with it. I also notice the VRM heat sinks on the gigabyte stay cool to the touch, where the MSI heats up pretty quickly.
Edited by WackyWRZ - 3/21/14 at 8:42pm
post #45 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by WackyWRZ View Post

Nice write up!!!! I want to say I read 1.55V is what you want to stay under.

After having issues with an Asus A88X-PRO being DOA, I bought this board with high hopes. It's feature packed, but reliability is a concern. I have been messing with it a little bit, but am having problems with the CPU Voltage having really weird fluctuations. I posted a YouTube video of it to show what its doing here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vomfc35qFf8

I verified this using my DVOM and the test points near the 24-pin, this isn't just a BIOS fluke. I also agree and feel that this BIOS is really clunky feeling. They really should have given a manual voltage option instead of only allowing offset. I made the mistake of setting the voltage control to "Auto" and I saw spikes up to 1.59v just idling! And yes that is 65 degrees at IDLE! If I put everything back to auto it drops way down to the 30s.

I also bought the Gigabyte F2A88X-UP4 to play with and the voltage is rock stable on it using the same components. It uses the IR 8+2 phase voltage regulators, so I wonder if that has something to do with it. I also notice the VRM heat sinks on the gigabyte stay cool to the touch, where the MSI heats up pretty quickly.

Mine does that in the BIOS, too, but yours is either a LOT worse, or your BIOS polls the voltage sensors a lot more often! Mine doesn't read out anywhere near that quick.

However! Mine also does not read that at the test points. Like right now I'm running LinX with 6144MB, so it's fully loaded, and the voltage on mine is rock solid on every test point. Now the thing is, it's under load and they might be jumping around in the BIOS because of nothing being under load in any realistic way. Also, for the record, I've now reach a new high score on temps lol 53C! It drops right now to 48C if I turn the fan on behind the motherboard though. Nevertheless, even before I did that, the VRM heatsinks were not even qualifiably luke-warm. Maybe check the VRM screws on yours and see if they're fully tight? Then again, my system is NOT inside a case so that might matter. But room temp is only like 20C for me.

Still, my CPU temp has never exceeded 50C in the BIOS. I think 48C was the highest. I don't know what kind of heatsink you're running, but you definitely want to invest in something better :\ If you're running the stock heatsink then that is definitely why! The only thing that stock heatsink is good for is the fan! Pull it off and strap it to your RAM or something lol If you DO have a good heatsink though, then it definitely isn't mounted right, has too little thermal compound, or maybe even too much. I'd definitely figure that out though.

EDIT: Wacky, you're thinking of Trinity as being Bulldozer. Llano is "Stars" which is basically a Phenom II X6, minus two cores, and an even better memory controller.

But when I say "Bulldozer", I mean Bulldozer architecture, which is what everything has been so far. Steamroller is just another advancement of the Bulldozer architecture.
Edited by Formula350 - 3/21/14 at 8:48pm
post #46 of 99
@formula,

I get similar tdp limitations with my ASRock Extreme 6+ and Athlon 760K. Even disabling APM in BIOS there must be a hidden limit that makes me throttle before I can ever hit a temperature threshold. when going for high overclocks. The workaround, at least if you would like a nice CPU-Z validation. is to use AMD Overdrive and tweak around the Turbo power states. There is a lot to explore as far as utilizing the Turbo mode to overcome the tdp limit, if you have the patience to play around with it.

Do bother the MSI engineers. They have worked hard for me in the past by giving me quite a few exclusive beta BIOSes for my overclocking endeavors. You just got to ask them. It takes them 2-4 weeks then they give you the BIOS file and say "thanks for using our product". I was delighted because I was already so far out of spec running a 5GHz Bulldozer on an 890FX board and DDR3-2000CL8 smile.gif
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post #47 of 99
If I shut it down and reboot it sometimes it'll hold at a steady voltage. Then if I reboot again it'll get all jumpy again. I have a bootable linux USB, maybe I should fire that up and check the test point with my meter while running a stress test. Even at all settings stock it still jumps around, but usually within 0.1v. It's pretty cool they give the test points, but also not cool that its showing the same as the BIOS smile.gif

Right now I am running the stock HS just so I can play a little bit before installing the 212 EVO I have. I don't want to set it all up until I decide which of the 2 boards I am keeping. For the same reason I am also running without a case and my room temp is about 62 degrees F (17C). My VRMs are not *hot* but are for sure at least luke warm. I wish I could find my IR thermometer! I really want to like this board for all the features like Audio Boost / Killer NIC but it's not looking promising.

I have seen some of the other A88X boards have a BIOS option that says CPU current limiting or something to that effect that can be set over 100%. I was unable to find that in this board. I wonder if that has to do with the throttling you guys are seeing.


Have you had a chance to see how good the audio boost amp sounds, or play with the "Creative Cinema" sound stuff?
Edited by WackyWRZ - 3/21/14 at 9:11pm
post #48 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by damric View Post

@formula,

I get similar tdp limitations with my ASRock Extreme 6+ and Athlon 760K. Even disabling APM in BIOS there must be a hidden limit that makes me throttle before I can ever hit a temperature threshold. when going for high overclocks. The workaround, at least if you would like a nice CPU-Z validation. is to use AMD Overdrive and tweak around the Turbo power states. There is a lot to explore as far as utilizing the Turbo mode to overcome the tdp limit, if you have the patience to play around with it.

Do bother the MSI engineers. They have worked hard for me in the past by giving me quite a few exclusive beta BIOSes for my overclocking endeavors. You just got to ask them. It takes them 2-4 weeks then they give you the BIOS file and say "thanks for using our product". I was delighted because I was already so far out of spec running a 5GHz Bulldozer on an 890FX board and DDR3-2000CL8 smile.gif

Hmm, turbo eh? It's worth a shot I suppose, but right now the problem I'm also having with AOD is if I apply anything, it derps SOMETHING in Windows which is killing DWM (which among other things, is responsible for Themes). Not quite sure why that is, but I suspect it's mostly due to this board deviating way away from the norm. Seems to be the case usually when AOD isn't even able to readout the temps and voltages on the Board Status page. "VIN0" and "VIN1" are both 70.87V lol That, and only 2 of the voltage sliders work on the Clock/Voltage page... which the CPU is incorrect rolleyes.gif I'm at 1.5V yet it's reading 1.4438V... Wish PSCheck worked still frown.gif

Bug the BIOS engineers though, eh? Happen to have an email I should use? biggrin.gif I don't mind running unreleased BIOSes. My Gigabyte A75 based board ran a BIOS me and the one engineer (Colin) hammered out, because theirs didn't correctly set the CPU-NB divisor when setting DDR3-1866, the NB wouldn't run at 900MHz like it was supposed to, but 720MHz I think it was. So he chucked the manual selection option in there and all was well! I used that BIOS for the last 2 years lol Dunno why they never put it on the site, because the Beta they have up there is the first version he made me and it's NB option didn't work heh (BTW here's a tip for anyone still running a Llano that no one else seemed to discover. and never was addressed in either ASRock's or Giga's BIOS: change the C1E option to whatever is opposite of Default and your memory scores will jump about 2000-3000MB/s [yes, thousand] in all three categories! I'd test it with Kaveri, but this board only has C6 option)
post #49 of 99
Their is some funny business in the A88X g45's vrm mosfets. I have noticed the same voltage fluctuation problem albeit, not to the same extreme, I am starting to wish I picked up the gigabyte up4 board.

Pictures of the mosfets on the msi board show 22 mosfet chips, But I have yet to find a picture that I can make out the numbers on the chips with, At first I though the board was using a doubler, But the more I read from real world usage of the thing the more I dough that.
post #50 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by WackyWRZ View Post

If I shut it down and reboot it sometimes it'll hold at a steady voltage. Then if I reboot again it'll get all jumpy again. I have a bootable linux USB, maybe I should fire that up and check the test point with my meter while running a stress test. Even at all settings stock it still jumps around, but usually within 0.1v. It's pretty cool they give the test points, but also not cool that its showing the same as the BIOS smile.gif

Could give it a try, but as I said, even when I'm in the BIOS mine doesn't jump around when reading from the test point :\
Quote:
Right now I am running the stock HS just so I can play a little bit before installing the 212 EVO I have. I don't want to set it all up until I decide which of the 2 boards I am keeping. For the same reason I am also running without a case and my room temp is about 62 degrees F (17C). My VRMs are not *hot* but are for sure at least luke warm. I wish I could find my IR thermometer! I really want to like this board for all the features like Audio Boost / Killer NIC but it's not looking promising.

Since your chip is so damn hot it could easily be heating up the VRM sinks a bit. Also with as much copper as the boards have they will spread the heat around more as well, which will make nearby components heat up a bit further. I know how it feels to not want to deal with installing a heatsink though. I'm so glad to have gotten this watercooler, as my Spire TherMax Eclipse II is a total pain in the butt to install. It's one HELLuva cooler, but dang, it's not work the pain and suffering to install lol
Quote:
I have seen some of the other A88X boards have a BIOS option that says CPU current limiting or something to that effect that can be set over 100%. I was unable to find that in this board. I wonder if that has to do with the throttling you guys are seeing.

Have you had a chance to see how good the audio boost amp sounds, or play with the "Creative Cinema" sound stuff?

Ours is in the CPU Features menu, it's called cTDP. However, ours isn't set by percentage but wattage, which it isn't capable of exceeding 95W (which is "100%" for our model APU).

As for the sound, I have not tested it, sorry. I use my 46" LED TV as my monitor, and so I use the HDMI Audio and my TV"s Line-out into my speaker system for sound. Even then, I have a high end sound card which pummels the onboard's abilities lol I've never found Realtek's offerings to be very good at the low frequencies though, but then again last time I used one was back before they were actually giving them suitable onboard audio circuitry like this. I'm sure it would be more than capable for the untrained ear.
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