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LostInSpace

Computer Upgrade, Finally.

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CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3700+ 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor (San Diego core)

MEMORY: pqi TURBO 1GB 184-Pin DDR SDRAM Unbuffered DDR 400 (PC 3200)

MOTHERBOARD: ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 Socket 939 ULi M1695 ATX AMD Motherboard

HD: Maxtor DiamondMax 10 6L200S0 200GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache Serial ATA150 Hard Drive

The motherboard issue is what really cheeses me off. The board above, that I have ordered, is an AGP and PCI-express system and it's the only one that I can seem to find that supports both. My rant is about how fast the motherboard manufacturers dropping AGP in most of their new class boards. Meanwhile, when PCI slots became all The rage, the board companies kept the ISA slots for many years. What I'm thinking that is going on, in a strictly coporate sense, is that most of these motherboard manufacturers also make PCI express video cards. So, to them I guess, by dropping the AGP they figure will force people to plunk down the cash and migrate over to an expensive PCI express video card. Asrock (an Asus subsidiary) board proves that it can be done and the reviews on this board have been fairly stellar. The upgradeability on this board, not just in terms of, in the future, upgrading to a PCI express video but the cpu, is fairly stellar as well. There are some downsides, however minor, like where they put the floppy connector and it's not a great overclocker (which I never do anyway so that's not an issue with me). Other than that, this board was designed to last technology wise. Check it out for yourself:

MotherBoard

http://www.asrockamerica.com/Products/939DSATA2.htm

Cpu List

http://www.asrock.com/support/CPU_Support/...l=939Dual-SATA2

My video card is the ATI9600xt. The motherboard I'm replacing the new one with is an MSI. Great board. The only draw back, with the MSI board, is the AGP in that it's max is 4x and the ATI card is 8x max. Just in that upgrade alone, I'm doubling the speed of the video card.

I should be safe for some time now in anything SC throws my way (or anyone else for that matter).

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Nice setup.

Not a fan of Ati myself however (got burned recently with my last card - not a good expierence, plus Ati don't play nicely with Linux)

EDIT: dang forgot about this part.

I think you'll find the reason most boards don't support both AGP and PCIe slots is the extra work required to ensure there is no conflict between the two buses.

ISA and PCI were easier to implement side by side - very different architectures but there is something shared by agp/PCIe that causes putting them on a board harder to do.

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quote:

Originally posted by Gonesolo:

Nice setup.

Not a fan of Ati myself however (got burned recently with my last card - not a good expierence, plus Ati don't play nicely with Linux).

EDIT: dang forgot about this part.

I think you'll find the reason most boards don't support both AGP and PCIe slots is the extra work required to ensure there is no conflict between the two buses.

ISA and PCI were easier to implement side by side - very different architectures but there is something shared by agp/PCIe that causes putting them on a board harder to do.

Thanks

Have never had a problem with any ATI I've owned. Haven't used linux so I can't really comment on that compatibility. Eventually, I will upgrade to a PCI-E card and with this motherboard I can. Sweet.

Anyway, The reason I went with the PQI and not a "name" brand like corsairs or kingston was the price, it's speed and it's features compared to the other two (or others).

http://www.pqimemory.com/spec.asp?link=/sc...200-1024SBL.htm

Cas Latency 2

Timing 2-3-2-5

Warranty: Lifetime

I picked it up for $105 plus a $10 manufacturer rebate and the buyer's reviews on newegg are pretty good. Plus it looks nice .

Forgot to list the price I bought the parts at.

CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3700+ 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor (San Diego core) $222.00

MEMORY: pqi TURBO 1GB 184-Pin DDR SDRAM Unbuffered DDR 400 (PC 3200) $105.44

MOTHERBOARD: ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 Socket 939 ULi M1695 ATX AMD Motherboard $68.00

HD: Maxtor DiamondMax 10 6L200S0 200GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache Serial ATA150 Hard Drive $88.50

Total: 483.94

Not sure how Newegg works but I went back to check any more reviews on these and I see that some of the prices have gone up on them since putting my order in on thursday.

As for the motherboard, I'm sure you are right. I like taking the more sinister view on things.

One thing this motherboard does require is two power connectors. A 20 pin and a 4 pin. Don't know yet why but I'm going to find out. Some newegg people hooked up just the 20pin and booted up their systems with nothing. Then and only then did they read the manual and found out that you need to hook up a 4 pin power connector also. See, as SC always tells everyone, RTFM. Luckily I have replaced my older power supply back in october with a coolmax 450 watt and it has all the power connectors needed.

Can't wait to see UC in all its glory. I can also order up UCAWA now that I will have to power to run it.

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quote:

Originally posted by jamotto:

Nice!

The extra 4 pin connector is needed for more power hungry processors like the AMD 64 and later P4's.

Thanks. Oh okay, I was thinking it might have had something to do with the video systen.

Motherboard schematics

Look where they put the floppy connector.

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quote:

Originally posted by LostInSpace:

Thanks. Oh okay, I was thinking it might have had something to do with the video systen.

naw, now if you where to upgraded your video card to something like a 6800GT they need extra power, mine used the same plug type as the one you would use for harddrives, CD-Rom drives etc.

quote:

Look where they put the floppy connector.

oh that's not too bad, at least it's near the drives, I had a board that put the connector under where the Power Supply would be

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quote:

Originally posted by jamotto:

1: naw, now if you where to upgraded your video card to something like a 6800GT they need extra power, mine used the same plug type as the one you would use for harddrives, CD-Rom drives etc.

2: oh that's not too bad, at least it's near the drives, I had a board that put the connector under where the Power Supply would be

1: Yeah, I've tried to stay away from those types of video cards in the past. But with the new power supply, I hope 450w is still enough, I should be okay. My previous power supply was 350.

2: I have Full size server case and I might need to get a longer Floppy IDE because the floppy drive bay is all the way on top. My Msi board is midway on the board and the cable just reaches I think. As for the board you had, that means the power connector for the board was way off the beaten track?

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quote:

Originally posted by LostInSpace:

1: Yeah, I've tried to stay away from those types of video cards in the past. But with the new power supply, I hope 450w is still enough, I should be okay. My previous power supply was 350.

The 400W Sparkle PSU that I have, seems to work alright for my 6800GT. As long as you got a good brand, 450W should be more than enough.

quote:

2: I have Full size server case and I might need to get a longer Floppy IDE because the floppy drive bay is all the way on top. My Msi board is midway on the board and the cable just reaches I think. As for the board you had, that means the power connector for the board was way off the beaten track?

Just out of curiosity any reason your keeping the floppy drive? I removed mine the last time I upgraded and I really have not missed it.

The power connector was about where your RAM goes. The whole board was a bit off the beaten track being a VL busPCI combo board just about everything was in odd locations, I guess to make room for all of the components.

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quote:

Originally posted by jamotto:

1: The 400W Sparkle PSU that I have, seems to work alright for my 6800GT. As long as you got a good brand, 450W should be more than enough.

2: Just out of curiosity any reason your keeping the floppy drive? I removed mine the last time I upgraded and I really have not missed it.

3: The power connector was about where your RAM goes. The whole board was a bit off the beaten track being a VL busPCI combo board just about everything was in odd locations, I guess to make room for all of the components.

1: The coolmax Power supply seems pretty good so far. Very quiet too.

2: Well, I mainly have kept it for redundancy. Good thing I did because the new motherboard (as well as some of the others I've looked at) seem to have a slight OS install quirk. You need to make a floppy driver disk for the SATA drives as windows XP installs. XP will request you to put a floppy disk in I guess, don't know why you can't use the CD the drivers come on if one has a second CD drive. We'll see.

3: Ah, okay. I guess they had to make compromises with the design.

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quote:

Originally posted by jamotto:

[QB]
quote:

Originally posted by LostInSpace:

Thanks. Oh okay, I was thinking it might have had something to do with the video systen.

naw, now if you where to upgraded your video card to something like a 6800GT they need extra power, mine used the same plug type as the one you would use for harddrives, CD-Rom drives etc.


Yea got stuck when I bought a 6800 recently and then realised I hadn't got a spare power connector. Got it sorted now though.

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I'm looking to build a new rig this month with the FX-60 chip. Man, AMD is kicking Intel's butt like it was going out of style. That chip - with all its power - runs cool and requires only 110W of power. Compared to the 130W that Intel's PEE 955 requires.

...and its dual core. yikes!

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quote:

Originally posted by Supreme Cmdr:

I'm looking to build a new rig this month with the FX-60 chip. Man, AMD is kicking Intel's butt like it was going out of style. That chip - with all its power - runs cool and requires only 110W of power. Compared to the 130W that Intel's PEE 955 requires.

...and its dual core. yikes!

Egads.

I can see the dual cores helping you out with what you do.

You might want to wait spending that cash on the dual cores. AMD has promised Quad cores by 2007. Oh, man.

AMD Announces Quad Core

The Fx-57 which is single core is $1,000. I can't imagine what they are going to charge for the FX-60. However, looks like you will have to wait a little though since the FX-60 hasn't started shipping yet. It's slated for Q1 2006. Besides, most if not all games do not support dual core processors. Until everyone catches up with dual core, I'll personaly just stick with the cheaper single cores for the time being.

My chip (still waiting for shipment):

Core San Diego

Name Athlon 64 3700+

Operating Frequency 2.2GHz

$222

Compare:

Core San Diego

Name Athlon 64 FX57

Operating Frequency 2.8GHz

$1,011.

Everything else is the same but is .6ghz worth the extra $800. Nah, I've been reading a lot from overclockers that they can match or exceed the FX-57.

I did find out what that future M2 processor connection on the motherboard I'm getting is all about:

M2 socket and DDR2

You know it's getting very crowded out there with all the selections of CPU cores.

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Who said that getting a dual core proc needs to be paired with apps that support it? You're kidding me, right?

And if you think that the difference between those two procs is merely the .6 Ghz difference, then you surely have no idea what you're talking about.

Also, before you went out and shelled on that AMD 64 3700+, you could have got a 64 X2 4800+ for a little bit more. And since they're all socket 939, a good mobo is all you really need.

btw, that ASrock mobo you're harping on about is rubbish. You could have picked up an Asus A8V Deluxe AGP board instead. By the time you're ready to switch to PCIe, the board would still be cheaper.

Buying an AGP + PCIe board is the stuff of consequential n00bism. I doubt that you're even aware of the pitfalls of any board that has to support both data paths. Probably not.

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quote:

Originally posted by Supreme Cmdr:

1: Who said that getting a dual core proc needs to be paired with apps that support it? You're kidding me, right?

2: And if you think that the difference between those two procs is merely the .6 Ghz difference, then you surely have no idea what you're talking about.

3: Also, before you went out and shelled on that AMD 64 3700+, you could have got a 64 X2 4800+ for a little bit more. And since they're all socket 939, a good mobo is all you really need.

4: btw, that ASrock mobo you're harping on about is rubbish. You could have picked up an Asus A8V Deluxe AGP board instead. By the time you're ready to switch to PCIe, the board would still be cheaper.

5: Buying an AGP + PCIe board is the stuff of consequential n00bism. I doubt that you're even aware of the pitfalls of any board that has to support both data paths. Probably not.

1: Not me. Perhaps I used a poor choice of words. What I meant was, that the majority of games that are still coming out are designed for single process only. Even though you have a dual core, it's as if you still had one processor in the system unless the game is encoded with simultaneous multi-threading technology(SMT). The game will use either one core or the other not both to take advantage of the dual core.

2: I was refering to my needs. The expense of the FX-57 is just not worth it for me. For you however and your work, you will benefit the most from it. Even better and Fx with dual core.

3: A little bit more!? Yikes!!! I only had a budget to spend on this upgrade of $500. I wasn't going above that.

64 X2 4800+ - $787.00

Athlon 64 3700+ - $222.00

4&5: As for the board. The only problem with getting the one you mentioned is that yea Newegg does have it but it seems the only ones they do have are referbished. Sure I could try somewhere else but I just want one stop shopping. As for the board I'm getting. Trust me. I know there are going to compromises with this board. That's a fact with any multi option system. You are probably right about the PCI-e business. The way I look at it, by the time I get my butt to getting a PCI-E video card I'll just get another motherboard with it also. Until then, I'll be more than happy with I got.

Remember I'm just upgrading from an amd 2000+ 256mb and 4x agp slot. In your honest opinion, don't you think I'm getting a pretty decent upgrade for the price? Not that I'm looking for validation. I'm just picking your brain for some input. Remember it's just a gaming system I'm going for.

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I understand where your coming from Lost, I upgraded on a budget this Xmas too. I decided it was time to get a Nvidia card to replace my Ati, (sick of linux/ati problems)

While I was at it I decided it best to change my mbd too. I had a socket 754 board with AGP slot and a AMD 64 3200. So I bought a new MBD with a 939 socket and a PCIe slot, and I got a PCIe nvidia 6800 and a amd 64 3800. All in all not much of an upgrade but at least if I want to move again all I've got to do is drop in a new cpu and, eventually, a new vid card too.

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quote:

Originally posted by Gonesolo:

I understand where your coming from Lost, I upgraded on a budget this Xmas too. I decided it was time to get a Nvidia card to replace my Ati, (sick of linux/ati problems)

While I was at it I decided it best to change my mbd too. I had a socket 754 board with AGP slot and a AMD 64 3200. So I bought a new MBD with a 939 socket and a PCIe slot, and I got a PCIe nvidia 6800 and a amd 64 3800. All in all not much of an upgrade but at least if I want to move again all I've got to do is drop in a new cpu and, eventually, a new vid card too.

Yeah, it's all about compromise in one form or another. If my upgrade lasts 2-3 years, I'll also be more than happy. By then these uber priced chips will be what the 64 3700+ is now. Then we'll be back to same old argument get the newer chips or get what use to be new.

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Yea I used to do the "buy the best hardware" thing but I found in the end it's not worth it.

Especially now. TBH there is no game I run that pushes my current system but I wanted to get a PCIe board and 939 chip so I was happy to get hardware that was only a very minor increase on my current hardware.

The "top of the range" stuff just aint worth the money imho. And besides I have a wife and 4 kids to feed I can't aford to be spending mad money on new kit every year. Nuts to that idea.

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quote:

Originally posted by Supreme Cmdr:

Buying an AGP + PCIe board is the stuff of consequential n00bism. I doubt that you're even aware of the pitfalls of any board that has to support both data paths. Probably not.

You are correct but that was with the older boards that tried that route. You might be surprised about this board.

techpowerup: ASRock 939Dual-SATA2.

What is unique about the ULi M1695 is that it has native support for AGP 8x and PCI-Express x16. Other boards which have both AGP and PCI-E, implement the AGP port via a PCI-to-AGP bridge, which means that all special performance enhancing features of AGP are lost. On these boards AGP performance is quite sluggish.

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

anandtech: ASRock 939Dual-SATA2.

Almost everyone likes a story where the little guy wins - David beats Goliath. The little guy comes up with a unique and useful product or tops the Performance charts with a new chipset. Certainly, the ULi M1695/M1567 is just such a success story.

Many buyers were begging for a PCIe board that would also support AGP, without compromise. Lots of companies tried and the market ended up with a lot of compromised solutions that didn't catch on. It took ULi to finally build the chipset that made top-performing AGP on a PCIe board a reality.

More than that, the ULi M1695/M1567 chipset does not need to apologize to any other chipset in its performance. The ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 shows a retail product that is as good, or even better, than the ULi Reference Boards that excited those sites that actually bothered to look at the ULi chipset with an open mind.

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I'm still not convinced. Apart from the fact that it is from a company that only entered the fray in 2002.

For one thing, HW reviewers tend to run different rigs themselves. As a game developer and one who has seen every side of HW issues over the years, there is absolutely NO way in hell that anyone is going to convince me that a board that incorporates AGP+PCIe on the same board (via two bridged data paths no less) is stable for prolonged and real world operations. But hey, its your choice, so who am I to judge? Just remember this thread when you've got your rig all built up....and you start tearing out your hair at some point wondering whats going on with your games, the single most intense apps most likely to stress it.

As for board pricing, I meant to write 64 X2 3800+. The price is comparable to the single core 3800+ and you get dual core, low heat, low wattage etc.

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quote:

Originally posted by Supreme Cmdr:

As for board pricing, I meant to write
The price is comparable to the single core 3800+ and you get dual core, low heat, low wattage etc.

Hmmm, didn't notice that price difference. You are correct that's not too much of a difference in price.

Well, I'll let you know about the board when I have it and put it through its paces.

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Yeah, I'll be very interested in knowing how that board is. If its everything and a box of crackers, I may get one for my lab. Just for giggles.

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Speaking of upgrades... I'm looking to rebuild here in a month or so. Should be fun

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quote:


Originally posted by Darkling:

Same here, 64 X2 3800 looking REAL good


Yeah, paired with the right motherboard, you can't go wrong with that. There is no point going with the 4000+, because if you can, you might as well splurge and go with the 4800+

For those of you looking for AGP mobos with the 939 socket, the best (I have two) is the Asus A8V-Deluxe if you can find it.

Unless you're looking to change your video card within the next year or so, there is no point in spending the money on a PCIe board because then you're going to have to fork out for a new video card.

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quote:

Originally posted by Supreme Cmdr:

Yeah, I'll be very interested in knowing how that board is. If its everything and a box of crackers, I may get one for my lab. Just for giggles.

Oh, still a skeptic eh? I'll do you one better. If this board is worse than a cracker jack prize, I'll personaly send it to you with the box marked have your way with it. Take it out of the box tack it onto your wall so you can scorn, yell and mock it. Even throw darts at it.

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