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Got a question about AM4 platform.

I am thinking about building a small cloud server. I would like to put an r7-1700 (already have it) in it.

 

1. How important is it to have an B3/450 chipset if you don't intend overclock?

2. How important is it to have a VRM heatsinks/cooling if you don't intend to overclock?

3. And finally, can you still use XMP on A320?

 

Basically I just want to know if it's worth the extra $50++ in my scenario.

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8 minutes ago, t33to said:

1. How important is it to have an B3/450 chipset if you don't intend overclock?

Affects board quality. A320 is basically as crap as it gets because it has to be cheaper than the already really cheap B chipset boards

 

9 minutes ago, t33to said:

2. How important is it to have a VRM heatsinks/cooling if you don't intend to overclock?

considering the low end parts on cheap boards, rather important. They arent meant for even the 6 core in the first place, their target users will probably put a 200GE or 2200G at most in it and call it a day

 

9 minutes ago, t33to said:

3. And finally, can you still use XMP on A320?

Yes

 

10 minutes ago, t33to said:

Basically I just want to know if it's worth the extra $50++ in my scenario.

It still depends on the actual board more than the chipset it carries.

CPU: i7-2600K 4751MHz 1.44V (software) --> 1.47V at the back of the socket Motherboard: Asrock Z77 Extreme4 (BCLK: 103.3MHz) CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 RAM: Adata XPG 2x8GB DDR3 (XMP: 2133MHz 10-11-11-30 CR2, custom: 2203MHz 10-11-10-26 CR1 tRFC:230 tREFI:14000) GPU: Asus GTX 1070 Dual (Super Jetstream vbios, +70(2025-2088MHz)/+400(8.8Gbps)) SSD: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB (main boot drive), Transcend SSD370 128GB PSU: Seasonic X-660 80+ Gold Case: Antec P110 Silent, 5 intakes 1 exhaust Monitor: AOC G2460PF 1080p 144Hz (150Hz max w/ DP, 121Hz max w/ HDMI) TN panel Keyboard: Logitech G610 Orion (Cherry MX Blue) with SteelSeries Apex M260 keycaps Mouse: BenQ Zowie FK1

 

Model: HP Omen 17 17-an110ca CPU: i7-8750H (0.125V core & cache, 50mV SA undervolt) GPU: GTX 1060 6GB Mobile (+80/+450, 1650MHz~1750MHz 0.78V~0.85V) RAM: 8+8GB DDR4-2400 18-17-17-39 2T Storage: 1TB HP EX920 PCIe x4 M.2 SSD + 1TB Seagate 7200RPM 2.5" HDD (ST1000LM049-2GH172), 128GB Toshiba PCIe x2 M.2 SSD (KBG30ZMV128G) gone cooking externally Monitor: 1080p 126Hz IPS G-sync

 

Desktop benching:

Cinebench R15 Single thread:168 Multi-thread: 833 

SuperPi (v1.5 from Techpowerup, PI value output) 16K: 0.100s 1M: 8.255s 32M: 7m 45.93s

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2 minutes ago, Jurrunio said:

Affects board quality. A320 is basically as crap as it gets because it has to be cheaper than the already really cheap B chipset boards

 

considering the low end parts on cheap boards, rather important. They arent meant for even the 6 core in the first place, their target users will probably put a 200GE or 2200G at most in it and call it a day

 

Yes

 

It still depends on the actual board more than the chipset it carries.

Can you give me an example of a low quality board that I should avoid and what makes it low quality?

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5 minutes ago, t33to said:

Can you give me an example of a low quality board that I should avoid and what makes it low quality?

For example, the Asrock A320M-HDV R4.0. It lost even more mosfets and capacitors than the A320M-HDV (which is already low end in every way) so the operating temperatures of the mosfets (supplies power to the CPU) will run even hotter. Capacitors are sensitive to heat and degrade faster when they run hot (exponentially with temperature pretty much), and they are placed around the mosfets for voltage regulation. Combined with the reduced number of them, the performance drop off will occur even faster.

 

A320M-HDV is already cut down from the standard A320M and that is a cutdown A320M Pro4. The A320M Pro4 is really close to the B450M Pro4 however (which is low end, but not nearly as awful as the HDV R4.0) so if you run a low power draw CPU and dont overclock, the A320M Pro4 is not a bad choice. This is not the case though as the Ryzen 7 1700 is still an 8 core CPU at 3GHz.

CPU: i7-2600K 4751MHz 1.44V (software) --> 1.47V at the back of the socket Motherboard: Asrock Z77 Extreme4 (BCLK: 103.3MHz) CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 RAM: Adata XPG 2x8GB DDR3 (XMP: 2133MHz 10-11-11-30 CR2, custom: 2203MHz 10-11-10-26 CR1 tRFC:230 tREFI:14000) GPU: Asus GTX 1070 Dual (Super Jetstream vbios, +70(2025-2088MHz)/+400(8.8Gbps)) SSD: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB (main boot drive), Transcend SSD370 128GB PSU: Seasonic X-660 80+ Gold Case: Antec P110 Silent, 5 intakes 1 exhaust Monitor: AOC G2460PF 1080p 144Hz (150Hz max w/ DP, 121Hz max w/ HDMI) TN panel Keyboard: Logitech G610 Orion (Cherry MX Blue) with SteelSeries Apex M260 keycaps Mouse: BenQ Zowie FK1

 

Model: HP Omen 17 17-an110ca CPU: i7-8750H (0.125V core & cache, 50mV SA undervolt) GPU: GTX 1060 6GB Mobile (+80/+450, 1650MHz~1750MHz 0.78V~0.85V) RAM: 8+8GB DDR4-2400 18-17-17-39 2T Storage: 1TB HP EX920 PCIe x4 M.2 SSD + 1TB Seagate 7200RPM 2.5" HDD (ST1000LM049-2GH172), 128GB Toshiba PCIe x2 M.2 SSD (KBG30ZMV128G) gone cooking externally Monitor: 1080p 126Hz IPS G-sync

 

Desktop benching:

Cinebench R15 Single thread:168 Multi-thread: 833 

SuperPi (v1.5 from Techpowerup, PI value output) 16K: 0.100s 1M: 8.255s 32M: 7m 45.93s

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A320 boards limit you to 2 memory slots, fewer SATA ports, fewer USB ports (often no usb 3.1 gen 2 aka 10gbps)

 

As the VRM has no heatsinks and it's often just enough to work, the VRM heats up more compared to other motherboards. Even if you don't overclock, it's possible depending on your case and ventilation that the VRM heats too much with some processors. For example, if you have a 95w TDP processor and you render a movie for 1-2 hours, you may find out that after 20-30 minutes of rendering, the cpu's frequency goes down from the default 3.5 Ghz to 3 Ghz or less and stays there. Because the VRM overheats, the motherboard tells the CPU to slow down in order to consume less power, which translates into the VRM producing less heat, which means the VRM can slowly cool down.

 

Yes, you can use XMP but note that for some processors, you may be limited to some frequencies like 2666 Mhz or 2933 Mhz. Also, as the quality of the motherboards is lower, it's not guaranteed you'd actually achieve those frequencies. For example. you can get 3600 Mhz sticks and go in BIOS and set XMP profile to 3600 Mhz but the motherboard may not actually be able to do 3600 Mhz without significant amount of errors. Basically, you'd have to go in bios and configure 3200 Mhz or 3000 Mhz and/or increase timings and voltages for memory in order to get memory working without errors.

 

A b450 motherboard should not be 50$ more, it's more like 10-15$ more... but I guess it depends on where you live.

In US, I see a320 boards at 55$ and I see B450 boards starting from 63-65$.

 

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3 hours ago, t33to said:

Can you give me an example of a low quality board that I should avoid and what makes it low quality?

What specific features are you looking for? What CPU do you want to run? What form factor?

 

Half-decent B450 boards DON'T cost that much. Eg.: Gigabyte B450M DS3H, S2H, or Asrock B450M Pro-4 are all very cheap, yet, superior to anything A320 has to offer. I would not recommend anything lower. Budget? Where are you shopping&located?

Life is really challenging. I don't always suceed: )

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10 hours ago, mariushm said:

A320 boards limit you to 2 memory slots, fewer SATA ports, fewer USB ports (often no usb 3.1 gen 2 aka 10gbps)

 

As the VRM has no heatsinks and it's often just enough to work, the VRM heats up more compared to other motherboards. Even if you don't overclock, it's possible depending on your case and ventilation that the VRM heats too much with some processors. For example, if you have a 95w TDP processor and you render a movie for 1-2 hours, you may find out that after 20-30 minutes of rendering, the cpu's frequency goes down from the default 3.5 Ghz to 3 Ghz or less and stays there. Because the VRM overheats, the motherboard tells the CPU to slow down in order to consume less power, which translates into the VRM producing less heat, which means the VRM can slowly cool down.

 

Yes, you can use XMP but note that for some processors, you may be limited to some frequencies like 2666 Mhz or 2933 Mhz. Also, as the quality of the motherboards is lower, it's not guaranteed you'd actually achieve those frequencies. For example. you can get 3600 Mhz sticks and go in BIOS and set XMP profile to 3600 Mhz but the motherboard may not actually be able to do 3600 Mhz without significant amount of errors. Basically, you'd have to go in bios and configure 3200 Mhz or 3000 Mhz and/or increase timings and voltages for memory in order to get memory working without errors.

 

A b450 motherboard should not be 50$ more, it's more like 10-15$ more... but I guess it depends on where you live.

In US, I see a320 boards at 55$ and I see B450 boards starting from 63-65$.

 

https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/products/motherboard/#c=125,124,133&sort=price&page=1

 

That's pretty much what I'm working with. I see boards for $70/$80 that don't have VRM heat sinks and I see $100~ boards that don't have VRM heat sinks.

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Canada eh? Shipping is going to be killer from the States which sucks. See if you can find something used, sometimes you can score a nice deal by finding something broken you can easily fix if no one else has really caught on. AM4 sockets have a very flimsy cover plate (that little plastic grid that slides to lock the CPU), they break easily and most people trash the whole board because if it. The truth is you can replace JUST that part of the socket as long as none of the pin receptacles are damaged. I scored two boards for 1/2 price this way and then used $8 socket shipped in from China to swap the needed part from, repair took about 10 minutes once I had the right part. I don't know where you'd go to look for broken hardware in Canada but it's worth a shot and would let you get a much better board at a budget board price.

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Well, yeah, I don't know what you expect considering how weak the Canadian dollar is ( 1 CAD = ~ 0.76 USD) ... if you convert 70$ to CAD you get 93 CAD ... add 10 CAD for shipping and other crap and you're at 90-100 CAD.

 

From that list, the best deals would be these:

 

The Asrock board has a 30$ mail-in rebate at Vuugo, bringing the price down to 70$ canadian ... if the mail-in rebate works out eventually.

 

99$ MSI B450M Gaming Plus : https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/product/9C97YJ/msi-b450m-gaming-plus-micro-atx-am4-motherboard-b450m-gaming-plus

100.28 ASRock B450M Pro4-F : https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/product/zym323/asrock-b450m-pro4-f-micro-atx-am4-motherboard-b450m-pro4-f

 

Still good but not as good as the above would be

 

95 Gigabyte B450M DS3H : https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/product/hpRzK8/gigabyte-b450m-ds3h-micro-atx-am4-motherboard-b450m-ds3h

 

The cheapest ASRock B450M-HDV R4.0 is OK but the savings are just too small to recommend it, the vrm can handle a 6-8 core processor but it has no heatsinks and it also has a layout that would make it difficult for you to add a heatsink (some mosfets are between inductors and the 12v capacitors are between the hi side mosfets again breaking off the path, making it hard to use a big rectangular heatsink over the whole area)

 

I'd rather have the computer sit inside a cardboard box for a month or two until you can afford to spend 30$ on a case, instead of suggesting saving 20-30$ by going with an A320 motherboard.

 

 

 

 

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