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A good Ryzen server motherboard at last?

Ericloewe

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#41
Now that you mention it, the CPU power delivery stuff does look somewhat puny. Maybe a step below what is typical for Intel C2xx boards, even though higher power levels are expected.
 
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#42
Now that you mention it, the CPU power delivery stuff does look somewhat puny. Maybe a step below what is typical for Intel C2xx boards, even though higher power levels are expected.
Yah, it doesn't look all that good. A quick google didn't give me the skinny on the VRM configuration but it really looks quite wimpy.

Ok, I decided not to wait for the second 3900X to come in. I ripped the one I had out and stuffed it in there. I realized that the BIOS settings for the power and clock management with the 2700X stuffed were completely different than what the would be for a Zen 2 chip. So maybe the BIOS code for the Zen 2 chips would work better. And, indeed, I am getting much better results. I am able to run the 3900X with 'Platform Power Setting' in CBS/NBIO/SMU set to 120W (and not messing with cTDP which might be more of a failsafe field). The watt meter is showing 150-160W at the wall under full load and it seems to be sticking there without any need for excess cooling.

Unfortunately I can't get exact temperatures because the BIOS/ACPI isn't providing them on the Zen 2 chips yet... its still an early beta-like BIOS for the Zen 2 support. But the IR thermometer seems to indicate reasonable temps.

--

I did one other thing. I actually removed the Noctua low-profile cooler and put in a Stock 3600X cooler (the lower-end one... the high-end one that comes with the 3900X is too tall for a 2U case). I had to saw-off a bit of the plastic cowling to get it to fit without hitting the DRAM, and the heat sink still impinges on the first DDR slot a little from the side, but actually a bit less so than the Noctua did and the fan has more headroom because the cooler is shorter, overall. This appears to work ok with the platform power setting set to 120W. It's not the best cooler in the world but it can handle 120W in the socket as long as case airflow is reasonable.

The advantage of the stock cooler is that it is a box cooler that pushes air directly onto the VRM heatsink from the side, so it looks like the VRMs are not overheating any more. I'm running with the box cooler and four 80mm fans in a 2x2 configuration (CORRECTION ON PREVIOUS POST: I meant to say 80mm, not 40mm in the previous post).

I am doing a 24-hour burn-in now. I'm still not enamored with this board, particularly the primitive state of the IPMI and the very early BIOS, but... it might actually work for us. If it survives the burn-in without catching fire :).

-Matt
 

Ericloewe

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#43

Constantin

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#44
I just noticed there's a new variant with 10GbE onboard
That’s nifty though I prefer SFP+ over a copper 10Gbe interface for a number of reasons. But AsRock may have run out of space to accommodate a SFP+ module!
 
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#45
Oooh, very nice, though they still haven't fixed the weak VRMs or the DDR4 socket spacing being too close to the CPU. It does look like all they did was pull a few PCIe lanes away from the SATA to plug the 10Gbe in. It's unclear whether that BIOS for the new mobo supports Zen 2. The original went through a 1.50 and then a 3.04 BIOS to get Zen 2 support. The new board is on 1.40 BIOS but the BIOS is dated more recently than the 3.04 Zen 2 BIOS for the old board.

My burn-in tests with the X470D4U succeeded. With the 3900X in there the CPU cooler more or less needs to run at full speed for anything that isn't full idle (keeping temps down is very important to maximize Zen 2 performance). The VRMs did ok with 120W in the socket (160W at the wall) though they definitely require the direct airflow they get from the downdraft box cooler I'm running atm. Basically the burn-in test consists of running a bulk package build with synth on DragonFlyBSD... basically building the FreeBSD ports tree with maximal concurrency. Around 30000 packages and millions of files. Takes around 24 hours to complete. It's a great test because if anything at all goes wrong it's really obvious in the error logs whether it is related to CPU/stability or not.

Obviously OC'ing the CPU is IXNAY, the VRMs aren't beefy enough, but the 3900X does run close to its maximal power-performance point at 120W in the socket so I'm happy. In contrast, the mobo actually had a much harder time with the 2700X than with the 3900X due to not having the more advanced thermal/power management algorithms for Zen+ that it has for Zen 2.

Since OCing memory is really easy to do and costs basically nothing, I ran a second burn-in with 64G worth of 2133 ECC UDIMMs OC'd to 1.34V @ 2666C15 and it ran without issue, boosting general performance by around 10% (which is expected for Zen/Zen+/Zen2 CPUs... they really like fast memory), and memory performance by 28% from 2.8 MFault/sec to 3.6 MFault/sec on an all-cores zero-fill fault test. The BIOS is still really primitive, it took a while to figure out the right OC settings for the memory. In this BIOS, under 'AMD Overclocking' set the actual memory frequency (which is half the marketed frequency)... so 1333 in order to get 2666 equivalent, and the voltage setting in manual mode to '10' assuming roughly 14mV per division. 1.2V + 10 * 0.014V = 1.34V. The BIOS is unclear but those settings seemed to work. Be careful not to OC memory above 1.35V.

-Matt
 
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#46
Hi all,

I registered specifically to discuss this motherboard as it's pretty new and there aren't too many sources of discussion.

I am strongly considering this as an alternative to the refurbished Intel based server I have been considering for some time. This appears that it would be more powerful for my needs (hypervisor with strong single thread performance), less expensive and less power consumption (I would couple with Ryzen 3600 CPU).

Is there any reason that a Dell Perc H330 RAID controller would not work in this motherboard? Can anyone make specific recommendations around ECC compatible RAM that is performing well? I would need to passthrough a Quadro P400 or similar GPU for Plex transcoding and am interested if I could get it to work under a hypervisor.

The box would be replacing an aging HP i7 based workstation that currently runs Windows.

Thanks
 

mgittelman

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#47
@jmpage2 I will be receiving one of these in about a week or so, and pairing it with a Ryzen 1700, Crucial ECC memory, and an LSI 9305. I will check back in when (hopefully not if) I get it up and running in a few weeks.
 
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#48
@jmpage2 I will be receiving one of these in about a week or so, and pairing it with a Ryzen 1700, Crucial ECC memory, and an LSI 9305. I will check back in when (hopefully not if) I get it up and running in a few weeks.
Awesome! Just don’t know how long I can wait. Trying to find the “perfect” server chassis might keep me occupied for awhile.
 
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#49
Hi all,

I registered specifically to discuss this motherboard as it's pretty new and there aren't too many sources of discussion.

I am strongly considering this as an alternative to the refurbished Intel based server I have been considering for some time. This appears that it would be more powerful for my needs (hypervisor with strong single thread performance), less expensive and less power consumption (I would couple with Ryzen 3600 CPU).

Is there any reason that a Dell Perc H330 RAID controller would not work in this motherboard? Can anyone make specific recommendations around ECC compatible RAM that is performing well? I would need to passthrough a Quadro P400 or similar GPU for Plex transcoding and am interested if I could get it to work under a hypervisor.

The box would be replacing an aging HP i7 based workstation that currently runs Windows.

Thanks
Any PCIe card should work but in terms of pass-through that really depends on IOMMU partitioning provided by the hardware and BIOS. I don't know the answer to that on this mobo but it is often the case that early BIOSes do not set up the IOMMU partitioning in a reasonable way, so YMMV. Zen 2 itself should have pretty good IOMMU and SRIOV support. This is one of those situations where the only way to know for sure is to throw the stuff together and see what actually works.

-Matt
 

mgittelman

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#50
Update: Got the X470D4U installed. Paired with Ryzen 1700, 4X Crucial CR16G4WFD824, LSI 9305, and Chelsio T520-SO-CR.

Had issues at first with stability - it would not boot further than the BIOS with all 4 sticks installed. The memory is rated for 2400, but I set it manually down to 2100, and then it was fine. I believe the user guide does mention max speeds around here for fully populated memory, so not too surprising.

Only been up for about 48 hours now, so a little early to tell, but so far no problems.

As others report, using stock AMD cooler the memory is pretty close to the heat sink, but my memory modules don't have heat sinks themselves and so they don't touch. I would not recommend using memory with heat sinks on this board.

I have 2x nvme drives connected. An adata and a Samsung 970 pro. Both are limited to a little less than 2GBps throughput which is per spec from the user guide. For my use, not an issue but something to keep in mind.

IPMI looks fine to me. A little bit prettier than Supermicro. No issues there.

If I run into anything interesting I will update this thread.
 
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