PC Build Thread 2020

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LadyGeek
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

Utility power quality is a constant concern and I wanted to monitor what my UPS (APC Back-UPS RS 1350MS) was doing. I installed PowerChute Personal Edition. The UPS was reporting 1 event on the front panel, but I don't have any info when that occurred. The next time an event occurs, the software will capture the details.

There are 2 areas to configure:

1. Voltage:

You can customize the voltage range where the UPS will intervene and switch to battery. The battery will intervene when the AC utility voltage goes above 144 V and when it goes below 88 V.

My Seasonic power supply specs an input range from 100 V to 240 V, but I could not set the software threshold to match the 100 V minimum. I'm guessing that 88 V is "good enough", as they don't want uninformed users mucking up the performance.

2. Sensitivity:

When your backup will switch to battery due to electrical "noise". The APC online support forums had a better definition - transfer time. "At high sensitivity the transfer times will be in the range of 6 - 8 milliseconds. At low sensitivity the range is 14 - 16 milliseconds." (Source)

They mean sensitivity to line transients. Since the period of 1 AC cycle is 16.67 mS (1/60 Hz), a "low" sensitivity would switch just before 1 cycle has dropped. You should switch sooner than that, so I changed the default configuration from "medium" to "high" sensitivity (maximum protection).

===============================
Here's a quick way to see all of the devices that are plugged into your PC - especially what's connected to your USB ports.

Device manager --> View --> Devices by container
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Kruser64
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Kruser64 »

Got my system built with Ryzen 5600X! Best Buy delivered the CPU 2 days early from their estimate. Compared to my i5-7600k, my video encode test dropped from 10:19 to 5:54.

Updates:
7600k -> 5600X
ASUS Z390 -> ASUS B550 MB
pcie 4.0 Samsung nvme
2 140 mm BeQuiet SilentWings 3 fans at front of case
1 120 mm BeQuiet SilentWings 3 fan at rear
Seasonic 650 W Platinum

Holdovers:
Fractal Design Define C case
32 GB Corsair RAM (don't have speed handy)
Samsung 500 GB SATA SSD
Seagate 4 TB 5400 HD
Nvidia 1060 6GB GPU

The system is almost completely inaudible when doing anything other than gaming. When gaming, the GPU is audible. I'm waiting for an NVidia 3050ti or similar to upgrade that piece. (Not for total silence just looking for a little more oomph.)

Having said all that, the i5 7600k was no slouch. The new system is faster and for sure I do notice it. I need to run some tests of tasks I typically do. But the overall feel is not nearly as big a jump as I got a few years back when I updated my boot drive from an HD to a SATA SSD.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Rowan Oak »

LadyGeek wrote: Tue Nov 10, 2020 5:33 pm The installer wouldn't proceed without an email address, so I gave it a bogus email and password which it promptly locked out. The next screen was a local login / password, which I entered and am using now.
Microsoft loves to try to force you to use a "Microsoft Account" with Windows 10. If you look at the lower left corner you should see a link to create an "offline account" -in very small font of course.
note: If you don't see the link you can disconnect from the internet which will force the option to appear.
LadyGeek wrote: Tue Nov 10, 2020 5:33 pm Device Manager shows a nice, clean driver install of everything I expected. There are a few unknown PCI devices, but I'll get to that later.
I've had this happen and installing the "Intel Management Engine" driver will sometimes fix it. Not always, but it's one to check.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

^^^ I didn't see anything which pointed to an "offline account" - it's how I setup Windows the first time. I didn't want to muck up my install, so I just gave it something which let me get to the next step.

Thanks for the suggestion, but the "Intel Management Engine" has problems due to security concerns. In any case, I have an AMD CPU which would use the AMD Platform Security Processor in place of Intel. I'll hold off on installing it, but will keep it in mind.
Kruser64 wrote: Fri Nov 13, 2020 9:33 pm Got my system built with Ryzen 5600X!
Congrats! :beer

If you haven't done this already, I recommend checking for a mobo BIOS update.

Also check Event Viewer for critical errors. If any appear, I strongly recommend a clean install. Based on my earlier experiences, I should have done this the first time around. All of my critical errors have disappeared and my system is stable (fingers crossed).

==========================
One thing I forgot to mention about my UPS software - it calculates your energy cost.

Just enter the total cost / kWh from your electric bill and it will tell you how much your new pet project is costing you per day. Enter the total of generation, transmission, and distribution costs. The help file shows you what to do.

I'm running about $1.06 / day with a fully loaded open-source computing project (CPU + GPU). That's a daily cost assuming the PC is on 24 hours. Of course, all PCs have electricity costs - the software just lets you know exactly how much.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Peculiar_Investor »

One thing I just discovered on my new PC, since it is a desktop I was surprised by the defaults in Change the power mode for your Windows 10 PC.

I've moved my Power mode all the way right to "Best Performance". I don't recall ever tweaking this setting on previous desktops, I would have thought that Microsoft would default it to "Best performance" on a desktop machine.

Added: I just checked another desktop PC running Windows 10 and there is no setting for 'Power mode'. 🤷‍♂️ Digging a bit deeper using the 'Additional power settings' on my desktop (AMD Ryzen CPU) there is a 'AMD Ryzen Balanced' plan and a 'AMD Ryzen High Performance' plan. Those must be dictating the appearance of the 'power mode'. Changed my plan to 'AMD Ryzen High Performance.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

^^^ Thanks! I've never thought about the power settings, but it makes sense.

After I first did a clean install, my PC kept shutting down. Why? The default power configuration shut everything down after 15 minutes. That got fixed in a hurry.

The power plan options are part of the chipset drivers. Here's a brief overview: Latest AMD Ryzen chipset drivers are good news for Windows 10 64-bit users (2017)

Following the link in the article, I ended up at AMD Drivers and Support and downloaded the AMD Ryzen™ 7 3700X Drivers & Support software. I stopped and did not install. Why? Although the AMD software does contain the AMD power plan, that's not the intended purpose. Only use this software if you want to try your hand at overclocking.

More importantly, the chipset drivers are part of your motherboard. The best source of chipset drivers is the motherboard manufacturer. You don't want to take chance here. I downloaded and installed the chipset, LAN, and audio drivers for my motherboard. The power plan is indeed part of the Asus chipset driver set. Reboot.
  • Settings --> Power & Sleep --> Additional power settings --> Show additional plans --> AMD Ryzen High Performance
Without any additional measurements, the PC already seems to be running faster. My boot time also seems to be faster. Nice.

Update: Installing the power plan reset the default timeouts. I caught my PC going to sleep just before it powered down.
  • Settings --> Power & Sleep --> Screen --> Never
  • Settings --> Power & Sleep --> Sleep --> Never
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AKBTX14
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by AKBTX14 »

Dyloot wrote: Thu Nov 12, 2020 4:48 pm

- Are you sure you only want a 1080p monitor? If it were me I'd look for 2560 x 1440 for 1440p gaming.
- Current Gen Intel only supports PCI-E 3. I'm not really sure PCI-4 is really necessary at this point, but figured I'd point it out.

Otherwise, it looks awesome to me.
Yes, I am looking at 2560x1440 monitors. I thought that I should wait till I am able to buy new GPU.

I am leaning towards one of these monitors. Does anyone has a monitor recommendation?

https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E1682401200 ... klink=true

https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E1682401201 ... 6824012013
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Independent George
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

The Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2 TB is on sale for $250 at Newegg, with Black Friday price protection (so you will be refunded if the price drops even further next week).
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by othermike27 »

Independent George wrote: Mon Nov 16, 2020 10:30 am The Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2 TB is on sale for $250 at Newegg, with Black Friday price protection (so you will be refunded if the price drops even further next week).
And Newegg also has the 1TB version for $150. These prices match MicroCenter which has been running both the 1TB and 2TB versions at the same sale prices and will drop the price further ($5 on 1TB or $10 on 2TB) if you bundle with a CPU or motherboard.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

Independent George wrote: Mon Nov 16, 2020 10:30 am The Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2 TB is on sale for $250 at Newegg, with Black Friday price protection (so you will be refunded if the price drops even further next week).
I completely missed that. I wonder if I can bring in my motherboard receipt from a couple weeks ago and count it as a bundle...
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by othermike27 »

Independent George wrote: Mon Nov 16, 2020 11:45 am I completely missed that. I wonder if I can bring in my motherboard receipt from a couple weeks ago and count it as a bundle...
Maybe. Over the years the store manager at Downers Grove has been good at price matches and similar moves if they carry the same gear. I appreciate that, so I always check with MicroCenter before I buy big items elsewhere.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

Check multiple sources. I purchased my 500 GB Samsung 970 EVO Plus from Amazon at 89.99. It's now $79.99.

- Samsung 970 EVO Plus SSD 500GB

1 TB = $149.99
2 TB = $249.99

Newegg's price for 500 GB is also $79.99 - add it to the cart to see the price.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

LadyGeek wrote: Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:03 pm Without any additional measurements, the PC already seems to be running faster. My boot time also seems to be faster. Nice.
Not so nice, as my PC did an unexpected restart with a "Page fault in Nonpaged area" Win 10 blue screen of death upon boot. Event viewer had zero, zip, nada hint of a problem except that the previous shutdown was not done cleanly. Google suggests drivers, but I'm up-to-date on everything. I may be pushing performance, but it's well within limits.

Next step - a comprehensive RAM test. Here's what I did: How to check your Windows 10 PC for memory problems I tested with the Extended option. The test took 29 hours and had no errors.

If you haven't run this test before, be aware that the test seems to "hang" at 21% complete. No worries, just wait it out. From: [Solved] Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool hangs at 21% 88% 89% 90... on every computer
Extended mode just takes many, many hours. 21%, 88%, 89%, 90% are known points where you can wait forever without seeing any progress - and 21% is the longest of those.

It's not unexpected for the whole test to take, say, eight hours. For three or four it might be stuck at 21%.

Unless Microsoft's Windows Memory Diagnostic is stuck at 21% for an entire day, there's no reason to worry.
My test took 9 hours to get past 21%. It also took several hours at 88%, 89%, and 90% completion. (29 hours total for 32 GB.)

Since my mobo RAM is good, I went looking for GPU RAM tests. I was unable to find anything (1) recent or (2) built for Windows that did the pattern testing. However, there are several GPU stress test utilities. Since I already have MSI Afterburner, I installed MSI Kombustor and ran a bunch of stress tests. In addition to some cool graphics, the GPU had no problems.

Thinking harder, this particular crash occurred when I was running my folding@home distributed computing application - for both the CPU and GPU. The support forum has several mentions of problems with nVidia drivers (what I'm using). I think this crash is a problem with the app - not my hardware. I'll proceed accordingly.

Important: Do NOT download MSI Kombustor from msikombustor .com (link intentionally broken). The site is not affiliated with MSI. My anti-malware tool, Malwarebytes, kicked-in with a site hijack and stopped the browser. The download link was bit.ly (red flag) and was redirecting to a 3rd party site that I didn't recognize. I'll renew my Malwarebytes subscription - it just paid for itself.

Update 11/17: I installed the latest graphics drivers directly from NVidia. They're much more recent than the Windows drivers and you get the full package - the PhysX engine is not installed with Windows. I did a clean install. So far, so good.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by stan1 »

AKBTX14 wrote: Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:42 pm
Dyloot wrote: Thu Nov 12, 2020 4:48 pm

- Are you sure you only want a 1080p monitor? If it were me I'd look for 2560 x 1440 for 1440p gaming.
- Current Gen Intel only supports PCI-E 3. I'm not really sure PCI-4 is really necessary at this point, but figured I'd point it out.

Otherwise, it looks awesome to me.
Yes, I am looking at 2560x1440 monitors. I thought that I should wait till I am able to buy new GPU.

I am leaning towards one of these monitors. Does anyone has a monitor recommendation?

https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E1682401200 ... klink=true

https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E1682401201 ... 6824012013

Personal preference but are you sure you want a curved 27" monitor? I can see that at 32" and above, but for me not at 27". I try to keep my head about 24" away from the 27" monitor.

I bought this monitor:
https://www.dell.com/en-us/shop/dell-27 ... ccessories
when it was on sale around Labor day (not on sale now). I like it a lot and it is fully adjustable (tilt, swivel, height) but it has been on a rolling 45 day back order since it was introduced. Monitor supports both GSync and FreeSync. Only downside is that it does not have a speaker bar attachment. Also these days I would love to have a camera and microphone in the monitor but those seem to be very rare. I do have camera, mic, and speakers in my 2011 Apple Cinema 27" monitor which I use every day.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

stan1 wrote: Mon Nov 16, 2020 9:46 pm Personal preference but are you sure you want a curved 27" monitor? I can see that at 32" and above, but for me not at 27". I try to keep my head about 24" away from the 27" monitor.
I had missed that the recommendation pointed to a curved monitor. Likewise, I also have a 27" monitor, but view it a tad closer.

Curved monitors are gaining popularity with little drawbacks - even for using them at work. However, 30" seems to be the smallest size where the benefits over a flat monitor are worth it. Also note that the aspect ratio changes from 16:9 to 21:9, which might be a consideration.

See: Should you buy a flat or curved computer monitor?
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

I finished reading my motherboard manual last night and discovered that using the second M.2 slot downgrades the PCIE 4.0 expansion slot (used for the GPU) from 16 lanes to 8. That is likely not an issue in the short term, but my goal with this build was to have a desktop last 6-8 years with maybe one GPU and/or memory upgrade in this span; there is a nonzero chance that RDNA 3/Nvidia 4000 series GPUs (which is what I plan on upgrading to in 1-2 years) will bottleneck on x8 by then.

That's a good lesson for everyone - don't just look at the spec sheet, RTFM.

Fortunately, I'm still within 30 days of purchase and the board still has all the plastic on it; I'll be replacing it with an Aorus Pro instead. I just find it hilarious that I'm going to be downgrading because the higher-spec board is actually worse for me.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

^^^ Lesson number 2 - Double check the numbers and be sure the components are compatible. Not just for mechanical fit, but performance as well.

Here's what I bought:
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X, system memory spec "Up to 3200MHz"
  • Motherboard: ASUS AM4 TUF GAMING X570-Plus (no wi-fi) - "The maximum memory frequency supported varies by processor."
  • DRAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4 SDRAM 3600 Model F4-3600C16D-32GVKC - DDR4-3600MHz CL16-19-19-39 1.35V
Notice anything? I didn't until this morning, and then it was obvious in hindsight.

First - My PC unexpectedly crashed last night (again) and I was now focused on a motherboard stability problem. A google search showed that Asus has problems reading DOCP (the Intel version of XMP) and does not handle overclocking correctly. There were numerous complaints, along with a bunch of fixes.

Deep into the BIOS, I discovered that the DRAM timing was set to 15-15-36, but my spec is 16-19-19-39.* IOW, the default setting was too tight and is very likely to be the cause of my crashes. The memory frequency was set to 2133 MHz.

Looking at the specs, I realized that I had purchased the wrong DRAM. I should have gotten DDR4-3200, not DDR4-3600. OK, that's my mistake. Bummer.

However, the motherboard wasn't using DOCP and set the timing to exceed what my DRAM could do. Even though the frequency was OK, the timing was not. Random freezes and reboots are classic symptoms of memory compatibility and performance problems.

How do I fix this (other than purchasing new DRAM)? First, I turned on DOCP (XMP) and set the memory frequency to DDR-3200 MHz (what the CPU can support). It froze after a few minutes of running my resource intensive open computing project, folding@home. Next, I enabled CPU auto-tuning. That didn't work for long.

Finally, I set the memory frequency to 2133 MHz (the default) and manually entered the timing latencies. The PC is still running, which is a step in the right direction I think I have a handle on the problem - finding the cause is the first step. If my PC is stable at these settings, I'll think about carefully improving performance (operating as designed).

* tCL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS. This is what I changed. tRCD is 2 settings in the BIOS - tRCDrd and tRCDwr.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by stan1 »

LadyGeek wrote: Thu Nov 19, 2020 4:21 pm
How do I fix this (other than purchasing new DRAM)?
Hoping you get an answer since I made the same "mistake"!
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

The steps I've listed are the path to fixing my "mistake". I'm open to suggestions.

This is exactly the type of problem that can cause first-time builders to give up. Overclocking is not for the faint-of-heart. I've been doing this for quite some time. The only thing that frustrated me is that I have completely new hardware (except for a SATA SSD) and the problem could be anywhere.

My first approach was to eliminate the software - use a clean install. My unexpected crashes disappeared for a while and I thought I was OK. A few days later, it happened again. With software eliminated, I then started thinking about hardware.

Lesson 3 - You can have more than one problem.

I googled "(motherboard) instability" and got lots of search results. A few websites even described the same motherboard and DRAM part number. OK, I know what to look for. I then realized that I had purchased the wrong part. Digging into the motherboard pointed to the problem - it was set to the wrong timing.

Digging out of this hole will be a compromise at best. Memory tuning is not easy. Here's a deep-dive: AMD Ryzen Memory Tweaking & Overclocking Guide and note that it's from 2019. The DRAM overclocking calculator mentioned in the article might be helpful.

In this case, I don't want to overclock. I just want to be sure I'm running at the right frequency and timings.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by tortoise84 »

LadyGeek wrote: Thu Nov 19, 2020 4:21 pm ^^^ Lesson number 2 - Double check the numbers and be sure the components are compatible. Not just for mechanical fit, but performance as well.

Here's what I bought:
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X, system memory spec "Up to 3200MHz"
  • Motherboard: ASUS AM4 TUF GAMING X570-Plus (no wi-fi) - "The maximum memory frequency supported varies by processor."
  • DRAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4 SDRAM 3600 Model F4-3600C16D-32GVKC - DDR4-3600MHz CL16-19-19-39 1.35V
Notice anything? I didn't until this morning, and then it was obvious in hindsight.

First - My PC unexpectedly crashed last night (again) and I was now focused on a motherboard stability problem. A google search showed that Asus has problems reading DOCP (the Intel version of XMP) and does not handle overclocking correctly. There were numerous complaints, along with a bunch of fixes.

Deep into the BIOS, I discovered that the DRAM timing was set to 15-15-36, but my spec is 16-19-19-39.* IOW, the default setting was too tight and is very likely to be the cause of my crashes. The memory frequency was set to 2133 MHz.

Looking at the specs, I realized that I had purchased the wrong DRAM. I should have gotten DDR4-3200, not DDR4-3600. OK, that's my mistake. Bummer.

However, the motherboard wasn't using DOCP and set the timing to exceed what my DRAM could do. Even though the frequency was OK, the timing was not. Random freezes and reboots are classic symptoms of memory compatibility and performance problems.

How do I fix this (other than purchasing new DRAM)? First, I turned on DOCP (XMP) and set the memory frequency to DDR-3200 MHz (what the CPU can support). It froze after a few minutes of running my resource intensive open computing project, folding@home. Next, I enabled CPU auto-tuning. That didn't work for long.

Finally, I set the memory frequency to 2133 MHz (the default) and manually entered the timing latencies. The PC is still running, which is a step in the right direction I think I have a handle on the problem - finding the cause is the first step. If my PC is stable at these settings, I'll think about carefully improving performance (operating as designed).

* tCL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS. This is what I changed. tRCD is 2 settings in the BIOS - tRCDrd and tRCDwr.
I also just built a PC with a Ryzen 7 3700X and the exact same G.Skill RAM as you but I have an ASRock B550M Pro 4 motherboard and it's working fine.

The RAM defaults to 2133 because that is a 'JEDEC' standard fall-back speed. The timings: 15-15-15-36 are actually ok at that speed because they are the number of clock cycles for each operation, so when you reduce the speed the actual time in nanoseconds remains about the same.

Speeds over 3200 should actually work fine on a Ryzen 7 3700X, but you need to load the XMP/DOCP profile and the timings would also increase to what is stored in the profile: 16-19-19-39. The G.Skill RAM is supposed to be rated to work at 3600 and those timings, but if your system still crashes, you may have to play around with the DRAM calculator in the article you linked. The G.Skill 16GB x 2 DDR4-3600 CL16 RAM should have Hynix CJR modules with 2 ranks, so that's what you should put into the calculator. You can reduce the frequency to say 3533 or even down to 3200, then hit Calculate Safe or Fast. You'll then have to copy down the timings and manually enter them in your BIOS.

Also note that the voltages matter. The XMP profile should raise the DRAM voltage from 1.2V to 1.35V.

Also make sure you put the RAM into the correct slots: A2 and B2.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Nekrotok »

So have you fixed the ram issue or not yet? Seems like you've already done most of what I'd do:
1. enable XMP/DOCP
2. check DRAM voltage is 1.35V or slightly higher
3. set RAM frequency to 3200mhz
4. check/set RAM timing to the RAM spec, 16-19-19-39
5. run test to see if stable (I'd run prime95 with large fft and see if it fails)
6. if test fails, then either reduce frequency or relax timings or increase voltage and try again

I don't think buying faster RAM than your processor supports is necessarily a problem. It should be able to run slower than the rate frequency. I bought 3600mhz RAM with a ryzen 5 3600, and found it couldn't run at that speed, but it ran at 3200mhz just fine for me.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

Thanks to both! :beer

Prime95 is exactly the tool I was looking for. I briefly used it back in the early 2000s and had completely forgotten about it. I'm glad it's still around. "Torture test", indeed. It crashed my PC in no time flat. This is important because it allows me to quickly rinse and repeat. It was fun to see all 8 cores nailed at 100% loading. :)

Here's what I did in the following order. Running Prime95:

- Failed quickly - RAM frequency = 2133 MHz, timings to 16-19-19-19-39, voltage at 1.20 V (Baseline of what I started with)
- Failed - crash, locked at boot, blank screen, GPU fans running 100% - RAM frequency = 2133 MHz, timings to 16-19-19-19-39, voltage at 1.35 V
- Failed quickly - Win 10 crash - (DRAM calculator, 3200 MHz), voltage at 1.35 V
- Failed at 6 minutes - Win 10 page fault - Load DOCP (XMP) profile, RAM frequency = 3600 MHz, voltage at 1.35 V
- Failed at 9 minutes - Win 10 IRQL error - Load DOCP (XMP) profile, RAM frequency = 3600 MHz, voltage at 1.35 V, SOC voltage to offset mode, +
- Stable (4+ hours, still running) - Load DOCP (XMP) profile, RAM frequency = 3200 MHz, voltage at 1.35 V, SOC voltage to offset mode, +

tortoise84 - Thanks for the RAM module info. I found the info using a different tool* and confirm Hynix with 2 ranks. I also used PCB revision A0. The calculated manual settings didn't help, but was worth a shot.

Prior to making a change, I also reset my BIOS ("Load optimized defaults") for the latter tests. I should have done this for my earlier tests, but didn't. At one point, my mouse locked up while I was inside the BIOS - a good sign that Asus is not completely overwriting its configurations. I found this during my internet searches.

The "SOC voltage to offset mode, +" comes from this Asus support thread: TUF X570 Gaming Unstable Using DOCP Profile. Several websites referred to that thread. Note that it also mentioned the same part number, which is a good sign.

When I made that change and my failure extended to 9 minutes, I knew I was doing something right and decided to leave the SOC voltage change in. Almost there. I then dropped the RAM frequency down to 'spec' of 3200 MHz. That did it. I'm calling it 'Done' and will leave these settings in place. If I want to push things further, I'll do it at a later time.

Today is Benoit Mandelbrot's birthday. Back to fractals...

* I'm not mentioning the tool name - The site was blocked by Malwarebytes as a hijack. Downloaded it with my Linux PC, then scanned the tool - OK.
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tuningfork
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by tuningfork »

I've been through that RAM timing game on some past builds. Usually some future BIOS update would fix the problem permanently to allow that specific RAM to work at default/XMP settings. Until that occurred, I would have to remember to reenter the RAM timings any time I did something that reset the BIOS. Nowadays the motherboard vendors are better at publishing specific lists of RAM parts certified to work, so I always make sure to buy from that list. Not just some RAM with the same specs as one on the list, but the exact RAM vendor part number they tested.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

My RAM part number is indeed on the Asus Qualified Vendor List. However it has to be matched with the processor - which can only go to 3200 MHz. That's what I got wrong.

Looking at the latest Asus info, I see they list the chip (die) manufacturer (SK Hynix), timing, and voltage.

G.SKILL F4-3600C16D-32GVKC 32GB(16GB*2) DS SK Hynix 16-19-19-39 1.35V 3600 3600

And yes, it should indeed work going slower than the rated frequency.
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manatee2005
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by manatee2005 »

Nice to see people are still overclocking. Last time I overclocked was celeron 300MHz chip to 450MHz back in 2000.
stan1
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by stan1 »

tuningfork wrote: Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:35 pm Usually some future BIOS update would fix the problem permanently to allow that specific RAM to work at default/XMP settings.
Ah, that prompted me to check and at least for my Asus B550M board there was now a BIOS update within the last few weeks. Downloaded it, enabled DOCP, and I have 3600 MHz (30 minutes and counting).
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by tortoise84 »

Interesting. It could be that the Asus motherboard is not increasing the SoC voltage enough when you run the RAM at higher speeds. The SoC voltage is for the non-core components in the CPU including the memory controller, and the voltages and frequencies are all related. So when you run your RAM at DDR4-3600, the 'Infinity Fabric FCLK' and memory controller 'UCLK' will also increase to 1800 MHz, but they may need a slight increase in the SoC voltage to run stable. You can view the voltages in the AMD Ryzen Master software or other programs like HWInfo. The full name is VDDCR SOC and it should be 1.1V but you may need 1.2V.

You could also log the issue with ASUS because they may be able to fix it with a BIOS update. I know for my ASRock motherboard, my RAM was working fine at 3600 with the AGESA 1.0.0.8 BIOS which automatically set the SoC voltage at 1.2V, but when they released the AGESA 1.1.0.0 version (which is really meant as an update for Zen 3 CPUs), it set the SoC voltage to 1.1V and I couldn't change it so my computer would not even boot anymore. After clearing the CMOS, I found that I could only run the RAM at 3533. I have also heard from tech YouTubers and forums having the same problem of the new Ryzen 5000 series Zen 3 CPUs not working with DDR4-3600 XMP.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by ScaledWheel »

Really wish some more recently-released items would come back in stock so I could contribute to this thread :annoyed

Doubt that my RTX 3090 or Ryzen 5950x are going to be coming in stock before January, unfortunately...
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

I went to Micro Center and exchanged my Gigabyte B550 Aorus Master for the Aorus Pro, and also picked up a 2TB Samsung 970 Evo Plus SSD for an additional $10 off the $250 sale price. Score!

As it happens, they had Ryzen 7 5800X CPUs in stock. I was sorely tempted, but I still think the price is stupid compared to the 5900X, and I'm perfectly willing to wait for stock to stabilize. I suppose I could have bought it and immediately flipped it on eBay, but scalpers are bad and should feel bad.
Last edited by Independent George on Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

^^^ Congrats!
tortoise84 wrote: Fri Nov 20, 2020 10:13 pm Interesting. It could be that the Asus motherboard is not increasing the SoC voltage enough when you run the RAM at higher speeds.
Nailed it. Thanks! :beer I'm now running at 3600 MHz. How I got there -

1. Another unexpected reboot last night followed by my mouse turning off while in the BIOS led me to thinking that the BIOS was unstable. Yup. Asus rev 2812 is not only marked "Beta Version" but has numerous complaints for randoom reboots and freezes.
2. Reverting to 2802 was frustrating as I kept getting "Selected file is not a UEFI BIOS" when I tried to flash the file. :annoyed Google found this Youtube video for an easy solution. Load the BIOS onto a FAT32 USB stick. Works fine.
3. Load DOCP profile at 3600 MHz, 1.35 V, SOC voltage as 'offset, +'. Prime95 crash in 4 minutes.
4. Load DOCP profile at 3600 MHz, 1.35 V, SOC voltage at 1.2 V. Prime95 runs. Done.

Success! Prime95 is still running at 4+ hours.

First, thanks for the HWiNFO recommendation. I downloaded the free version and exported the report to HTML. I didn't see SOC voltage.

The Asus BIOS displays the configured settings. Before I changed anything, SOC Voltage (VDDCR SOC) was 1.025 V - the fallback value. After changing to "offset, +", it went to 1.1 V (3600 MHz). OK, let me take this up to 1.2 V - it worked! I'm officially overclocking at 3600 MHz.

Hopefully, my random reboots will disappear. Time will tell. I'm not happy with the ASUS firmware quality. If I had to do this again, I might go with a different vendor.

Update 11/22: The PC froze with my folding@home distributed computing app. I backed the RAM frequency down to 3200 MHz.
=====================
For those new to overclocking - Mucking with voltages must be done with caution. It's "Here there be dragons..." territory. In addition to voiding your warranty, you can and will brick your PC if you do it wrong. Not so much for memory, but especially so for a CPU. Do your due diligence.

Use credible resources, such as the overclocking forums. I also found an authoritative source. From: Corsair's Ryzen 3000 Series Memory Overclocking Guide:
SoC (System-on-Chip) Voltage: SoC voltage is the voltage supplied to supplementary components like the, known as “System-on-Chip.” Most motherboards will automatically adjust SoC Voltage to accommodate overclocks on DRAM. This value can be manually adjusted.
• You must be very careful with adjustment of these values, due to potential inaccuracies in how voltage is being measured and reported; while you may set the SoC voltage to a safe level, variations that exceed the upper limit could irreparably damage your CPU or other components.
• 1.2V is generally considered the upper limit of safe SoC voltages, particularly on Ryzen 3000 CPUs.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by othermike27 »

For anyone still looking to buy a Ryzen 5000 series CPU, you might want to check your local MicroCenter if you have one. I just noticed that their suburban Chicago location had 18 5600X in stock as of ~10:20 AM today, 24 Nov. I note the time because when I refreshed the page 10-15 minutes later it was down to only 8 in stock (now 5 as of 11:22 AM; they're flying off the shelf!). The others (5800, 5900, 5950) all still show out of stock. I don't think this will help you unless you have a MicroCenter close, since they have tagged all of these as unavailable online.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

othermike27 wrote: Tue Nov 24, 2020 11:42 am For anyone still looking to buy a Ryzen 5000 series CPU, you might want to check your local MicroCenter if you have one. I just noticed that their suburban Chicago location had 18 5600X in stock as of ~10:20 AM today, 24 Nov. I note the time because when I refreshed the page 10-15 minutes later it was down to only 8 in stock. The others (5800, 5900, 5950) all still show out of stock. I don't think this will help you unless you have a MicroCenter close, since they have tagged all of these as unavailable online.
Talking to the staff at Micro Center, apparently people have been lining up at 5AM to grab stock as soon as they opened at 9. That just seems crazy to me. I want to get started on my new PC, but not that badly - and my system is ten years old! I don't see how waiting another month or so for stock to stabilize is so terrible that I'd be willing to camp outside in the Chicago winter just to maybe pick up some new hardware; don't get me started on people paying double msrp from eBay scalpers. I just don't understand it.

2020: the year people learned that things need to be built, tested, packaged, shipped, and distributed instead of magically appearing on shelves.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

I just sent my motherboard out for warranty repair. :annoyed

My random crashes continued, in spite of dropping the DRAM speed down further from 3200 MHz. It was fine all day then decided to do a hard crash in the early evening. I rebooted (had to power-off) and it crashed 20 minutes later while doing next to nothing.

OK, time to swap out the motherboard. Hopefully, this will solve the problem.

For Asus, the first thing to do is create an RMA number. I entered my board's serial number. All OK, my warranty is good until 2023/08/30 (the manufacturer's date). This is why I only purchase parts with a US warranty. You might use it.

Removing the Noctua cooler was an adventure. The CPU paste was sticking like glue. I unintentionally pulled the cooler with the CPU still attached. I was able to rotate the cooler a bit, but it still wouldn't pull off until I applied more force.

Asus offers purchase of a shipping label. It would have cost me $15.90, but would take several days for them to get it to me. Instead, I went to the UPS store and got it shipped for $14.38 + insurance. I don't normally get insurance, but I was hoping they would lose / damage the box so I can get a replacement that's not Asus. I'm sure this won't happen, but one can hope. (UPS is extremely reliable. I've had nothing but good experiences.)
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by Independent George »

Wow, that sounds really frustrating. This is the one downside to homebrewing - when something goes wrong, unless you have a shelf full of compatible parts to swap, it can be really difficult to narrow it down. Worse, it's usually a combination of parts that just don't work together, but might in another build. Hopefully this fixes things.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by lazydavid »

LadyGeek wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 11:43 am I just sent my motherboard out for warranty repair. :annoyed
I hope your results are better than mine. I got a new board, which exhibits the exact same problem I sent it out for, which in my case is it semi-randomly--seems to happen more frequently during video changes, but can happen at anytime--crashes the machine, and blanks out the video permanently. A power cycle doesn't change this. The machine boots happily (and will shut down orderly if you push the power button), but will never again show video until the CMOS is cleared, and occasionally the battery must be removed as well.

It's happened twice since receiving the new board, upon reading your saga after the second time I left the RAM at the default of 2133 and so far it hasn't happened again, but I've only used it a little since then. If it remains stable I'll try playing with the settings again.
LadyGeek wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 11:43 amRemoving the Noctua cooler was an adventure. The CPU paste was sticking like glue. I unintentionally pulled the cooler with the CPU still attached. I was able to rotate the cooler a bit, but it still wouldn't pull off until I applied more force.
Same exact thing happened to me, the AMD Spire cooler yanked the CPU right out of the socket. Luckily, no damage.

As a side note, hopefully you removed EVERYTHING from the board before shipping it. Mine came back missing an M.2 standoff, so I had to order a $5 kit from Amazon in order to reinstall my second SSD (which I still haven't done). This has definitely been my most troublesome build in 25+ years of doing this.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

Independent George wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 12:09 pm Wow, that sounds really frustrating. This is the one downside to homebrewing - when something goes wrong, unless you have a shelf full of compatible parts to swap, it can be really difficult to narrow it down. Worse, it's usually a combination of parts that just don't work together, but might in another build. Hopefully this fixes things.
Agree, this is the downside of homebrewing. Dealing with "things that break" is no different than any other hobby. You always plan for it, but it's disheartening when it happens to you for the first time. This isn't my first time, nor is it the second.

What you do is hedge your bet - It's why I save the original boxes. I also save all the little plastic parts bags. In case a component needs to be shipped back, I'll have the proper shipping container.

I packed the motherboard in its original box inside an old laptop shipping box. It was just the right side and still had the packing foam. I'll be saving all the boxes from my current build...

I agree that the problem is combination of motherboard, CPU, memory, GPU... in just the right order to cause these problems. I took a swipe at the motherboard first because it's the hardest one to replace. I loaded the default BIOS settings before shipment so Asus can't point to anything I was doing as a reason for the failure.
lazydavid wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 12:27 pm I hope your results are better than mine. I got a new board, which exhibits the exact same problem I sent it out for, which in my case is it semi-randomly--seems to happen more frequently during video changes, but can happen at anytime--crashes the machine, and blanks out the video permanently.
I have the same thought. The replacement may have the same problem - or it may exhibit a different problem.

With regards to warranties, my failure was exhibiting a few symptoms a few weeks ago. Now, they've gotten worse. This pushed me over the 30 day retail return limit and into manufacturer warranty territory. In any case, electronics that fail will do so (1) within a few months or (2) at the end of the product life. It's why I don't go for extended warranties.
lazydavid wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 12:27 pm Same exact thing happened to me, the AMD Spire cooler yanked the CPU right out of the socket. Luckily, no damage.

As a side note, hopefully you removed EVERYTHING from the board before shipping it. Mine came back missing an M.2 standoff, so I had to order a $5 kit from Amazon in order to reinstall my second SSD (which I still haven't done). This has definitely been my most troublesome build in 25+ years of doing this.
CPU pins look intact. I should be OK.

I almost missed that M.2 standoff as well. :) I scanned my board several times before packing. The M.2 drive is easy to miss, but it's the first time I've owned one. The other thing I had to do was replace the Noctua cooler mounting bracket with the stock brackets. It's another reason to keep everything that comes with the components. Unfortunately, I lost the little plastic cover that goes over the CPU socket. I apologized to Asus in the RMA instructions.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by rallycobra »

Ladygeek, sorry for your trouble. I would have suggested installing the ram one stick at a time. If you still had crashes, swap for another. To me it sounds like a bad stick of ram.

To the original poster I would suggest a GTX 1650 super instead of RX580. Slightly faster and much less power draw and heat.
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Re: PC Build Thread 2020

Post by LadyGeek »

rallycobra wrote: Wed Nov 25, 2020 1:51 pm Ladygeek, sorry for your trouble. I would have suggested installing the ram one stick at a time. If you still had crashes, swap for another. To me it sounds like a bad stick of ram.
Thanks, but I already spent a few days running the Windows memory diagnostic memory tool (extensive option). If there was anything obvious, it should have shown up at that time.
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