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Asus AM3 motherboards get beta BIOS, Bulldozer support

By Julio Franco ยท 30 replies
Mar 18, 2011
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  1. Asus has been quick to announce they are the first manufacturer to offer beta BIOS updates for current AM3 motherboards, receiving instant support for AMD's upcoming Bulldozer processors.

    Read the whole story
  2. Mizzou

    Mizzou TS Enthusiast Posts: 783

    This would be a really pleasant surprise, if I can drop a Bulldozer in my Gigabyte MA790FXT-UD5P AM3 board I'll be one happy camper. If ASUS can do it, surely Gigabyte will be soon to follow.
  3. fpsgamerJR62

    fpsgamerJR62 TS Rookie Posts: 489

    Good news for users on the AM3 platform if the rest of the motherboard manufacturers follow the lead of Asustek regarding enabling support for the new Bulldozer CPUs in their existing AM3 boards. My only concern is that PC users who install the new AM3+ CPUs on their existing boards may not be able to activate all the features of the new processors. As for myself, since I'm currently running an AM2 board, whatever upgrade path that I choose will necessarily require the whole package of motherboard, memory and CPU since DDR2-based platforms are pretty much obsolete.
  4. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,073   +164

    It appears this compatibility is only for the 890/850 chipset MB's

    R3DP3NGUIN TS Booster Posts: 155   +12

    I guess this is good news for people who have just upgraded, but since this is a completely redesigned CPU you should atleast have the board it was designed for, plus to get the full potential of new architecture. I just wish it was released in 1 month not 3, im so ready to upgrade my 955.
  6. Jesse

    Jesse TS Evangelist Posts: 358   +42

    When are the bulldozer cpus going to be released?
  7. Mizzou

    Mizzou TS Enthusiast Posts: 783

    Oh well, sounded too good to be true :(
  8. HaMsTeYr

    HaMsTeYr TS Guru Posts: 378   +7

    I wonder if gigabyte would add support for bulldozer for the 790XT-USB3... Please do Please do.
  9. Compability will soon arrive to 870 and 880 chipsets,says the Asus website, if you dig enough. Not at this time maybe, but it will arrive that's for sure.
  10. bimboy56

    bimboy56 TS Rookie

    This is one of the reasons why I continue to support AMD. :)
  11. Vrmithrax

    Vrmithrax TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,467   +500

    I've got a computer that I'm upgrading in bursts for a friend... He's got a 955 as well, and is anxious to move up, but doesn't have lots of cash all at once (and his mobo chipset is not one that can be updated for AM3+). So, we're going incremental. Watching for a good AM3+ motherboard that we feel would make a good foundation for his system. Once that's available, we grab that and memory. Since the AM3+ boards are supposed to be fully backwards compatible with AM3 processors, we can keep the 955 for now, and then grab a BD processor when they are available (and he has the money again). Odds are he may run 6 months or more with the 955, and it's nice to have that option.

    Which reminds me... Has anyone seen actual AM3+ boards available in the wild yet? Still none on Newegg, but I seem to recall seeing several "AM3+ boards now available" mentions throughout the net fairly recently... Most reports indicated Q1 of 2011 for release of those boards, as well.
  12. Mizzou

    Mizzou TS Enthusiast Posts: 783

    I've seen listings for a DFI Lanparty that's supposed to be AM3+ but not really sure it's for real with the chipset it lists.

  13. CamaroMullet

    CamaroMullet TS Rookie Posts: 93

    Has to be a typo. It has a 785G northbridge.
  14. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,654   +319

    Good discussion here: http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=268098

    From that discussion: AM3+ requires a new socket, but these sockets are already shipping in new AM3 motherboards, so these boards will be upgradable to an AM3+ compatible BIOS. Which means that AM3+ won't magically appear on old boards, but it's possible to buy new AM3 boards in the knowledge that they'll be compatible with AM3+.
  15. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,357   +116

    Assuming of course its been built since that decision was made. Older, bulk stock certainly won't be any better, and I see many people getting caught out by this.
  16. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,073   +164

    That has been a portion of the debate. It looks possible that the ( or some of them anyway) 890/850 MB's may have actually been BD (AM3+) to begin with. I keep looking for it to be written somewhere that " the 890/850 motherboards will be compatible with limited functionality" , or something along those lines. I have not found that yet.
  17. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,372   +17

    Definitely good news and that interests me the most.
  18. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,268

    The mechanics of the whole thing >>here<< -conditions that need to be met (present AM3 socket boards) and possible feature set restrictions. Which is probably why John Fruehe (AMD's Director of Marketing-Server) is on record ( i.e. here and here )in numerous instances as saying that AM3 does not support Bulldozer -as opposed to Bulldozer not being functional in an AM3 socket.
  19. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,073   +164

  20. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,268

    Bulldozer should be waaaaaay popular judging by the three threads we have up and running. Kind of makes if a coin-toss as to where to post the info
  21. For months? Are we just expecting AMD to miss its due date again, because last I checked, they said end of Q1(-ish) for Zambezi. Llano is the only offering confirmed months away. I grant you, they've held onto release information w. the tightest buttcheeks in history, so there is no certainty- the old leaked timeline had them at June, and knowing them, that seems more their speed. But they promised, and we've played this game w. them a _few_ times. If they don't deliver by April...May 1... game up. I'm no longer amused by their ability to weld a couple of GPUs together. CPUs please.
  22. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,073   +164

    I kind of took care of that in my previous post :)

    *** @ Chef,
    Think Its a fair estimation (from your article link above that this is a bit of 'overbuilding'? put another way, if the raised voltage and spikes were much beyond what they are now, they would not even offer support for the higher end AM3 boards? ...I mean ...it would be a warranty nightmare...paging XFX!!! :haha:
  23. Lemme ask you, would you want them if they were? OTOH, we hear "forward compatibility!!!" and on the other we hear AMD is missing showcases b/c they are "unhappy with the chipset". I'll just wait around for 990FX or wth they'll name it.
  24. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,268

    Not sure what you're asking here. If BD needed a VRM in excess of the multi-phase Hi-C caps in present use then I'd suggest AMD might have a problem on it's hands. As for voltage demand, I would hope that Bulldozer is a little more frugal than the 140w version of the 965, which is already supported across the board(!) with the 800 series chipset boards.

    Luckily for the computer enthusiast, XFX haven't been a factor in mobo production since their X58I-CH19 abomination thankfully departed store shelves.

    Talking of XFX, I'd say that their PR department probably wont be getting a Christmas card from the groups accountants. Here's a fun picture (graph 4) of the 6990's power demand -note that the nominal current draw for an 8pin PCIe is 12.5A. Given that more than a few high-wattage PSU's run more than one PCIe per 12v rail, I'd say that XFX won't be offering the 6990 at knockdown prices :D
  25. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,073   +164

    What I meant was that after reading your link, was that the boards that are getting this AM3+ compatibility must be able to handle the power regulation/delivery. Otherwise Asus would not have done this. They are not going to subject themselves to a burned board RMA frenzy. I am seeing comments out there crying foul that the AM3 boards will not be able to handle the BD and its power requirements. I wonder if this has any impact on LLC? I have it enabled, but I really have no Idea if it has much of an impact on a board that has quality caps/regulator to begin with.

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