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  1. #1
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum (MS-7025) Guide

    LAST UPDATE: 1/30/2005
    Added: Q&A added

    Before you start reading, be sure to check out MSI K8N Neo2 Owners Post your rig and settings! by crash0veride007 - You can find similar systems and compare 'em to yours

    Guide for settings up almost everything on MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum.
    In this thread also included:
    Reviews, BIOS (official, beta, modded & recommended bios settings), Drivers & Utilities, Voltmods and common Questions & Answers.

    A64 Basics
    A64 101
    Sen's Ultimate Winchester Thread


    Reviews
    Anandtech: Socket 939 Roundup
    Socket 939 Motherboard Roundup by Hothardware.com
    MADSHRIMPS - MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum
    PCStats - MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum
    VIPERLAIR.com - MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum


    BIOS
    Official - Here
    Neo2 BIOS Collection (includes: official, beta and mod) - Here
    Another BIOS Vault for Neo2 (better one) - Here

    BIOS Settings
    Hidden options
    - Pressing SHIFT+F2 then ALT+F3 unlocks hidden options in Cell menu, and 1 in advanced chipset options.
    this is on most bioses, including beta's

    Cell Menu
    - High Performance Mode: Disabled
    - Aggressive timing: Disabled (if memory able to handle, turn this Enabled)
    - Dynamic Overclocking: Disabled
    - Spread Spectrum: Disabled
    - HT Frequency: 3x if FSB higher than 250 / 4x if FSB lower than 250
    - Cool'n'Quiet: Disabled
    - Adjust AGP Frequency: 66 (if using BIOS 1.2 or newer. Otherwise, use 67)

    Cell Menu -> DRAM Configuration
    - Max Memclock(MHz): 200MHz (1:1), 166MHz (6:5), 133MHz (3:2), 100MHz (2:1)
    - 1T/2T Memory Timing: 1T for performance / 2T for stability

    Drivers & Utilities
    A64Tweaker by CodeRed
    Up-to-date drivers from MSI
    Latest utilities from MSI

    Voltmods
    VCore, VDD, VDDR, VHT by Oohash


    Questions & Answers
    Q: I found they sell two different boards, MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum and MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum 54G. Do these boards difference eachother and is WLAN card only different what they have?
    A: Yes, they do have differences and WLAN card isn't the only "add-on". 54G model has also more powerful power circulation (three more mosfets on the backside of the board)

    Q: My CPU temperature is high or keeps fluctuating, how can I solve this problem?
    A: Use BIOS version 1.3 or newer

    Q: I have SATA-drive connected to SATA port 1/2, others seems to have much better overclocking results with same system?
    A: SATA ports 1/2 are not directly connected to chipset like 3/4 so the "AGP/PCI lock" do not effect to ports 1/2. If your FSB stops somewhere 230-240, you probably have "wrong" SATA-port in use.

    Q: I try to change my HT Frequency, empty window just pops on the screen and my PC freeze, what can I do?
    A: Do not hit ENTER to change options, use +/- and Pg Up/Pg Dn instead

    Q: I get no POST after I set HT Frequency to 2.5x, is this an known issue?
    A: Yes and no, however there's some issues on half multipliers so use only full multipliers, 4x, 3x, 2x, etc

    Q: How can I remove the "NVidia IDE Raid" message after POST?
    A: Actually this message has nothing to do with NVidia's Raid. It is an Realtek Ethernet Configuration message (Press Shift+F10 to enter setup), however this can be removed by disabling Realtek RTL8169/8110 Gigabit LAN from BIOS (Integrated pheriperals -> Onboard Device -> Onboard Giga LAN -> Disabled)

    Q: I have (example) KHX3000 BH-5 sticks and I need to have a 1:1 divider, how can I do this?
    A: There's problem (according on Asus report) on AMD64's integrated memory controller, so ram sticks without 3200 SPD information this cannot be done through BIOS, however, with A64Tweaker it's possible to "force" 1:1 divider so you can use your FSB and memory with synchronized speed. Run A64Tweaker, and select MEMCLK Frequency: 200 and hit 'Set'. If you're facing instability or your PC freezes up after you have done this, reset your PC and when you're back on the Windows, run A64 Tweaker and select first Refresh Rate (Tref): 200MHz 15.6us and then select MEMCLK Frequency: 200 and press 'Set'. Now you're running your FSB / MEM with synchronized speed.

    Q: I have RAM that requires 2,8V -> 2,85 VDIMM to work with tight 2-2-2-5 timings. I've set all the DRAM configuration manually (example: 200, 1T, 2, 2, 5, 2) but whenever I try to boot up my system just freezes?!
    A: This is important to know, that if you set manually Trcd(RAS to CAS Delay) to '2' from bios, it forces your Memory Voltage to 2,7V.

    Other important threads (worth to look at)
    Problems with Antec PSU's & Neo2 Plat?
    K8N Neo2 suffers some SERIOUS VDIMM issues?
    XtremeSystems Forum MSI K8N Neo2 Tips and Tricks


    Please, feel free to give any suggestions, corrections, new links, or questions & answers which may help people for not having so much problem.
    And also we should thank MSI for creating and ultimate Athlon64 board.
    Last edited by Zebbo; 09-16-05 at 07:30 AM.

  2. #2
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    Good post....thanks.

    Im a little unsure what HT Freq is and does...and where I need to have it set. I think it comes stock at 5x. But when I do anything above 200fsb I have to set it at 1x and no higher or it wont even post - is this right??

    I think I have a bad board because I seem to be unstable at any overclock. So far I have tried 2 different sets of RAM including my brand new OCZ 3700 gold r3. Unstable no matter what I do.

    Any links to AMD HyperTransport - what it is and does?

    Thanks

  3. #3
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Here's everything related about A64 CPUs. So I guess you can find your questions about HT frequency there. And yes, with K8N Neo2 the default HT Frequency is 5x, when overclocking, you should set this to 4x, or if going higher than 250FSB then 3x.

    What ram sets you've tried (OCZ and other brand)? Are you sure it's not incompatibility what you're facing there? What bios version you're using? What chips these OCZ memories has? Samsung TCCD?

    Try this: Go to one of the links above and download official 1.3 BIOS or 1.3beta7 BIOS and flash it (if you haven't done this already). Then go to DRAM Configuration and change 1T/2T Timing: 2T and try again, if this won't help you to solve your problem try to change Max Memclock to 166MHz.

  4. #4
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    Thanks Zebbo,

    I have tried my Mushkin 3500lvl1 - worked fine on my Abit nf7-s rig.
    Also tried (currently installed) my brand new OCZ 3700Gold rev3.
    I do know that MSI lists the Mushkin 3500 lvl 1 on their wesite for compatability. Also I have seen at least 3 - 4 reviews (Anandtech, MadShrimps etc) using the Neo2 Plat with the OCZ 3700 Gold Rev3. All with excellent things to say about this combo.

    As far as configuration and settings: With HT set to 5x and 4x I have tried both single and dual channel, 1 and 2 sticks of ram, tried different dimm solts, tried RAM "AUTO" settings, and 1T and 2T with various ram timings (cl 2.5and 3.0 etc).

    I HAVE NOT tried Max Memlock at 166MHz - I have only left this to stock settings.

    None of this seems to help - it just wont POST past 200fsb (at HT 5x 0r 4x). Now, when I change HT to 1x I have tried as far as 240MHz and it POSTs and boots fine - BUT its reboots when running 3DMark03 and Call of Duty.

    I will go back and try HT 4x again and Max Memlock to 166.

    Oh yeah, I am currently using BIOS 1.3

    Thanks again.

  5. #5
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    cmitchellfly, how much you give voltage to your rams?

  6. #6
    Member HeXenViRii's Avatar
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    Here is one I discovered . It helps if you want to run the ram @ 1:1 speeds (I have not tested async) , simply ****** the RAS to CAS Delay (Trcd) from its stock settings by 1 . I have tried this with my Geil and BH-5 and it greatly increased my maximum achieveable 1:1 FSB .

    For the Geil running at 1:1 3-4-8-4 @ 2.8v I was able to go no higher then 242 prime stable . After making it 1:1 3-5-8-4 @ 2.8v I am now able to run 270 prime stable .

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zebbo
    cmitchellfly, how much you give voltage to your rams?
    I have tried "AUTO" up to 2.8v

  8. #8
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    ok. now I think I figgerd it out.

    My problem: I was not lowering HT.

    I had it at 5x when I should have had it at 4x or even 3x. I also loosened up my ram timings. So far Im stable at 240*10 (HT 3x, RAM 1T; 2.5-4-4-10; 2.85vdimm, vcore 1.60v). So far I have kept the ram/cpu ratio at 1:1.

    Actually Im not quite sure I understand exactly how to set the ratio (should I use 166mhz etc?), and when should I change it from 1:1

    Anyway thanks!!

  9. #9
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    What the heck, are you giving 1,6V to Winchester? You really should read Sen's Ultimate Winchester Thread. It gives you alot of good info about Winchesters, and how they are different compared to NewCastles.

    I think I'll update the first post and add some additional links and information about A64 too. And yes, use 1:1 divider since your ram sticks are able to handle it.
    Last edited by Zebbo; 10-27-04 at 03:21 PM.

  10. #10
    which lan port is better - the marvell port or the realtek port??

  11. #11
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arctic-k20
    which lan port is better - the marvell port or the realtek port??
    Well, I don't see any difference which one would be better than other since they both are capable to handle the magical gigabit. I'm using the marvell's port cause when I got the board I just plugged the RJ-45.

  12. #12
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeXenViRii
    Here is one I discovered . It helps if you want to run the ram @ 1:1 speeds (I have not tested async) , simply ****** the RAS to CAS Delay (Trcd) from its stock settings by 1 . I have tried this with my Geil and BH-5 and it greatly increased my maximum achieveable 1:1 FSB .

    For the Geil running at 1:1 3-4-8-4 @ 2.8v I was able to go no higher then 242 prime stable . After making it 1:1 3-5-8-4 @ 2.8v I am now able to run 270 prime stable .
    Effects overclocking nicely, but I wouldn't personally recommend this if you're not running on high frequencies. RAS to CAS effects so much on memory performance thou. Should I add this to guide too? I'm a little unsure about this.

  13. #13
    Member HeXenViRii's Avatar
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    I did a little test with the help of A64 Tweaker .

    At 3-5-8-4 i got 6263MB/s Int buff'd in sandra .
    At 3-4-8-4 i got 6346MB/s Int buff'd in sandra .

    A difference of 83MB/s @ 273mhz . Although it may seem like a lot , its only ~ 1.5% increase in memory bandwidth .

  14. #14
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    Just wanted to let you guys know about this issue that is being investigated regarding the mobo...

    http://www.sudhian.com/showdocs.cfm?aid=616

    If it turns out to be legit, you should include it in your guide.

  15. #15
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Do anyone have experience about 2.5x HT Frequency or lower? Have you got it working or not?

  16. #16
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    As Zebbo said, Im having problems with HT multiplier below 3x, anything below that it wont post, max fsb here 335x7. Need 2.5x multiplier to go higher

  17. #17
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tacobell
    As Zebbo said, Im having problems with HT multiplier below 3x, anything below that it wont post, max fsb here 335x7. Need 2.5x multiplier to go higher
    I just thought this a little and I was like "WTF?!" where the hell you're going to need that kind of FSB since you don't gain anything in performance?

  18. #18
    Member Sucka's Avatar
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    Do we have confirmation that "66" will actually lock it? I was under the impression it was "67" to be an effective lock.
    DFI SLI-DR | Opteron 170 | 2x512 G.Skill LE | x1900XTX | 2x250GB T7K250 RAID 0 | PCP&C 510 SLI | X-Fi | Dell 2007FPW
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  19. #19
    Mushkin Tech Rep Zebbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sucka
    Do we have confirmation that "66" will actually lock it? I was under the impression it was "67" to be an effective lock.
    This info was given me by "d]g[ts" and I tried it before I added it to guide. I can agree that AGP lock works and you don't have to change it from it's default value to "67". You should try it before you doubt it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zebbo
    I just thought this a little and I was like "WTF?!" where the hell you're going to need that kind of FSB since you don't gain anything in performance?

    I told you before, I only want to see how high it goes...

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