Asus P5Q-EM G45 mATX motherboard

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Monkeh16
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Post by Monkeh16 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:00 am

Mats wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:The G45 uses the PCI-E lanes for SDVO (8 lanes) and DVI/HDMI (2x4 lanes), which accounts for all 16. It's IGP or PCI-E GPU, unless the BIOS allows headless operation.
You're right about that, but then again Intel should have added more lanes into their premium IGP chipset. The whole idea with having a good IGP mobo is that you shouldn't have to add a graphics card if you don't need to, and that's why you should be able to use the x16 slot for somethig else.

This doesn't change the fact that the P5Q-EM can't be considered a perfect IGP µATX mobo since it can't handle a simple RAID card that does work in other (older?) µATX mobos (like MSI K8NGM2-FID).
And a board like the K8NGM2-FID is even further from perfect than the P5Q-EM. Those nVidia chipsets are broken in so many ways it's not funny.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:04 am

Never said it was perfect, my point is that P5Q-EM is not perfect either.
The broken nVidia mobo can still handle a simple RAID card.

Monkeh16
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Post by Monkeh16 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:32 am

Mats wrote:The broken nVidia mobo can still handle a simple RAID card.
And yet, not an even more simple few USB devices or sound card..

And hey, the MCH isn't supposed to have anything but a GPU attached to it. Look for a G45 board with an x4 slot attached to the ICH.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 9:51 am

Monkeh16 wrote:And hey, the MCH isn't supposed to have anything but a GPU attached to it.
Yeah, I know. It's a really bad design.

Monkeh16
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Post by Monkeh16 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:05 am

Mats wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:And hey, the MCH isn't supposed to have anything but a GPU attached to it.
Yeah, I know. It's a really bad design.
It beats crippled USB and unreliable PCI latencies any day in my book.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:09 am

Monkeh16 wrote:
Mats wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:And hey, the MCH isn't supposed to have anything but a GPU attached to it.
Yeah, I know. It's a really bad design.
It beats crippled USB and unreliable PCI latencies any day in my book.
I was talking about P5Q-EM.
You must have missed the part when I said that the nVidia mobo wasn't perfect.
It was just an example, showing that the x16 slot can be used for other cards than graphic cards, if the chipset/mobo is designed for it.

MiKeLezZ
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Post by MiKeLezZ » Thu Nov 20, 2008 1:10 pm

Mats wrote:
Monkeh16 wrote:What sort of trouble? I find it hard to believe there are software problems with the PCI-E bus.
Look here. It's not a problem if you're using it for graphic cards.
OK: 16x PCI-E port should not used for anything different than a VGA. Now you know it. Does it change something? No.

There are 6 SATA. RAID 0-1-5-10, and Intel Matrix Storage.
Need more? There are 2 OTHER PCI-E 1x FREE SLOTs!
A PCI-E 1x is able to sustain a 250MB/s of data!!! You can do whatever RAID you want with it.

You just can't use the $400 Promise SuperTrak EX8350 RAID Controller... but, my friend, if you want to use it, you bought the wrong board. That is a server-grade server-duty device, and you should use it on a X38/X48/X58 motherboard with at least ECC support... if not a server-grade motherboard made by Tyan or SuperMicro.
It is also just plain stupid to use a m-ATX motherboard with 14 SATA.

The solution? The Gigabyte G45 board sports a 4x PCI-E port, instead of a 16x one. No problem with the Promise Controller (but a reduced performance with VGA cards). This seems like a better deal to you?

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:19 pm

I didn't realize that I would hurt so many feelings by calling P5Q-EM not perfect.
MiKeLezZ wrote:OK: 16x PCI-E port should not used for anything different than a VGA.
Wrong, there's nothing unique with the x16 slot except for the number of lanes and the amount of power it can deliver.
Because of that, people have used x4 cards in x16 slots, and x16 graphic cards in x4 slots (with open slot end), and I don't think that was plain luck.
MiKeLezZ wrote:Now you know it. Does it change something? No.
Actually that's just your opinion.
MiKeLezZ wrote:There are 6 SATA. RAID 0-1-5-10, and Intel Matrix Storage.
A separate RAID controller can give much higher transfer speeds, that's one reason.
MiKeLezZ wrote:There are 2 OTHER PCI-E 1x FREE SLOTs!
Yes, but that doesn't really help if you need x4.
MiKeLezZ wrote:A PCI-E 1x is able to sustain a 250MB/s of data!!!
Yes, that is correct.
MiKeLezZ wrote:You just can't use the $400 Promise SuperTrak EX8350 RAID Controller... but, my friend, if you want to use it, you bought the wrong board. That is a server-grade server-duty device, and you should use it on a X38/X48/X58 motherboard with at least ECC support... if not a server-grade motherboard made by Tyan or SuperMicro.
That is first of all a matter of cost. There's a big difference between what we should do and what we actually can do.
Do some searching and you'll see people using these RAID controllers together with various kind of motherboards.
MiKeLezZ wrote:It is also just plain stupid to use a m-ATX motherboard with 14 SATA.
Why? Does the µATX size mean lower quality? I think it's a pretty obvious choice for a budget file server, because there's no need to add a graphic card.
MiKeLezZ wrote:The solution? The Gigabyte G45 board sports a 4x PCI-E port, instead of a 16x one. No problem with the Promise Controller (but a reduced performance with VGA cards). This seems like a better deal to you?
Perhaps, but this thread is about the P5Q-EM, and the point is that it's pretty impossible to find out that the x16 slot won't work with anything else than garphic cards without trying, something that works on some other motherboards.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:21 pm

I still don't know if this motherboard works with PCIe 2.0 graphic cards or if it have been solved, does anyone know?

Monkeh16
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Post by Monkeh16 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:08 pm

Mats wrote:I still don't know if this motherboard works with PCIe 2.0 graphic cards or if it have been solved, does anyone know?
The G45 provides a PCI-E 2.0 slot, so if this board doesn't, it's an.. interesting bug, considering it's hardwired to support 2.0.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:16 pm

Monkeh16 wrote:
Mats wrote:I still don't know if this motherboard works with PCIe 2.0 graphic cards or if it have been solved, does anyone know?
The G45 provides a PCI-E 2.0 slot, so if this board doesn't, it's an.. interesting bug, considering it's hardwired to support 2.0.
Well, at least it was a problem two months ago, but I don't know if it still is. The problem seems to be graphic card model independent.

Edit: The next page in the link says that a BIOS upgrade should fix it, it's two months old so it's probably fixed.
MiKeLezZ said he used a 8800 GTS, for instance.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:47 pm


speedkar9
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Re: Asus P5Q-EM G45 mATX motherboard

Post by speedkar9 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:18 pm

Here is something I still don't understand:
If the general ATX layout of a case supports front to back airflow, then why do all heatsinks (from ASUS so far...) have a vertical orientation? It would make sense to me that a front intake fan (either at the front of the case or behind some hard drive bays <a la SonataIII>) would blow air on the SB/NB heatsinks in a horizontal fashion, cooling them off faster, rather than having that air hit only one side of the fins on a vertically placed heatsink.

Am I missing something here? Or does Bernoulli have a principle for this?

Mats
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Post by Mats » Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:30 pm

speedkar9: The chipset heatsink is supposed to be cooled by airflow coming from the CPU fan, although that doesn't work very well when you use a tower heatsink.

bozar
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Post by bozar » Fri Nov 21, 2008 2:04 am

Seems like the best G45-based motherboard so far. I'm still amazed by the superior 3D performance by 780G chipset though. Driven only by a X2 4850 cpu it still outperforms a G45 and E6400.

bgiddins
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Post by bgiddins » Fri Nov 21, 2008 4:36 am

Actually... just recalled a problem I had with the P5Q-VM - just retested and it's still there.

When using a DVI cable, in 1680 x 1050, the screen will randomly lose signal, then after a second or so, come back. It's almost as it it turns off then on. If I decrease the resolution to 1440 x 900, the problem does not occur. With VGA cable, this doesn't happen at 1680 x 1050. Only when using a DVI cable.

Any ideas? Cranking the system fans and lowering NB temps don't make any difference.

QuietOC
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Post by QuietOC » Fri Nov 21, 2008 5:05 am

bgiddins wrote:Actually... just recalled a problem I had with the P5Q-VM - just retested and it's still there.

When using a DVI cable, in 1680 x 1050, the screen will randomly lose signal, then after a second or so, come back. It's almost as it it turns off then on. If I decrease the resolution to 1440 x 900, the problem does not occur. With VGA cable, this doesn't happen at 1680 x 1050. Only when using a DVI cable.

Any ideas? Cranking the system fans and lowering NB temps don't make any difference.
My ASUS M2A-VM (690G) did this at 1680x1050 over DVI. My advice: don't buy ASUS.

ST
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Post by ST » Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:23 am

One thing not mentioned on review that needs to be added: 24p support.

For those folks with nice sets that can support 5:5 pulldown, this is a must. Judder from 2:3 cadence especially on pans is really annoying once you know what you're looking for. Having the ability to do proper 24p playback with BD negates this affect for a perfect BD STB-quality playback. Unforunately, the G45 doesn't support this yet; it has 24hz output yes, but it's implementations isn't perfect and still suffers from judder.

This is the primary reason i sold my P5Q-EM and traded "up" for a P5N7A-VM (nvidia 9300 chipset).

PS - One more thing to add, the P5Q-EM does have one very nice feature: line load calibration so it can automatically adjust VDroop to be basically nothing. Really nice feature given the older P5E-VM used to suffer from this (and also my present Asus board).

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Post by Aris » Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:10 am

QuietOC wrote:My advice: don't buy ASUS.
Idunno if thats really sound advice. I've been building systems for over 10 years now, and i feel very confident when i say Asus is probably my #1 pick when it comes to motherboard reliability. Right up there with Gigabyte.

Just because one specific model has one minor flaw doesnt mean the whole company is crap.

QuietOC
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Post by QuietOC » Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:29 am

Aris wrote:Just because one specific model has one minor flaw doesnt mean the whole company is crap.
No, I have a history of questionable ASUS motherboards going back to Slot A. But I did just buy another ASUS product (Eee PC), so don't think I've completely abandoned them.

Devonavar
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Post by Devonavar » Fri Nov 21, 2008 3:26 pm

Flickering displays are generally an issue with poor quality cables, though I suppose a low-power display port could also affect things. In any case, I'd be hesitant to blame Asus for that one. Try a shorter and/or better quality (usually, thicker) cable.

speedkar9
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Post by speedkar9 » Fri Nov 21, 2008 5:25 pm

Mats wrote:speedkar9: The chipset heatsink is supposed to be cooled by airflow coming from the CPU fan, although that doesn't work very well when you use a tower heatsink.
So what happens to the South ridge? How about AMD based boards that have the stock cooler's fins (for example) oriented in a front to back manner? That doesn't help the NB/SB chips.

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Post by Aris » Sat Nov 22, 2008 10:31 am

speedkar9 wrote:
Mats wrote:speedkar9: The chipset heatsink is supposed to be cooled by airflow coming from the CPU fan, although that doesn't work very well when you use a tower heatsink.
So what happens to the South ridge? How about AMD based boards that have the stock cooler's fins (for example) oriented in a front to back manner? That doesn't help the NB/SB chips.
NB/SB heatsinks typically dont ever overheat anyhow, so this really is a non issue. The only time it becomes a problem is when your overclocking, in which case you should replace stock heatsinks for better aftermarket heatsinks anyhow.

MiKeLezZ
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Post by MiKeLezZ » Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:30 pm

Mats wrote:I still don't know if this motherboard works with PCIe 2.0 graphic cards or if it have been solved, does anyone know?
I use my P5Q-EM with a 8800GTS 512MB (PCI-E 2.0) since day one; I had no problems with either BIOS 0202 or 0402 (I am just playing with Fallout 3 and Mass Effect). I also hot-swapped the 8800GTS and the IGP without the need to format the system. Drivers co-existed without problem. Tested also with drivers 176.x, 178.x, 180.x.

Why? Does the µATX size mean lower quality? I think it's a pretty obvious choice for a budget file server, because there's no need to add a graphic card.
It is.
But if we begin talking about a setup with a $400 Promise Card, a total support for 14 SATA HDD, that leads to a total height (only for the HDD sub-system) of 50 cm and a power consumption of about 150W (250W for the start-up)... well, we are losing the point.

ST wrote:PS - One more thing to add, the P5Q-EM does have one very nice feature: line load calibration so it can automatically adjust VDroop to be basically nothing. Really nice feature given the older P5E-VM used to suffer from this (and also my present Asus board).
Just useless. Vdroop is a part of the Intel VRM specification (useful for not frying the electronics).

Aris wrote:
QuietOC wrote:My advice: don't buy ASUS.
Idunno if thats really sound advice. I've been building systems for over 10 years now, and i feel very confident when i say Asus is probably my #1 pick when it comes to motherboard reliability. Right up there with Gigabyte.

Just because one specific model has one minor flaw doesnt mean the whole company is crap.
You shouldn't consider the brand but the model. There are good and bad model from either Gigabyte and Asus... I quite trust Asus (but Gigabyte gives better SATA cables :P ).


p.s. I also bought a GA-MA74-S2H. The system (build with a LE-1250 and 1GB) consumes more or less than the one with P5Q-EM, E8400 and 4GB. Very different results than the ones of SPCR.

Mats
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Post by Mats » Mon Nov 24, 2008 7:12 pm

MiKeLezZ wrote:
Mats wrote:Why? Does the µATX size mean lower quality? I think it's a pretty obvious choice for a budget file server, because there's no need to add a graphic card.
It is.
Nice argument.
Everybody knows that the best ATX boards are usually better than the best µATX boards, but that's a different story.
MiKeLezZ wrote: But if we begin talking about a setup with a $400 Promise Card, a total support for 14 SATA HDD, that leads to a total height (only for the HDD sub-system) of 50 cm and a power consumption of about 150W (250W for the start-up)... well, we are losing the point.
Yes, you're losing the point.
This certain RAID card was just an example, you'd still have the same problem if you picked any non-graphic card that needs x4. Enough said.

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Post by Square Wave » Wed Jul 15, 2009 6:34 am

I have just got this motherboard and I'm trying to work out which slots I should be putting my memory into. My memory is a pair of 2GB sticks. I have noticed from looking at people's photographs via a Google search that they seem to be using channels A1 and B1 for a pair of memory sticks, rather than putting the pair in A1 and A2 or anywhere else.

The chart in the user guide makes absolutely no sense to me whatsoever. It shows many examples of all different installations into the four slots, but nothing anywhere that indicates which slots to use for a pair of memory sticks and why that's the best - or indeed why you would want to put the sticks into the other slots that apparently work, but report lower values in the chart.

It does appear to show that using B1 or B2 alone - or indeed both B1 and B2 together - that the result is zero GB. It shows using A1 and A2 gives 16GB or 64GB for some reason, but using A1 and B1 gives 32GB or 64GB. Although this makes no sense to me whatsoever because I've got two 2GB sticks, it does suggest that A1 and B1 together is best, but I have no idea why, nor is it explained why or why you should or shouldn't use the slots in any other particular way.

From looking at the highest values given in the chart (32GB and 64GB) it does appear that I could use quite a few other slot combinations, although I'm not 100% sure of that.

I can't find anything via a Google search that elaborates on this user guide information.

:?

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Post by MikeC » Wed Jul 15, 2009 6:54 am

Square Wave --

Rule of thumb is to use the pair of slots closest to the CPU. Ensures shortest trace (and supposedly, time) between CPU and memory. Been that way for... a long time. W/ 2 x 2gb sticks in our sample, used now for heatsink testing, we get 4gb total mem.

Square Wave
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Post by Square Wave » Wed Jul 15, 2009 7:42 am

Okay, thanks for that. I'm glad I mentioned it here because I would have put the memory in A1 and B1 (the two yellow slots), rather than next to each other.

:)

swivelguy2
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Post by swivelguy2 » Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:30 am

I disagree. I think the rule of thumb is to read the motherboard manual ;)
P5Q-EM manual wrote:It is recommended to install the memory modules from the yellow slots for better overclocking capability
I'm pretty sure they meant "into" instead of "from," but you get the idea.

The yellow slots are A1 and B1, which means they're the first slot of Memory Channel A and Memory Channel B. You're using dual-channel memory, which means one DIMM goes into each channel - A and B. They color-code them to show which slots should be occupied, not just to look pretty.

Some motherboards have the slots arranged in different orders, so the two closest to the CPU would be A1 and B1, and others (like the P5Q-EM) have A1 and A2 first. There's no real difference, so you just have to read the manual. The color-coding is generally correct, but no guarantees there.

Square Wave
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Post by Square Wave » Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:32 am

swivelguy2 wrote:I disagree. I think the rule of thumb is to read the motherboard manual ;)
That's the first thing I did and the relevant section made absolutely no sense to me whatsoever, hence my post above.

:)

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