ASRock 775Dual-VSTA for Conroe (Core2) with both AGP/PCI-E and DDR1/DDR2 support

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This is a sort of official ASRock 775Dual-VSTA help and info thread... and hopefully it can become a useful thread for those people who want to buy it or already have it.

Unfortunately OcUK don’t sell this motherboard yet, but they do sell ASRock motherboards so it might happen. It seems to be a good way of jumping halfway to a full upgrade. It costs about £36, so its nice and cheap, but please don’t ask for links in this thread.

http://www.asrock.com/product/775Dual-VSTA.htm

1. Supports FSB1066/800/533MHz processor, EM64T CPU and H-T Technology
2. Supports Dual Channel DDRII667 (DDRII x 2 DIMMs) and DDR400 (DDR x 2 DIMMs)
3. Untied Overclocking : During Overclocking, FSB enjoys better margin due to fixed PCIE/ PCI Buses
4. 1 x PCI Express Graphics slot
5. 1 x AGP 8X slot
6. Hybrid Booster - Safe Overclocking Technology
7. 2 ports of SerialATA 1.5Gb/s, support RAID 0, 1, JBOD, 2 ATA133 IDE ports
8. HDMI_SPDIF header, providing SPDIF audio output to HDMI VGA card, allows the system to connect HDMI Digital TV/projector/LCD devices.
9. 7.1 channel with High Definition Audio, 10/100 Ethernet LAN
10. Windows Vista™ Premium Logo Hardware Ready
11. HD 8CH I/O: 4 ready-to-use USB2.0 ports, HD 7.1 channel audio jacks

The latest BIOS version is 1.50 (I am using it and I have not had any problems)

Some advice that might help:

When I installed my DDR1 400 ram it did not automatically put it at DDR400 but instead at DDR333.

When just using 1 SATA drive you need to turn raid off in the bios otherwise it will not be picked up by windows when installing and booting. If you do a bios upgrade do not panic if windows is not found. This is because the bios has been reset and the raid setting is now back on.

My setup so far:

Core2 E6600
2x512MB DDR1 Crucial Ballistix Ram
Geforce 6800 GT AGP

I have not had time to do many benchmarks, but I will post them when I have.
 
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Sounds like a really good alternative, £150 for an upgrade to conroe, keeping the same ram/g-card, sounds a lot nicer than £400+

I'd Like to see how this performs, and overclocks.
 
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That is good timing, as my board arrived today along with my retail e6600.

my setup is very similar..2x512 patriot ddr 400, 6800nu agp

benchmarks would be good :)
 

bee

bee

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great stuff , im still trying to decide which motherboard to get and this is a serious budget contender,so some benchmarks would be great.

todays anandtech article on this board provided some very surprising results for me with ddr400 giving virtually zero performance loss against ddr2 533 or 667.

apparently they'll be doing a agp vs pci-e comparison on friday which should be interesting, i wanna see how much difference only having 4x pci-e really makes at normal resolutions like 1024x768 or 1280x1024.
 
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Likewise I came across this motherboard today, and the idea of a conroe upgrade without the major expense of new GFX and RAM sounds like a winner - I'd be interested to hear how you get on with it.

Ant.
 
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Something strange is happening with mine, but it might just be the program reading the hardware wrong. Whenn the ram is set to DDR333 in the bios, CPU-Z says the ram is running at 444MHz and if I set it to DDR400 then CPU-Z says 533Mhz (The ram is rated as DDR500). Yesterday with DDR400 setting 3Dmark06 was fine... today 3DMark05 kept on crashing until I set it to DDR333???

Strax what does Cpu-z say about your ram?


The Anandtech 'DDR vs DDR2 performance' article is interesting. There was not much difference between DDR and DDR2 memory. I could stick with my DDR memory, but I want 2GB so I will have to get DDR2 in the future anyways.

EDIT//

Everest reports what should be the right speeds at the moment 167Mhz (333Mhz). The problem with 3Dmark05 crashing could be because the timings are too strong.
 
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Strax what does Cpu-z say about your ram?

My pc is still lying in bits. My new motherboards power connectors are in a different place from my last one so both power cables are too short. (Upside down mb in enermax case)

got to go tomorrow to pick up two extension cables for the power leads. I'll let you know once I get back up and running though.
 
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Good to see a thread for the 775Dual-VSTA.

Got this motherboard + bits earlier this week. After about 4 hours of grief because catalyst drivers for my x800xt either crashed, or failed to install, I updated the bios to the latest revision and all was good. In terms of fitting it in my case, inconveniently the motherboard has the motherboard 20 pin connector right in the middle, which makes the cable get in the way of the CPU fan. I suppose intelligent and convenient motherboard design is not high up in priorities for a 36 quid motherboard.

My set up is as follows:
Core 2 Duo E6300
1gb (512x2) Twinmos PC3200 RAM
X800pro -> xt
74gb raptor
250gb barracuda (latest)
Antec P150 case.

For a while it was working very well, haven't tried overclocking yet.

HOWEVER, today it started freezing in the windows xp startup splash screen, and on the occasion it went past the splash screen, just a blank screen. The comptuer stays on, doesn't reboot, just hangs.
What could this be? I got this kind of thing when the graphics cards drivers wouldn't install, or on the occasion they did install.
 
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Well I decided to take the plunge so I now have a 775Dual-VSTA, E6400 and Arctic Cooler Freezer 7 Pro sat waiting for me to take home and install - must back up my HD first ;)
 
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They don't o/c very well, mine did only 300fsb, anything over it failed to boot. Using a ds3 now, with the same chip @ 463 fsb .
 
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Had some more trouble, I think its graphics card related. Or the AGP settings. I managed to get into windows this time by turning on fast writes and dropping AGP aperture size to 128. I'm rather confused.
 
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Well it happily posts and I've bolted it together but it doesn't want to boot from my Highpoint RocketRAID card. I've just emailed Asrock to see if they know of anything. This is with 1.1 Bios and I've tried all the PCI slots. :confused:
 
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right, got the board up and running at stock. Most things seem faster. 3d mark2005 didn't go up much compared to previous mb and chip (p4 [email protected])

one thing though..cpuz in the memory section is mentioning a frequency of 533 and a fsb:dram divider of 1:2. Is this correct for ddr400?
 
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I've just picked one of these boards up, to replace an ageing P4 1.7 pc which keeps on falling over.

It will be used as a file server, TeamSpeak server, remote file defrag and acronis back up server with folding running in the background (and I wonder why the old one keeps falling over)

I've managed to scrape together the following spec from my unused bits.

1Gb Crucial Cas3 RAM
ATI 9550 256mb
74Gb Raptor (from the B-grade section)
400w Antec PSU
Zalman 7700cu
and a 6300OEM (arrives Monday)

A big OC is not too important, but I'll have a good play before setting it up fully.

Any updates on owners experience appreciated.

Jack
 
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I am sorry that I have not posted any benchmarks, and I will not be able to do sor maybe 1 1/2 weeks as I am on site working. I have done a few benchmarks which I will post later on. One thing that the benchmarks have shown is that the agp graphics cards don't perform worse on this motherboard.
 
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My computer is ALIVE!!
It appears that the motherboard wasn't compatible with the gigabyte x800pro vivo (16 pipe) and kept on freezing on the Windows splash screen.
A rather good excuse to buy an x1900gt :) And as people will query why I didn't go for the x800xt, it is because it is louder, uses more power, and the additional 2-3 extra frames a second don't worry me. In maybe a years time, it will be a lot easier to source an x1900gt for crossfire use than an x1800xt.

My 3dmark2006 score is 4070

Thats with E6300 stock, 2gb geil ultra PC6400 (i know its a waste for the moment, but when I get a different mobo, the core2duo/geil combo will fly. The ram is running at 3-3-3-9, T1. Graphics card is X1900gt at stock.

I'm going to attempt to overclock and see if the score goes up.

EDIT:

With the E6300 at 2100Mhz, ram at 300mhz, 1:1 3-3-3-9 T1, x1900gt with core at 600, ram at 650 (i could probably push this higher) i got 4504.

The performance of this motherboard ain't half bad, considering its only PCI-e x4. Of course, with a different motherboard, I would be breaking 5000+ points on 3dmark06 without breaking a sweat. (cranking the e6300 to at least 2.8ghz, ram at native 400mhz speed, and graphics card with full pci-e 16x and a better cooler)
 
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Thanks for that Acliff.

What cooling are you using and what temps are you getting?

When mine arrives I will only be using DDR1 ram, so if I run the FSB at 300 I would need a memory divider of around 3:2.

In Servos post earlier he found the upper FSB limit on the board to be 300, is this what you've found?

Cheers

Jack
 
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