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Thread: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!




  1. #1
    Punkboy is offline Junior Member
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    Default Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    Hi All,

    Hoping you can help, because Asrock support certainly aren't! I just bought an Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 mobo (BIOS v1.60) thinking it had the right combination and number of ports for SATA and USB3 for my purposes.

    However, I can't get the SSD to be stable or perform anywhere near where it should on the mobo integrated ASmedia SATA3 ports. As an indication, CrystalDiskMark reports between 15-31MB/s for sequential reads! I tried the same benchmark multiple times using a mate's Intel 520 240GB SSD and this would cause the machine to reset during the sequential read test.

    My suspicion is that the firmware on the integrated ASMedia is crap (running v0.90 as reported in POST). I know that ASMedia have released v0.951 for add on PCI cards and I suspect that this could fix the problem. I would at least like to try it.

    Can anyone help with the following:
    1) provide me with a Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 mobo BIOS that has ASM106x 0.951 firmware? Is there someway to get Asrock to look at this?
    2) a procedure on hacking the existing v1.60 BIOS with the new 0.951 firmware?
    3) any other ideas in case I am barking up the wrong tree?

    I really don't want to run the SSD on the AMD SATA2 ports as I'm getting approx 250MB/s sequential reads when I know I can get approx 400MB/s using ASMedia 1061 Sata3.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    Your results with the ASMedia SATA ports with the Intel SSD is strange, something else is the issue, not the v0.90 firmware. What driver are you using on the ASMedia chipset, and what SATA mode are you using? Have you tried a new SATA cable? What OS are you using?

    If you use both of the ASMedia ports with two drives, it will slow down quite a bit and be unstable. Only one drive at a time on the ASMedia.

    The sequential read speed numbers you quoted for each SATA interface are correct, but sequential read speed is not always the most important factor, depending upon what the SSD is used for. For an OS drive, 4K random read speed is more important, and will be better on the AMD SATA II chipset. Benchmark tests like AS SSD usually produce better overall results with the AMD SATA II ports, than the ASMedia.

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    Punkboy is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    Do you have experience with the 0.90 firmware and SSD?

    The reason I believe it is this is because I added a PCIe Syba Asmedia 106x card to my machine and was able to get 390MB/s. The add in card had v 0.951 BIOS on board.

    To answer you questions:
    SATA Mode: AHCI
    Cable: Yes, have tried 2 cables now (maybe 3, my head is beginning to hurt with all the different combinations and permutations I have been trying)
    OS: I have tried this in two configs now
    Windows 7 64bit Ultimate using ASMedia AHCI drivers Version 1.3.8.000 obtained from http://www.station-drivers.com/page/asmedia.htm
    Windows 8 Pro using std MS AHCI drivers
    Only using one SATA port on ASMedia, so should be no issues with bandwidth contention.

    With regards to benchmarks, I was really only using sequential reads just to show how bad things are. Interestingly, reads are terrible fairly much across the board on crsytalmark whilst writes are close to an order of magnitude better in performance. It's really strange.

    Am curious as to why you think the onboard 0.9 BIOS is not a factor.

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    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    Simply because the ASMedia 1061 SATA chipset on my board, with the 0.90 firmware, provides the sequential read speeds you mentioned, ~400MB/s. I've also used the same PCIe card you have, with the same result, identical performance. I've also never seen an issue with the ASMedia SATA controller producing speeds in the range of good USB 3.0 flash drives. I had to ask those basic questions, since you did not provide that information, and I have no idea what your level of PC experience is, but I do now.

    I've never used any of my 520's on the ASMedia controller, but here is a SandForce based SSD on mine:

    Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!-ssd-sandisk-ex-asm-mbs-4-28-2012-png

    I've never seen a BIOS for any board that has the ASMedia firmware you are interested in. You might find the firmware itself at StationDrivers, but getting onto your ASMedia chipset is the hard part.

    Given the terrible performance you are seeing with the ASMedia chipset on your board, my reaction is that something else is the problem, since I've never seen such an issue with the Marvell or ASMedia SATA chipsets.

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    Punkboy is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    Thanks Parsec, your fist hand experience is certainly food for thought. But how to debug, hey?

    I'd like to try some of the drivers that you are using.

    For your onboard ASM1061, what OS and driver versions (ASMedia/MS?) are you using? Are you using AHCI?

    I assume that you are running this from your Asrock ASR Z77 Extreme 4?

    Also, do you boot your system from an ASMedia port?

    Thanks

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    I only use AHCI mode for the ASMedia or Marvell chipsets, but use RAID mode on the Z77 EX 4 Intel SATA chipset board, that's right. I have Intel SATA III on my board, so boot from that, and currently have two 520's in RAID 0 as the OS volume, haven't changed my system profile.

    I've used both the ASMedia 1.3.1 driver from my boards download page (same as your boards download page), or 1.3.4 from station-drivers, or msahci, as you mentioned. The flaky Marvell driver for their chips (on other boards) had me using msahci with them, but that is really not needed (for stability) with the ASMedia chip, in my experience. msahci is worth a try if you haven't tried, it will work on the '1061. You can't use the Intel IRST driver on the ASMedia chip.

    I just noticed that on your boards download page, they provide the "F6" ASMedia driver package for use during a Windows installation. My boards page does not, and I've never used the F6 ASMedia driver. Did you happen to use that? If so, did you then run the standard ASMedia driver installer after Windows was installed? Just a thought about differences.

    Another thing, likely not related, but FYI. Intel recently released a new version of their RAID driver (IRST 11.6), which I installed, in place of the previous version of IRST I was using. After installing the new IRST driver, the Intel IRST UI for configuring RAID volumes, etc, would not work. First time I ever saw that happen. Long story short, if I disable the ASMedia chipset in the UEFI, the IRST UI works again. Other users of this IRST driver confirmed the same issue on their boards, and that the same work around worked for them. Weird, but why am I telling you this?

    What if the AMD driver you are using has some strange interaction with the ASMedia chipset/driver, as I had? A longshot I know, again just FYI. Can you disable the AMD SATA chipset, and have the ASMedia still active? I can't do that on my Intel board.

    You've probably been into Device Manager to check the status of the ASMedia chipset. Have you tried clicking the Start icon, and type in "system", and look for System Information. Click that to open that feature. In Hardware Resources check Conflicts and IRQs for problems. In Components check Problem Devices. In Storage, check everything. All might be well, or you might find something.

    As I said, I've never heard of this problem before, so I'm curious about it.

  7. #7
    Punkboy is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Asrock 970DE3/U3S3 and integrated ASM106x no go with Intel 520 SSD - help!

    I'm away from that computer for about a week. I will try some more tests with more drivers when I get back and see how I go.

    Thanks a lot for your feedback, was glad to see you have used 0.9 bios.

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