Asus A8R32-MVP Issues

Discussion in 'Hardware Discussion & Support' started by Stuart Davidson, Mar 6, 2006.

  1. Stuart_Davidson

    Stuart_Davidson Senior Editor Staff Member

    Asus A8R32-MVP Issues - UPDATE 9th March

    ****See the bottom of the post for todays update****

    Those of you who have visited the site in the last week will have noticed that our coverage of ATI’s Crossfire 3200 has been non-existant. We have been quiet on the reasons behind this because we were working through them with ATI/Asus and our A8R32-MVP.

    Here is an extract from our as yet unpublished review:

    “Once we were up and running within windows we ran the system in general use for a few days and all seemed well. Next up was our plan to perform performance testing on the board, this is when we started to experience some concerns.

    The first issue we found was that the Sisoft Sandra results for the system were pretty random. On one run we would score in around the expected performance and then a repeat run would show results 10x more than expected. Run it again and we were just as likely to receive a result of about 1000points less than expected. Thinking this was most likely a random issue with Sandra we moved on to PCmark05, however this resulted in more issues being highlighted. For example, hard drive performance on our SATA drive was reporting almost zero. And on occasion some tests would hang or loop.

    So we now had several applications giving us unexpected results. In an attempt to fix this we performed numerous installs, new CPU’s, memory, psu, gfx, heatsink/fans, drives, drivers, patches and an initial updated BIOS (0307). You name it and we more than likely swapped it out. All the while our voltages and temps were reporting fine through bios and Asus probe.

    So having given up we contacted ATI (and they contacted Asus) looking for any assistance…

    …a few days later we received a note from ATI with a new Bios attached. The note accompanying the bios stated that a timing issue had been found and that this was resolved by the new bios. This happened early on the 4th March which by this time was well after NDA expiry so most other reviews you have seen of this board use the BIOS which has timing issues.

    Following the bios update we were pleased to see that the Sisoft Sandra results were fixed, we also noted that our own (real world) Driver heaven Photoshop benchmark was reporting much more stable results. So we retested in Pcmark05. Disappointingly there was still an issue with some of the tests and so we reported back to ATI at the same time we reported a minor bios issue involving the onboard LAN config.

    ATI responded letting us know that a clock issue was still being worked on by Asus, so again we waited on a fix before proceeding.”

    That brings us up to this evening when some of our readers contacted us saying that they and a few others were experiencing random performance issues in real world programs (such as Quake 4 and Battlefield 2) when using their A8R32-MVP. Having read through those issues it was clear that they too had attempted many of the same fixes as us and as they did not have access to the timing fix bios (v 0309) they were left with an unusable board and worse, a waste of money.

    We have chosen to publish the above information to ensure that anyone wishing to purchase the A8R32-MVP is aware of the issues that end users are currently experiencing as no online review has yet made people aware of the performance issues with this particular board. We also want to make existing users aware that they cannot fix the issues themselves.

    We await the fix from ATI/Asus and will report back on its success as soon as we have tested it. Hopefully now that real users are affected Asus will give the fix a higher priority.

    ****Update 07/03/06****

    Today we received a new bios (v0033 dated 03/07/06 at 4pm) from no less than 4 sources in ATI and Asus! Having run preliminary tests on this bios we can confirm that both Sandra and PCmark now complete without issue. We are looking into 3d testing at the moment however initial results are promising. It is our intention to suggest to Asus that this beta bios is released for anyone with issues as soon as possible (at this time we have not been given permission to distribute the new bios).

    More will follow as we have any updates....

    ****Update 09/03/06****

    Asus will today be releasing bios version 0311 for end users, we have tested this version and can confirm it fully resolves the performance issues we reported. We will monitor end user results and update as required.

    ****Update 09/03/06 - 2****

    Ok guys, get it here - please note Driverheaven or Asus will NOT in anyway be responsible for anything that MAY go wrong, this is an unsupported bios.
  2. Coolasmoo

    Coolasmoo New Member

  3. HardwareHeaven

    HardwareHeaven Administrator Staff Member

    you might want to let the guys over there know what we posted. if we were allowed we could let you guys have the updated bios, however that would be breaching a relationship with asus, we are certain they will fix this pretty quick now.
  4. Coolasmoo

    Coolasmoo New Member

    I have made a link to your newspost , thanks

    I can understand not wanting to release the bios, its not down to you guys anyway, its Asus who should be sorting this issue out now.

    I just hope they realise how urgent this needs resolving as many of us early adopters are on the brink of returning the boards.

    Its not as if we can invoke a quick fix in the bios or relax timings to get games to run, they simply refuse to work full stop.

    This is the board we have all been waiting for and quite frankly Asus have let us down once again.

  5. HardwareHeaven

    HardwareHeaven Administrator Staff Member

    Dont worry we have made sure they know how serious the issue is and we have been working very closely for a week (or more) with Asus and ATi. We havent published information about it until now because we were not sure if it was just our systems. However this is not the case (and I cant believe no other site and review team spotted this), therefore we decided to hold off on our review until this was obviously resolved. (as well as the lan issue we reported).

    We will continue to pressure them into getting this fixed and to the end users, you guys.
  6. Coolasmoo

    Coolasmoo New Member

    Thats good to hear Zardon,

    Im sure everybody involved will be greatly appreciative of the effort you guys are putting in.

  7. El Kapitano

    El Kapitano Most of the 7 dwarfs in 1

    Thanks to you all for the effort you're putting into this.

    This is the board I was looking at using in my upcoming system overhaul and I thank you for bringing these issues to my [our] attention.

    Keep up the good work chaps and I eagerly await the final outcome.

    <nice bike btw Z, I've just got me a RD350 FII to rebuild - 2 stroke smokin' heaven all the way>
  8. Rasta Monsta

    Rasta Monsta Just an Average Joe...

    Great job, Stu & Allan. . .DH is once again a real service to the community.

  9. jpinard

    jpinard New Member

    I understand how tough it is to have something negative for a piece of hardware you want to be the best. You've done a real service to your readers and probably saved Asus a crapload of angry user demonstrations. The Asus forums were already bad enough ;)
  10. Vikingod

    Vikingod Int'l Fish Liaison

    Great move on publishing this guys, I'm shocked that others didn't notice (or didn't have the nerve to publish) this before. I'm sure all will be fixed, but if I was in the market for such a mobo, I would want to know.
  11. AlexM105

    AlexM105 New Member

    Could you also ask ASUS to release a new BIOS for the A8R-MVP? It's been over 2 months since the last BIOS update, and the Vcore and memory problems are still there.
  12. Channelsurfer

    Channelsurfer New Member

    Thanks for posting the information guys, but more to the point.. glad that you had a better look at the board than some other reviewers seem to have had. I left a note on the Asus forum suggesting a visit here would be a good idea.

    I picked up one of these boards myself based largely on the reviews from other sites. I did think it strange that there was nothing much about the mobo posted here, but thought you'd soon get to a review yourselves. Now I know why you were so quiet at first.

    Ah well, I'm haging on to mine to see a bios fix for this. Honestly, as a very early adopter I did expect teething problems, as sad as that sounds considering Asus is not a new comer to this and that it should not be the type of thing that is passed by their quality assurance people.
  13. HardwareHeaven

    HardwareHeaven Administrator Staff Member

    we can try, but right now I think they will be focusing on the current problems....
  14. Blinder

    Blinder New Member

    Just to add my thanks for the effort you guys are putting in on this - v.much appreciated as my board will arrive in a couple of hours and I know i'll be relying on people like you who have raised the awareness bar for Asus and ATi and hopefully gone some way to salvaging the not so "grand" release of the RD580 chipset.
  15. Dukey

    Dukey New Member

    As above.. many thanks for speaking to Asus / Ati to solve these issues :)
  16. AlexM105

    AlexM105 New Member

    Thanks man, I really appreciate that. A lot of people have been saying that ASUS probably won't fix the A8R-MVP since the A8R32-MVP fixed all the problems (which apparently it didn't either lol).

    I don't want to have to buy a new board to "fix" the problems. That's no way to treat customers.
  17. Erroneus

    Erroneus Get off my lawn!

    Great job DH.

    And i have to say, I'm not suprised Asus blows it again. They have never manged to create a proper bios for my board, the mem dividers has always been fucked, but aleast 1t and the vcore is properly working now. It seems to me Asus really need to pick up the pace and do something about their bios', as it's a problem on many of their boards.
  18. MindlessOath

    MindlessOath New Member

    i never buy asus. never will either. they are great for the first boards of new chipsets, and often proove themselfs, but there are usually better out there, but since such a wide acceptance is in the wild they are so popular.

    there are going to be other 3200 ati chipsets on differnt boards and i hope to see some of them.

    btw did MAKI (hrm, the famus swidish/finish? overclocker) co-make the asus board? or was that ABIT? (not comake, but help?) and im not talking about the techpowerup review that was just did.
    hrm... if you dont know what im talking about juts ignore it :p

    i hope you guys get your fix, because this board did look great, and i was going to buy an ati3200 chipset motherboard, but now im going to wait a bit more.
  19. SLI

    SLI New Member

    ASUS is the #1 (OEM) motherboard manufacturer in the world. They did not get there by making shoddy products. The A8R32-MVP is an awesome board. BIOS issues can be fixed, and it looks as though they are trying very hard (2 internal BIOS rev's inside a few days) I swore to myself I would not get caught up in the 1st revision black hole (I got burned on the initial spin of the ABIT NF7-S which had hardware problems that were later corrected on the NF7-S V 2.0 which is what I currently have running)


    Anyways, I wondered why Anandtech had not posted thier A8R32-MVP review as of yet (they had previously had a short blurb on getting HT to 315mhz) Maybe they are holding back just like driverheaven for the same reasons. My A8R32-MVP is sitting right here along with a FX-60, 2 X1900 cards (crossfire), 2 150gb Raptors, 1KW Pc power and cooling P.S. (anyone interested in buying a Zippy/EMACS 700W? less than 1 yr old :) ) all ready to be swapped into my Prometeia/watercooled 3 foot tall 100lb "silver bullet" that is very much in need of it's new "toys" I was literally going to rip it up today and install these components but looks like i'll be waiting until we get a stable BIOS.

    Keep us informed and thanks for the heads up so much!!
  20. dipstick

    dipstick New Member

    I would not be as quick to throw ALL the blame on Asus but that’s just my opinion from previous ATi chipset experiences;)

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