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New Folding rig. Advice on mobo needed  

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wilding2004
(@wilding2004)
Estimable Member Customer
Newbie

Hi all,

I'm adding another folding rig. Its mainly to house 2 existing GPU's, but also to add a 3rd new one.

Budget is very tight, so I'm not looking at any really end high kit.

I'm struggling to find a suitable mobo that has 3 x16 lanes slots with enough space between all 3 for dual slot coolers.

Also I would prefer a DDR3 mobo, as I already have some ram I can use. But am willing to look at alternatives.

I'll be recycling the case, PSU, and possibly hard drive. Although Im tempted to get a cheap sata SSD. Any mobo suggestions would be welcome.

Cheers

Dave.

Quote
Posted : 21/09/2016 4:44 am
bardacuda
(@bardacuda)
Eminent Member Customer
Newbie

I find pcpartpicker.com to be extremely useful for this sort of thing. You can look at everything out on the market in a given country, and then narrow it down dramatically based on your needs. In this case look up motherboards, select DDR3, and then set PCI-E x16 slots to 3+, then sort the remaining list by price. Then you can go straight to the store's website where you can look at the pictures and specs for the individual boards.

If you do this you should see the cheapest board that meets those requirements in the US is the ASRock 970 Extreme 4 at $70 USD. If you go to newegg and look at it, though, you can see that there is a 2-slot gap between the first and second x16 slot (great), and a 1-slot gap between the 2nd and 3rd x16 slot (good enough), but the third slot is at the very bottom.

That is most likely going to be an issue, unless you have some special non-standard case that has an extra spot where the bracket can screw down and the monitor connections poke out the back. Also a dual-slot cooler there would cover the USB3.0 headers. You are probably going to need a board where the 3rd x16 slot is not at the very bottom of the board.

(Basically there are 7 total expansion slots in an ATX board and case, so you'll need slots 1/2, 3/4, or 5/6 to be your x16 slots.)

Unfortunately almost all of these boards use slot 2, 5, and 7 for their x16 slots. The cheapest one I see that would work is one this at $140 USD:

Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5 R5 ATX AM3+

Another alternative, which is not only cheaper, but will provide much better airflow and allow for even more GPUs; is to build one yourself and use x1 to x16 powered risers. There are many tutorials online for building a custom open air case out of wood or aluminum (or even a milk crate) for a mining rig for like 20 bucks or less. Each rig can house 6+ GPUs and dual PSUs too if required.

Also, gpushack.com has bundles that include a motherboard, CPU, a stick of RAM, and a 16GB SSD for $150 to $200 depending on the number of slots you want, and they also sell other things you need for a rig like powered risers, fans, and even GPUs. I think it's all used or refurbished stuff but it all comes with a 2-year warranty. The SSDs are preconfigured to do ethereum mining but you can just reformat them and put a light linux OS on instead.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 23/09/2016 5:46 am
wilding2004
(@wilding2004)
Estimable Member Customer
Newbie

@bardacuda wrote:

I find pcpartpicker.com to be extremely useful for this sort of thing. You can look at everything out on the market in a given country, and then narrow it down dramatically based on your needs. In this case look up motherboards, select DDR3, and then set PCI-E x16 slots to 3+, then sort the remaining list by price. Then you can go straight to the store's website where you can look at the pictures and specs for the individual boards.

If you do this you should see the cheapest board that meets those requirements in the US is the ASRock 970 Extreme 4 at $70 USD. If you go to newegg and look at it, though, you can see that there is a 2-slot gap between the first and second x16 slot (great), and a 1-slot gap between the 2nd and 3rd x16 slot (good enough), but the third slot is at the very bottom.

That is most likely going to be an issue, unless you have some special non-standard case that has an extra spot where the bracket can screw down and the monitor connections poke out the back. Also a dual-slot cooler there would cover the USB3.0 headers. You are probably going to need a board where the 3rd x16 slot is not at the very bottom of the board.

(Basically there are 7 total expansion slots in an ATX board and case, so you'll need slots 1/2, 3/4, or 5/6 to be your x16 slots.)

Unfortunately almost all of these boards use slot 2, 5, and 7 for their x16 slots. The cheapest one I see that would work is one this at $140 USD:

Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5 R5 ATX AM3+

Another alternative, which is not only cheaper, but will provide much better airflow and allow for even more GPUs; is to build one yourself and use x1 to x16 powered risers. There are many tutorials online for building a custom open air case out of wood or aluminum (or even a milk crate) for a mining rig for like 20 bucks or less. Each rig can house 6+ GPUs and dual PSUs too if required.

Also, gpushack.com has bundles that include a motherboard, CPU, a stick of RAM, and a 16GB SSD for $150 to $200 depending on the number of slots you want, and they also sell other things you need for a rig like powered risers, fans, and even GPUs. I think it's all used or refurbished stuff but it all comes with a 2-year warranty. The SSDs are preconfigured to do ethereum mining but you can just reformat them and put a light linux OS on instead.

Thanks for the feedback. Some good info there. I have been thinking about an open air design for a while, but in this particluar case (pardon the pun) it's not a viable option.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 24/09/2016 5:29 am
CygnusXI
(@cygnusxi)
Moderator
Curecoin Community Superstar
5 Year Member
Newbie

These are pretty nice. Im very happy with mine. Simple yet very sturdy open air cases with an extra fan to move air over the whole rig. My machines run much better with these than any other options I have tried. There is a half deck station for less also, I have one of those and it is great but the top deck version worked out better for what I needed.

http://www.highspeedpc.com/category_s/1477.ht m"> http://www.highspeedpc.com/category_s/1477.htm

ReplyQuote
Posted : 27/09/2016 6:11 am
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