Performance AND power efficiency with (still young) Tyan S2925

Discussion in 'Tyan' started by SebastianMWS, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. SebastianMWS


    Mar 10, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Greetings everyone,

    A »long time lurker«, I belive, is any expression for guys like me; we're hopping silently from one forum to another, digging tirelessly through topics and posts, with steam puffing out of our ears as we struggle to come up with just the right key words for the search field, in order to score the info we're hunting in enormous maze of knowledge. Most of the time our persistence rewards us with right answers, or at least with directions where to look for something, but not always I'm afraid...

    Time to raise my hand and ask for assistance, as my own »stealth« research brought me nowhere;
    I just bought a secondhand AM2 based Tyan Tomcat n3400B S2925 motherboard (first board revision - non »E« S2925A2NRF) . Along came a Phenom II X4 910 as a bonus (95W TDP), and while it's plenty for my line of work (graphic design, mostly 2D, with ambitions for 3D Blender), I would much prefer to run a cooler CPU in my silent-to-be workstation build, quad core or dual-core with preferably 45W, but no more than 65W TDP.

    My first stop was Tyan's online tech support. I wasn't hoping for miracle, but I thought I'd get at least as much assistance as I received from guys at UK branch of Supermicro (while H8SMi-2 was still competing with Tyan for the build). Even though SM does not list any other officially supported CPUs on their H8SMi-2 page, other than Opteron 1200/1300, there's quite a lot of user question to be found in the FAQ section, about Athlon (I/II) or Phenom (I/II) this and that and whether it works. I even sent my own query to their tech support, and promptly received meaningful and helpful answers, about HW board revisions and quad AMD CPUs support.

    Due to lack of on-board audio on SM board (I know, pathetic excuse, but Skype is godsend... ), I finally decided for the Tyan S2925 route. So how about Tyan and their response to my humble request, about support of officially unsupported CPUs ? Well .. I got brushed off, pretty much ! It was that typical »I'm talking A and you're answering B« kind of brief correspondence, almost playing dumb to some extent. The last words I read before farewell...''you can buy our latest AM3 board.« ??!?? But...I have a board, and it's not like a $5 cell phone from Hong Kong that you toss in a dumpster as you please, and fetch a new one for $7.

    Disappointed, was I ? Yep ! I was expecting a little bit more flexibility from the staff of respected manufacturer, especially since I specifically emphasized my priority for energy efficient computer build, in times when environment protection and rampant energy usage issues are not just popular and lame CNN newsflash topics anymore - this is for real now folks, and we must act opon it - if only with little steps, as responsible individuals or irresponsible society !

    So here's the list of my contenders, people. Please see if there's one of them sitting on your S2925 board, and report how it runs with latest (and last) ver. 2.0 BIOS, with factory default core speed, Vc set on "auto" in BIOS:

    1. working (CPU name recognized, everything working perfectly, rock solid and stable)

    2. working (unknown CPU, but other than that - matching frequency, as well as L1/L2...L3)

    3. sort of working - wrong core frequency, and/or cache L1/L2...L3 not properly recognized

    4. board doesn't POST, no matter what

    - Phenom II X4 900e 2.4GHz 65W TDP
    - Phenom II X4 905e 2.5GHz 65W TDP
    - Phenom II X4 910e 2.6GHz 65W TDP

    - Athlon II X4 600e 2.2GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X4 605e 2.3GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X4 610e 2.4GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X4 615e 2.5GHz 45W TDP

    - Athlon II X2 235e 2.7GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X2 240e 2.8GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X2 245e 2.9GHz 45W TDP
    - Athlon II X2 250e 3.0GHz 45W TDP

    Please don't forget to state if your board is S2925 or S2925-E, even though I have no idea about the difference - Tyan's site and Internet sources are absolutely mute about this. If anyone knows the answer, please come forward.

    I can tell you that of all these CPUs, I only got one (1!) confirmed by a user post to be working on first S2925 board revision - it's the Phenom II X4 900e. It is said to be working normally and stable, with L1/L2/L3 properly recognized, core speed as well, it's just not identified by CPU name (unknown) by BIOS. Who cares ? I don't, as long as everything else works in a rock solid and stable fashion.

    As a last resort, that is if I don't receive any answers about listed CPUs, I am willing to try my luck with undervolting my existing Phenom 910 (voltage range=0.875-1.425V), though I have no idea about the lowest voltage needed for stable board functioning, and how will the lower voltage reflect on default speed of CPU cores ( how much?).

    Any help would be precious and invaluable. Thank you in advance !

    SebastianMWS, Mar 10, 2011
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