AMD's Phenom incompatible with many boards?

AMD's Phenom incompatible with many boards?

One of the great strengths of AMD's Phenom processor generation is without question the possibility, thanks to the downward compatibility between Socket AM2 + and AM2, of being able to install a current quad-core processor even on a board that is no longer 100% up-to-date.

During a first test by the colleagues in the English edition of 'Tom's Hardware Magazine' it turned out that many motherboards with socket AM2 are currently not able to boot successfully with AMD's newest offspring. The test candidates included motherboards from several manufacturers, different chipsets and price ranges:

  • Asus Crosshair (Nvidia nForce 590 SLI)
  • Asus M2A-VM HDMI (AMD 690G)
  • Biostar TForce 590 SLI Deluxe (Nvidia nForce 590 SLI)
  • Epox MF570 SLI (Nvidia nForce 570 SLI)
  • Foxconn C51XEM2AA (Nvidia nForce 590 SLI)
  • Foxconn/Winfast K8M890M2MA-RS2H (VIA K8M890 chipset)
  • Gigabyte GA-M57SLI-S4 (Nvidia nForce 570 SLI)
  • Gigabyte GA-M59SLI-S5 ( Nvidia nForce 590 SLI)
  • MSI K9A Platinum (ATI Crossfire Xpress 3200)
  • MSI K9NU Neo-V (ULi/Nvidia M1697)

Except for the two products from Asus, no other board on the course was able to boot with a Phenom processor at the time. The main fault is the lack of BIOS updates, since in most cases the last BIOS is months old, although the latest chipsets have almost always been used with Nvidia's nForce 570 and 590 SLI and the Crossfire XPress 3200. For many owners and those who want to upgrade the mostly expensive motherboards, a rude awakening could threaten if the latest BIOS version with Phenom support was not installed at the time of the upgrade and instead of an 'Unknown CPU xxxx MHz' message in the Power On Self Test as it has worked in the past with newer steppings, just a black oneScreen without function appears.

The situation does not appear as bad as shown in the test. For example, Gigabyte, Asus and MSI offer appropriate BIOS updates for a number of motherboards. At Gigabyte, boards based on the nVidia chipsets nForce 570 SLI, nForce 560 and nForce 550 are currently supported. Boards with nForce 590 SLI, nForce 4, GeForce 6100/nForce 430 or GeForce 6150/nForce 430 chipsets are currently not available. A similar picture emerges at MSI. Here, too, the midrange models are primarily supported. The low-end as well as the high-end segment with the top chipset nForce 590 SLI received no support from bilsang. The situation is different with the competitor Asus. Almost all top boards have been equipped with fresh BIOS versions.

Manufacturer does not support supported Gigabyte GA-M52L-S3 (Rev. 1.0) GA-M52S-S3P (Rev. 2.0) GA -M55S-S3 (Rev. 2.0) GA-M55S-S3 (Rev 1.1) GA-M55S-S3 (Rev 1.0) GA-M56S-S3GA-M57SLI-DS4 (Rev. 2.0) GA-M57SLI-S4 (Rev. 2.0 ) GA-M57SLI-S4 (Rev. 1.0) GA-M57SLI-S4 (Rev. 1.1) GA-M51GM-S2G (Rev. 1.0) GA-M52S-S3P (Rev. 1.0) GA-M55plus-S3G (Rev. 1.0 ) GA-M55plus-S3G (rev 2.0) GA-M55plus-S3G (Rev. 3.0) GA-M55SLI-S4 (Rev. 1.0) GA-M55SLI-S4 (Rev. 2.0) GA-M59SLI-S5 (Rev. 1.0) GA-M61PM-S2 (Rev. 1.0) GA-M59SLI-S4 (Rev. 1.0) Asus CrosshairM2A-MVPM2A-VMM2A-VM HDMIM2N32 WS ProfessionalM2N32-SLI DeluxeM2N32-SLI Premium VISTA EditionM2N-EM2N-SLIM2N-SLI Deluxe-MVPAM3-MVPM3R32 DELUXEM3A32-MVP DELUXE/WIFI (remainder) MSI K9AG Neo2K9AG Neo2-DigitalK9AGM3-FK9AGM3-FDK9AGM3-FIHK9AGM4-FK9N Neo V2K9N Neo V3K9NGM3-FDK9NGM3-FDK9NGM3-FIHNForce> It is to be hoped that in the near future the manufacturers will also provide corresponding BIOS versions with Phenom support for other boards in order to enable the technical upgradeusable accordingly.