Question Will a b450 be a safe choice for an AMD 3900x provided I'm not overclocking?

Will Dano

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Jul 15, 2013
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I want to upgrade to a 3900x/64GB 3200 Ram and am deciding on a decent motherboard that won't break the bank.

This is the one I'm looking at: https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=569_26_1207_1205_1505&item_id=123861
ASRock B450 PRO4

I'm gonna want to use this ram on it (buying 64gb, not 32gb) : https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=569_24_311_1326&item_id=099478
G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 3200MHz

I have a GTX 1070 at the moment, but I might upgrade it in a year or two.

Since I'm not overclocking, will that motherboard do well? Or should I just spend the extra $100 on this: https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=569_26_1207_1205_1505&item_id=139034
ASUS PRIME X570-P AMD AM4 ATX


Advice is appreciated.
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Your motherboard link takes you to the main page, not a specific board model. Probably requires having the cookie on your browser to see what you have in the cart or whatever. Try linking only to the product page for the motherboard.
 
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TJ Hooker

Illustrious
Herald
B450 Pro4? I would personally go with an MSI B450 Gaming Plus or B450-A Pro, or an ASRock B450M Steel Legend, all of which can be found for cheaper than that Pro4 (not counting the mail in rebate). Darkbreeze will probably fight me on the MSI options though :p

The MSI boards also have a feature that lets you upgrade the BIOS without a supported CPU, in case the board doesn't come with a BIOS that supports the 3900X out of the box.

I would recommend buying a single kit of 4x16GB, not two kits of 32GB.

What are you going to use this PC for that you need 64GB of RAM?
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
I have nothing bad, not specifically anyhow, to say about any of the MSI models that we'd consider to be above the Tomahawk or Mortar. Just too many threads on those boards specifically, and NOT on other board models that are similarly tiered, to not believe something is up with those motherboards.

The Pro Carbon and other higher tiered MSI models don't seem to have those same quality issues.

Honestly, and this has been true for many generations, I've found the Pro4 models to be the absolute best of the low end budget models, which might not be saying much, but if you have to really scrape the bottom of the barrel, I've never seen any patterns of failure on any of those boards and especially if you need a microATX model, because IIRC the Pro4 is one of the few micro models with four DIMM slots AND a very good number of fan headers, where most other boards in it's price range have MAYBE one or two case fan headers in addition to the CPU and OPT headers.

Totally agree on not buying two kits of 32GB. Makes no sense. It's intentionally asking for problems.

I also agree that the amount of memory is probably completely overkill unless you are running extremely high end applications at a very high level of complexity or intend to run a few serious VMs.
 
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Will Dano

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Jul 15, 2013
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B450 Pro4? I would personally go with an MSI B450 Gaming Plus or B450-A Pro, or an ASRock B450M Steel Legend, all of which can be found for cheaper than that Pro4 (not counting the mail in rebate). Darkbreeze will probably fight me on the MSI options though :p

The MSI boards also have a feature that lets you upgrade the BIOS without a supported CPU, in case the board doesn't come with a BIOS that supports the 3900X out of the box.

I would recommend buying a single kit of 4x16GB, not two kits of 32GB.

What are you going to use this PC for that you need 64GB of RAM?
Noted!

Why would you recommend the single kit of 4x16 as opposed to two kits of 32? The only reason I'm thinking of going for the 2 kits is it's simply the least expensive option I'm finding at canada computers.

I'm wanting 64gb ram because currently with my 32gb, a lot of the times I see that ~25gb is in use while rendering. I usually have Premiere Pro/After Effects/Photoshop opened at once, and occasionally Blender as well with several Chrome tabs on the side.
 

Will Dano

Honorable
Jul 15, 2013
126
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I have nothing bad, not specifically anyhow, to say about any of the MSI models that we'd consider to be above the Tomahawk or Mortar. Just too many threads on those boards specifically, and NOT on other board models that are similarly tiered, to not believe something is up with those motherboards.

The Pro Carbon and other higher tiered MSI models don't seem to have those same quality issues.

Honestly, and this has been true for many generations, I've found the Pro4 models to be the absolute best of the low end budget models, which might not be saying much, but if you have to really scrape the bottom of the barrel, I've never seen any patterns of failure on any of those boards and especially if you need a microATX model, because IIRC the Pro4 is one of the few micro models with four DIMM slots AND a very good number of fan headers, where most other boards in it's price range have MAYBE one or two case fan headers in addition to the CPU and OPT headers.

Totally agree on not buying two kits of 32GB. Makes no sense. It's intentionally asking for problems.

I also agree that the amount of memory is probably completely overkill unless you are running extremely high end applications at a very high level of complexity or intend to run a few serious VMs.
Thanks for the input!

During my peak usage, the task manager says ~25gb ram is being used while multiple programs are open (adobe programs, blender, chrome, etc...). Wouldn't doubling the ram give a more comfortable experience?

And excuse my ignorance, but what's wrong with going with 2 kits of 32gb as opposed to a single kit of 64?
 

TJ Hooker

Illustrious
Herald
Why would you recommend the single kit of 4x16 as opposed to two kits of 32? The only reason I'm thinking of going for the 2 kits is it's simply the least expensive option I'm finding at canada computers.
RAM is only guaranteed to work together if purchased as a single kit. You may have issues combining two separate kits, even if they're the same model.
 
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DMAN999

Respectable
Herald
I have an Asus ROG Strix B450-F Gaming MB and I will most likely be upgrading from my current Ryzen 5 2600 to a Ryzen 7 3700x sometime next year.
I am fully confident that my motherboard will be able to run the 3700x without any problems once Asus gets the bugs worked out of the BIOS.
But if I was building a system now for a 3900x I would be researching X470 and X570 boards.
I would probably be leaning towards the Asus ROG Strix X470-F since it is a step up in quality from my current board and I am very happy with my current board.
But it will certainly be a few months before any of the motherboard manufacturers can get a Stable BIOS released for any board running a 3000 series CPU no matter the chipset.

And excuse my ignorance, but what's wrong with going with 2 kits of 32gb as opposed to a single kit of 64?
2 32GB kits will NOT be guaranteed to run at their max rated speed and may not even work together at all.
Buying RAM in a kit ensures that all the sticks are guaranteed to be compatible with each other.
Also if you choose a B450 or X470 board you will want to get a 2 stick kit for the best results.
4 sticks tend to be much more difficult to get to run at their rated speeds because they tax the Ryzen Memory controller much more than a 2 stick kit does.
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Here is the problem with mixed memory, as per my guide.

The odd man out, or, unmatched memory

At the forefront of many memory issues is a well known and accepted (Throughout the enthusiast and builder communities anyhow) notion that while memory modules that did not come together in a matched set that was tested by the manufacturer to be compatible, certainly CAN still work together, often it does not. Right up front I'll tell you that if you are trying to get sticks to work in the same machine together that were purchased separately, even if they are otherwise identical according to the kit or model number or if they would seem to have identical timings and voltage requirements, there is a very good chance that you simply will not be able to do that. There is also a pretty fair chance that you might be able to if you are willing to take your time, listen to and understand what you are being told and follow the steps necessary to determining if they will "play nice" or not.

The exception in most cases will be that if the memory from both sets are the same speed and timings and both kits are within the JEDEC specifications for the default speed on that platform, so for example, 2666mhz on the latest Intel Z390 platform, 2133mhz on Ryzen first and second Gen platforms, then they stand a much better chance of working together but if they are higher speed kits the chances begin to diminish from what they might be at the low speed and loose timings end of the scale.

A word of advice. If you just purchased this memory, and for whatever reason you bought two separate sticks of the same memory instead of buying them together in a matched set, see if you can return them for a refund or credit towards buying a similar or same set of matched sticks that come together in a kit. It is ALWAYS better to have matched modules because from brand to brand, or even within the same brand, in fact, even when the part numbers are IDENTICAL, there can be anything from simply slightly different memory chips that were sourced from different bins at the end or beginning of a production run to entirely different configurations altogether even though the model numbers seem to be the same. Some manufacturers even reuse model numbers when they discontinue a product. Point being, memory is only the same for sure when all sticks came out of the same blister pack or packaging and were sold as a tested kit.

In order to determine if differences in the memory, or a need for increased voltage when using more than one stick (Especially if you are running three or more sticks) are responsible for the problems you are having you will always want to begin your troubleshooting process by attempting to boot the machine with only a single stick of memory installed. Also, for practically every consumer motherboard that's been sold since at least as far back as about 2014, the A2 memory slot which is the second slot over from the CPU socket, is THE slot that is most commonly designated for the installation of a single memory module. Slots A2 and B2 are almost always the slots specified in the motherboard memory population rules for use with two modules. If you need to install a third module I have no opinion on which of the remaining slots to use for that, but typically since the A1 slot is right next to the CPU socket and often interferes with the CPU cooler or fan, I'd say the B1 slot was probably just as good.

Honestly, I don't ever recommend that you HAVE three modules installed anyhow. Using memory in pairs is always a better option so that normal dual channel operation will occur. And that's another thing. When it comes to memory there are no "single channel" or "dual channel" memory modules. There are ONLY memory modules and the motherboard and CPU architecture will determine whether or not dual, triple or quad channel operation is possible based on the architecture and how many modules are in use. Occasionally though there are situations where it might make sense to run three modules and some boards CAN use three modules in a FLEX type mode where two of the modules will operate in dual channel while the third oddball module will run in single channel. I'd avoid oddball configurations though if possible because many motherboards will simply run ALL modules in single channel mode when an odd number of modules are installed.

If you think you will ever need 16GB of memory, then buy 16GB of memory from the start so you can get it all in a matched set that has been tested, and eliminate a lot of problems right from the start.
 
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Will Dano

Honorable
Jul 15, 2013
126
0
10,690
4
I have an Asus ROG Strix B450-F Gaming MB and I will most likely be upgrading from my current Ryzen 5 2600 to a Ryzen 7 3700x sometime next year.
I am fully confident that my motherboard will be able to run the 3700x without any problems once Asus gets the bugs worked out of the BIOS.
But if I was building a system now for a 3900x I would be researching X470 and X570 boards.
I would probably be leaning towards the Asus ROG Strix X470-F since it is a step up in quality from my current board and I am very happy with my current board.
But it will certainly be a few months before any of the motherboard manufacturers can get a Stable BIOS released for any board running a 3000 series CPU no matter the chipset.


2 32GB kits will NOT be guaranteed to run at their max rated speed and may not even work together at all.
Buying RAM in a kit ensures that all the sticks are guaranteed to be compatible with each other.
Also if you choose a B450 or X470 board you will want to get a 2 stick kit for the best results.
4 sticks tend to be much more difficult to get to run at their rated speeds because they tax the Ryzen Memory controller much more than a 2 stick kit does.
Thank you for saving me the time and hassle, I would have probably made the mistake and learn from it the hard way.

Are there any x2 32GB Ram available? I searched through Newegg.ca, all the 64GB ram kits I can find are 4 sticks and not 2, am I looking in the wrong place?
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
4 sticks tend to be much more difficult to get to run at their rated speeds because they tax the Ryzen Memory controller much more than a 2 stick kit does.
Not just on Ryzen, although it is definitely more evident on that platform. This is true of ALL dual channel platforms.

On any dual channel platform, running four sticks is always a lot more stressful on the memory controller than running two. So, while you can usually run four, sometimes easily, sometimes after some tweaking of settings, it is ALWAYS less frustrating and much more recommended to get only two sticks in the full amount of the capacity you wish to run, if possible.

Plus, that leaves you room down the road in case you find that you NEED to add more.

If you need 64GB however, that option isn't viable since the maximum amount of supported memory on this platform is 16GB per DIMM. No chance of using 32GB DIMMs.

But so long as you buy a matched set of 4 x16GB, and they are high quality sticks and the advertised speed isn't too high, it should probably work ok.
 
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DMAN999

Respectable
Herald
I just looked and I couldn't find any so your only option for 64 GB of RAM would be a 4 x 16 GB kit.
Be sure to check the QVL (Memory Compatibility List) for your MB to be sure that they will work properly for you.
 

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