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Component compatibilty with Fatal1ty Z97 Killer

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D0OMZDAYZ View Drop Down
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    Posted: 25 Sep 2017 at 7:47pm
Hello,
I have just a couple simple questions regarding component compatibility with the ASRock Fatal1ty Z97 Killer:
1. Is this model of RAM supported?
https://www.kingston.com/datasheets/HX318C10FBK2_8.pdf
It is not listed on the 'Memory Support List' (found here http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Fatal1ty%20Z97%20Killer/?cat=Memory) but models of RAM very similar to the aforementioned ones are.

2. Is the Samsung 960 Pro M.2 SSD supported?
http://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/minisite/ssd/product/consumer/ssd960.html
Again, it is not listed on the official 'Storage Support List' (found here http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Fatal1ty%20Z97%20Killer/?cat=Storage) but by all accounts should be supported as the Motherboard has an M.2 port. Even the latest bios update list "Add NVMe support." which is what the 960 Pro uses.

These are the only two questions holding me back from purchasing this motherboard so any help would be appreciated. Thank you!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Sep 2017 at 9:44pm
Originally posted by D0OMZDAYZ D0OMZDAYZ wrote:

Hello,
I have just a couple simple questions regarding component compatibility with the ASRock Fatal1ty Z97 Killer:
1. Is this model of RAM supported?
https://www.kingston.com/datasheets/HX318C10FBK2_8.pdf
It is not listed on the 'Memory Support List' (found here http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Fatal1ty%20Z97%20Killer/?cat=Memory) but models of RAM very similar to the aforementioned ones are.

2. Is the Samsung 960 Pro M.2 SSD supported?
http://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/minisite/ssd/product/consumer/ssd960.html
Again, it is not listed on the official 'Storage Support List' (found here http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Fatal1ty%20Z97%20Killer/?cat=Storage) but by all accounts should be supported as the Motherboard has an M.2 port. Even the latest bios update list "Add NVMe support." which is what the 960 Pro uses.

These are the only two questions holding me back from purchasing this motherboard so any help would be appreciated. Thank you!


The best I can tell you about that memory is Kingston said it is supported on Z97 systems. That really means the memory controller in the Haswell and Broadwell processors that work in Intel 9 series chipset boards, like the Z97, are compatible with this memory.

Any NVMe SSD will work with this board, and can be used as the OS drive as long as the UEFI/BIOS has NMVe support, which it does.

But the M.2 slot on this board only provides a PCIe 2.0 x2 interface (10Gb/s), while the 960 Pro requires a PCIe 3.0 x4 interface (32Gb/s) to provide its full performance. For that you need a board that has an "Ultra M.2" slot.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote D0OMZDAYZ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 7:58am
That's for your reply Parsec. I'm devastated to discover that the M.2 slot is only PCI E 2.0 but I'm very thankful you pointed that out before I went ahead, I completely missed that. I know I am asking a lot but do you know of ANY motherboards that have this "Ultra M.2 slot" while still retaining DDR3 support and LGA 1150 socket?

I know I'm really pushing my luck trying to get the best of both generations but I really don't want to have to upgrade my CPU and RAM because they both work fine. Thanks again so much for your help.
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UPDATE: I think I have located a suitable boards for my needs!

The ASRock Z97 Extreme6 (http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z97%20Extreme6/):
  • Supports New 4th and 4th Generation Intel Xeon/Core??i7/i5/i3/Pentium/Celeron Processors (Socket 1150) (I have the Intel Core i5 4690K) CHECK
  •  Supports Dual Channel DDR3/DDR3L 3200+(OC), 15弮 Gold Contact in DIMM Slots CHECK
  •  2 PCIe 3.0 x16, 1 PCIe 2.0 x16, 2 PCIe 2.0 x1, 1 mini-PCIe, 15弮 Gold Contact in VGA PCIe Slot (PCIE2) (For my graphics card CHECK)
  • 1 SATA Express, 10 SATA3, 1 eSATA, 1 Ultra M.2 (PCIe Gen3 x4), 1 M.2 (PCIe Gen2 x2 & SATA, Supports 30mm, 42mm, 60mm, 80mm, 110mm M.2 devices), 10 USB 3.1 Gen1 (4 Front, 6 Rear), 5 USB 2.0 (4 Front, 1 Vertical Type A) CHECK

I checked the BIOS page and this was listed in the lastest update (V2.70 7/20/2016):

  1. Update NTFS module.
  2. Add ME FW version in BIOS setup.
  3. Add NVMe support.

So everything checks out right? This seems to be the one!



Edited by D0OMZDAYZ - 26 Sep 2017 at 8:35am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 9:48am
Originally posted by D0OMZDAYZ D0OMZDAYZ wrote:

UPDATE: I think I have located a suitable boards for my needs!

The ASRock Z97 Extreme6 (http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z97%20Extreme6/):
  • Supports New 4th and 4th Generation Intel Xeon/Core??i7/i5/i3/Pentium/Celeron Processors (Socket 1150) (I have the Intel Core i5 4690K) CHECK
  •  Supports Dual Channel DDR3/DDR3L 3200+(OC), 15弮 Gold Contact in DIMM Slots CHECK
  •  2 PCIe 3.0 x16, 1 PCIe 2.0 x16, 2 PCIe 2.0 x1, 1 mini-PCIe, 15弮 Gold Contact in VGA PCIe Slot (PCIE2) (For my graphics card CHECK)
  • 1 SATA Express, 10 SATA3, 1 eSATA, 1 Ultra M.2 (PCIe Gen3 x4), 1 M.2 (PCIe Gen2 x2 & SATA, Supports 30mm, 42mm, 60mm, 80mm, 110mm M.2 devices), 10 USB 3.1 Gen1 (4 Front, 6 Rear), 5 USB 2.0 (4 Front, 1 Vertical Type A) CHECK

I checked the BIOS page and this was listed in the lastest update (V2.70 7/20/2016):

  1. Update NTFS module.
  2. Add ME FW version in BIOS setup.
  3. Add NVMe support.

So everything checks out right? This seems to be the one!



What a coincidence, I have a Z97 Extreme6 too! Thumbs Up

This board is actually the first mother board ever made that had a PCIe 3.0 x4 M.2 slot. It was also released when the first PCIe M.2 SSDs were released by Samsung, but were not yet NVMe. For example, the Samsung SM951 is not SATA, but has its own controller built into the SSD that uses an AHCI driver, and uses the PCIe 3.0 x4 interface.

Not long afterwards Samsung released the 950 Pro, one of the first NVMe SSDs, and the first M.2 NVMe SSD. You can see in the history of this board's UEFI updates that NVMe support was added later in its lifetime, and is also one of if not the first board to have NVMe support. So this board's design was ahead of its time, in anticipation of the new SSDs to come. I still use a 950 Pro as the OS drive in this board.

One FYI for you about this board and ALL other Z97 boards that might have an Ultra M.2 slot. The Ultra M.2 slot uses some of the PCIe 3.0 lanes provided by the CPU. Those are the same PCIe 3.0 lanes used by the PCIe 3.0 x16 slots, and video cards. All CPUs compatible with Z97 boards provide 16 PCIe 3.0 lanes to the board. Since the Ultra M.2 slot uses four of those PCIe 3.0 lanes, and the way those lanes must be allocated to the slots, when an NVMe M.2 SSD is in that slot, it will cause the PCIE4 x16 slot to run at PCIe 3.0 x8, and the PCIE4 slot to run at PCIe 3.0 x4. So your video card will run at PCIe 3.0 x8 at best.

So if you are OCD about having your video card run at PCIe 3.0 x16, that might bother you. There is NO way around this with any Z97 board. It is known that the difference in performance of any video card between running at x16 and x8 is very small to no difference at all.

But otherwise you are fine with this board for full performance from a 960 Pro, and any other current NVMe SSD.

One more thing I must mention, what version of Windows will you be using? If it is Windows 7, you've got a problem. Windows 7 does not have a built in NVMe driver, like 8.1 and 10 do. You also cannot simply install an NVMe driver during a Windows 7 installation, it must be incorporated into the installation media, or other techniques can be used to accomplish the same thing. But they are not very simple. There are also one or two different things you need to do to install Windows 8.1 or 10 on an NVMe SSD that are different than SATA SSDs.

If you have questions about any of the Windows installation techniques for NVMe SSDs, let us know.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote D0OMZDAYZ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 10:10am
Oh for goodness sake! I already ordered the motherboard. I have a GTX 980? Do you know how badly it might impact my card? Ordering this M.2 SSDs was one of the worst decisions I ever made :(
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Oh sorry. Also I am going to be using Windows 10 which apparently has support for NVMe natively but I'll make sure to get the Samsung drivers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote D0OMZDAYZ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 10:12am
Also THANKS AGAIN FOR ALL YOUR HELP. You guys are the best.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 11:30am
Originally posted by D0OMZDAYZ D0OMZDAYZ wrote:

Oh for goodness sake! I already ordered the motherboard. I have a GTX 980? Do you know how badly it might impact my card? Ordering this M.2 SSDs was one of the worst decisions I ever made :(


As I said, the difference in performance will be very small, or nothing at all. Even if you had a GTX 1080, it would be less than 5FPS on a game that gives you over 100FPS at 1080p, and then only on certain games. You can find gaming tests of video cards at PCIe 3.0 x8 and x16, and if there is a difference, it is not worth worrying about.

The 16 PCIe 3.0 or 2.0 lane limitation has been around for many years, and many more mother board/chipset and CPU models. If you used any type of add on card in any of the PCIe x16 slots, you would have the same x8 lane per slot situation. If you used two cards in SLI or Crossfire, both cards would run at x8. Many boards, like the Fatal1ty Z97 Killer, have the second PCIe x16 slot wired in at only x4, even if the first PCIe x16 slot is not being used. AMD did not even have PCIe 3.0 until they introduced Ryzen, this year. You have nothing to worry about regarding video card performance.

Sorry but this is really pretty basic stuff. We do see misunderstandings like this all the time. You really need to check the Specifications closely, and know what the components you select provide in detail.

If you want more PCIe lanes, you'll need to buy the HEDT processors and boards from AMD or Intel. But you will pay about three times the price for the CPU, and at least double the price for the board.

The newer Intel boards don't use the PCIe lanes from the CPU for the M.2 slots, but you cannot use your CPU in those boards.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote D0OMZDAYZ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 2:19pm
Ok, thanks so much Parsec. I'm going go ahead with ordering the motherboard. At this point I have to concede to some comprises or upgrade my components entirely, I won't be able to cling to my Gen 4 CPU and DDR3 forever haha.

I really do apologies for the many misunderstandings I have presented. I thought this would be a simple storage upgrade but it's turned into a lot advice. I'll be sure to do a lot more research next time and be patient. I want to thank you once again for your very helpful advice and explanations, you have made things a lot clearer for me. At this point I would consider my problem to be solved.

Thank you very much and have a good day!
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