SAPPHIRE PGS A3 M MAINBOARD & AMD Piledriver Firepro A300 APU/CPU Bundle,  Ideal workstation, Server, HTPC, Eyefinity, 8 SATA 6gbs/USB 3.0 65watt TDP. £159.99 Delivered @ eBay / Silverstar Components Ebay
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SAPPHIRE PGS A3 M MAINBOARD & AMD Piledriver Firepro A300 APU/CPU Bundle, Ideal workstation, Server, HTPC, Eyefinity, 8 SATA 6gbs/USB 3.0 65watt TDP. £159.99 Delivered @ eBay / Silverstar Components Ebay

£159.99eBay Deals
113
Found 5th Jun 2013
This is an absolute steal!, I have just ordered one. Looking online they are going for £350 - £400, Hopefully it will come with a CPU cooler, *EDIT* Spoken to seller there is a CPU heatsink/fan in the box.

The motherboard is well built and designed for constant or 24hr use, it's aimed at professionals. As it's an industrial grade board. You won't get a consumer board with these features or this quality anywhere near this price, let alone with a CPU.

A300 Cpu is a quad core AMD chip with a 65watt TDP, it's about the performance between a Athlon X4 750k - A10-5800K as this is what it's based on. But less wattage (65w TDP) And has built in Firepro Professional Graphics.

Would make a really energy efficient workstation, Photoshop, Cad etc.
Or an amazing server/NAS, it's got 8 SATA 3.0 6gbs ports! (What board has 8x 6gbs sata!)
It supports 3 Monitors out of the box with Eyefinity, can also take a discrete graphics card as it has a PCIe 16x slot.

It also has a Decent dedicated Broadcom Gigabit NIC

I've bought this to run all my Media server, Transcoding stuff and as a NAS, with the recent Microserver as a backup for this or I may even just use the Microserver as an iSCSI target device.

Can confirm it supports IMMOU (VT-d) Hardware passthrough, ideal for ESXi/HyperV
ECC Unbuffered RAM seems to be working as well.

Dual Bios, Solid Capcitors, Industrial grade, Black Diamond Choke, 30u Gold

Spec from Sapphire:

APU AMD FirePro™ A300 Accelerated Processors
BIOS AMI BIOS, 32Mb Flash ROM, Supports Dual BIOS Switch
Memory 32 GB Max.
Four 240-pin DDR3-1066/1333/1600/1866 DIMMs with dual channel,
Supports x16 and x8 DIMMs, non-ECC, unbuffered DIMMs
Graphics Entry to Mid Range FirePro Graphics Performance
Expansion Slots 1 x PCI-Express (Gen2) x16 slot
1 x PCI-Express (Gen2) x1 slot
1 x PCI-Express (Gen2) x4 slot
1 x PCI 2.3 Slot
Storage 1 x SATA3 ports with 6Gb/s data transfer rate
Audio Realtek ALC892 HD Audio Codec with 8-Channel
Ethernet LAN 1 x Gigabit Ethernet from Broadcom BCM5761 Gigabit controller
Rear Panel I / O 4 x USB 2.0 ports
2 x USB 3.0 ports
1 x Display port
1 x VGA port
1 x DVI-D port
1 x RJ45 LAN port
1 x Audio Jacks
Internal I / O 1 x 24-pin ATX power connector
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
8 x SATA3 connectors
4 x USB2.0 headers
2 x USB3.0 headers
1 x Front Panel header
1 x Speaker header
1 x Serial Port (COM1) header
1 x S/PDIF header
1 x Front Audio header
1 x Chassis intrusion header
1 x Trust Platform Module (TPM) header
1 x GPIO Header
1 x Internal Thermal Sensor Header
1 x Clear CMOS Jumper
1 x 4-pin CPU Fan header
2 x 4-pin Fan headers
OS support Windows 7 (32/64-bit)
Windows Vista (32/64-bit)
Linux (32/64-bit):
-SUSE Enterprise Desktop [SLED] Release 11.4 and 11.5
-Ubuntu Release 11.04 and 11.10
-RedFlag Desktop
Form Factor Micro-ATX form factor of 244mm x 244mm

Clickable links coming up in post below.

113 Comments

I have very little knowledge of all that this board can do.

but it seems like a mega deal from your description. so heat from me

I am going to have to buy one of your deals sooner than later Rusty. I'm not sure this is the one though.

Excuse my ignorance Rusty I know near nada about workstations.

But if its based on / same performance as a A10-5800K what does this have above buying an A10-5800K and a separate motherboard.

I'm just trying to figure out the value and can't find any pricing specifically on the A300 Firepro.

Nevermind, I found one good reason, just re-reading your post.

Industrial quality.

Original Poster

M1sterDeeds

Excuse my ignorance Rusty I know near nada about workstations.But if its … Excuse my ignorance Rusty I know near nada about workstations.But if its based on / same performance as a A10-5800K what does this have above buying an A10-5800K and a separate motherboard.I'm just trying to figure out the value and can't find any pricing specifically on the A300 Firepro.



Less power consumption, better graphics performance for productivity stuff, CAD/Photoshop/Etc, though I should imagine you can simply hack the catalyst drivers to make it a Radeon instead of a Firepro.

There is no motherboard on the market for the A10-5800 that comes anywhere near close to this in terms of features and quality, also no Intel board has 8x 6gbs SATA and don't think there is an AMD board like it either.

Garbage.

As someone who works in sales. You can sell a lot of things just using that phrase.

Punter1: "Nah mate I don't need an igloo"

Salesman: "This is no ordinary igloo, forget your regular consumer igloo. These are Industrial Quality"

Punter1: "I'll take 6."

M1sterDeeds

As someone who works in sales. You can sell a lot of things just using … As someone who works in sales. You can sell a lot of things just using that phrase.Punter1: "Nah mate I don't need an igloo"Salesman: "This is no ordinary igloo, forget your regular consumer igloo. These are Industrial Quality"Punter1: "I'll take 6."



These are no ordinary widgets. They've got a different sticker on.

Original Poster

ether707

Garbage.



Why because it's AMD or not Haswell?

3spartan

These are no ordinary widgets. They've got a different sticker on.



No , This is Sparta!

Not really up on specialist software now days. Is there any software that still needs FirePro or Quadro validation?

I know back in the day on the G86 and G92 Nvidia consumer cards you could spoof the drivers so the software saw your card as a quadro and not a GTX.

I know main stream stuff is fine now just wondered about any specialist software, cad etc?

Original Poster

GAVINLEWISHUKD

Not really up on specialist software now days. Is there any software that … Not really up on specialist software now days. Is there any software that still needs FirePro or Quadro validation?I know back in the day on the G86 and G92 Nvidia consumer cards you could spoof the drivers so the software saw your card as a quadro and not a GTX.I know main stream stuff is fine now just wondered about any specialist software, cad etc?



Yeah certain apps do, but this board ignoring the Firepro is still a bargain, I won't be using that part of it. It's a awesome TDP and 8 Sata Ports, with a quality board. Even better for those who use Cad or Productivity and those that don't, just edit the catalyst driver and it becomes a Radeon I look at it as a Workstation or Server/Nas board, not really one for gamers, though can't see why you can't game on it either with a Radeon softmod or put a discrete graphics card in it.

The Firepro will handle HTPC duties with ease too.

The A10-5800 is over £100 with a higher TDP, none of the consumer boards come close. Absolutely perfect for what I need (NAS/VM/Media Server)
Edited by: "RustySpoons" 5th Jun 2013

I have experience of Sapphire motherboards and i can tell you that they are rubbish, i had a top of the range white Sapphire AMD board with all the bells and whistles on it was nearly £200 and i had no end of trouble with it the fact that Sapphire makes very few motherboards tells you all you need to know. Unless you have a specific reason to buy such kit stick with consumer stuff.

Original Poster

polly69

I have experience of Sapphire motherboards and i can tell you that they … I have experience of Sapphire motherboards and i can tell you that they are rubbish, i had a top of the range white Sapphire AMD board with all the bells and whistles on it was nearly £200 and i had no end of trouble with it the fact that Sapphire makes very few motherboards tells you all you need to know. Unless you have a specific reason to buy such kit stick with consumer stuff.



They focus more on Workstation/Industrial. But I have used their Workstation boards which have been superb.

Gigabyte made a load of rubbish boards for Sandybridge, but everyone makes a Lemon, so you can't judge a brand on one product.
Edited by: "RustySpoons" 5th Jun 2013

RustySpoons

They don't make any consumer boards these days, they focus more on … They don't make any consumer boards these days, they focus more on Workstation/Industrial. But I have used their Workstation boards which have been superb.Gigabyte made a load of rubbish boards for Sandybridge, but everyone makes a Lemon, so you can't judge a brand on one product.



It doesn't change the fact that this board will be more trouble than its worth in the long run, you're buying it as a media server/NAS when something goes wrong its not such a simple task to get the items repaired or replaced as it is with Consumer stuff if your CPU goes you need another the same you can't just slot in a AM3 or FM2 off Amazon the same with the board but the biggest nail in the coffin is its a eBay seller. Yesterday i stumped up £190 for a new nas and one WD Red 3tb drive which is more than the cost of this but the running costs will be a lot lower and so will the agro level. It seems to me that this is complete overkill for what you are using it for i would personally grab a 5800k and board instead that will at least be able to game with no extra cost and as for SATA ports you can by a PCI card for a tenner. I have to agree if you have a specific use for it then it probably a good buy but only for the applications it was designed for and not for home use. As for Sapphire making more industrial stuff, i don't know where you get that from as i can count on one hand the Servers or workstations i've worked on in the last 12 months that have used Sapphire boards.
Edited by: "polly69" 5th Jun 2013

Original Poster

polly69

It doesn't change the fact that this board will be more trouble than its … It doesn't change the fact that this board will be more trouble than its worth in the long run, you're buying it as a media server/NAS when something goes wrong its not such a simple task to get the items repaired or replaced as it is with Consumer stuff if your CPU goes you need another the same you can't just slot in a AM3 or FM2 off Amazon the same with the board but the biggest nail in the coffin is its a eBay seller. Yesterday i stumped up £190 for a new nas and one WD Red 3tb drive which is more than the cost of this but the running costs will be a lot lower and so will the agro level. It seems to me that this is complete overkill for what you are using it for i would personally grab a 5800k and board instead that will at least be able to game with no extra cost and as for SATA ports you can by a PCI card for a tenner. I have to agree if you have a use for it then it probably a good buy but only for the applications it was designed for and not for home use.



The seller is a proper business with a shop, I've bought loads from them, their service and returns is superb.

A consumer board isn't designed to run 24/7, a £10 SATA card will be rubbish, no £10 card compares to the AMD Chipset SATA it's superb, this will run Synology no problem and work as well as their £2000 unit, if not better.
It will take ANY FM2 chip and that chip will work in any FM2 board.

The A10-5800 is a 100watt TDP, this is 65watt TDP, not to mention no FM2 board has 8 SATA, this amount of VRM's, decent NIC, decent capacitors.

I have a Supermicro Superserver, with a Xeon 1230v2, 32gb RAM, LSI Megaraid and 8x Hitachi drives with a 1600watt Dual redundant PSU, not to mention the 3000kva UPS. That's overkill lol! But my Supermicro board gets mixed reviews, some love it, some hate it.
Edited by: "RustySpoons" 5th Jun 2013

Don't get this site, that's a £350 board and CPU, it's a deal so it's hot, but people commenting on it as it's not suitable for their use, why comment at all. It's like saying a coffee maker doesn't make tea or a Double Breasted, tweed patched grey suit doesn't freeze food.

Its fit for purpose, great spec for the money, but because its not a jar of pickle for 7p in Tesco, people poo-poo it.
Edited by: "santaclart" 6th Jun 2013

santaclart

Don't get this site, that's a £350 board and CPU, it's a deal so it's … Don't get this site, that's a £350 board and CPU, it's a deal so it's hot, but people commenting on it as it's not suitable for their use, why comment at all. It's like saying a coffee maker doesn't make tea or a Double Breasted, tweed patched grey suit doesn't freeze food.Its fit for purpose, great spec for the money, but because its not a jar of pickle for 7p in Tesco, people poo-poo it.



3 comments in 6 years.. by your logic why do we even have down votes?

ZALMAN CNPS 8000 is a great amd cooler,
bit awkward to fit,
had one years it is brilliant,

probably do a newer version now

bye xxxxxxxxxx ps. thanks

santaclart

Don't get this site, that's a £350 board and CPU, it's a deal so it's … Don't get this site, that's a £350 board and CPU, it's a deal so it's hot, but people commenting on it as it's not suitable for their use, why comment at all. It's like saying a coffee maker doesn't make tea or a Double Breasted, tweed patched grey suit doesn't freeze food.Its fit for purpose, great spec for the money, but because its not a jar of pickle for 7p in Tesco, people poo-poo it.


I for one, appreciate the banter. I don't have the time to keep up with all the latest tech developments and rely on the experience of other members that work with specific tech on a daily basis.
I value Rusty's knowledge when it comes to media servers, NAS's, htpc's etc. I am looking at assembling an all in one htpc for myself and would have just ordered this if it wasn't for the context added by other members. I respect Polly69's experience with PC, home audio systems etc and his no nonsense approach.
Armed with the knowledge from the comments posted, I can now decide for myself whether or not this deal is suitable for me without having to spending several hours googling.
Also, unlike yourself, if I have any questions, I know I can ask them for help!
Edited by: "Guan" 6th Jun 2013

Great deal I've been after set up 30 workstation systems for work I think this will do nicely

Original Poster

About the comments regarding Sapphire, AMD picked Sapphire to exclusively build board for this platform, it's basically an AMD reference board.

Original Poster

For NAS/Server/VM use the GPU is ideal, saves buying a graphics card to set it up with or buy an expensive server class board from SuperMicro with built in crappy Matrox chipset from the 90's. HTPC use it will play back media files with ease. Can't wait for it turn up

entry level workstation at best.
This kit was released a year ago.

Will be usefull for some, not to others.

FWIW, I got a 'consumer' mboard thats has 8 sata ports, thats been switched on 24/7 running perfectly happy for the last 4 years.
Infact, I worked at one place that was using old IBM ps2 as print servers for legacy kit. They was quite happily running 24/7 for 10 years+ (HDD died eventually - when I took the lid off, there was a 2nd lid made up of dust.. that collapsed after a few seconds).
So dont give crap consumer boards are not designed to run 24/7. Its consumer stuff companies build their reputation on. We not talking PC Chips brands here.

Guan

I for one, appreciate the banter. I don't have the time to keep up with … I for one, appreciate the banter. I don't have the time to keep up with all the latest tech developments and rely on the experience of other members that work with specific tech on a daily basis. I value Rusty's knowledge when it comes to media servers, NAS's, htpc's etc. I am looking at assembling an all in one htpc for myself and would have just ordered this if it wasn't for the context added by other members. I respect Polly69's experience with PC, home audio systems etc and his no nonsense approach. Armed with the knowledge from the comments posted, I can now decide for myself whether or not this deal is suitable for me without having to spending several hours googling.Also, unlike yourself, if I have any questions, I know I can ask them for help!



I respect you Guan. You seem nice, respecting everyone else. (well at least Rusty and Polly).:)

RustySpoons

....A consumer board isn't designed to run 24/7, a £10 SATA card will be … ....A consumer board isn't designed to run 24/7, a £10 SATA card will be rubbish, no £10 card compares to the AMD Chipset SATA it's superb, this will run Synology no problem and work as well as their £2000 unit, if not better. It will take ANY FM2 chip and that chip will work in any FM2 board.




Please can you confirm, are you suggesting that you can install and run the Synology OS onto non-Synology hardware?
If so, please can you send me some details on this? I'd be interested in buying this deal if I can do this.

GAVINLEWISHUKD

Not really up on specialist software now days. Is there any software that … Not really up on specialist software now days. Is there any software that still needs FirePro or Quadro validation?I know back in the day on the G86 and G92 Nvidia consumer cards you could spoof the drivers so the software saw your card as a quadro and not a GTX.I know main stream stuff is fine now just wondered about any specialist software, cad etc?



"AMD's Firepro branded CPUs carry the all-important certifications from software vendors such as Adobe, Autodesk and Maxon that are critical in the workstation market."

theinquirer.net/inq…dle

Original Poster

stubs

Please can you confirm, are you suggesting that you can install and run … Please can you confirm, are you suggesting that you can install and run the Synology OS onto non-Synology hardware?If so, please can you send me some details on this? I'd be interested in buying this deal if I can do this.



xpenology.com I have this running on a FX6-6300 and a HP Microserver,

The FX6-6300 is running on the cheapest Asus board I could fine, runs perfectly. I will have this new board tomorrow and will test Synology on it. I'm getting rid of the FX6-6300 because it uses a lot more power than this and only has 6 SATA opposed to 8 SATA, not to mention the board not being as good quality as this due to it being a cheap consumer board.
Edited by: "RustySpoons" 6th Jun 2013

Original Poster

Guan

I for one, appreciate the banter. I don't have the time to keep up with … I for one, appreciate the banter. I don't have the time to keep up with all the latest tech developments and rely on the experience of other members that work with specific tech on a daily basis. I value Rusty's knowledge when it comes to media servers, NAS's, htpc's etc. I am looking at assembling an all in one htpc for myself and would have just ordered this if it wasn't for the context added by other members. I respect Polly69's experience with PC, home audio systems etc and his no nonsense approach. Armed with the knowledge from the comments posted, I can now decide for myself whether or not this deal is suitable for me without having to spending several hours googling.Also, unlike yourself, if I have any questions, I know I can ask them for help!



Totally agree with you and that's why we have comment boxes on here.
I don't mind the banter, I do tend to say it how it is, but on a factual basis, also if I can help someone I will help someone.

I agree with what Rusty said.

Original Poster

M1sterDeeds

I agree with what Rusty said.


I agree with what you said

Not a bad deal.
clbenchmark.com/com…516

Worth noting that although firepro is certified etc - its well below the spec, and only really has value if you really have to have certified CAD work. And I'd say that you'll probably need more CAD power if you are in that position. However, if you are limited on budget, and need a do it all box, including media playback and a bit of CAD work in an all in one - its a good choice.

Also, AMD have just dropped new procs - and these have some decent GPU ooomph on top of the older models..

But good deal - heat added.

Forgive me for asking, but what does it come with? - I guess it's a motherboard & CPU, but does it also include RAM?

Original Poster

stubs

Forgive me for asking, but what does it come with? - I guess it's a … Forgive me for asking, but what does it come with? - I guess it's a motherboard & CPU, but does it also include RAM?



Motherboard, CPU, Cooler, Box, Cables, Backplate.

Requires RAM/Case/PSU

RustySpoons

Motherboard, CPU, Cooler, Box, Cables, Backplate.Requires RAM/Case/PSU


Great thread, good deal - I really shouldn't be tempted though! Just in case I cave in, can you recommend a good PSU (a specific offer with price, rather than a size or brand) for use as a media PC/NAS?

^^^^ "its well below the spec." This is for an entry-level workstation. Below entry-level workstation spec!

OP change the post to "Ideal entry-level workstation."

Edited by: "Discente" 6th Jun 2013

Been out of the desktop market for a few years now so completely unfamiliar with how things are these days - how would this setup do as a mid-level gaming rig? When I say mid-level, I'm talking World of Warcraft. I know that Intel are dominating the processor market (other than in terms of price) - what sort of Intel processor would the A300 go up against? i3?

Could anyone recommend a semi-decent Micro ATX case?

Original Poster

Boogie83e

^^^^ "its well below the spec." This is for an entry-level … ^^^^ "its well below the spec." This is for an entry-level workstation. Below entry-level workstation spec! :|OP change the post to "Ideal entry-level workstation."



Hehe, I think those benchmarks are somewhat skewed though as it's the same GPU core as the 5800k, that site has user submitted benchmarks, might have been early pre production models, no drivers installed etc. It's a bit like passmark.
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