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Thread: Flashing 8800GT into GEN1 PCIE from GEN2 possible?

  1. #1
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    Flashing 8800GT into GEN1 PCIE from GEN2 possible?

    Hi guys,

    I have a problem here with my old, yet trusty ASRock 775Dual-VSTA (VIA PT880Pro) and the new eVGA 8800GT KO GPU. It turns out that the 8800GT is not compatible with the ASRock mobo due to the GPU being PCIE "GEN2" according to ASRock tech support. They say they have the card in their lab trying to getting it to work on the 775Dual-VSTA but so far, they can't get it to work on the VIA chipset.

    They did say, however, that they managed to get the Asus 8800GT card to work by flashing the GPU BIOS as a "GEN1" PCIE GPU, from its default "GEN2" PCIE GPU status.

    My eVGA 8800GT KO is coming later today and I anticipate that my card won't work.

    Are there any experts here with the knowledge to modify the stock eVGA 8800GT KO BIOS to set the GEN2 into GEN1 status?

    Of course, you guys would need the BIOS file first. Which program do I have to use to extract the BIOS?

    Help will be greatly appreciated.

    -Optimummind
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  2. #2
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    seems kinda of odd to me, since 8800GT works fine on most other non PCI 2.0 motherboards...
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  3. #3
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    This asscrap have 4x PCI-E right? Why the heck you put 250$ videocard on 40$ motherboard? Just get 80$ and get Biostar P35 Tforce board. Also you can overclock your E6600.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diverge View Post
    seems kinda of odd to me, since 8800GT works fine on most other non PCI 2.0 motherboards...
    It's because of that damn, but flexible VIA PT880Pro/Ultra chipset. I'm on the phone right now with eVGA tech support to get them to send me a custom BIOS, if possible that would reset my card as a GEN1 card.

    The first guy had to transfer my call to a "more advanced" tech support and he is taking down my case number right now and he said most likely they'll be able to send me the modified BIOS by Monday.

    -Optimummind
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kasparz View Post
    This asscrap have 4x PCI-E right? Why the heck you put 250$ videocard on 40$ motherboard? Just get 80$ and get Biostar P35 Tforce board. Also you can overclock your E6600.
    Well, when I bought the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA last year in October, I just wanted the new E6600 but keep on using my 6800GT AGP 8x and my 4x512MB DDR400. I didn't want to spend too much money and I wanted to update piece-by-piece.

    Until today, the plan worked great. After getting the E6600, I then bought 2x1GB DDR2-800, then a PCIE x16 ATI 1900XT 512MB for cheap from a HardOCP forum member.

    Now that Crysis and Hellgate London is out, I'm getting another GPU upgrade.

    The cheap $55 ASRock has served me well for the last year and I can't really complain. It's been a very stable and reliable motherboard, to my surprise.

    I just got off the phone with eVGA tech support, and they said they'll try to change the string in the BIOS from GEN2 to GEN1 and send me the modified BIOS as soon as possible. Hopefully, that will be today instead of next week.

    I do have a backup mobo I just purchased yesterday in case neither eVGA nor ASRock can help me. I bought the Gigabyte P35C-DS3R from Fry's.

    Anyways, I'll keep you guys updated.

    -Optimummind
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  6. #6
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    Any gurus here who knows how to pull this off??
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    No, PCI-E 2 compatibility of a card is determined by hardware.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jigsaw View Post
    No, PCI-E 2 compatibility of a card is determined by hardware.
    I don't know if you read my first post but ASRock Germany's tech support flashed their Asus 8800GT into GEN1 mode from GEN2 to get the card to boot up on the 775Dual-VSTA. So, it definitely is possible unless ASRock tech support is lying.

    -Optimummind
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  9. #9
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    how are you going to flash your card if you've only got the one motherboard?
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  10. #10
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    pci-e 2.0 is supposed to be backwards compatible with pci-e 1.0

    I honestly wouldn't take the advice of ASRock and do something as risky and undocumented as FLASH the GT. Stick with what EVGA tells you so if anything happens, your warranty is still intact.. good luck
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by STEvil View Post
    how are you going to flash your card if you've only got the one motherboard?
    I have another motherboard, the Gigabyte P35C DS3R (Intel P35 + ICH9R + PCIE + DDR2 & DDR3).

    I'm currently running the 8800GT on the DS3R but I would prefer to get a refund on the DS3R and continue using the ASRock motherboard. I have 30 days. If neither ASRock nor eVGA can help me, then I guess I'll hold on to the DS3R.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldy402 View Post
    pci-e 2.0 is supposed to be backwards compatible with pci-e 1.0

    I honestly wouldn't take the advice of ASRock and do something as risky and undocumented as FLASH the GT. Stick with what EVGA tells you so if anything happens, your warranty is still intact.. good luck
    Yea, that's my plan. The eVGA tech told me he will probably be able to get back to me after talking to his boss on Monday. I'm hoping eVGA will give me "extra special service" so I can use the 8800GT on the 775Dual-VSTA ASRock motherboard.

    I'm gonna miss the overclocking ability of the DS3R, for sure. On the 775Dual, the best overclock I could manage on my E6600 was 2.4Ghz --> 2.66GHz (just 11&#37. On the DS3R, I've taken it to 2.4GHz --> 3.00GHz so far with just a slight increase in voltage from 1.325 V to 1.350 V.

    -Optimummind
    Last edited by optimummind; 11-04-2007 at 03:42 PM.
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    Umm the DS3R is just plain and simply a better motherboard. Why waste your time on the other motherboard?

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    Quote Originally Posted by The0men View Post
    Umm the DS3R is just plain and simply a better motherboard. Why waste your time on the other motherboard?
    To save some money, mainly. Except for my recent trouble with the 8800GT and the 775Dual-VSTA, the motherboard's been stable, reliable, and fulfilled all of my needs. Even with the PCIE being bottlenecked at x4 speeds, I could still play games like Oblivion, FEAR, and STALKER at 1280x1024 with high quality options on the 1900XT 512MB PCIE.

    If I don't HAVE to spend money, I don't want to. My original plan when I bought the 775Dual last year was to use this mobo for piece-by-piece transitional upgrades until Intel released a CPU with integrated memory controller + new chipset to support it around late 2008 or early 2009. If the 8800GT would've just worked, then I'd been very happy.

    Besides, it's more exciting to tinker with hardware and see how far you can take your components than just spending money to solve everything.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
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  15. #15
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    hey bro did you solve your problem? i saw the same problem reported by bluetooth @ ocworkbench, and it seems that the easiest way to solve it's asking eVGA a GEN1 bios, plus flashing your 8800GT with that bios! If ASUS would do it, why eVGA wouldn't? good luck.

    link@ocworkbench

    edit:
    aah btw to flash your nvidia vga you could use the NBiTor @ mvktech .. there you should also find a guide/faq about using it, anyway you're only going to use it if evga send to you a modified 88gt GEN1 bios .. last but not least good luck again
    Last edited by SottaM; 11-05-2007 at 03:31 PM. Reason: update
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  16. #16
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    you realize you will just have this issue with the next card you buy anyways.

    A card like the 8800gt will probably take about a 30-50% fps drop from having to use PCIe 4x
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    Quote Originally Posted by dunn2953 View Post
    you realize you will just have this issue with the next card you buy anyways.

    A card like the 8800gt will probably take about a 30-50% fps drop from having to use PCIe 4x
    Yes, I'm aware of that. To determine just how much performance I'd lose, I'm currently running benchmarks of the 8800GT KO on the Gigabyte P35C-DS3R mobo. Once I'm done with that, I'm gonna install the card on the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA and re-run the same benchmarks. I'll post the percentage difference later on once I'm finished. If the difference is very large, then I'm gonna keep the P35C-DS3R. The more I play with the DS3R, I'm thinking about keeping it. On the 775Dual-VSTA, I could only manage a 11% overclock, from 2.4GHz to 2.66GHz. On the DS3R, I've attained a 33.33% overclock, from 2.4GHz to 3.2GHz. And this is with the stock Intel HSF. I think I can crank it up even more once I reattach my waterblock.

    BTW, a HardOCP member received a modified Asus 8800GT GEN1 BIOS from ASRock tech support. He flashed his Inno3D 8800GT with it and he reported that the card now works on his 775Dual-VSTA!!!

    He sent me the BIOS so I'm gonna flash my card later tonight.

    -Optimummind
    Last edited by optimummind; 11-05-2007 at 05:54 PM.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by SottaM View Post
    hey bro did you solve your problem? i saw the same problem reported by bluetooth @ ocworkbench, and it seems that the easiest way to solve it's asking eVGA a GEN1 bios, plus flashing your 8800GT with that bios! If ASUS would do it, why eVGA wouldn't? good luck.

    link@ocworkbench

    edit:
    aah btw to flash your nvidia vga you could use the NBiTor @ mvktech .. there you should also find a guide/faq about using it, anyway you're only going to use it if evga send to you a modified 88gt GEN1 bios .. last but not least good luck again
    Not yet. But I did receive a modified GEN1 Asus 8800GT BIOS from a HardOCP forum member who got his Inno3D card working on the 775Dual-VSTA. I edited the clock speeds to match the eVGA 8800GT KO and I'm gonna flash it llater tonight.

    I'm still waiting on the eVGA tech support guy. He said he submitted the BIOS to some overseas engineering group who will modify the BIOS for me.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
    =ASRock 775Dual-VSTA
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    =ATI Radeon 1900XT 512MB, PCIE
    =2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
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  19. #19
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    Here's an update. Not wanting to wait for eVGA, I went ahead and flashed my eVGA 8800GT KO with a modified Asus 8800GT GEN1 BIOS.

    Now, I'm able to use the 8800GT on my ASRock 775Dual-VSTA.

    I finished running some benchmarks on the Gigabyte DS3R abd I'm gonna run them too on the ASRock mobo to determine how much performance I'm losing due to the PCIE x4 limitation.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
    =ASRock 775Dual-VSTA
    =Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
    =ATI Radeon 1900XT 512MB, PCIE
    =2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
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  20. #20
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    Well?
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  21. #21
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    save money? hell i will send you my beat to death 9800XT, run that in that assrock board. more than likely run the same as that 8800 bottlenecked.

    Dude keep the P35 board. sell the other on on ebay and just live with the fact that you spent some money on a good product.

    And with a name like Optimummind, i'd think you would see the logic in keeping the P35.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrome_Rust View Post
    And with a name like Optimummind, i'd think you would see the logic in keeping the P35.
    LOL, good point. If I wasn't strapped for cash, you know I wouldn't hold back on a component as important as the motherboard. It's just that right now, I don't have much money left for me after the bills and school expenses (university student). And the holiday shopping period is coming soon too.

    As for the benches, I'll post them later tonight. I'm still finishing up the installation on the ASRock mobo and I gotta create a backup image first.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
    =ASRock 775Dual-VSTA
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    =ATI Radeon 1900XT 512MB, PCIE
    =2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
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  23. #23
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    cool bro, i can't wait to see them!!
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  24. #24
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    Ok, I've finally finished running all the benches. One set of benchmarks is weird and needs to be re-tested. Well, it should be retested but I'm not going to retest them because I'm gonna return the Gigabyte motherboard. Well, read below and you'll see what I mean by the weird set of benchmarks.

    **System #1:

    *Gigabyte P35C-DS3R, P35+ICH9R
    *Intel E6600, 2.4GHz@3.2GHz
    *2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
    *eVGA 8800GT KO (stock speeds)

    3DMark01SE: 41,889 3DMarks
    3DMark03: 38,221 3DMarks
    3DMark05: 16,568 3DMarks
    3DMark06: 10,203

    **System #2:

    *ASRock 775Dual-VSTA, VIA PT880
    *Intel E6600, 2.4GHz@2.66GHz
    *2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
    *eVGA 8800GT KO (stock speeds)

    3DMark01SE: 33,101 3DMarks (-26.6&#37
    3DMark03: 34,393 3DMarks (-11.1%)
    3DMark05: 14,527 3DMarks (-14.0%)
    3DMark06: 9,284 3DMarks (-9.90%)


    **System #3:

    *Gigabyte P35C-DS3R, P35+ICH9R
    *Intel E6600, 2.4GHz@2.66GHz
    *2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
    *eVGA 8800GT KO (stock speeds)

    3DMark01SE: 21,715 3DMarks
    3DMark03: 30,441 3DMarks
    3DMark05: 8,774 3DMarks
    3DMark06: 5,646 3DMarks

    *Results:

    (1) The eVGA 8800GT KO on the Gigabyte DS3R with the CPU at 3.2GHz is, on average, 15.4% faster, than the eVGA 8800GT KO on the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA with the CPU at 2.66GHz. The largest performance difference was in 3DMark01SE which is known to scale well with increasing CPU speed.

    (2) Something seriously went wrong with the benchmarks in System #3. Those scores are too low to be correct as my 1900XT 512MB beats the 8800GT KO. I double-checked all the BIOS settings, did a clean install of ForceWare 168.02 (uninstall from Control Panel, reboot into Safe Mode, run Driver Sweeper, run Registry clean, reboot into normal Desktop, and reinstall the 168.01).

    I don't know what went wrong and I'm too tired to care anymore. What I do know is that I can live with a 15.4% performance difference if it means that I get to save $200.00 (mobo price + tax + $30.00 2-year warranty from Fry's).

    (3) In games such as Stalker v1.0004, Bioshock, and Crysis Demo, my gaming experience has improved dramatically and I can crank up all the settings (except for Crysis) which my older 1900XT couldn't do. In fact, I haven't noticed any real-world gaming performance differences between the Gigabyte DS3R and the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA in the games I've played.

    **Conclusion:

    I'm gonna keep the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA mobo now that the 8800GT KO works and I'm gonna postpone my motherboard upgrade until Intel releases their on-die memory controller integrated CPU and the new chipset to go along with it.

    I'm very happy with the 8800GT and I'm immensely glad it works now on the 775Dual-VSTA.

    -Optimummind
    =Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit
    =ASRock 775Dual-VSTA
    =Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
    =ATI Radeon 1900XT 512MB, PCIE
    =2x1GB G.Skill DDR2-800
    =NEC NC-3520A DVD+/-R/RW
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    =Antec NeoPower 480W

  25. #25
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    what did you use to flash your 8800GT?

    edit: nevermind, found it
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