Cheap chinese x79 mobos

e97

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Jun 3, 2015
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thank you for the mini review. One more question.

What was the shipping time to your approximate locale? States? Aus? EU? etc.
You're welcome. Folks help me out on this forum so I like to share my findings as well.

Shipping was about $40 through DHL from Shenzhen, China to Michigan, USA and took about 4 days.

Superbuy, a shipping agent, has a helpful international shipping cost/time calculator: superbuy logistics freight inquiry
 
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itronin

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Nov 24, 2018
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Yes -- the BIOS is pretty raw -- like a debug OEM version so ton of options. Waiting to hear back from mfg on some settings to optimize things.

Board POSTS and installed debian lighting fast with E5-2678v3.
Bench case or custom motherboard tray for a custom case? In either case really neat esp with the water cooling loop and repurposed power supply!

What are you doing for storage? Any plans to use the nvme? any indication that booting is supported with the nvme?
 

e97

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Jun 3, 2015
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@e97
You probably haven't come so far to test this, but i'm asking: does this board support IOMMU/Intel VT-d?
@fossxplorer forgot to attach this

thumb_IMG_0212_1024.jpg

Bench case or custom motherboard tray for a custom case? In either case really neat esp with the water cooling loop and repurposed power supply!

What are you doing for storage? Any plans to use the nvme? any indication that booting is supported with the nvme?
Thanks!

Prototype for a custom case, will likely become my goto bench case.

The PSU is 94% platinum efficiency @ 220V = less power consumption and compact.

Overall dimensions are 17" x 13.5" x 7". Next version will be even smaller with full cover.

Booting off 1TB Phison E12. Its hidden under the heatsink right under the GPU slot. Barely fits with 1.5 mm clearance : D

nvme.jpg
 
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itronin

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Edit - was informed that there is a limited set of v3 cpu's that supports ddr3.

@e97 how is the rest of your testing going?
I saw over on Win-Raid that you have ECC support working. Any other hiccups?
Are you using RDIMM or LRDIMM?
Do you know if there is support for LRDIMM?
Do you know if the manufacturer has released additional CPU support?
Did you purchase direct from the manufacturer or via eBay or Alibaba?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm contemplating getting one of these boards and a CPU for my next workstation life cycle upgrade.

TIA.
 
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e97

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Jun 3, 2015
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Edit - was informed that there is a limited set of v3 cpu's that supports ddr3.

@e97 how is the rest of your testing going?
I saw over on Win-Raid that you have ECC support working. Any other hiccups?
Are you using RDIMM or LRDIMM?
Do you know if there is support for LRDIMM?
Do you know if the manufacturer has released additional CPU support?
Did you purchase direct from the manufacturer or via eBay or Alibaba?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm contemplating getting one of these boards and a CPU for my next workstation life cycle upgrade.

TIA.
Won't know about long term stability until its been running few months but I'm quite pleased after getting ECC working. For now everything is great!

One tiny thing is after waking from Sleep the LED turns back on but I think thats a BIOS misconfig on my part.

I'm also working on porting CoreBoot to this for open source BIOS / UEFI.

Using RDIMMs.

LRDIMM support in BIOS, set to Auto - not sure if its functional. I would think since RDIMMs with ECC work correctly on every OS I've tested + memtest, if the CPU supports LRDIMMs, they should work. Unless LRDIMMs have quirky trace requirements above and beyond RDIMMs that I'm unaware of.


I got it on Alibaba (Alipay, paypal equivalent, now accepts all major credit cards so its as easy as ebay) with purchase protection (30 days): Intel X99 Mainboard on Alibaba.com ~ $130 with express DHL shipping

Ask for Diego and tell him "the professor" recommended the board to you.


UPDATE (2019-09-22):

seller said they can give a discount, use this link:
SZMZ X99-8D3 LGA 2011v3 DDR3 Intel motherboard on Alibaba.com
 
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itronin

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Nov 24, 2018
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Just saw your edit on the discount as I was going to order the board today. wow! way to go @e97 and the seller! Not quite sure how to contact Diego? If there's a message space for the order I'll drop that in there! eBay bucks coming in October so that will be the time to order the CPU!
 

e97

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Jun 3, 2015
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Just saw your edit on the discount as I was going to order the board today. wow! way to go @e97 and the seller! Not quite sure how to contact Diego? If there's a message space for the order I'll drop that in there! eBay bucks coming in October so that will be the time to order the CPU!
Yep, got a E5-2678 v3 grade B for $130 ! Use them ebucks!

Contact button! Maybe only appears if you are logged in?

Screen Shot 2019-09-23 at 4.05.30 PM.jpg

Pro-tip: when buying from overseas, always contact seller because listings are often inaccurate. You also get a feel for who you are dealing with. Good sellers will not let you buy without talking to them first.
 

itronin

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Nov 24, 2018
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Yep, got a E5-2678 v3 grade B for $130 ! Use them ebucks!

Contact button! Maybe only appears if you are logged in?

View attachment 11991

Pro-tip: when buying from overseas, always contact seller because listings are often inaccurate. You also get a feel for who you are dealing with. Good sellers will not let you buy without talking to them first.
ohhhh Nice Tip - first time I've done a non ebay overseas purchase. I didn't contact them via the contact supplier so we'll see what happens. There was a NOTE field in the order form and I did put the note in there. we'll see if that was sufficient. I have a small project where about 5 of these would work quite while as some lower cost engineering workstations so besides me trying one out there might end up being a small build.

I did not select DHL as I do not need this in my hands for at least 14 days. I did let it go with the default Alibaba Air Express which was 5-7 working days. plus the 3 day lead. so 8 - 10 working days total? Its an experiment in many different ways.
 
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e97

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ohhhh Nice Tip - first time I've done a non ebay overseas purchase. I didn't contact them via the contact supplier so we'll see what happens. There was a NOTE field in the order form and I did put the note in there. we'll see if that was sufficient. I have a small project where about 5 of these would work quite while as some lower cost engineering workstations so besides me trying one out there might end up being a small build.

I did not select DHL as I do not need this in my hands for at least 14 days. I did let it go with the default Alibaba Air Express which was 5-7 working days. plus the 3 day lead. so 8 - 10 working days total? Its an experiment in many different ways.
It certainly is a learning experience.

Diego mentioned being contacted by someone and having a phone number issue but it got sorted not. Not sure if that was you?

Interesting, I've never heard of Alibaba Air Express. AliExpress has standard and express shipping options, wonder if this is new for Alibaba?

If you dont mind, please let me know who the carrier is, how long it takes and how much it was. Plus package weight and dimensions if you know. I'm always interested in cheaper, faster, or better shipping options!
 

itronin

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It certainly is a learning experience.

Diego mentioned being contacted by someone and having a phone number issue but it got sorted not. Not sure if that was you?

Interesting, I've never heard of Alibaba Air Express. AliExpress has standard and express shipping options, wonder if this is new for Alibaba?

If you dont mind, please let me know who the carrier is, how long it takes and how much it was. Plus package weight and dimensions if you know. I'm always interested in cheaper, faster, or better shipping options!
I received a text from a chi-town number but no name in the message so a little back and forth to establish who it was, namely Diego. Timezone lag is creating a 24 hour round-trip delay in all channels. He also connected to me via LI and we have exchanged messages there too. I've suggested email since I'm not on social media much.

Diego said it was packaged up and out the door the same day I ordered it. He did not have the shipping info at that time. The shipping info was posted to the order within 48 hours - its there now.

Alibaba Air Express was I think the default option and second cheapest. The shipping amount was $21.04 for 5-7 business days plus a 3 day lead time. Per Diego it went out same day, tracking info was posted within 48 hours - all within the 3 day lead time. Maybe waiting for a air cargo container to fill up before it goes out?

I will definitely update with the shipping details, actual carrier etc, and will take some pictures when I receive the box. I am very curious about the Alibaba Air Express too - a very positive experience with that would cause me to look at Alibaba as an alternative source to eBay for some items as I do not feel the shipping cost was particularly outrageous.

I *might* even have a small volume (5-7 unit) custom "very value-priced" engineering workstation build project later this fall and am hopeful this motherboard could fit the bill if that project goes live and I like what I find. I have NOT mentioned this to Diego and like a said very small volume.
 
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e97

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I received a text from a chi-town number but no name in the message so a little back and forth to establish who it was, namely Diego. Timezone lag is creating a 24 hour round-trip delay in all channels. He also connected to me via LI and we have exchanged messages there too. I've suggested email since I'm not on social media much.

Diego said it was packaged up and out the door the same day I ordered it. He did not have the shipping info at that time. The shipping info was posted to the order within 48 hours - its there now.

Alibaba Air Express was I think the default option and second cheapest. The shipping amount was $21.04 for 5-7 business days plus a 3 day lead time. Per Diego it went out same day, tracking info was posted within 48 hours - all within the 3 day lead time. Maybe waiting for a air cargo container to fill up before it goes out?

I will definitely update with the shipping details, actual carrier etc, and will take some pictures when I receive the box. I am very curious about the Alibaba Air Express too - a very positive experience with that would cause me to look at Alibaba as an alternative source to eBay for some items as I do not feel the shipping cost was particularly outrageous.

I *might* even have a small volume (5-7 unit) custom "very value-priced" engineering workstation build project later this fall and am hopeful this motherboard could fit the bill if that project goes live and I like what I find. I have NOT mentioned this to Diego and like a said very small volume.
I use skype, whatsapp or wechat (in order of preference). For alibaba protection it recommends you keep all payment and conversation on the platform so I've been using alibaba messenger. I tried email but most sellers are slow to reply, Diego included. He's been pretty responsive on Alibaba messenger.

To use it: go to any item page. In the bottom right will be the messenger chat window. Click to open it. ote: the messages item in the top menu is different (like email vs chat).

It seems most of the sellers on ebay sell the same thing on Aliexpress or Taobao. I ask for their other store links to compare prices. Some platforms have higher fees but the prices should not be too different.

= ) we're on the same page. I'm thinking this could be an excellent candidate for the coreboot bootloader, an open source BIOS-ish, due to the debug headers.

A system booting in under 5s, with latest security patches + microcode, disabled ME vulnerabilities and all core unlock sounds pretty good to me.
 
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jpautom

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Sep 25, 2019
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I just received the same X99 board yesterday.
Very excited to find this thread and the Win-Raid material.
Any advice on how to acquire a copy of the BIOS with the ECC fix?
Or have you had a chance to see if there was anything more than changing the platform to C612?
 
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itronin

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Off-topic - kinda -
am familiar with / semi familiar with coreboot (old IBM thinkpads, my own librrem 13v2) and doing basic updates and some of the troubleshooting steps. I did some research when I was actively working on and using my librem. I had not considered coreboot but now that you mention it ... interesting... sehr interessant... hmmm... I digress further for the moment - I was unaware that the ME and other locked-in components were also "turn-off-able" in the E5 series and chipsets. when I get time may have to look back into that.

back on track

thank you for the tip on communicating with the vendors. am wondering if an topical thread "alibaba, aliexpress dos and don'ts for sourcing compnents) in a more appropriate forum topic here would be handy...
 

itronin

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hmmmm... and then there were three (known) so should we start a specific thread for the szmzit X99.

why?
a) szmzit has multiple products
b) there are other overseas mfg's
c) a variety of boards x79, x99, 4 dimms, 8 dimms, dual sockets etc. etc.

Maybe a sticky recapping resources from here and for adding new resources, and start on a FAQ / read me first?
 
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foogitiff

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Jul 26, 2018
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I read the topic on Win-Raid forum, and I am very tempted by this X99 mobo.

@e97 can you share the bios that works with ECC? The firefox link from the Win-Raid forum is expired
 

e97

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Jun 3, 2015
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I read the topic on Win-Raid forum, and I am very tempted by this X99 mobo.

@e97 can you share the bios that works with ECC? The firefox link from the Win-Raid forum is expired
When I contacted the brand JINGSHA (KINGSHARK), and asked about ECC support, they didn't even bother to reply. One of their other sellers said it was not possible.

I specifically bought this X99 board from Diego because he promised good support.. and he delivered. Above and beyond. After talking with him, he went out and hired a BIOS engineer to get ECC working. That's expensive.

Developing a product and resolving issues takes blood, sweat and tears. You're asking me to steal this persons hard work. I won't do that.

If you want working ECC on this board, you have a few options:

* develop it yourself. From my research, the ME does MC initialization so setting it to the server chipset should be enough.
* wait for an alpha release of open core (open source) I'm working on
* ask szmit for the BIOS.
* buy the board from szmzit. They have the best pricing, even on Taobao.

FYI - I don't receive any money from this. I'm only recommending a product I found to be useful from a stellar seller.
 
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foogitiff

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You're asking me to steal this persons hard work. I won't do that.
What? I thought the bios you got was from the motherboard manufacturer, not the seller.

I am a bit confused, what works "out of the box" with this motherboard? Does RDIMM works without ECC enabled, or it simply doesn't post?