Guide: Upgrading B450 motherboard for Ryzen 3000 series (Zen 2) – Preliminary – Rev (0.2)
If you are reading our guide, hopefully you have read our review of the Ryzen 9 3900X. In our original review, we saw that there are problems with Ryzen 3000 series, with 500/400/300 series boards; WHEA problems (NVIDIA cards, perhaps AMD and Samsung NVMe storage) BIOS problems and frequencies that do not reach the maximum suggested by the box. In our review we recommended to wait for these issues to fade away instead of “buying right away“.
We are not the most sophisticated or expert media, but we think on the “average joe” at the time of recommending products.
It has been two weeks since launch and these problems have not been resolved. (Hardware Canucks has reported boost issues finally).
Note: This guide does not solve these problems (boost and WHEA), it only helps to configure what we have been able to validate and hopefully it will help you configuring your PC in the state BIOS/AGESA is available at the moment. We can’t guarantee you won’t have any issues, but at least it is a baseline. For our test setup, it is giving no issues (except boost frequency).
The most recent patch is AGESA 1003AB and 400/300 board support is causing problems for several users, so I decided to make a guide after I tested 3600 MHz CL16 memories (not Samsung B-Die) on a cheap B450 motherboard and a Ryzen 5 3600X CPU. The new chips look promising, but in the current state we don’t recommend until new BIOS/AMD validation/manufacturers.
If, despite this warning, you still want to be one of the early adopters of the new Ryzen 3000 series (Zen 2) we hope this guide can help you solve problems when configuring your Ryzen system.
This update guide is intended for B450 series and Ryzen 3000 series processors, although it should work for 300 series, as well as 500 series.
The board that we will use for the instructions, will be the GIGABYTE B450M DS3H, an economic and very commercial motherboard in Peru. These instructions should be useful for other manufacturers, because the principals are the same.
Be careful, we are not responsible if you have problems, nor will we promise to solve problems you have after trying these steps.
In addition, we will have information of VRM temperatures and if DDR4 3600 MHz CL16 RAM work without problem with this board and processor (Ryzen 5 3600X).
You can use the DISQUS (commenting system) in this guide to see if other users (on other motherboard brands) have a particular solution in case they have problems. We will also put an appendix of information extra you might find interesting, so check it out.
Let’s start with by stating the system we used for validation:
CPU: Ryzen 5 3600X (Ryzen 3000 Zen 2, Matisse)
Motherboard: GIGABYTE B450M DS3H (BIOS F41B, AGESA 1003AB)
RAM: Crucial Ballistix Elite 3600 MHz CL16 (Micron E-Die)
Cooler: Wraith Spire
Graphics card: Sapphire RX 560 14 CU 4GB
SSD: Trion OCZ150
PSU: GIGABYTE PB500
OS: Windows 10 1903
Things we haven’t validated:
-If NVMe SSD (PCI Express Gen 3) are working as intended.
Things we have validated:
-3600 MHz CL16 (2x8GB) RAM stability test, VRM test on this motherboard, Single Core Performance
We recommend the following:
–Ryzen 5 2600 (if possible). This will depend on what board we are on and what BIOS they are on, so check your manufacturer’s BIOS page. For the B450 DS3H, if we suggest to have that chip to be able to update (please check our update history).
-A USB in FAT32 to have the BIOS files, also to store some files that you will need additionally. Download the necessary BIOS files for the update. To find out what files to have, check the manufacturer’s page.
-A USB with Windows 10 1903 installation (backup your files). We recommend a clean Windows installation.
-A screwdriver to short the CLEAR CMOS (if you have a jumper, better, but I doubt you have it available at hand).
Watch out, if you don’t know how to update BIOS, you can visit our guide (it is in spanish, but translator helps) or check a Youtube tutorial for your specific brand. The same principles apply for other manufacturers, but the guide is quite straightforward and other brands do have similar options within their BIOS.
Before putting the steps, please read our update history in our sample. Reading this, might give you some insights in case you have issues on other brands.
Update history (in our case)
-We used a Ryzen 5 2400G up to BIOS F32 (we upgraded from BIOS F4). Ryzen 5 2400G ceased to be recognized in F32 (although we didn’t try to make Clear CMOS when we reached F32).
-We switched to Ryzen 5 2600 in F32 and upgraded to F41B (AGESA 1003AB).
-We had BSODs (although we isolated the reason and it is included on the recommended settings for this guide) so now F41B works.
Additional things we suggest to have beforehand
Apart from the previously mentioned, we suggest to download and have this inside a USB, already pre-downloaded:
-Chipset driver by the manufacturer (most recent) for your motherboard model. To download it, go to the model and revision of your motherboard, look for drivers for Windows 10 and the most current chipset driver. Link for the B450 DS3H board here.
-Latest AMD chipset. (You can go to www.amd.com and browse for your chipset, but normally the driver is a universal one for all motherboards).
-Current video driver for your video card (either AMD or NVIDIA).
READ ALL THE STEPS BEFORE STARTING THE PROCESS, AT LEAST TWICE, DO NOT GO ON THE FLY.
Tutorial: Upgrading to Ryzen 3000 series using B450/B350/X370/A320 series and 500 series chipsets
Step 1.A (GIGABYTE Board B450M DS3H) Flashing to BIOS F32
Note: Do not format Windows 10 1903 yet, especially those that have certain GIGABYTE/AORUS boards (read step 1.B).
-Read the instructions on the manufacturer’s page, and check for compatible BIOS for Ryzen 3000 series on your B450 or different chipset.
-For the GIGABYTE B450M DS3H motherboard, first upgrade to BIOS F32. The process takes a few minutes (the flashing itself). Once the flashing is finished, the PC will reboot a few times (two or three times) and after a few minutes the BIOS image will be displayed. In case it does not show up, it’s probably that the processor you used for the flashing process doesn’t work with BIOS F32 (that’s why we suggest a Ryzen 5 2600 processor for the whole flashing process, or a similar one, 2600X, 2700, 2700X). In case your motherboard has a BIOS flashback button, it might be useful (although read some people were having issues in certain boards).
-As we mentioned, if you don’t know how to flash BIOS, here is a guide (in Spanish). In GIGABYTE BIOS, the option is called Q-Flash.
Read the manufacturer’s motherboard instructions, be it B450 / B350 / X470 / X370 or 500 series for Ryzen 3000 series processors.
Step 1.B (AORUS Boards B450/X370) EC Firmware Update
This step is optional and does not apply to this particular model B450M DS3H (at least for the moment) but does apply to motherboards, such as:
-X470 AORUS GAMING 7 WIFI
-B450 AORUS PRO WIFI
For certain B450 board models (and perhaps other series) like the B450 AORUS Pro Wifi, you will need to additional update for the EC Firmware, as it says in the instructions for Ryzen 3000 (Zen 2) processors.
If you read in the instructions for BIOS F40 (which we will skip for this guide) you need to update the EC (Embedded Controller) Firmware. You should still have a functional Windows 10, that’s why we told you not to format Windows yet. For those models, download the FW Update Tool.
If your GIGABYTE boards need an ECFW upgrade, be it B450/X470 chipset for the new Ryzen 3000 processors, go to the Utility tab inside your motherboard model. On the B450M DS3H it is not necessary. Follow the instructions below for models that need EC FW update:
-You need to be inside Windows 10.
-Save your files, close programs, etc.
-Unzip the ZIP in a folder and run the file.
-Flash will result complete, but do nothing. Wait a minute, up to three. The operating system should restart without warning (that’s why we said to have everything saved and close everything).
-Once restarted, Flash updated was successful to the latest version of EC Firmware (compatible for Ryzen 3000 series). Let’s move on to the next step.
Step 2 (GIGABYTE Plate B450M DS3H) Flashing to BIOS F41B
-Same as previous step (i.e. 1.A). Upgrade to BIOS F41B (or the most recent from your manufacturer). If you are with a Ryzen 5 2600 or Ryzen 2000 Zen+ processor, F41B still works. Wait for it to launch the mafufacturer logo and enter Windows (in case you haven’t formatted) yet. SUCCESS.
-You can check CPUz (if you don’t have it, download it), Mainboard tab, and it should specify the BIOS version you are in, which should be in F41B (AGESA 1003AB). If all these conditions have been met, it’s time to switch to your new Ryzen 3000 series (Zen 2) processor.
Note: Have HWInfo downloaded (use sensor module) and check the section below, where WHEA errors occur. In case you have WHEA errors (which we doubt you have, because you are still in Ryzen 2000 Zen+ series) do not fret yet.
Step 3 (Install your new Ryzen processor)
-I suggest you do a CLEAR CMOS before installing the new processor or reset the factory settings even if you are on the previous chip (in GIGABYTE BIOS, I think it’s F7, check the menu at your manufacturer, normally F1 to check hotkeys).
-Install the processor… we imagine that you have the minimum knowledge how to install AMD processors. Do not activate yet XMP.
Step 4 (Motherboard configuration for Ryzen 3000 series in BIOS)
Note: You can try to fresh install Windows 10 1903 XMP activated, that depends on you. On certain motherboard models, from what I have read on comments, XMP is not working on specific models. We tested with XMP enabled and our 3600 MHz CL16 kit worked with BIOS F40 and F41B on this motherboard.
Note 2: We assume that you have installed your RAM in the correct positions, i.e. in slots 2 and 4 (1 being the left side).
-Ryzen 3000 Zen 2 chip should be installed, but if in case after flashing and waiting for a while, you do not get a post and get to the LOGO screen (it has happened to me) use the reliable CLEAR CMOS. See this section to make CLEAR CMOS on this board.
-We imagine you have reached the GIGABYTE logo screen (or your motherboard manufacturer) so press the DEL key as soon as the logo appears to enter BIOS.
Do all the following steps (especifically for B450M DS3H and GIGABYTE motherboards, but other brands should have same options)
1). Go to Advanced Frequency Settings
2). Go to the Extreme Memory Profile (X.M.P) and put Profile 1.
3). Optional: Smart Fan 5, activate at maximum speed, or Full Speed (especially if they have a water pump, or AIO to the board).
4). Super important: Go to Miscellanous Settings. Switch to PCIe Slot Configuration from Auto >> Gen 3.
5). Optional, not recommendd: If you don’t want to install Windows again, something that we DO NOT SUGGEST, change in BIOS BOOT option to the corresponding Windows partition.
6). Go to the option in Peripherals >> AMD CBS >> XFR Enhancement >> Accept >> Set Precision Boost Overdrive to Disable and Precision Boost Overdrive Scalar to Disabled.
7). Go to Peripherals >> AMD Overclocking >> Precision Boost Overdrive >> Precision Boost Overdrive >> Disable (Yes, again). Both options should be stock settings and we prefer it to leave it disabled instead of Auto.
8). Go to the Save & Exit tab (or go to the motherboard option of choice) and save a profile and call it whatever you like. Then press Save & Exit and cross your fingers.
9). If you loaded XMP profile, it will take two to three restarts and the boot screen of the brand logo will appear. In case it gets stuck (boot loop or just does not post), you can CLEAR CMOS and retry to put the profile we just saved and retry. In case I can’t, well, there’s a problem, which means you’ll have to troubleshoot.
BIOS Image Gallery for B450 M DS3H Board for Ryzen 3000
NOTE: PBO and AutoOC don’t work, or they don’t do anything at the moment, so we don’t recommend using it. We suggest disabling them on purpose, so that they work normally. In my testing, PBO sometimes works (in certain BIOSes) but for the moment, we don’t suggest it at all.
NOTE 2: On the B450M DS3H model, we do not suggest modifying the BCLK from Auto to 100.00 MHz. It has caused WHEAs and BSODs, so leave it at AUTO.
Step 5 – Install Windows
Extra Tip: DO NOT USE THE DRIVERS THAT COME ON THE MANUFACTURER’S CD
Note: For this step, we hope that you have downloaded the following files to a separate USB or to your own Windows 10 installer:
-Motherboard manufacturer’s chipset driver (depends on the model you have)
-Chipset driver, latest version of AMD.com
-Video card driver (most recent, hopefully no problems)
-Extra: Just in case, download the LAN driver from the manufacturer’s motherboard, as Windows 10 1903 may not recognize some LAN hardware in certain cases.
The version that AMD suggests is Windows 10 1903, so if you haven’t done a W10 installer USB stick, we advise you to do so. For this step, as we mentioned, let’s hope you have already backed up your important files.
-Disable LAN cable
-Install Windows 10 1903 (Home or Pro, depending on your choice)
Step 6 – Install drivers
As mentioned in the previous step, install Windows 10 1903 and you should be on Windows 10 1903. Do not connect the LAN cable yet. We hope you get BSODs. In case you have it, you could make clear CMOS, not activate XMP, but at least, set PCI Express to Gen 3 manually, as instructed.
We assume there are no BSODs and you are inside Windows. What needs to be done next is the following in specific order:
-Install manufacturer’s motherboard model driver chipset. It will require a restart; in case it does not require, we suggest to manually do it. Reboot.
-Install AMD chipset, in case you don’t ask for restart, reboot anyway.
-Install video card driver (either NVIDIA or AMD, latest version available). Restart one more time, even if it doesn’t ask you.
Once this is completed, connect the LAN cable (in case LAN is not recognized, use the LAN driver that we suggest you have downloaded).
-Go to Windows 10 Update and update Windows 10 until it doesn’t allow any more updates (there will probably be some reboots until you are up to date).
After these Windows 10 updates, you can download the remaining drivers from the motherboard:
Other drivers if your model needs it
Step 7 – Frequency Monitoring and WHEAs
To monitor WHEAs (Windows Hardware Error Arquitecture), download HWInfo64 and use the SENSOR MODULE. At the bottom of HWInfo64, there is a WHEA option. If you have a couple of bugs and use NVIDIA video card, this is of public knowledge (we put it in our review and there is still no fix). If they have WHEA errors with more than 100 errors or worse (I’ve reached 3000-4000 before a BSOD comes) then you might have an issue.
We suggest trying to install HWInfo64 after you have completed the installation of the manufacturer’s Chipset Driver, AMD Chipset latest version and video card driver (before the other drivers, i.e. AUDIO/LAN updated) to see if you see WHEA errors.
Extra Tip: Install an Anti-virus, Windows Defender is lousy.
Extra: How to make CLEAR CMOS on the B450M DS3H board?
Check your motherboard manual in the diagram section and you will see a part that says CLEAR CMOS. It’s two pins. To make a short, have your PC turned off and you can use a screwdriver to short both pins (i.e. connect the two pins using the screwdriver metal) for about 3-4 seconds. You can repeat a couple of times to make sure you did CLEAR CMOS. Not best practice, but it just works.
The best thing obviously is to have a two-pin jumper that makes that short, but most people probably don’t have that at hand.
Annexes: Maximum frequency, 3600 MHz CL16 working on B450 and more
This section is for attachments and additional questions.
Appendix 1: Frequencies not reaching the maximum offered in AGESA 1003AB vs 1002
Will AGESA 1003AB make me reach maximum frequency? No with the tests we have done. We have tested BIOS F40 vs F41A and as far as frequency, F40 (AGESA 1002) and the Ryzen High Performance plan gives higher performance (but we also see higher voltages).
We have tested AGESA 1002 vs 1003 (1003, 1003A, 1003AB) on different boards of different models, in series 500/400 and 300. With the latest AGESA code, 1003AB (not to be confused with 1003ABA) of three samples we have had, none almost reaches the maximum frequency.
AGESA 1002 shows higher frequency even in games (50-100 MHz more) but from what I understand, AMD does not suggest 1002 as it overheats the threads. (According to HU, from AMD rep)
You can do a simple CPU-Z test or Cinebench R20 single-core with a BIOS 1003AB. It doesn’t get to single-core frequency (as printed on box) and has problems keeping that frequency. I used the ASUS, MSI and GIGABYTE boards, which I had at my disposal, without success.
If you wish to send your data, I would appreciate it. You can leave it on the comments section below as a imgur.com link. Try to put and image with CPU-z tab (motherboard and BIOS) while a single core test is running. Also you can use the contact page and send the imgur.com link.
Appendix 2: Ryzen 5 3600X and its heatsink temperatures
We tested with BIOS F40 (gives a little more voltage than we believe in F41B) and the heatsink, using the stock heatsink and with Arctic MX-4 thermal paste, we reached 82 degrees Celsius in Prime95 (non-AVX) in a room with an ambient temperature of 18 degrees Celsius and an open chassis.
If you are going to use a render with a Ryzen 5 3600X, we probably suggest you buy a better heatsink.
Appendix 3: Do 3600 MHz CL16 memories work on Ryzen 3000 and B450 M DS3H board?
The answer is yes.
Are they stable?
Validation screenshot on F40. Do you notice single core boost does reach 4.4 (99.8 MHz BCLK mind though) on all cores. This version is not recommended by AMD, as far as we know.
Do we advise it?
No, because it doesn’t make much sense to spend 150 USD or more on two 8GB 3600 MHz CL16 memories and then spend 84 USD (the cost of the DS3H in Peru approximately). It is the same philosophy, to spend 646 USD on a Ryzen 9 3900X + mid-range board and to buy a 40 dollars PSU, but it works for those who want the data.
But does it work?
Well, again… yes. Validation test and capture using F40 BIOS.
Are they Samsung B-Die?
No, we used Micron E-Die. We bought a kit that was on sale on Amazon at 105 USD on Amazon Prime Day.
Appendix 4: Does the VRM of the B450M DS3H work fine with a Ryzen 5 3600X?
Yes, there is no problem and it reached 52 degrees Celsius (VRM) maximum on Prime95 No-AVX using BIOS F40. BIOS F41B should probably give a couple of degrees less. We can’t say for sure with Ryzen 7 or 9 (Ryzen 9 probably will have VRM issues on this board, but remember it’s an inexpensive board and we don’t suggest joining it with a chip that’s worth almost 8 times the cost of the board). Here is the image capture.
VRM test on B450 M DS3H board with a Ryzen 3000 processor, the Ryzen 5 3600X on Prime95 No-AVX. The only airflow it had was the Wraith Spire (maximum RPM).
Apprendix 5: I have problems with motherboards from other manufacturers despite your guide, what do I do?
Well, since I can’t validate models of other motherboards, because I simply don’t have the motherboards, as well as the time needed, I can’t be much help in that case… but… I could suggest some pointers that I haven’t mentioned in this guide.
- Wait to buy Ryzen 3000 series up to new BIOSes with the same AGESA 1003AB or new AGESA (maybe AGESA 1004). Well, that’s what we suggest in our review.
- Put Infinity Fabric 1:1 into manual form. At the factory, it should work like this, but other models might have “bugs” from the manufacturer, who doesn’t apply 1:1 well (for 3600 MHz memory down). Putting it on manually could solve the problems. Calculation for IF (FCLK) is as follows: Memory frequency / 2 = IF 1:1. Concrete example. If I use 3600 MHz memory, the FCLK that should be set manually is 1800 MHz (note, it is not necessary to set it manually B450M DS3H so I have tested).
- Putting manual timings to your memories (manufacturer’s problem and its support) might solve it. Maybe that is already escaping from this guide as most kits under 3600 MHz should work without problems in Ryzen 3000. I know that some models have problems training at frequencies above 3000 MHz, but they are fixing that (or it’s already fixed).
- Wait for new BIOS.
Appendix 6: What other motherboards have you tested?
-X570 AORUS MASTER (different BIOS)
-X570 AORUS XTREME (different BIOS)
-X470 AORUS GAMING 7 WIFI (F40)
-X570 Crosshair VIII Hero WIFI (Release BIOS, believe AGESA 1003AB?)
-X570 GODLIKE (NPRP BIOS – Buggy, Release BIOS 02/07, also buggy)
-X370 Crosshair VI Hero (BIOS 0716)
Godlike gave boot problems during the reviews phase with press BIOS and release BIOS and a Ryzen 7 3700X. I hope it has been fixed (cold boot issue).
X370 Crosshair VI Hero (BIOS 0716) gave the best performance, but it seems to me, that it overfed voltage. Partially the PBO and Auto OC worked, but I had boot problems. Partial solution, put VRAM BOOT Voltage manually and use the “Retry Button” of the board. ASUS has a new BIOS for the board, but I don’t know if those boot problems have been fixed.
That’s it, we’ll be doing maybe some revisions in the future.
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