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ASRock's Phantom Gaming Alliance Build Guide (Page 2)

By: Steven Bassiri from Oct 24, 2019 @ 9:09 CDT

The GPU, DRAM, and SSD

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More recently ASRock got into the GPU business and has been producing GPUs. As part of their Phantom Gaming Alliance, ASRock offers Radeon VII, Radeon RX Vega, Radeon RX 590, Radeon RX 580, Radeon RX 570, Radeon RX 560, and Radeon RX 550 GPUs. There are two variants of the Phantom Gaming RX 580, the X and the D versions. The D version is clocked slightly lower and only has a single 6-pin power connector, while the X version features a higher overclock and an 8-pin power connector.

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An oversized heat sink allows for better heat dissipation, and there are two fans on the GPUs to help decrease temperatures. When running stock, the fans are silent and do a solid job cooling the GPU. It might be surprising to hear, but there are rare instances where the GPU and motherboard are incompatible, but in this case, you are guaranteed compatibility.

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There is no backplate on the GPU, and if you try to remove any of the heat sink screws you will void the warranty on the GPU. You won't need to remove the heat sink since it's already aftermarket and allows for you to tweak the overclock.

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One of the most common incompatibilities is between motherboards and DRAM. Every motherboard has a memory compatibility list, but in this case, you don't even need to check it. Both GEIL and T-FORCE make DRAM modules for the Phantom Gaming Alliance. The T-Force XCALIBUT Phantom Gaming RGB is what we are using, and it is the only DRAM in the alliance that has RGB LEDs.

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The DRAM comes with a translucent light bar at the top and uses addressable RGBs, so it can produce more intricate lighting effects. It offers 120-degree ultra-wide angle RGB lighting. Team Group's website states the DRAM is compatible with all of ASRock's Phantom Gaming motherboards, both AMD and Intel. By default, it works perfect with ASRock's POLYCHROME SYNC, which is important because a lot of motherboard RGB software is not compatible with RGB LED DRAM.

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The DRAM comes in three variants; 3200MHz, 3600MHz, and 4000MHz. The 3200MHz variant we have has latencies of 16-18-18-38, the 3600Mhz chimes in at 18-20-20-44, and the 4000MHz comes in at 18-20-20-44. All of them have lifetime warranties.

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The SSD also uses addressable RGB LEDs, and offers a 5:3 ratio luminous area, which is the largest in the industry. Team Group's T-FORCE brand is the only SSD certified for the Phantom Gaming Alliance. It uses a 5V ADD header and supports three or four pin addressable RGB LED headers. A microUSB port is used to provide RGB LED signaling.

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The SSD comes in three SATA6Gb/s variants at 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB. The 250GB variant we have offer sequential speeds up to 560/500MB/s read/write, the 500GB and 1TB chime in at 560/510MB/s. Random 4K performance is 90K IOPS read for all three variants, 75K write IOPS for the 250GB and 80K IOPS for the 500GB and 1TB variants. Terabytes written is >60TB for the 250GB, >120TB for the 500GB, and >240TB for the 1TB.

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