This post is part of the Motherboard BIOS Settings series and covers a specific motherboard the ASRock H81 Pro BTC R2.0. To see the full list of motherboards covered in the series, please visit the parent post.
This guide was written using: BIOS Version: 1.40 (beta) BIOS Date: 2018/05/21
The ASRock H81 Pro BTC R2.0 has 6 PCIe slots, it is a socket LGA1150 motherboard, and uses DDR3 RAM. This was one of the first motherboards dedicated to mining to come along. It has 6 usable PCIe slots and can make for a good beginner, or even medium sized, mining rig if you can find one for a reasonable price.
Even though this board is designed for mining, it is still a good idea to follow a set procedure when setting it up to use 6 GPUs.
To get the motherboard initially setup for mining, I normally get Windows and the graphics drivers installed and setup first with just one GPU before adjusting the BIOS. You usually can run up to 4 GPUs with the default BIOS settings before needing to make any changes. Also be sure you install Windows using UEFI mode.
I recommend getting your mining rig up and operational with one to four cards at first, then once everything is going smoothly, shutdown, add your remaining GPUs and then make the BIOS modifications below.
When Windows comes back, you will need to check the Device Manager to confirm that all 6 GPUs are detected and operating correctly. If you get any GPUs with errors reinstall the graphics drivers, of if you use BIOS modded AMD GPU’s run the AMD/ATI Pixel Clock Patcher and reboot.
Also (with AMD GPUs) be sure to switch any AMD GPUs over to compute mode if you are seeing lower hash-rates than you expect.
BIOS Settings for Mining
Fortunately since the H81 Pro BTC R2.0 motherboard is basically setup from the factory to run multiple GPUs, it is not quite as tricky as some others to get going right away with mining.
First be sure you have the most recent BIOS, which seems to have stopped at version 1.40 (beta), dated 2018/05/21, as there have been no updates since.
While you can get 6 GPUs running with the 1.20 Release BIOS, you do need to put one card in the full sized slot, either directly (which covers up a small PCIEx1 slot), or by using a 16x riser cable.
The 1.40 beta BIOS allows you to utilize all risers. One note though, the 1.40 bios update also requires you to plug in at least one of the 4-pin Molex connector on the motherboard, regardless if you you powered riser or not.
Go to Advanced along the top of the BIOS setup screen, and the click on Advanced->Chipset Configuration.
Make sure the following settings are in place:
- Primary Graphics Adapter: PCI Express (default)
- PCIE2 Link Speed: Change from Auto to Gen 1
- Share Memory: Can leave at Auto (default)
- IGPU Multi-Monitor: Set to Disabled
- OnBoard HD Audio: Set to Disabled
- Onboard LAN: Leave Enabled (default)
- Deep Sleep: Disabled
- Restore on AC/Power Loss: Your choice, Power Off is the default.
- Good Night LED: Disabled
Under Advanced -> Super IO Configuration, I like to make the following changes:
- Serial Port 1: Set to Disabled
- COM2 & IR: Leave at default (Com port 2)
- Serial Port 2: Disabled
- Parallel Port: Disabled
Under the Boot menu, everything should be fine at the defaults, but just double check flashing your BIOS did not mess up your boot order. If you are using Windows 10 Boot Option #1 should be Windows Boot Manager…
Once you are finished making all your changes to the BIOS, click on Exit and then confirm you want to save the changes by click on Yes. The computer will then reboot.
- CPU Fan Connector (CPU_FAN2)
- CPU Fan Connector (CPU_FAN1)
- Power Fan Connector (PWR_FAN1)
- ATX 12V Power Connector (ATX12V1)
- 2 x 240-pin DDR3 DIMM Slots (DDR3_A1, DDR3_B1)
- TPM Header (TPMS1)
- ATX Power Connector (ATXPWR1)
- Chassis Fan Connector (CHA_FAN1)
- Power LED Header (PLED1)
- Chassis Speaker Header (SPEAKER1)
- SATA2 Connector (SATA2_0)
- SATA3 Connector (SATA3_0)
- SATA2 Connector (SATA2_1)
- SATA3 Connector (SATA3_1)
- System Panel Header (PANEL1)
- USB 2.0 Header (USB_4_5)
- USB 2.0 Header (USB_2_3)
- PCIe Power Connector (PCIE_PWR2)
- SPDIF Out Connector (SPDIF_OUT)
- COM Port Header (COM2)
- Infrared Module Header (IR1)
- Front Panel Audio Header (HD_AUDIO1)
- Clear CMOS Jumper (CLRCMOS1)
- PCIe Power Connector (PCIE_PWR1)
- Chassis Fan Connector (CHA_FAN2)
Flashing the ASRock H81 Pro BTC BIOS
For this guide I am using BIOS Version: P1.40 with a build date of: 2018/05/21.
You can update the BIOS under the “Tool” menu along the top and use the Instant Flash utility. Have your BIOS image loaded on a USB stick and inserted into one of the USB ports. I found using the “reddish” colored USB ports work best for this, as sometimes using the blue USB ports the board has trouble detecting the flash drive.
The tool should detect the valid image, click on it and verify to begin the process. One it has complete click on OK to exit and reboot the computer.