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VIA K8T800 Performance Motherboard Shootout - Gigabyte, MSI and ABIT - MSI K8T Neo - Features

It's time for the battle of the big guns in the AMD Athlon 64 motherboard department. We've collected three high-end performance motherboards from Gigabyte, MSI and ABIT which are all based on VIA's K8T800 chipset and tossed them all in the ring to fight it to the death with our still shiny Athlon 64 3200+ processor. Let the fight begin ladies and gentleman!

By: | Editorials in Motherboards | Posted: Dec 29, 2003 5:00 am

Features of the MSI K8T Neo


We first saw the MSI K8 motherboard when we tested the Dual Opteron processors earlier this year and we were very impressed with it. This particular model is the single processor Athlon 64 version. If you simply get rid of one of the processor sockets on the original motherboard we looked at you have this particular product that we are looking at here today.


- Package


When opening up the box you find all the normal goodies: manuals, drivers, USB header, rounded Parallel ATA cables, Serial ATA cables and Serial ATA power converters.





The inside of the box is not anything fancy and everything is just simply spread across the top.


- Motherboard Features and Layout


If you're new to MSI motherboards, the first thing that may go through your head is "Oh its Red". The motherboard looks great and follows the same red PCB color scheme we have seen for quite a while in the MSI line up.



The placement of the ATX 12V adapter and the extra 4 pin adapter is very similar to the Gigabyte motherboard with the main connector towards the top edge and the smaller 4 pin connector being right next to the processor to give a clean flow of power. One thing you might notice when it comes to looking at the Northbridge is the lack of fan. While it might not do a lot, if you're spending this kind of money on a motherboard you would think that you would receive everything that the other high-end products include.




Again like the Gigabyte motherboard we see a 5/1 combination with the first PCI slot being positioned right next to the AGP slot. MSI have been kind enough to include a Serial ATA Promise controller as well as the VT8237 Southbridge giving us a total of four Serial ATA ports which is indeed a big bonus.







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