Package and Contents
ASRock, for those who don't know are the OEM name for ASUS. Rather than put another line of boards under its own name, ASUS decided to set up a sub-division dedicated to producing and marketing boards more on the cheaper side of life.
ASRock's packaging for their boards are extremely colourful with a lot of art work on the front. Unlike most companies, ASRock has put quite a few logo info stickers on the front of their box which states what the board supports along with a few of their key features. The bottom right hand corner on the front gives you the model name as well as a detailed list (though very small writing) on the board's specifications, these of course the same specs that you find inside the user manual.
The back of the box also contains a lot of info, but more so marketing hype about how well the board is supposed to perform compared to the competition. These results should be taken with a grain of salt; after all, is any motherboard company going to down play their own board?
One thing that is missing is the full colour photo of the board, which we find quite annoying. How do you really know what you're going to get without one? You don't buy a car without at least first seeing a photo of it.
Now to the documentation and software. First off, the user manual for the board is the size of a Harry Potter novel. Inside the manual is every language under the sun with info on how to set up the board in each. This is a definite advantage making the packaging universal; you don't need separate manuals for each region, just one for all.
The driver CD contains drivers for Windows XP, XP64 and all versions of Vista (both 32bit and 64bit).
Despite being on the budget side, ASRock has provided quite a good bundle of cables and accessories; there are four SATA data cables, a single IDE and FDD cable, a SPDIF data cable and two Molex to SATA power cables.
It should be noted that if you want to run the two e.SATA ports you lose two of the internal SATA ports and you need to use two of the SATA data cables to bridge the internal SATA ports to the e.SATA ports, we'll cover more on this later.
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- Page 1 [Introduction]
- Page 2 [Specifications]
- Page 3 [Inside the Box]
- Page 4 [The Motherboard]
- Page 5 [BIOS and Overclocking]
- Page 6 [Test System Setup and Memory Performance]
- Page 7 [Benchmarks - PCMark05]
- Page 8 [Benchmarks - Worldbench]
- Page 9 [Benchmarks - Adobe Premiere Elements 2.0]
- Page 10 [Benchmarks - HDD Performance]
- Page 11 [Benchmarks - 3DMark06]
- Page 12 [Benchmarks - Prey]
- Page 13 [Benchmarks - Far Cry]
- Page 14 [Benchmarks - Power consumption]
- Page 15 [Final Thoughts]
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