AMD may not have the performance crown when it comes to its processors. In fact, Phenom has a lot of competition from Intel and a long way to go if they want to regain the top crown they stole from Intel quite some time ago.
But while their CPUs aren't top of the line, their chipset business has been spot on. ATI acquisition has allowed AMD to increase its own chipset production to the level where AMD is able to produce platforms for its own products; something that has been a major problem for them in the past. I can remember the Irongate debacle to this day. Now that's a thing of the past thanks to AMD branded chipsets and the 7 series from AMD being top notch.
The first chipset to have come out in the 7 series was the 780G, the first with the next generation in onboard graphics along with HT3 support for the Phenom processors. AMD really outdid themselves; not only was it future proof, it finally introduced a good onboard graphics accelerator. Not to say that it would rival a discrete solution, but its hardware decoding of HD video along with its ability to combine a second ATI graphics card to increase its 3D potential made it a huge success for the cheap PC market.
GIGABYTE has been one of the biggest producers of motherboards along with ASUS and MSI. And one thing is for certain with these three companies; above all else, if the chipset is good, you will find at least one board based on it. Today we are looking at the GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H motherboard. How does it stack up as a HTPC board? Let's have a good look.