We would like to thank the following companies for supplying and supporting us with our test system hardware and equipment: GIGABYTE, ASUS, Intel, Corsair and Sceptre.
The G1.Assassin is an easy board to setup, but you do have more than a few items you have to check on and of course configure. The first item that comes to mind is the Killer NIC. This is, according to Killer Networks, a network control processor. It is designed to act as a specialized QoS device that is capable of identifying certain types of packets and forwarding them ahead of other packets. Killer Networks calls this the "bullet" packet.
Getting into the application that comes with the KillerNIC E2100, we find what looks like the internals to a router. We were not surprised as after all, this is a QoS processor.
Killer Networks has included a pretty decent monitoring utility that can let you keep track of what your system has going on (it is a little more functional than Task Manager).
The applications tab serves a couple of purposes; the first is to let you see what could be using up your gaming bandwidth. The second is a little less obvious until you think about it. It can let you identify potential malware present on your system. If you see an application that is taking up a ton of bandwidth that should not be, you can remove or block it.
The Network page gives you options to adjust the Killer NIC E2100 to suit your network. The entries for Download and Upload speed can be detected by the software depending upon the firewall you have in place. The Gaming Router we used for this testing prevented the utility from working at all. It set both up and down speeds to 1.5Mbps. The real speeds are much higher than that, so I ended up manually setting them. This improved performance quite a bit, as did creating profiles for games in my router.
The Advanced Page is just what it says; it is a page of advanced options. These options grant you extra control/ monitoring for the NCP (Network Control Processor). So far our testing shows that the E2100 while behind a restrictive firewall does not have much of an effect on gaming speed. This is because you still have to pass that traffic through the firewall before it hits the Internet. Still, once we opened up the router for gaming traffic we found a nice increase in responsiveness.
The next item on the list is the X-Fi card that is integrated into the motherboard. Here you have Creative's own software to tinker with. For the average gamer you can install this and leave it alone. The default mode is the gaming mode, so this should be more than enough. But if you are looking for more from your audio, Creative does have a few other modes to play around with.
The other modes are Entertainment and Audio Creation. They are self-explanatory, so we will not waste any time on them.
The last piece of software that GIGABYTE adds to the list is the Smart6 suite. I am not sure why it is included, though, as most of the gamers I know would not bother installing it.
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