Intel Desktop Motherboard
It wouldn'tt be a review without some pictures, here we have assembled pictures of the Intel Desktop Motherboard powered by the I875P chipset.
First off we look at the board layout. Intel, while not being one on style and grace in the past, but rather on raw design has changed its ways lately. Gone is the Green PCB that we are used to. Intel now uses a 4 Layer large PCB in a very dark brown. This is used by Albatron and ASUS on special edition PCB'ts, a very nice colour for case modders.
Intel uses a single AGP 8x slot and 5 PCI slots for expansion configuration. With the support for Serial ATA through the ICH5, two standard Serial ATA 150 ports are added to the board supporting RAID. The CSA system is used with Intel'ts new Gigabit Ethernet controller onboard. This allows for Gigabit Ethernet off the PCI bus. eight USB ports are also available, six are available on the backplane and two via expansion bracket for front panel access. Power and IDE connectors are also located in spots that most overclocking companies use. The Main power connector is located behind the memory slots, well out of the way of the CPU socket. The 4 Pin connector is located between the MCH and the I/O panel.
As stated this is the first board from Intel to support the new I857P chipset. We have already stated the specs and features of the I875P chipset in this article. Intel places the controller on a 45 degree angle; this allows for the shortening of trace wires and allows Intel to use a four layer PCB. The ICH5R is supported on this board for eight USB ports, Serial ATA RAID and all the other features that are common on the ICH4.
Intel places a very large passive cooling solution on the MCH, Intel states that passive cooling works well enough and that active is not needed for specified FSB speeds. However, overclocking will require cooling better than that of a passive cooler.
The BIOS is that of a standard Intel Desktop board. You need to set a jumper in order to configure CPU parameters and clear passwords. Designed similar to that of the ASUS motherboard BIOS, it is pretty easy to get around.