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VIA KT400 Motherboard Roundup

By: Asher Moses | Editorials in Motherboards | Posted: Oct 24, 2002 4:00 am

Soyo KT4 Dragon Ultra


- Package Contents


As far as bundled software goes, the Soyo KT400 Dragon Ultra stands head and shoulders above the rest. The board comes packaged with a "Symantec 8-in-1 Super Bonus Pack", featuring Norton Anti-Virus 2002, Norton Ghost, Adobe Active Share, VCom Autosave (used for backing up data), WinDVD, Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader, Adobe Acrobat Reader and Imagemore.


Like we've seen on previous Soyo boards we've tested in the past, the KT400 Dragon Ultra comes bundled with a USB panel that slots into a 3 1/2" or 5 1/4" bay and provides two USB 2.0 ports, a Smart Media card reader and a Compact Flash card reader.


- The Board



As with previous Soyo Dragon boards, the Soyo KT400 Dragon Ultra features a sexy silver PCB with purple PCI slots and yellow/green IDE headers complementing it nicely. As far as RAID goes, the board supports ATA133 RAID through the Highpoint HPT372 controller. This is similar to the RAID controller found on the Abit AT7-MAX2, however, it only supports 2-channel RAID rather than 4-channel.



Like the MSI KT4 Ultra, the Soyo board also features Serial ATA support through the Promise 20376 controller. Support for 10/100 Ethernet is included though a Realtek controller, as well as 6-channel audio through the C-Media 8738MX controller.




Furthermore, the KT400 Dragon Ultra features 5 PCI slots and four USB 2.0 ports, which is one less PCI slot than the MSI KT4 Ultra, and two less USB 2.0 ports than both the KT4 Ultra and the Abit AT7-MAX2. We were quite disappointed to see the lack of IEEE1394 ports on the KT400 Dragon Ultra, especially seeing that the chipset supports this feature. Also of note is that, like the KT4 Ultra, the Dragon Ultra includes three DIMM slots.



The overall layout of the board was great, with all components and connectors positioned logically and out of the way of wiring.


- Overclocking


The Soyo KT400 Dragon Ultra does not feature the amount of overclocking options seen on the AT7-MAX2, however, there are a few variables worth noting. Firstly, the board allows FSB adjustments up to 255MHz in 1MHz increments. You are also able to adjust the multiplier from 3x to 18x and can also lock the PCI bus at a speed of your choice.


Vcore, DIMM and AGP voltages can also be adjusted, up to 1.85V, 2.8V and 1.8V respectively. We were able to overclock our AthlonXP 2200+ processor up to an FSB of 180MHz, which is certainly not as impressive as the other two boards in this roundup, however, it is still respectable.


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