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VIA KT400 Motherboard Roundup

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



- Package Contents


Like the AT7-MAX2, the KD7-RAID doesn't come bundled with as much free software as the other boards in this roundup. Included in the box is two ATA133 cables, one floppy cable, a USB 2.0 backplate enabling extra ports, a driver CD, and a detailed User's Manual


As far as free software goes, the driver CD contains a copy of Norton Anti-Virus 2002, which compared to the Soyo and MSI boards, isn't much. That said, Abit are not known for including extravagant software bundles as their boards are directed at enthusiasts who most likely already own any software they could include. Instead, Abit try to make up for this with extensive overclocking features.


- The Board



Unlike the other boards in this roundup, the KD7-RAID doesn't feature a coloured PCB, but rather a regular brown coloured PCB. This makes sense as the board is a cut-down version of the AT7-MAX2, with an emphasis on a low price yet high performance and overclockability. The KD7-RAID supports 2-channel ATA133 RAID through the HPT372 controller, but, unlike the other boards in this roundup, it does not feature Serial ATA.


The board also supports 10/100 Ethernet provided by the VT-6103 controller, and 6-channel AC97 audio. Like the AT7-MAX2, we were disappointed to see Abit utilizing AC97 audio on their board as controllers from C-Media are of much higher quality.



Furthermore, the board features six PCI slots and four USB ports, however, it lacks Firewire ports. That said, this is understandable considering Abit are marketing this board to the more budget-minded users. Also of note is that the KD7-RAID features four DDR DIMM slots supporting up to 2GB of DDR400 memory.



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


- Overclocking


As far as BIOS options are concerned, the KD7-RAID is virtually identical to its big brother the AT7-MAX2. The FSB can be adjusted from 100MHz all the way up to 250MHz in 1MHz increments. As well as this, the FSB:AGP:PCI ratio can be set from the options 3:2:1, 4:2:1 or 5:2:1. This allows you to increase the FSB while leaving the AGP and PCI speeds at their default values.


Furthermore, the multiplier can be adjusted from 5x all the way up to 22.5x+ and the core and DIMM voltages can be set up to 2.325V and 3.25V respectively. We were able to overclock our AthlonXP 2200+ all the way up to an FSB of 201MHz. Any further and the board would not remain stable. This is very impressive and certainly up to the standards we're used to seeing from Abit.


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