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8-Way nVidia nForce 2 Motherboard Roundup (Page 10)

By Cameron Johnson on Jul 2, 2003 11:00 pm CDT
Manufacturer: none

Features of the Shuttle AN35-400

Board and Layout

This is the first Shuttle motherboard we have had at the TweakTown labs for quite some time. Their AN35-400 product is amongst the latest motherboards for the AMD Athlon platform to come from the Taiwanese based company. Measuring 305 x 240 mm, Shuttle dresses the board up with a dark blue PCB just as Albatron and Gigabyte do.

Expansion wise, one AGP slot is included for AGP 8x and 4x transfers and five PCI slots come standard. Shuttle left a large gap between PCI slot 1 and the AGP slot to allow for OTES style video cards or the latest in nVidia's FX5900 video cards due to larger coolers making sure no PCI slots are wasted. Good thinking guys!

On the connector side of things, this is where Shuttle has worked their board out to a tee. The IDE, FDD and 20pin ATX power connector are all placed behind the DIMM sockets which eliminates the clutter around the CPU area and allows maximum air flow around and through the case making it the most well thought out motherboards in this roundup, so far.

Chipset and Memory

Shuttle uses the latest revision of the nForce2 SPP north bridge, the SPP 400. This new revision officially supports 400MHz FSB Athlon XP processors along with the normal features that the original SPP introduced. The MCP south bridge is placed onboard to add USB, IDE and AC'97 audio with nVidia networking. Like the Albatron and Soltek motherboards, the DRAM slots for Dual Channel DDR SDRAM operations have been colour coded in blue to indicate the two DIMM slots needed for 128bit operations.

Networking

Since the MCP supports the nVidia 10/100 network controller, and to sell a motherboard today you must at least have onboard Ethernet. Shuttle uses the Realtek RTL8100BL PHY connector for the onboard Ethernet LAN connections.

Overclocking - Up with the best

Overclocking features on the AN35-400 are quite in-depth and well rounded. Under the Frequency / Voltage menu you will find all the overclocking options.

FSB adjustments can be set from 100MHz up to 250MHz in 1MHz increments. Dram voltage can be adjusted from 2.5v up to 2.8v in 0.1v increments. AGP voltage can be adjusted from 1.5v up to 1.7v in 0.1v increments.

Within this menu is the adjustment for the memory frequency which can be set to various speeds depending on the FSB due to the asynchronous bus used. AGP and PCI dividers can be locked to their default 33/66MHz respective bus speeds to prevent any data instabilities when overclocking the CPU which will minimize data corruption on the hard disk and various other PCI devices.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Cameron Johnson

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