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DFI LANParty Jr. GF9400 T2RS mATX Motherboard (Page 3)

By: Sean Kalinich from Oct 18, 2009 @ 23:49 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 72%Manufacturer: DFI

The Board

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Let me start off by saying that I am not a big fan of Micro-ATX boards. For the most part they tend to be cluttered. Too many companies try to stuff too much into them and end up making most of the slots useless in the process. This is not to say they do not have their uses, but that they can be difficult to work with. DFI is not far off the path with the LP Jr GF9400 T2RS. But on the other hand, it does have some decent options for expansion into more than a simple Micro-ATX integrated mainboard.

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Starting off with the upper right hand side of the mainboard (as viewed when installed in a tower case), you can see some of the cramping I was talking about. The 24-Pin ATX socket is very close to the DDR2 slots and there is also a heat sink very close that does hinder proper connection unless you get the angle just right.

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DFI has one advantage over most other micro-ATX boards; they have kept the area around the LGA 775 socket very clean. You can actually use a decent cooler with this board. I have had issue with other boards not fitting the higher end (pronounce bigger and taller) CPU coolers, but this was not the case with the T2RS. Here you can also see part of the 4-Phase digital power system on the T2SR. DPM (Digital Power Management) is more efficient and can allow for better overclocking by supplying cleaner power to the components on the board.

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Moving down to the lower half of the board, we see that DFI has included the now standard six SATA II ports, a troubleshooting LED display and on-board power and reset switches.

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Unfortunately the DFI LP Jr. GF9400 expansion ports are very cluttered. There is also a small issue with the 4-pin external power ports. If you have any add-in GPU in the PCI-e x16 slot you absolutely cannot use the second one and if you use the PCI-3 x1 slot you might not be able to use it either. I am not sure why these were placed here, but they are in a very bad place.

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For I/O ports the DFI LP Jr. GF9400 has some nice options. You can see its HTPC heritage here as there are options for DVI, HDMI and S/PDIF (both Coaxial and Optical).

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