Packaging and Contents
Chaintech uses a black, very large box with golden colors, to catch your eye but this is not where the impressive looks end. When you unpack the box you get even more for your dollars.
First is your motherboard, always of great importance when buying a new Motherboard. You get a very impressive user manual that explains all the workings of the motherboard and BIOS, so you will have no problems setting things up once you have your board installed in your case. You get the C-Box, cable set, audio module and CD software in a four CD case. Plenty of CD's for you guys who love software bundles.
The layout of the board is similar in design to the Chaintech Apogee 7VJL1. One AGP 4x (1.5v) slot is present as well as green PCI slots for all your expansion needs. The coloring of the DIMM, IDE, FDD and PCI connectors in green is a very attractive feature, set against the backdrop of the dark brown PCB used.
Only two DIMM slots are supported on the 9EJL1 since this board uses the Intel I845E chipset it is one limitation we have to live with. Placement of the connectors for IDE are well designed, however, like the 7VJL1, the floppy connector could have done with a bit more thought. Placed at the bottom right hand of the motherboard, this means cables are going to be all over the pace, and placing this board into some server cases will mean you can't use the FDD.
The power connectors are placed with some thought, the 20pin ATX connector sits on the upper right of the board, well away from the CPU. The 4 pin connector does cause the cables to cross over the CPU being small in size, these cables won't cause a huge clutter.
Powered by the Intel I845E northbridge, you get with this board support for AGP 4x transfers, DDR-266 memory and up to 533Mhz FSB for Intel Pentium 4 and Celeron CPU's. Coupled with the ICH4 southbridge, you get AC'97 rev 2.2, 6 USB 2.0 ports, UDAM-100 IDE controller and built in network support. Chaintech fits the northbridge with a very familiar fan. This is the exact same design as the one that was on the 7VJL motherboard.
No Cheap AC'97 on this baby
If you are going to build a motherboard for the enthusiast, you need to do away with cheap audio, like AC'97. Chaintech have listened to this demand and have given you a C-Media 6ch PCI audio controller. Supplied with a riser bracket for the rear and Sub/Center speakers, you can really get the full feeling of 5.1 sound from your motherboard. Chaintech couples this board with their impressive Body Theatre sound set. These are basically earphones that are well, the best damm headphones I have played with to date.
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