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Gigabyte 7VAXP-A Ultra - Retail VIA KT400A

By: Cameron Johnson | Editorials in Motherboards | Posted: May 1, 2003 4:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 6.0%Manufacturer: Gigabyte

Features of the GA-7VAXP-A Ultra


Package and Contents



Gigabyte has used its colour coded boxes to identify their motherboards for quite some time. Green and white boxes with the Triton logo on them are the Gigabyte trade. While being pretty simple on the outside, inside is where you see the big picture. Gigabyte packs into its box the usual motherboard, User Manuals (1 for the motherboard, one for the IDE RAID controller and one for the Serial ATA controller), four IDE ribbons, one floppy disk cable, two Serial ATA controller cables, one External Serial ATA converter, one Serial ATA power converter, one Surround/SPDIF expansion bracket, one Firewire expansion bracket and one USB expansion bracket.


Wow that's a mouth full.


Board, Layout and Gripes



Gigabyte's latest AMD boards have been pretty much all identical in size and layout. Due to VIA's pin compatible feature of their North and Southbridge's, there has been pretty much no need to change the PCB or layout. Gigabyte uses a very generous sized PCB to fit all of the components onto the board comfortably without many obstructions.


While this does raise the price of the board a bit, the prices of VIA chipsets being what they are, you can afford a bit more PCB as a trade-off. A single AGP slot supporting the AGP 4x and 8x AGP standards has been included of course for supporting 4x or above AGP video cards, no AGP 2x cards are supported on this board due to the AGP 3.0 specs not allowing backwards compatibility with 2x 3.3v cards. Five PCI slots are included to add on any extra sound peripherals such as high quality sound cards, Gigabit Ethernet or any other devices you can think of. Three DIMM slots are provided and colour coded blue for easy recognition and style, Gigabyte likes to head to the custom case modders and hardcore users.


Gigabyte also colour codes the CPU socket. This tends to look good under UV lights in modded cases; even if you don't have UV lights it still looks great. The location of the IDE connectors is well arranged behind the DIMM slots. This keeps them all out of the way of the CPU heatsink and allows for putting the hard disks up higher in the case. The power cable and the FDD connector is located above the IDE connectors behind the DIMM sockets, so all of the cables are well out of the way of heatsinks.


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