Last month we looked at Abit's NF-M2 nView motherboard. The NF-M2 nView was one of the first microATX motherboards that offered upscale overclocking abilities while featuring integrated graphics with both VGA and DVI connectors (not to mention being a first for Universal Abit). Abit continued to use their Silent OTES technology on this AM2 motherboard along with the usual extras. Ultimately we found the Abit NF-M2 nView motherboard to be an excellent contender for HTPC enthusiasts and had worked quite well with Fedora Core 6.
This time around we are looking at the Abit AB9 motherboard, which is a P965 + ICH8 solution that offers Abit's uGuru, OC Guru, BlackBox, SoftMenu, and their well-known Silent OTES technology. The ATX motherboard is Intel Quad Core Ready, but can the Abit AB9 perform as well as the NF-M2 nView when running Linux?
· Support Intel Core 2 Duo Pentium & Pentium D processors with 1066/800MHz FSB
· Support Intel 2006FMB Conroe CPU
· Intel P965 / ICH8 Chipset
· 4 x 240-pin DIMM sockets support max. memory capacity 8GB
· Supports Dual channel DDR2 800/667/533 Un-buffered Non-ECC memory
· Onboard Gigabit Ethernet
· Onboard 7.1 CH HD Audio CODEC
· Supports auto jack sensing and optical S/PDIF Out
· 1 x PCI-E X16
· 2 x PCI-E X1
· 2 x PCI
· 4 x SATA 3Gb/s through Intel ICH8
· 2 x SATA 3Gb/s through JMicron JMB363 support up to 0,1, JBOD RAID function
· ATX form factor 305 x 245mm
· PCB Color: Orange
· 100% lead-free process and RoHS compliant
· abit SoftMenu Technology
· abit uGuru Technology
· abit Silent OTES Technology
Over the years of reviewing Abit products we really have not seen much variation when it comes to their product packaging. The exterior of their retail containers are generally filled with graphics and other highlights for the product, while inside everything is separated to reduce the chances of any damage during shipping. The AB9 was no different and the motherboard along with all of its accessories had arrived safely at our location. Other products in the Abit AB9 series include the AB9 Pro edition as well as the AB9 QuadGT. The Abit AB9 Pro features an ICH8R Southbridge as opposed to the ICH8 on the AB9 vanilla. The Abit AB9 QuadGT features solid state capacitors, digital PWM, external CCMOS switch, and an HDMI ready header among an assortment of other extras.