Years ago when we started reviewing ASRock motherboards, most of them were fairly basic with very few features compared to what could be found on the ASUS or Gigabyte motherboards. With time though ASRock has begun ramping up their motherboards with more features, new innovative designs, and other improvements that cater towards the desires of enthusiasts and gamers. These days there are ASRock motherboards that can compete with those from major OEMs both in terms of features and in terms of performance, while delivering a better price. One example of a modern, feature-rich ASRock motherboard is the N7AD-SLI. The ASRock N7AD-SLI has NVIDIA SLI support, Gigabit LAN, IEEE-1394 Firewire, S/PDIF output, OC Tuner, solid capacitors, and an instant boot technology. This motherboard is centered around NVIDIA's nForce 740i SLI Chipset.
4 March 2009 - 16 Comments
Tyan, a long-time supporter of Phoronix and a manufacturer of many leading workstation/server-oriented motherboards, recently sent out their Thunder n6650EX motherboard. This motherboard is a slight redesign of their earlier Thunder n6550EX product, but with out of the box support for AMD's 45nm Opteron CPUs. The Thunder n6650EX is capable of handling four quad-core processors, up to 128GB of ECC Registered DDR2 system memory, dual PCI Express x16, and six Serial ATA 2.0 ports. In this article we are offering a preview of the Tyan Thunder n6650EX (S4992).
13 February 2009 - 5 Comments
If you have wanted to get your hands on an Intel Atom system but aren't interested in the netbooks that are out there, it's now relatively easy to find compatible motherboards out there to build your own Intel Atom system. Some of these motherboards even come with an Atom CPU already installed. In this article we have our hands on the Jetway NC92-230-LF, which is a mini ITX motherboard that is pre-installed with an Intel Atom N230 and offers one PCI slot, one DDR2 slot, Gigabit Ethernet, and 6-channel audio.
17 December 2008 - 14 Comments
Back in August we had looked at the G45-based Super Micro C2SEA with its integrated Intel GMA X4500HD graphics. The X.Org graphics performance wasn't that bad for being an Intel IGP, but Intel had also introduced the G43 Chipset with Intel X4500 (non-HD) graphics. One of the motherboards to use Intel's G43 is the ASRock G43Twins-FullHD, which we happen to be looking at today. This motherboard that pairs the Intel G43 with an ICH10 Southbridge supports both DDR2 and DDR3 system memory and its video connectors include D-Sub, DVI-D, and DisplayPort.
4 November 2008 - 1 Comment
Earlier this year we had looked at the ECS A780GM-A Black Series motherboard that was powered by AMD's 780G Chipset with SB700 Southbridge. This motherboard worked well with Linux and had received our approval, but since then AMD has introduced their 790GX Chipset with Radeon HD 3300 graphics and SB750 Southbridge. Elitegroup Computer Systems has introduced a new motherboard that relies upon these newest chips. The ECS A790GXM-A Black Series is this newest product and today we are looking at this motherboard at Phoronix.
12 October 2008 - 5 Comments
Last month we looked at the EP45-DS3L and EP45T-DS3R motherboards from Gigabyte. These two Intel P45 motherboards had turned out to be great contenders as long as you are using a newer Linux distribution that ships with a very recent Linux kernel. Today though on the review block we have two new motherboards compliments of ASRock. The ASRock P43R1600Twins-WiFi and P45R2000-WiFi utilize the Intel P43 and P45 Chipsets, respectively, but the duo share the Intel ICH10R Southbridge and both feature an integrated 802.11g WiFi module along with system memory support for both DDR2 and DDR3 standards. There are also a few other extras with the ASRock P45R2000-WiFi such as ATI CrossFire support, dual Gigabit LAN, and two eSATA connectors. What's important though is whether these relatively low-cost motherboards work under Linux, and we will tell you that today.
21 September 2008 - 3 Comments
Back in June we had looked at the Super Micro C2SBX+ motherboard, which was a workstation motherboard oriented around the Intel X48 Chipset. This was our first time reviewing a Super Micro product at Phoronix, but from the success of the C2SBX+ we decided to look at another one of their motherboards. This time around we have our hands on the Super Micro C2SEA, which is a desktop motherboard that uses the Intel G45 Chipset and provides integrated GMA X4500 HD graphics.
25 August 2008 - 2 Comments
Intel's P45 Chipset was released this summer along with the P43, G43, and G45 Chipsets as the mainstream Eaglelake alternative to Intel's current flagship X48 Chipset. Though over the older X48 motherboards, the P45 has the advantages of using Intel's newer ICH10 / ICH10R Southbridge and support for up to 16GB of DDR2/DDR3 memory, which is double that of what's supported by the X48. Today we are looking at two Intel P45 motherboards compliments of Gigabyte with their EP45-DS3L and EP45T-DS3R. The EP45-DS3L and EP45T-DS3R are just two of Gigabyte's motherboards bearing the P45 Chipset but in total they have eight different motherboards using this version of the Eaglelake Chipset.
18 August 2008 - 18 Comments
Intel's latest performance desktop chipset is now the X48 Express, but there still is life left in the X38 Express, which was released late last year. The Intel X38 and X48 Chipsets share many of the same features including support for the latest dual-core and quad-core Intel processors, DDR3 system memory support, and 2 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 interfaces with there being very few differences to the end-user between these chipsets. In addition, benchmarks we have delivered from different motherboards have shown the X48 has little to no performance improvements over the older Bearlake chipset. ASUS's X38 motherboards are still very much in the market place and today we happen to be looking at one of their workstation motherboards based around the X38. The motherboard we are looking at is the ASUS P5E64 WS Professional, which ships with all of the usual ASUS innovations in addition to having four PCI Express x16 slots.
8 August 2008 - 2 Comments
Over the past few months we have looked at a few different Intel X48 motherboards and all of these motherboards bearing Intel's latest chipset have worked quite well with Linux. Among these motherboards have been the ASUS P5E3 Premium, Super Micro C2SBX+, and Gigabyte X48T-DQ6. These X48 motherboards have been expensive, but now some of the budget manufacturers are introducing models at a lower cost. For just under $200 USD, ASRock has introduced the X48TurboTwins-WiFi. The ASRock X48TurboTwins-WiFi pairs Intel's X48 with the ICH9R Southbridge and offers a few extra features such as eSATA, integrated 802.11g WiFi, and IEEE-1394 Firewire.
4 August 2008 - 1 Comment
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