MSI has included solid capacitors across the board on the P6N SLI Platinum, which operate at a lower temperature and should account for added stability and product life. I see this as another positive approach by MSI who continue to produce high quality products using the latest technology. The inclusion of heat-pipe cooling for the Mosfets, NB, and SB is a good move for attracting PC enthusiasts. Although not really needed for those who will install a Core 2 processor and run at rated speeds, it is a good move for those who will up the clocks on the Core 2 and the memory to enhance performance.
In overclocking, the additional voltage needed in some cases for stabilizing does increase temperatures of those components and additional or supplemental cooling is needed. The heat-pipe/heatsink arrangement is effective and the addition of the optional fan is a plus for helping to keep the NB chipset cool at higher clock settings although the small fan does produce some unwanted noise. Like I have mentioned, to maintain stability at overclocked settings the P5N-E required no less than a fan added to the stock NB heatsink and the addition of a small aluminum heatsink on the SB to attain rock-solid stability. The P6N SLI Platinum motherboard is no different and MSI has seen fit to provide this board with the necessary extra cooling.
On-board features are restrained primarily by the cost-cutting measures incorporated in the southbridge, but performance still comes very close to matching the high-end motherboards on the market. The P6N SLI Platinum motherboard provides stability while giving excellent performance for those extended gaming sessions. It caters very well to the Core 2 line of processors by enabling the user to get the most from the processor at less expenditure. It does not have a crippled chipset as it merely uses NVIDIA's nForce 650i SLI (C55) SPP on the northbridge in conjunction with the tried and true nForce 430i (MCP51) on the southbridge which works very well.
It could use another LAN, a couple more USB ports, as well as a couple more SATAII ports, and another 16x PCI-e would have been nice. However, if those are must have items then you need to look no further than the 680i motherboard solutions. You would only loose the additional IDE port this board provides plus enjoyment, at less expense, of achieving overclocks that produce exceptional performance.
Heatpipe cooling solution for both North and South bridges plus the MOSFETs
CMOS reset button
All solid capacitors on the motherboard
Most 40mm high RPM fans are noisey and the optional fan included in this package is no different
Absence of NVIDIA's LinkBoost, SLI-Ready memory support, and DualNet.
For ultra high resolution SLI users x16 PCI-e is limited to one slot.
Considering the additional cooling and solid capacitors on the P6N SLI Platinum, SLI compatibility, support for quad core processors, and effective 1333MHz FSB, MSI has hit a Grand Slam with the P6N SLI Platinum in the mid-range motherboard wars.
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