View Full Version : What is a good motherboard?

08-04-02, 12:13 AM
Hi everyone,

I'm in a little bit of a problem with a few things. Very recently my pc almost died but i was still able to bring it back to life.

Now this is what i need a little help with i want to build a new system but I am not sure about a few things like which motherboard is best. I have taken a look at the MSI KT3 Ultra2 (MS-6380E) And for those who don't know the specs on this motherboard here they are.

KT3 Ultra2


* Supports Socket A (Socket 462) for AMDŽ Athlon^(TM) XP/
Athlon^(TM)/Duron^(TM) processor
* Supports 800MHz up to 1.8GHz (Athlon^(TM) XP 2200+)


VIAŽ KT333 Chipset
- FSB @200/266 MHz
- AGP 4X and PCI Advanced high performance memory

VIAŽ VT8235 Chipset
- Integrated Direct Sound AC'97 audio
- Dual channel Ultra DMA 33/66/100/133 master mode EIDE
- Integrated USB 2.0 controller


100/133 MHz clocks are supported.
Circle SpotMain Memory
* Supports six memory banks using three 184-pin DDR DIMMs
* Supports a maximum memory size up to 3GB
* Supports 2.5V DDR200/266/333 DDR SDRAM DIMM


* One AGP slot
- AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port) specification compliant
- Supports AGP 2.0 1x/2x/4x
* Five 32-bit PCI bus slots (support 3.3v/5v PCI bus interface)
* One CNR (Communication Network Riser) slot

On-Board IDE

* An IDE controller on the VT8235 chipset provides IDE HDD/
CD-ROM with PIO, Bus Master and Ultra DMA133/100/66/33
operation modes.
* Can connect up to four IDE devices.


* Realtek ALC650 6-channel audio
- SPDIF out (through S-Bracket only)
Circle SpotOn-Board Peripherals
On-Board Peripherals include:
- 1 floppy port supports 2 FDDs with 360K, 720K, 1.2M, 1.44M
and 2.88Mbytes
- 2 serial ports (COM A + COM B)
- 1 parallel port supports SPP/EPP/ECP mode
- 1 IrDA connector for SIR/ASKIR/HPSIR
- 1 audio/game port
- 1 D-Bracket^(TM) pinheader
- 1 S-Bracket pinheader


* The mainboard BIOS provides "Plug & Play" BIOS which
detects the peripheral devices and expansion cards of the
board automatically.
* The mainboard provides a Desktop Management Interface
(DMI) function which records your mainboard specifications.


30.4 cm(L) x 23.5 cm(W) ATX Form Factor


6 mounting holes.

Special Functions

* USB Interface
- Supports USB 2.0 and downward compatible with USB 1.1
- 6 ports USB 2.0 (Rear x 2 / Front x 4)

* Bluetooth (KT3 Ultra2-BR)
- 1 bluetooth connector on-board for bluetooth module
connection (bluetooth module optional)

* Promise 20276 On-Board (KT3 Ultra2-R, KT3 Ultra2-BR)
- Supports ATA133 RAID 0 or 1
- The two ATA133 RAID connectors support hard disk drives
Note: Only two hard disk drives will adopt the RAID function.

I tried accessing Asus site but i keep getting a time out message so if anyone knows of a good Asus board that well give this MSI board a run for it's money maybe even over take it?

Also it has be hapening more and more often some boards can't support certain types of DDR such as 2700. Is this true? And what is the best way to go when it comes to DDR memory?

08-04-02, 10:20 AM
If your not going to overclock:
Asus A7V333, best default performance and stability, tons of features USB2.0, Firewire, RAID, 6 ch. audio etc.

If your into overclocking:
EpoX 8K3A+, this is not a motherboard......its an "Overclocking Weapon"....:cool:

08-04-02, 08:52 PM
This is my vote:

I like SIS boards, VIA is da devil :p

08-05-02, 01:33 PM
I like VIA boards; they run very stably, especially under Linux. The only problem with VIA boards are VIA drivers :mad:

Nixdisciple: if you have lots of coin, buy either the Soyo KT333 Dragon Ultra or the Chaintech 7VJL APOGEE. Both have excellent reputations for overclocking and got good reviews. If you don't have a lot of coin, the Abit KX7-333 also looks like a good buy.

Personally, the best mobo I've had to date is the Abit KT7A (I know, it's ancient, but it works :) )

08-05-02, 04:04 PM
I might be in a positiont to buy a new motherboard in the coming weeks. I've used IWILL motherboards with great results. I'm thinking about getting the IWILL XP333. Has anyone heard anything (good or bad) about this board?


08-06-02, 08:53 AM
IWill arent really contenders these days, using the old AliMagik chipsets....

Id say if you think on-board is a dirty word, go for the KX7-333R :D it overclocks, and like all Abit boards, works sooo well... my KT7A-RAID served me well, and for that i got another Abit...

However, looking into it, given the choice again it would be between the Asus A7V333, KX7-333R, or that Epox....

08-06-02, 10:32 AM
my vote, if your gonna overclock, kx7-333r.the Epox is a great board 2 but doesnt have quite the bandwith of the kx7

08-07-02, 05:43 AM
Personally, I'd go for one of the Asus nForce offerings. I've gone off VIA recently, what with the PCI throughput bug. I've heard the nForce boards allow you to overclock your FSB and RAM, but keep the PCI bus at 33Mhz, so if you want to OC, this may be worth considering. The nForce 415 boards have great on board sound thrown in as well...

08-07-02, 06:41 AM
nah nforce boards too old... wait for nforce2 or get KT333

08-07-02, 09:12 AM
iwill is showing a kt400 board now, its all over the hardware sites.
serial ata support and lots of features. i had a kk266 and that board rocked.

08-07-02, 09:19 AM
Originally posted by NeoGeo
nah nforce boards too old... wait for nforce2 or get KT333

If he wants to wait, then definitely nForce2. Or KT400 if VIA is preferred. As Clawhammer processors and boards will hopefully be shipping in around six months, if waitings the game, then that's where it's at...

08-07-02, 10:13 AM
yep... Nixdisciple, this thread should make your decision much easier...hehehe

08-07-02, 10:33 AM
anyone know right off hand if the nforce2 is is going to have fixed(locked) agp and pci buses.

08-07-02, 01:27 PM
The IWILL KT400 board has VIA on it, and the VIA stuff doesn't actually support 400 only 333...one of those bad naming things again.

I was mainly wanting to get a little more umph out of the system that I have. This would mainly allow for all the initial bugs to get worked out of the Hammer and resulting chipsets. If that is the case, then the wait until I upgrade to the Hmmer et. al will be a little longer than six months.


08-07-02, 11:35 PM
I have the Asus A7V333 and it run great and is very stable and I find that it overclocks well too,it has all the new features,but I am sure some of the other brands are just as good.I useally research some before I buy ,like looking in MaximumPC magizines and seeing there lab results and checking out different fourms and hope for the best when I buy it.

08-08-02, 12:05 PM
I've always had good luck with Abit boards. My KT7A served me wonderfully and my KR7A-RAID has been absolutely flawless, especially if you want to do light to moderate overclocking.

If you can wait a while I'd say go nForce2 - that board is going to rock the house. But if you need it now, I say Abit. Good boards, easy to set up and tweak for maximum performance. :)

08-09-02, 03:52 PM
I agree - try and hold out at least until Nforce2 comes out. Now's not the greatest time to grab a mobo as newer designs are just around the corner.

I'd been using an Epox 8KHA (KT266) for quite some time but wanted a mobo that could take an XP proc (my rev of the board said "no"), so I dished out a whole $59 for a Shuttle AK31A. Works awesome with my oc'ed XP 1600+ and oc'ed GeForce 3 Ti 200 but I didn't to spend too much as I knew Nforce2 was coming.

08-18-02, 07:02 AM
I've been running an Abit NV7-133R motherboard for a few months without any problems.

Its stable with plenty of features and I'll be happy with what I've got for a while...