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View Full Version : Good nforce 4 Ultra or nforce 4 SLI Motherboard for A64 3000+/3500+/3700+


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KickAssCop
11-16-05, 05:24 AM
Well here is the deal, I have had bad luck with my first endeavor into the A64 world and my MSI Neo2 Plat mobo fried second day of use. It has since then gone for repairs and I have been nothing short of miserable. After a stroke of luck I can now order something from the states. Now the deal is that that something has gotta be stable. And I am talking rock solid intel stable, not finicky, work for 60 days and crap on your face stable.

Anyways I have cut the choices down to anything below 130 USD (+ 5 ship) from newegg.com.

I also want to overclock the crap outta my A64 3000+ since its a venice E6. Anyways I digress. Thus far, here is what I am looking at:

nforce 4, nforce 4 ultra and nfroce 4 SLI chipsets. In ULi I am liking the ASRock Dual SATA2 939 motherboard but it has very limited overclocking options that I heard about. I will be pairing the motherboard w/ a 7800GTX OC from BFG.

Options thus far are in no particular order:

1) ASUS A8N-SLI Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 SLI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813131524)
2) DFI LANPARTY UT nF4 Ultra-D Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813136152) NO LONGER AN OPTION
3) ABIT KN8 Ultra Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813127222)
4) ABIT AN8-ULTRA Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813127212) NO LONGER AN OPTION
5) ABIT AN8 SLI Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 SLI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813127207) NO LONGER AN OPTION
6) EPoX EP-9NPA+Ultra Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813123236)
7) EPoX EP-9NPAJ Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813123243)
8) ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 Socket 939 ULi M1695 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E16813157081) NO LONGER AN OPTION
9) eVGA 133-K8-NF41 Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 SLI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813188002)

Now there are a few more like the ASUS A8N-E and the like but why do all of these motherboards have issues. I have used gigabyte boards for intel in the past and they have let me achieve insane clocks on intel. For AMD I heard they are not good so I did not consider them, but I am looking for a board that just works, not cheap crap put together to work for like 3 months and then die on me.

Anyways, out of the above, I keep on leaning towards the ASRock one but now since I cannot pair it with an A64 3700+ as I had intended to, I am looking for something that will let me overclock further.

Heard some nice things about EpoX mobos but their support seems to be horrible. Not that I will be able to get support since I am getting it shipped all the way from States. So which is my best safest bet out of the above.

Here is what I know.
1) Board is excellent, had problems in the past but the new ones have them ironed out. Does the chipset fan still fail?
2) DFI boards are excellent when they work but the constant issues that I read makes me grow weary of them.
3) Heard a lot of good things about this board but some say their sound and ehternet ports die? wtf?
4-5) I was really leaning towards ABIT but recently heard that they are not upto the mark and the heatpipe tech may not just work in my country since here temp hits around 40-45C in summers.
6) Again heard that its a dog overclocker and since I have a 3000+ that can hit 2.35 GHz on neo4, I would like to achieve similar or better results, but again heard, that company is not too good and boards get faulty after a period of time.
7) What was the difference between nforce 4 or nforce 4 ultra again?
8) Not much overclocking options, and I am doing no voltmods.

There is also the evga SLi motherboard that I missed because I bought the 7800GTX too early and after 2 days this deal became reavailable. Otherwise that would've been my choice, but is it worth it to purchase it as a retail motherboard.

Sorry for the long post, but I require some serious data here.

Gorion
11-16-05, 09:53 AM
I've always been an Asus fan but they are more known for stability than overclocking. I would say the DFI would be your best bet if OC is what you are after, and if you don't see SLI in your future.

zoomy942
11-16-05, 09:57 AM
i gotta go with the Abit sli. i have it, and it lets me run a FSB of 300, and yoyu can never say SLI isnt on your future, cause you just never know:)

|MaguS|
11-16-05, 10:00 AM
I would suggest looking into the eVGA Motherboard, While mine died on me I still loved it. It overclocked great and was very stable untill the bios got messed up.

If I had to choose from the list provided I would have to go with the DFI, Im not a big Abit or Asus fan. I find Asus to be over priced for decent hardware...

Salamandar
11-16-05, 10:34 AM
You should take a look at MSI Nforce4 based line.
I just got an MSI k8N SLI Platinum and I'm amazed by how stable fast and feature rich this mobo is.
Yet I need to get a new VGA card to do some gaming.
:thumbsup:

KickAssCop
11-16-05, 10:38 AM
Well I am not a fan of MSI. I have nothing but bad experiences with MSI. My K8N Neo Plat has a memory slot that made two of my kingston sticks go bad (tested on my intel setups, were fine and giving BSODs on MSI). My second experience with MSI K8N Neo2 Plat resulted in a busted motherboard and I have heard my friends say that it has voltage issues. So no MSI for me.

Salamandar
11-16-05, 11:07 AM
Well I am not a fan of MSI. I have nothing but bad experiences with MSI. My K8N Neo Plat has a memory slot that made two of my kingston sticks go bad (tested on my intel setups, were fine and giving BSODs on MSI). My second experience with MSI K8N Neo2 Plat resulted in a busted motherboard and I have heard my friends say that it has voltage issues. So no MSI for me.

If you came to me 2 years ago and say these things on MSI products I would accept it, but lately I've used many MSI mobos and not one gave me a problem.
They have great components,stability,performance and overclocking.
Maybe you had a bad luck or something.
Any way, Products from ABit are also amazing, DFI seems to get people's eyes on their mobos but be carefull they are picky when it comes to RAM and PSU.

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 05:08 AM
How is the asrock Dual 939 motherboard with both PCI and AGP slots and looks that it can run that pretty well. Is that a worthwhile purchase?

chowells
11-18-05, 07:52 AM
I had a MSI K8N SLI board which died within about an hour of building the machine. Their tech support was insultingly useless.

Replaced it with an Asus A8N SLI which I'm very happy with.

ViN86
11-18-05, 10:45 AM
you seem like an overclocker. in that case, go with the DFI ;)

the asrock isnt a bad option. lets you upgrade to PCIe when youre ready, or use an old AGP card and what not for the time being. also, it will allow you to upgrade to the M2 socket when it hits.

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 12:16 PM
you seem like an overclocker. in that case, go with the DFI ;)

the asrock isnt a bad option. lets you upgrade to PCIe when youre ready, or use an old AGP card and what not for the time being. also, it will allow you to upgrade to the M2 socket when it hits.
I would really like to try out DFI but after the many horror stories of cold boot, random restarts, memory issues I am weary of it since, I will be importing this all the way from America and will not be able to claim any warranty on it or anything. I want a motherboard that just works, and thus far, all of the above mentioned boards are fairly decent clockers.

Riptide
11-18-05, 12:26 PM
The A8N-SLI is tried and true. Not to mention cheap. And it's one of the few SLI boards that will accomodate 512GTX's in SLI with room between the cards for air flow.

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 02:04 PM
Well still have time, so more opinions would help. I am also leaning towards ASUS A8N SLi and am torn between that and ASROCK DUAL 939.

ViN86
11-18-05, 02:08 PM
yea, the asus board is pretty solid. one of the first SLI boards, its got a lot of the bugs worked out.

crainger
11-18-05, 04:22 PM
I just bought an AN8-SLI and I'm very happy with it. Nice and silent due to heatpipe chipset cooler. Plus theres ample room around plug, sockets, slot, ports you name it. Only problem I had was that its a very tight fit in my SuperLANboy. That CoolerMaster Stacker is calling my name.

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 10:50 PM
Excellent feedback people. Abit boards are looking pretty solid too. My friend had the ASUS A8N SLi Deluxe and he had loads of problems with it. I do not know what to trust anymore. Damn!

Rytr
11-18-05, 11:04 PM
I have used the Gigabyte, DFI, and EVGA SLI boards. The EVGA is a good price/performance option. We did a review on it here: http://www.nvnews.net/reviews/evga_nforce4_sli_edition_mainboard/index.shtml
The only problem was with the manual on setting up dual channel which EVGA quickly corrected as noted in the update of the review. Solid stable board with a simple SLI setup solution. I run it 24/7 since the review with no problems.

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 11:13 PM
Hmm.. I would love to get that board but isn't it overpriced like 145 bucks shipped or something. Strictly under 130 budget now since I bought a 7800GTX.

Rytr
11-18-05, 11:19 PM
$129 plus 4.99 S&H from newegg.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813188002&ATT=Motherboards+AMD&CMP=OTC-pr1c3grabb3r

KickAssCop
11-18-05, 11:24 PM
Looks like a winner too.

Muppet
11-18-05, 11:36 PM
I just bought an AN8-SLI and I'm very happy with it. Nice and silent due to heatpipe chipset cooler. Plus theres ample room around plug, sockets, slot, ports you name it. Only problem I had was that its a very tight fit in my SuperLANboy. That CoolerMaster Stacker is calling my name.
Great choice in case there :D

KickAssCop
11-19-05, 04:30 PM
Well after some more research I have edited out the first post of this thread to ask for more questions. Thanks.

DFI removed because I can't get value ram to work on it.
ASRock removed because of limited overclocking options.
Abit passive cooled motherboards removed since temps in my country hit 40-45 C in summer, and I want motherboard to last.

Gord0n
11-21-05, 01:10 PM
Search some more reviews. In newer BIOS i hear that the asrock board has very decent OC abilities. I personally dont put too much faith in the M2 support. I dont see how it could possible be as fast as a native M2 socket board. But for a 939 board at the price point, i dont think thier is any better (keep in mind i said at the same price point. :)

KickAssCop
11-22-05, 01:20 AM
I am really leaning towards the Epox 9npa+ ultra motherboard. Any information/users here?

gjwild
11-29-05, 05:57 PM
I myself have just went through this same scenario, reading reviews and searching the web for my upgrade from the Via chipset (Abit AV8).
I finally decided on the Epox 9npa+ ultra, ordered it last night from ZZF.
I have heard good things about this board so I thought I would try it.
I have a 3200+ that overclocks well so I'm hoping for the best.

The one thing I thought of after I ordered the board unfortunately was that my PSU may not work w/the nforce 4 chipset. I'm concerned about the PSU connection switching from 20 pin to 24 pin.