Gigabyte P4 Titan 8PENXP i865PE Motherboard Review
Competition has always benefitted the end user because it
has the effect of driving down prices, and typically increasing the number of
features that come standard. With the upsurge in the tech sector these last few
months, competition has reached a fevered pitch, and the goal is your hard
earned spending money. As the movers and shakers shell out product after
product, Gigabyte, who are one of the larger manufacturers in the industry, have
been quietly making waves amongst the hardware community.
One such example is the P4 Titan 8PENXP which is based on
the mainstream i865PE Springdale chipset. The i865PE chipset has shown
that it's a very powerful solution, rival to Intel's i875P in terms of performance! With
that in mind, and the relatively low price, it's no wonder manufacturers
have multiple boards based on the highly successful i865PE
Intel CSA network interface offers advantages over other GbE solutions
which can saturate the PCI bus.|
But with so
much competition, how does Gigabyte separate
itself from the rest? Well, for starters the Gigabyte 8PENXP motherboard
is possibly one of the most equipped i865PE motherboards on the market.
features of the board consist of Serial ATA/Serial ATA RAID, Ultra
133 IDE RAID, IEEE 1394, 5.1 audio, Intel CSA enabled Gigabit LAN, dual
BIOS's and Gigabyte's special DPS2 (Dual Power System).
If you need
in another device, the five PCI slots and lone 8x
AGP Pro Port should be sufficient. The motherboard can support Northwood-based Pentium 4
processors running on a 400/533/800 MHz FSB and can handle up to 4GB of dual channel
PC1600/2100/2700/3200 non ECC DDR RAM.
All Gigabyte motherboards are blue in
colour, and as you an see they like to colour coordinate the system headers and
connectors. The GA-8PENXP is a larger board so you may have problems fitting it
into those smaller cramped Mid Tower ATX cases, of course that's expect with all
the on board features.
The layout of the 8PENXP
is good - you're not going to have to remove the videocard when you install
system memory! The main ATX, floppy and main IDE channels are in their most
ideal location to the right of the DIMM slots. Gigabyte did a great job at
placing all the headers (USB, IEEE 1394, etc) at the bottom of the motherboard.
This way they do not interfere with any of the other system devices.
Gigabyte brings customer care to another level,
they don't just colour code the front panel headers, they also indicate the
positive value's as well! How many times have you put together a system only to
open up the box again so you can make the Power LED light up?
The 8PENXP's PCB is very well labelled, newbies
shouldn't have a single problem attaching another system device or finding out
what any given header does.
Gigabyte certainly had a lot of
foresight when they decided to equip the 8PENXP with an additional IDE RAID
controller! With Serial ATA HDD's still difficult to find (at least around here) and with most
users still on regular parallel IDE, it only makes sense to include another IDE
Gigabyte has probably the best software bundle of
all motherboards. They include Norton Internet Security 2003 with their 8PENXP
and that consists of Norton AntiVirus 2003, Norton Personal Firewall, Norton
Privacy Control, Norton Spam Alert and Norton Parental Control. Nice to see
some useful utilities bundled for a change.
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