nVIDIA GeForce 6150 motherboards pack in a lot of
features that the AMD Athlon64 integrated graphics market has been
seriously lacking. The chipset is destined to find resonance with system
integrators looking to assemble affordable PCs based on the K8 architecture and with consumers who have similar goals. Core logic from nVidia has come a long way, and GeForce 6150 motherboards with their integrated Geforce 6 series GPU are being positioned at about half of what a high end nForce4 SLI motherboard will cost.
The Asus A8N-VM CSM motherboard looks like the perfect workstation/HTPC motherboard at first glance; onboard graphics with analog and DVI-D monitor outputs, and nVidia PureVideo High Definition MPEG-2/WMV9 Playback acceleration. The A8N-VM CSM supports all Socket 939 AMD Athlon64/FX/X2 processors on the market, and is built around two recent nVidia chipsets, the NVIDIA GeForce 6150 & nForce 430.
The board will support up to 4GB of dual channel PC3200 DDR400 RAM. Onboard features include IEEE 1394a, a 5.1 channel HDA (Azalia)/AC97 audio controller, Gigabit LAN and of course analog and DVI-D Geforce 6-series onboard video. Expansion is possible through PCI Express x16 and PCI Express x1 slots for high bandwidth devices and two 32 bit PCI slots for legacy devices.
The MicroATX form factor motherboard incorporates a full two channel IDE controller, and four SATA II ports for storage. Components are laid out well, so installation should be a snap. At the back of the Asus A8N-VM CSM are four USB2.0 ports, three audio headers, the Gigabit network and Firewire jacks, and Analog and DVI-D ports which connect directly to the Geforce 6 GPU.
Currently the Asus A8N-VM CSM
is the only GeForce 6150 and nForce 430 motherboard on the market to support
both analog and DVI-D output.
The onboard GeForce 6150 GPU will even accommodate dual monitors, which is a
great feature for business users who would otherwise need to install a stand
along graphics card for such functionality.
Note however that the DVI-D output is note quite the same as a DVI output. The DVI-D standard lacks four pins, and as such will not function with that spare DVI-to-analog converter you might have kicking around. If you plan to use dual monitors, one display must use an analog cable, and the other digital.