Soltek 75KV2 KT133 Motherboard
The fruits brought forth from AMD's newest line of
processors, namely the Duron and the "Thunderbird", not only delivered excellent performance at a very
low price, but also boasted of a tremendous potential for overclocking.
Since the release of these two chips,
various benchmarks across the web praise this "dynamic duo" for their ability
to overclock at speeds of 50% 60% (and at times more) over the manufacturers
rated specification. Thanks to a manual CPU multiplier adjustment present on
select motherboards, overclockers have been no less than delighted at what these
two processors can accomplish.
However in the initial period prior to the launch of the
Duron and "Thunderbird", looking for a motherboard which sports such a
multiplier adjustment was rather difficult. Board makers were hesitant as they
did not want to provide for any "accidental" damage that overclocking may cause.
However, slowly but surely, main board manufacturers
began to incorporate this feature onto their products as a rather substantial
demand for it was introduced.
Naturally, Soltek responded by releasing
the answer to an overclocker's desire the Soltek 75KV2 X. The KV2 X is the latest model of their
already well established Socket A based line of motherboards which started with
their Soltek 75KV.
Interestingly enough, the phrase "same... yet different" applies very
well to Soltek's first Socket A board and the one under scrutiny in this
And though the two boards are indeed quite similar, there are
additions on the 75KV2 X which were left out on the original 75KV. Let's take a
look at the specs and see.
Based upon the VIA
Apollo Pro KT133 chipset
694X Northbridge + 686B Southbridge
Support for ATA/100 Support for AGP 4X and AGP Pro cards
168 pin 3.3V DIMM sockets
5 PCI / 1 ISA / 1 AGP Pro slot(s)
DIP switch adjustments for Vio and multiplier adjustments
Factor (220mm x 305mm)
2 + 2 USB ports
Support for Vcore adjustments
Integrated AC97 Audio CODEC
with VD Tech (Voice Diagnosis Technology)
The 75KV2 X is one of
the first motherboards released in the world with the substitution of the
686A Southbridge for the newer 686B revision. The primary
difference between the two chips is the addition of ATA/100 support in the
"686B". Aside from that change, both chips are pretty much one and the
As with the
earlier Soltek Socket A boards, this one also comes with an AGP Pro slot.
As board makers are focusing more upon entry level DIYers, adding
a bit of simplicity in terms of usage and installation is very much called for.
With this in mind, Soltek devised a rather unique way of diagnosing a number of
installation errors. VD Tech, or Voice Diagnosis Technology, is designed to
playback a predefined error message (depending on the nature of the error)
through a voice in 4 different languages (English, Chinese, Spanish and
Japanese). You can select toggle the language through a set of on board jumpers.
In case you do commit an error on installation, the following error messages
will be presented on bootup...
1. "No memory
2. "Please check memory module"
"Please clear CMOS setting"
4. "Please check the video
5. "Please check hard disk cable or
As you can see, these are rather basic messages and
experienced assemblers probably will not need them. However, for beginners,
VD Tech is more of a useful tool than a luxury.
Soltek's decision to include a wonderful software package is
certainly welcome. With the 75KV2 X comes bundled Norton Ghost, Norton Antivirus
2000 and a copy of Winfax which makes for a rather decent mix of useful
software. In addition, Soltek has included 2 additional USB inputs which are
designed to occupy a single cabinet slot. Not wanting to overlook even the
smallest details, Soltek has also added a thermal sensor to the bundle. All in
all, the extra goodies do make for a good package overall.