It's easy to see why so many people jumped
on the nForce2 bandwagon early on because the Asus A7N8X motherboard is an awesome performer! To top
things off, with a street price of $189 CDN it's also one of the least expensive
nForce2 motherboards on the market as well!
two A7N8X models, a much better equipped deluxe version which includes everything but the kitchen sink, and
the leaner version which is what we reviewed
Lean does not mean lousy though, the A7N8X test
sample did have 5.1 audio (AC'97 codec) and a 10/100 NIC as
If that's not enough for you, with the money you
save you can make good use of those PCI devices. The board also supports up to a
maximum of 3GB PC1600/2100/2700/3200 DDR memory and any 200/266/333 MHz based
The layout of the A7N8X is awesome, there
is nothing that will get in the way of the PCI devices, and the board is very
well labelled. Everything from the Clear CMOS jumper to the front panel LED's
are labelled. I also personally like the two fan headers above the AGP port -
it just makes the lives of overclockers and enthusiasts that much easier.
I don't really
understand Asus's AGP warning LED system. It's supposes to warn users that they have installed
a 3.3V AGP videocard, but that's not really possible with the 4x AGP lock. I guess it
sounds good though, and it's one more thing the marketing guys can
use on the box.
The board we
tested did not hold the multiplier very well for some
unknown reason - often times it would boot with the default multiplier of the AthlonXP
3000+ instead of the one we selected. Hopefully Asus will release
a BIOS update that resolves this issue soon. If you're in the market for a no frills performance
nForce2 motherboard, give the Asus A7N8X a quick look over. It may just be to
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