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DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B Motherboard Review

DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B Motherboard Review  - PCSTATS
Abstract: Now that it's our time to test the DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B, I can tell you my expectations are raised pretty high.
 100% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: DFI Jan 15 2004   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B

Accessories and PC Transpo

As mentioned earlier, the green sockets and connectors are all UV reactive, which means they glow under UV light. In addition to this, the accompanying rounded floppy/IDE cables are encased in a UV reactive translucent plastic, so they also glow under UV light. Pretty cool when everything is all hooked up and glowing!

The rounded cables feature metal braiding on the inside, which A) looks kinda cool, and B) just might provide some decent EMI shielding... or not. I'm not too certain if that is really necessary.

Along side all of this gear, is a FrontX Drive bay; a device which brings ports to the front of the case so you don't have to reach around to get at your audio, fireware, or USB sockets. It's a pretty basic device, but one that gets the job done, and feels relatively well built.

And finally we get to the PC Transpo case carrying strap, which in my opinion is the coolest "extra" that's included into the LANParty package.

I remember a few of my non-computer friends calling me a geek because I use to drag my PC to my friend's place to play games on weekends during university.... If I had one of these case straps it certainly would have made my LAN Parting days much easier.

The 'PC Transpo,' as DFI call it, has a pre molded grip which is comfortable to grasp. If you've got a steel case full of drives which is too heavy to carry, there is a shoulder strap as well. The PC Transpo also includes two pockets, one which is deep enough to hold your keyboard.

I would have liked to have had a velcro lock on both the pockets as it's possible something could fall out during Transportation. Other then that, I'd just like to tip our hats to DFI for including such a useful accessory with their motherboard.

While there are plenty of things we've found really handy and useful on the DFI LanParty NF2 Ultra B, there is always room for improvement. Specifically, I would have liked an active cooling solution on the Nvidia NF2 northbridge instead of the passive heatsink. If I'm overclocking, an overheating chipset can hold me back. It was nice to see that DFI was kind enough to place a passive heatsink on the MCP-T Southbridge though. That chipset gets very hot during operation.

While it's great that DFI plans for the future with its four Serial ATA ports, we would have liked to see them include an additional IDE controller as well. Regular IDE hard drives are still a lot more popular than Serial ATA drives.

Firewire (aka IEEE 1394) compatibility is great, but the headers could have been placed in a better location. Having them just above the first PCI slot means that the cables will most likely run in front of the videocard's HSF. It makes it awkward when you need to get at them, and I'm sure we're all a little cautious about anything which could potentially obstruct the airflow of a $500 videocard. Up next, socket heatsink clearances and overclocking results.

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Contents of Article: DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B
 Pg 1.  DFI LANParty NF2 Ultra B Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  Plenty of Features to keep the Enthusiast Happy
 Pg 3.  — Accessories and PC Transpo
 Pg 4.  Heatsink Socket Clearances
 Pg 5.  NF2 Ultra B BIOS
 Pg 6.  CMOS Reloaded and Overclocking
 Pg 7.  System Spec's and Benchmarks: Sysmark, Winstone
 Pg 8.  Benchmarks: Winbench99, SiSoft Sandra 2004
 Pg 9.  Benchmarks: PCMark2002, 3DMark2001
 Pg 10.  Benchmarks: Quake III Arena, UT2003
 Pg 11.  The Ultimate AthlonXP board?

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