Doom 3 is
the most advanced OpenGL game to date, it takes advantage of the latest
videocard technology and pushes the processing power of the CPU to its absolute
limits. At its highest setting Ultra quality, texture sizes pass the 500MB mark
which means even tomorrows videocards will have a hard time running everything.
The framerates in the game itself are locked at 60 fps so anything above that point is
wasted. Each test is run three times and with the third run being
Doom 3 is
very videocard dependant, which is why we make a point of benchmarking
motherboards at such low detail and resolution. Still, it's nice to
see that performance figures are is good.
K8N Neo2 Platinum certainly looks like a modern motherboard; its DIMM slots are
above the CPU socket, and it has one heck of an core logic
chipset. From our time testing the MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum we came to
notice a few quirks... For starters, the third and fourth Serial
ATA headers are up next to the CPU socket (why?)and the Clear CMOS jumper
is too close to the last PCI slot. These things are trivial,
biggest issue with the motherboard resides with confusing labels on the DDR slots. As the labelling seems to indicate, to enable the dual channel
DDR memory controller install memory into slots one and three, or two
and four. This is incorrect. After reading the users manual it becomes clear that what MSI is actually discribing is installing memory in slots one and two, and three and four. Or in other words one DIMM on channel A and one DIMM on channel B, for dual channel setup. Most other manufacturers use DIMM colours
to coordinate which two slots should be used. MSI on the other hand uses them to
represent the two 64 bit channels.
Ultimately, the performance we were looking for from the MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum is
there, and it's excellent. Considering the benchmarks we tossed at it, the K8N
Neo2 was more than able to keep up with the other K8T800 Pro and nForce3
of overclocking? Well the results were a bit frustrating,
but overclocking can sometimes be like that. Given the only real option for socket 939 Athlon64
and AthlonFX platforms are based upon VIA and nVidia chipsets, the MSI K8N Neo2
Platinum certainly makes a good case for itself. It is packed with features
thanks to the nForce3 Ultra, it is enthusiast friendly, and it is stable.
If it had PCI Express it would be darn near impossible to beat!
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