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Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 945PL Express Motherboard Review

Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 945PL Express Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 motherboard is an affordable Intel platform of complementary technologies for consumers on a budget. Best suited to the upcoming Conroe-L Celeron processor.
 77% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Gigabyte Nov 30 2006   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3

Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 Motherboard Highlights Gallery


The Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 motherboard has three 32-bit PCI, three PCI Express x1 slots and one PCI Express x16 videocard slot (in blue).
The High Definition audio header for the remaining surround sound channels is just to the left of the PCI Express x16 connector. The necessary bracket is an optional extra in with this budget board.


The four 'click-connect' SATA II connectors positively lock each SATA cable into position, reducing the chance of loose cables down the road. The Intel ICH7 southbridge supports a single IDE channel (two IDE devices). Various USB and and front panel connectors occupy this corner of the Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 motherboard. Neither USB2.0 bracket (in yellow) is included.


The 24-pin main ATX power connector is positioned just to the right of the DDR-2 memory slots. Up to 2GB of DDR2-533/400 memory can be installed on the GA-945PL-S3 motherboard. The CPU heatsink fan header is the 4-pin PWM type. Gigabyte colour coordinate the four DDR-2 DIMM slots to make it easier for you to setup dual channel DDR-2 memory in pairs.The 945PL Express chipset is cooled with a passive aluminum heatsink.


The LGA775 CPU heatsink and fan make use of a 4-pin Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) fan header that allows the motherboard BIOS to automatically scale fan speed to match heat load, so noise is kept to a minimum. The Intel 945PL chipset supports a 800/533MHz Front Side Bus, but 1066MHz FSB Core 2 Duo CPUs can be used - they just default to the 800MHz FSB and a lower clock speed. Not the ideal solution, but better than getting locked into buying a Pentium 4 or Pentium D CPU.


There is sufficient space next to the PCI Express x16 slot so a videocard can be installed with dual-slot heatsink, leaving two PCI express x1 connectors still useable. The CMOS battery and BIOS reset jumper are seen in the background.

Up next we'll be putting the Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 motherboard through a couple rounds of gaming and office oriented benchmarks, but first PCSTATS we toss our hat into the overclocking ring and see where this motherboard takes us...

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Contents of Article: Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3
 Pg 1.  Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 945PL Express Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  Intel 945PL Express and ICH7 Chipsets
 Pg 3.  — Gigabyte GA-945PL-S3 Motherboard Highlights Gallery
 Pg 4.  Overclocking a 945PL Board with Conroe
 Pg 5.  Test System Specs and Sysmark 2004 Benchmarks
 Pg 6.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Office Productivity, SiSoft Sandra
 Pg 7.  Motherboard Benchmarks: SuperPi, PCMark05
 Pg 8.  Motherboard Benchmarks: 3DMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 9.  Motherboard Benchmarks: FarCry, Doom 3, Quake 4
 Pg 10.  Intel 945PL Express Good for Core 2 Duo?

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