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Biostar TPower I45 Intel P45 Express Motherboard Review

Biostar TPower I45 Intel P45 Express Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: I don't know what magic Biostar engineers infused into the TPower I45 motherboard to make it an overclocking monster, but reaching +600MHz FSB with this board is a real possibility!
 90% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Biostar Aug 17 2008   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Biostar TPower I45

Intel P45 Express and ICH10 Chipsets

With great fanfair the world was introduced to Intel's 4 Series chipsets at Computex 2008. The Intel P45 Express chipset has been touted as the newest "performance engine for mainstream PCs", basically meaning that it like all the other 4-Series chipsets, is optimized for Intel's latest batch of 45nm microprocessors. As Intel puts it, "45 + 45".

The Intel P45 Express replaces the P35 Express as mainstream/performance chipset, however the change is more evolutionary than a dramatic shift. The most visible changes are the inclusion of the PCI Express 2.0 spec, the ICH10 series southbridge, and unofficial support of Front Side Bus speeds of 1600MHz for "Yorkfield" quad-core processors. The Intel X48 Express officially supports FSB 1600MHz processors, but many Intel P45 boards do too (check the mobo specs to be certain). In most other respects the feature lists of P45 and P35 chipsets are nearly identical.

The new 4-series chipsets, which include the P45, G45, P43 and G43 Express variants, are paired with the Intel ICH10 Southbridge.


The Intel P45 Express Northbridge chipset.

The Intel P45 Express supports Intel socket 775 processors with a Front Side Bus of 800/1066/1333MHz, and incorporates a memory controller that accomodates up to 8GB of DDR3 1333 MHz or DDR2 1066 MHz speed memory. It has sufficient PCI Express lanes to accommodate a single videocard with 16GB/s bandwidth, or two videocards running in Crossfire with 8GB/s bandwidth each. There continue to be six PCI Express lanes associated with the ICH10/R Southbridge. Between the Intel P45 Express Express Northbridge and ICH10/R Southbridge is a dedicated 2GB/s Direct Media Interface (DMI).

The ICH10R supports six 3GB/s Serial ATA II channels (RAID modes 0, 1, 5 and 10) as well a 7.1 channel Intel high definition audio, 12 USB 2.0 ports, six PCI Express x1 lanes, and an integrated Intel GigABIT MAC that runs through the PCI Express bus specific to this chipset.

Intel Chipset Feature Breakdown
Intel P45 Express Express Intel P35 Express
CPU LGA775 Core 2 Duo/Quad LGA775 Core 2 Duo/Quad
Front Side Bus (FSB) 1333/1066/800 MHz 1333/1066/800 MHz
Intel Fast Memory Access Yes Yes
Dual Channel Memory Support DDR2 1066/800/667
DDR3 1333(unofficial)/1066/800
DDR2 1066/800/667
DDR3 1333(unofficial)/1066/800
Maximum Memory Capacity 8GB 8GB
Integrated Graphics - -
PCI Express x16 PCI Express 2.0 1x16, or 2x8 PCI Express 1x16
PCI Express x1 6 6
Intel Matrix Storage Technology RAID 0,1,5,10 RAID 0,1,5,10
SATA/IDE HDD 6/0 6/0
SATA Speed 3Gb/s 3Gb/s
Southbridge ICH10/R ICH9/R
USB 2.0 Ports 12 12
PCI Masters 4 4
Audio High Definition Audio High Definition Audio

Parallel IDE has been dropped completely, so board makers rely upon a stand alone IDE controller. Without this there would be no way to hook up a legacy DVD-ROM or HDD. A block chart of the Intel P45 Express chipset's major features is illustrated above.

Now that we covered all of that, it's time for some overclocking action!

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Contents of Article: Biostar TPower I45
 Pg 1.  Biostar TPower I45 Intel P45 Express Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  Motherboard Highlights Gallery
 Pg 3.  — Intel P45 Express and ICH10 Chipsets
 Pg 4.  Overclocking Test Report: FSB 575MHz!
 Pg 5.  BIOS Tweaking Tools & Test Specs
 Pg 6.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Sysmark 2007
 Pg 7.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Sandra XII 2008
 Pg 8.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PCMark Vantage
 Pg 9.  Motherboard Benchmarks: 3DMark Vantage, 3DMark06, SuperPi
 Pg 10.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Quake 4, FEAR
 Pg 11.  Maximum Motherboard Overclocking Chart

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