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Iwill WS133 i810E Motherboard Review

Iwill WS133 i810E Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: For the entry-level / budget conscious user, manufacturers have provided a solution to this market in the form of integrated motherboards. With onboard graphics, audio (usually in the form of an AC97 audio CODEC) and at times including RAID, SCSI, or an Ethernet solution, all-in-one motherboards have been accepted and implemented on a relatively wide scale.
 70% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Iwill May 18 2000   P. Masrani  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Iwill WS133

BIOS and Conclusion



The WS133's firmware exhibits a number of features that are commonly available on other boards. Though only the name is unique, "IWill Smart Setting" allows the user to modify CPU/SDRAM clock speeds depending upon the corresponding jumper setting (the table is found on the previous page). So although you can modify CPU/SDRAM frequencies, having it depend on a jumper does not allow the flexibility that most overclockers want. Something not found on many boards out there is the ability to control the processors speed in event the CPU temperature attains its default protection point.

This allows the CPU to run slower (at user configurable speeds in the range of 12.5% - 87.5% of maximum CPU performance) in order to lower the core temperature. A really useful utility for overclockers who want to maintain the life of their CPU. Unfortunately, the WS133 does not have the facility for modifying CPU core voltage from the BIOS itself (this is taken care of through jumpers).

Monitoring of various voltages is made available either through monitoring software (included on the CD) or through the BIOS itself courtesy of the Winbond 83627 HF-AW chip. To be precise, the WS133 monitors 7 voltages, 3 fan speeds and CPU temperature. In addition, the CPU temperature is read from its on die thermal diode instead of a thermistor. This naturally, adds accuracy to temperature readings.

During POST, a couple of hot keys are listed that give you access to fail safe defaults, optimized performance defaults, clock speed configuration, as well as the Award BIOS flash program that is built into its BIOS. On the motherboard itself are two small green LED's, one is to designate that the system is receiving power and the other denotes DIMM power reception. The latter is quite useful in STR situations.

It seems as though Iwill has thought of it all. Being an 810E board, Iwill has implemented options for the user with regard to the on-board display adapter. One can change CAS latency as well as setting the video memory bus speed at either 100MHz or 133MHz (default). Though the default CAS latency value is 3, you can attempt to tweak it and lower down to 2.

The usual power management options such as STR (Suspend-to-RAM), STD (Suspend-to-Disk), Wake-on-LAN / mouse, etc. The manual provides a very well detailed "how to" on implementing the STD option along with a utility for that on the CD.

Conclusion

Features, features and more features. This is probably the most loaded 810E-based board on the market today. Though graphics performance leaves something to be desires (as is the case will ALL 810 boards), it overclocking potential, stability and overall system performance make up for it tremendously. Of course a board like this would certainly suit general purpose as well as business users perfectly.

The only market the WS133 excludes are hard core gamers, period. Occasional gamers should not find the WS133 lacking in graphics performance at all! Its 6 PCI slots ensure that you will never lack in terms of expandability and support for CuMine CPUs and the Cyrix III's should give you peace of mind for future upgrades.

A quality product? I would say so.

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Contents of Article: Iwill WS133
 Pg 1.  Iwill WS133 i810E Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  First Impressions / Installation
 Pg 3.  Winstone Performance and Gaming Performance
 Pg 4.  Overclocking and Stability
 Pg 5.  — BIOS and Conclusion

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