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DFI CS65 SC i815 Motherboard Review

DFI CS65 SC i815 Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The Intel i815 chipset can be considered as the true successor of the renowned Intel 440BX chipset. Starting from the 810, Intel has shifted its position from the standard north/south bridge design in favour of what they like to call Accelerated Hub Architecture, or AHA for short. Under this particular design, there are 3 individual hubs: the Graphics and Memory Controller Hub (GMCH), the I/O Controller Hub (ICH) and the Firmware Hub (FWH). The GMCH and the ICH are connected through an internal bus, which offers a bandwidth of 266MB/sec (twice as fast as the PCI).
 90% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: DFI Jan 03 2001   P. Masrani  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > DFI CS65 SC

Sound Quality

The CS65 SC is equipped with Analog Devices AD1881A AC97 audio CODEC. According to specifications (found on Analog Devices site), this codec features a 90db S/N ratio, 0.02 THD (total harmonic distortion) and 80db DAC crosstalk. It also features a 4 bit multibit D/A along with a Data Direct Scrambling process to minimize noise and idle tones.

This codec does not provide support for A3D or EAX. After listening to a number of tunes, I can conclude that this board offers a rather decent quality of sound for an integrated solution. We did find a few flaws with audio output, such as: the bass wasn't deep enough and the middle frequencies sound a bit overwhelming. However, the good part is that there's little sound interference at all and sounds quite clean for an integrated solution. The board's sound output is definitely good enough for any low/middle priced PC speakers. The software bundle included Yamaha's S YXG50 software synthesizer and some other useful Yamaha applications.

The CS 65SC supports FSB modification through the system BIOS as most boards do. However, its settings are not very configurable because we must use the board's FSB jumpers to enable higher bus settings (setting jumpers for a 66MHz CPU enables BIOS FSB's up to 80MHz while selecting a 100MHz CPU enables all supported FSB's up to 129MHz, selecting 133MHz CPU enables all supported BIOS settings).

Our reference Celeron 566MHz could not be overclocked on the tested board at all. Even if we selected a 75MHz bus, the system would refuse to post. The same processor can be clocked reliably at almost 900MHz on other motherboards with the use of voltage tweaks. This was somewhat expected since DFI does not seem to be building boards for die hard overclockers.

Our board is an engineering sample and DFI hasn't released any newer BIOS updates since then. So basically, the overclocking capabilities look very poor up to now and hopefully this situation will improve. For what its worth, there are a number of FSB speeds to play around with and oddly enough, there are 3 fan connectors present for cooling purposes.


All in all,The DFI CS65 SC is an extremely stable board with top notch performance, hassle free installation, very good layout, decent sound quality, and best of all the CS65 SC is much cheaper than other i815 based motherboards. However, this board does not really offer anything special over its competition, hence we can say that you get what you pay for.

This product is an excellent choice for users who don't plan to do any serious overclocking but are in search for a trouble free board with excellent performance at a very reasonable price. The board worked like a charm from the beginning. System integrators will like this board because it's definitely a mature product, has an integrated 3D accelerator, an AC97 CODEC, a decent software bundle and a low price.

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Contents of Article: DFI CS65 SC
 Pg 1.  DFI CS65 SC i815 Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  Installation and Testing
 Pg 3.  Gaming Performance
 Pg 4.  — Sound Quality

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   11 / 21 / 2019 | 6:14AM
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