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Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI Motherboard Review
Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
The GA-K8N Ultra-SLI includes an additional four channel Serial ATA/RAID controller, two Gigabit NICs, IEEE 1394b, 7.1-channel audio, SPDIF in/out...
 82% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Gigabyte Mar 08 2005   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI

Lots of good useful features!

If you're looking to jump on the SLI bandwagon, the Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI might be exactly what the doctor ordered. Using the same PCB as the higher end GA-K8NXP-SLI, the GA-K8N Ultra-SLI supports all the usual goodies such as Gigabit network interface, an additional Silicon Image Sil3114 Serial ATA/RAID controller, a 7.1-channel audio codec, IEEE 1394b and of course Gigabyte's dual BIOS feature.

Like all Gigabyte motherboards, the GA-K8N Ultra-SLI is very easy to use and novice users shouldn't have a problem installing this motherboard. The layout is extremely user friendly and it seems like the Gigabyte engineers spent a lot of time trying to make everything perfect.

We have two minor complaints about the GA-K8N Ultra-SLI's construction. First we found the DIMM slots a bit close to each other. As they are, memory with larger heatspreaders like Corsair's PRO or Xpert lines might not sit 100% straight although this did not affect operation in our experience. Second, it's well known that the nForce4 chipset generates a lot of heat and the passively cooled NF4-SLI on the GA-K8N Ultra-SLI motherboard gets extremely hot. Better not have any cables in contact with the heatsink, otherwise you might be in a load of trouble!

The performance of the Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI was good overall, although the board lagged slightly behind in 3D applications mainly due to slightly lower memory bandwidth. With nVIDIA finally releasing drivers capable of running SLI in all games, the SLI "excitement meter" is definitely on the rise again. With that in mind the Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI is a good motherboard with a lot of features that's also easy to use. If you want to jump on the bandwagon but don't want to spend a fortune, check out this board. With a retail price of $210 CDN ($169 US), the GA-K8N Ultra-SLI won't break the bank of users wanting SLI capable AMD Athlon64 hardware on a budget.

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Contents of Article: Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI
 Pg 1.  Gigabyte GA-K8N Ultra-SLI Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  Fully Featured Motherboard
 Pg 3.  SATA II and SLI
 Pg 4.  How does it overclock?
 Pg 5.  Benchmarks: SYSmark 2004
 Pg 6.  Benchmarks: Winstone 2004, Winbench 99
 Pg 7.  Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra 2004, Super Pi
 Pg 8.  Benchmarks: PCMark04, 3DMark2001
 Pg 9.  Benchmarks: 3DMark05, AquaMark3
 Pg 10.  Benchmarks: Comanche 4, X2: The Threat, UT2003
 Pg 11.  Benchmarks: UT2004, Doom 3
 Pg 12.  — Lots of good useful features!

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