[X]   Directory of
Guides & Reviews

Beginners Guides
Motherboards by Brand
Weekly Newsletter
Archived Newsletters

+70 MORE Beginner GUIDES....
ECS AMD690GM-M2 AMD 690G Motherboard Review
ECS AMD690GM-M2 AMD 690G Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Like you, there is nothing we like better than a super affordable platform that gives you almost everything under the sun!! With the acquisition of ATi, the 690G chipset came to life as one of the finest chipsets for a home theatre platform thus far.
 79% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: ECS May 28 2007   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > ECS AMD690GM-M2

The traditional computer market as we know it is changing, becoming more creative and exciting. There once was a very definite line between consumer electronics and computers, but as all media goes digital that line is falling by the way-side. To stay relevant to our changing demands, computer makers are embracing the movies, music, and the digital outputs that sustain each format - audio and video. After all, why have several different electronics doing what a computer could handle in one small package?

As usual Intel was the first to make a move. It brought forth Viiv several years back, which even to this day we have a hard time really explaining. AMD had Live!, which again was more marketing than something you could tangibly sink your teeth into. However, with the release of the AMD 690G chipset, AMD has definitely surpassed anything Intel has done so far. With the acquisition of ATi, the 690G chipset came to life as one of the finest chipsets for a home theatre platform thus far.

We can almost imagine AMD engineers looking at what nVIDIA did right with the GeForce 6100 series, and building on top of that. Home theatre wise the AMD 690G is definitely superior to nVIDIA's aging platform, and with HDCP and HDMI support by default, it really brings down the cost of a home theatre PC since a dedicated videocard is no even required. Like you, there is nothing we like better than a super affordable platform that gives you almost everything under the sun!!

ECS is the king of lost cost computing, and you'll be hard pressed to find anything that beats its AMD690GM-M2 motherboard. With a retail price of just $71 CDN ($65 USD, £32 GBP) the AMD690GM-M2 is one of the most inexpensive Socket AM2 motherboards on the market. Considering the features it has, it's a steal.

The ECS AMD690GM-M2 supports AMD Sempron and Athlon64 X2/FX processors which use the Socket AM2 form factor. There are two DDR2 DIMM slots for a maximum of 4GB of DDR2-800 memory. Onboard video encompasses both a DVI and analog monitor connection, but regrettably not HDMI. HDMI is supported by the chipset, but if the manufacturer does not implemented a jack you're going to have to find a DVI-to-HDMI converter cable yourself. Integrated goodies include Gigabit network card, 7.1 channel High Definition Azalia compatible sound card, ten USB 2.0 slots, four Serial ATA II ports which support RAID modes 0, 1 and 0+1.

Should you need more than this, the ECS AMD690GM-M2 motherboard supports a PCI Express x16 slot for videocards, a PCI Express x1 slot for high bandwidth devices and two 32 bit PCI slots for legacy hardware.

ECS AMD690GM-M2 Motherboard


User's Manual, Driver CD, Ultra/133 IDE Cable, Serial ATA Cable, Floppy Cable, Molex to Serial ATA Power Cable, I/O Shield, Accessories Bag

If you're a novice at computer hardware, you may want to have a more experienced friend handy when setting up the ECS AMD690GM-M2 motherboard. This MicroATX board is not as user friendly as we'd like it, but then again with a price point of ~$70 CDN you really can't complain. The Hardware Installation Guide while brief is pretty detailed and the User's Guide is also very well written. From hardware installation to BIOS and driver setup, ECS has this part of its game pretty well down.

ECS place both a DVI and analog video output on the rear I/O so you can use dual monitors if you'd like. It's important to note that the DVI connector on the AMD690GM-M2 motherboard does not work with DVI-to-analog converters. Noticeably missing were the HDMI and S-Video output connectors that most other AMD 690G motherboards include. While you can run HDMI through the DVI connector, it does make things more difficult, and as it is there's no way to output the ECS AMD690GM-M2 motherboard to standard definition televisions.

The board does incorporates High Bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) into it. This is a form of Digital Rights Management developed by Intel for high definition digital video and audio content. Whether you like it or not, the HDCP signal travels through the DVI or High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) to HDCP compatible display's. This is supposed to ensure that only legitimate High Definition content is played, if the HDCP keys don't match or are missing content plays at a reduced quality.

So to recap, the AMD 690G supports HDCP and is Windows Vista compatible, has two onboard video output options, and runs without any noisy chipset fan. Next up let's look at the technology behind AMD 690G chipset.

© 2023 PCSTATS.com Next Page >


Contents of Article: ECS AMD690GM-M2
 Pg 1.  — ECS AMD690GM-M2 AMD 690G Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  AMD 690G / ATI RS690 Chipset
 Pg 3.  ECS AMD690GM-M2 Motherboard Highlights
 Pg 4.  AMD AVIVO for High Definition Content
 Pg 5.  Overclocking the AMD 690G
 Pg 6.  Motherboard Benchmarks: SYSmark 2007 Preview, SiSoft Sandra XIb
 Pg 7.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PCMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 8.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Doom 3, FEAR
 Pg 9.  A Low Cost Solution with Teeth?

Hardware Sections 

PCSTATS Network Features Information About Us Contact
PCSTATS Newsletter
Tech Glossary
Technology WebSite Listings
News Archives
(Review RSS Feed)
Site Map
PCstats Wallpaper
About Us
Privacy Policy
Advertise on PCSTATS

How's Our Driving?
© Copyright 1999-2023 www.pcstats.com All rights reserved. Privacy policy and Terms of Use.