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Review: ABIT AX8 VIA K8T890 Mainboard

by Tarinder Sandhu on 26 April 2005, 00:00

Tags: abit, AMD (NYSE:AMD), VIA Technologies (TPE:2388)

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CPU Support All S939 processors
Northbridge VIA K8T890
Memory Support 4 slots, non-ECC DDR-1 only. Optimum support at DDR400 dual-channel. Maximum 4GB system RAM
AGP None
PEG16X One slot
Southbridge VIA VT8237
Audio Onboard 5.1-channel audio from VT8237 southbridge, run through
Audio Connectivity 6-port backplane analogue speaker. Optical S/PDIF input and output
PCI 2x 32-bit 33MHz PCI 2.1 slots
PCI Express 3x x1 slots
IDE 2 ATA133 compliant ports from VT8237
SATA 2 ports from VT8237. Supports SATA RAID 0/1
Additional SATA 2 port SATA RAID from VIA VT6421 PCI-based controller. RAID 0/1/0+1 formats
Networking IC+ PCI-based Gigabit Ethernet Controller
USB VT8237, 4x backplane USB2.0, 2x I/O USB2.0
FireWire 3-port FireWire400 (1394a) from VIA 6306 PCI-based controller
Other I/O PS/2, Parallel, COM
Other notables ABIT µGuru monitoring/tweaking software
Board dimensions ATX form factor - 305mm x 245mm
Street price £79

Looking at the AX8 from a specifications' front and taking due note of its competitive street price of £79, it seems as if ABIT and VIA's collaboration is a sound one. Gigabit LAN, FireWire and discrete SATA RAID bump up its status from bare to semi-deluxe. The enthusiast hasn't been forgotten, either. ABIT's comprehensive µGuru software and the bus-locking nature of the K8T890 chipset should allow you to get the most out of your shiny S939 CPU. It's just a slight shame that a true PCI-E Gigabit LAN couldn't be included to take full advantage of even a x1 PCI-E lane. On the face of it, a good compromise between cost and features.