IntroductionCompared to the worlds of, say, CPUs and video cards, the release of a new motherboard chipset has never been heralded or anticipated in quite the same way - An odd state of affairs, considering how vital a good motherboard can be in provided everything you need both connectivity and performance-wise for your system. The humble motherboard has simply never been seen as all that glamorous - Until recently. NVIDIA's entry into the AMD motherboard market has stirred things up a treat, and now the name nForce is almost as recognisable as the GeForce brand. On top of that, we now see the same excitement and the rumour mill going into overdrive for a new nForce chipset as we do for NVIDIA's latest GPUs.
The release of the nForce4 was no exception, helped in part by the fact that it was vying to be the first PCI Express capable Athlon64 chipset to make it to market. And so, today we have just such an nForce4 motherboard to take a look at, thanks to ECS and their KN1 Extreme, based around the Ultra variant of the chipset. We took a look at NVIDIA's reference nForce4 Ultra back in October, but it's great to see a final shipping board land on my desk for review. So, let's see how it looks.