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This review is from: MSI 970 Gaming AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
Pros: Okay, I have only been running this board for a few hours, but it feels pretty awesome to me. I'm running Phenom II 965 at 4.2GHz. No overclocking. Got an SSD, modest video card, and 16GB Hyper X Ram. This board replaces a year old board from another manufacturer whose sound card was terrible. This board's sound card is really impressive. I plugged the fiber optic output to my Yamaha surround receiver, and WOW does it sound awesome.
This board also uses something called a KILLER Network Card Driver. And, in fact, it works great, too. I would say that the physical installation was pretty straight forward, and the driver installations were pretty automatic and flawless. Here's an interesting fact, this board seems to have four separate fan connections. I would think that's gotta be attractive to over clockers and big time gamers. It also came with the connector for attaching a second video card. I won't do that, but again that's gotta be attractive to gamers. This machine is mostly just a work computer - I went for the gamer board because it promised a noticeable performance jump. I am happy with it. I work, watch videos, and listen to loud music. It works great.
Cons: During the initial boot, I noticed my CPU was running at like 65 degrees Celsius. That seems high. I think I might need a newer, better cooling solution than the factory solution that came with my cpu.
Other Thoughts: This is the second MSI board I've ever owned, and I am pretty happy with it. For years I've been a GB dude, but that may be changing.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: GIGABYTE GA-G41MT-S2PT LGA 775 Intel G41 + ICH7 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: Used this board to replace an older Gigabyte G31 board with quad core Intel 9505 cpu running at 2.83GHz. This board allowed me to keep my cpu, reach 8GB ram with DDR3, and breathe new life into my work system. I bought a small Crucual SSD to use as a system drive, and this board works well with my PCIx EVGA nVidia 240 video card. NIC works fine, and the sound quality is good enough for listening to music at work. To me, this board represents good value. As configured, it does a reasonable job with Windows 7 64 bit in a business setting.
Cons: I'm not much of a gamer, but the guys I know who are gamers would not be satisfied with this board for running their higher end stuff.
If I was buying this unit again, I would look more closely at the memory support list and buy accordingly. This board didn't like the ram I selected for it, and I was forced to scrounge my inventory to find a couple DIMMS it liked.
Other Thoughts: I am considering another board to replace an even older Gigabyte board I use at home with an e8400 CPU.
I think this board, my e8400, and a modest HDMI video card would make a pretty decent home-theater machine.
Pros: Quality power supply, good air flow, sturdy metal, professional appearance, modest footprint. This makes a great case for machines in a professional settings. I've built five machines using this case. All are operating well.
Cons: I can't think of one.READ FULL REVIEW