Date Joined: 08/17/01
Pros: The board has many options to allow the user to get the most out of overclocking his memory and cpu.
Cons: The first board I got was bad, it did work but any bclock over 180 Mhz was simply unstable and the board would not boot up with one or two sticks of ram in it. After the new board arrived I was able to easily push it up over 200 Mhz.
I deducted one egg for this.
Overall Review: Overclocking isn't as simple as it used to be. Before you attempt to overclock this board, I would highly suggest you go to the EVGA forums and read over the different guides they have posted there so that you understand what you are doing.
The board allows you to tweak several multipliers and voltages and if you don't understand what you are doing you could fry your board.
Pros: It is a very nice looking, functions well and is fairly quiet.
Cons: The work required to mount this is rather cumbersome. You must have the motherboard unattached to your case in order to mount it since the heatsink is directly connected to the backplate ... which makes it a hassle to do maintencence of any kind. If you want to clean it, you have to remove your motherboard. If you want to reapply your thermal paste, you have to remove your motherboard.
Overall Review: It would not have been to difficult for the designers to create a mounting mechanism that would allow you to remove the heatsink from the board without having to remove the backplate and still be able to apply the pressure you need for proper cooling.
Pros: I can not hear the thing over my CPU fan and that is very quiet. The fact that it has modular cables is very nice since it keeps the inside of my case very clean looking.
Cons: None yet.
Pros: Large beautiful screen, good looking housing, no dead pixels, NO ghosting what so ever. Once the monitor is calibrated, it has quite beautiful picture.
Cons: The downside to this monitor is that the color is not calibrated out of the box. It is easy enough to configure if you have a nvidia video card since color correction software is part of the software installed. That being said, I find it annoying that the monitor color defaults are so out of whack.
Overall Review: I never knew that I was so picky about my monitor color. If you have a very picky eye (and I mean very picky) you may want to go with another monitor. If you are a gamer, like myself, and you like a large, well priced, no ghosting, good quality picture monitor then you can safely pick one of these up.
Pros: Very nice drive, very quiet and an averages about 78 MB/Sec transfer speeds.
Cons: I purchased 4 of these drives with the 3ware 9650SE-4LPML raid controller and found that no matter how I jumpered the drives or configured the raid array, I could not get the transfer rates above 100 MB/Sec.
After contacting WD they informed me that this particular raid controller does have issues with these drives and is due to a firmware algorithm. WD unfortunately did not have this information posted on their site nor did they have a firmware fix for this issue
Pros: I started with two 8800 GTS in SLI and went to this one video card since my particular application couldn't take advantage of SLI. For interest sake, I ran 3dMark06 on one 8800 GTS, two 8800 GTS in SLI and this card. My results were 9422, 14918 and 13667 respectively. This implies that the advantage of the NX8800Ultra over one GTS card is on the order of 45% but also has a 56% increase in price.
If you divide each one of the 3dmark06 scores by the price of each video set up, you can get an idea of the value of each card (the higher the value the more bang for the buck). In this case my values were 25.5 for one GTS, 20.5 for two GTS in sli and 23.0 for one NX8800 Ultra.
In short, the one GTS has the best value but if you want top end performance that all applications can take advantage of, the NX8800Ultra is the way to go hands down.
Cons: The only thing I would want from this card is a lifetime warrantee instead of 3 years. The manufacturer is pushing this card fairly hard and it could possibly sorten its life. I didn't subtract any eggs for this.
Overall Review: On default settings the card idles at 64c and at full load will go up to 84c (fan hovers around 50% speed at this temp). Using a third party tool to max the fan speed to 100%, the card will idle at 50c and will stay at 74c under full load.
When upping the fan speed, the increase in sound is very noticeable but since I wear headphones this does not bother me. Imho, small price to pay for extending the life of the card.
Pros: Having cores is a thing of beauty if you are a heavy multitasker. I run 3 instances of EQ on one system. Where my 4200+ would lag quite a bit requiring 25-30% per instance of EQ,this beast doesn't even break a sweat only requiring 7-8% of CPU time per instance. I love it.
Overall Review: Which stock cooling and no overclocking this particular processor is running mid 60s at idle and mid 80s at full load. You are going to want to order a decent third party cooling solution, which should lower you temps to more acceptable ranges. According to some reports a decent air cooling solution properly seated should lower your temps by 10-15 degrees.
Pros: Running at 5-5-5-15 2T, 1000 MHZ @ 2.1 volts with out a hitch. I haven't pressed the memory any further then this but I suspect I can get more out of it with the proper bios settings.
Cons: non so far.
Overall Review: I would be very curious to benchmark these modules against some of the Dominator sticks just to see how the two compare in performance ... comparing prices it is much easier to see which is more desirable considering you can get 4GB of memory for less money then 2GB of "Higher quality" ram. Also if you are not running a 64 bit OS not all of the memory is accessible to the OS, my rig can only access 2.8 GB of the memory installed.
Comments: Just got this board and I love it. Supper fast, tons of options. I can run multiple instances of EQ with no lag, surf the net and listen to my mp3s without a hitch. Here are my disclaimers.
THIS CHIPSET HAS KNOWN PROBLEMS WITH CERTAIN MAXTOR DRIVES ... if you don't belive me google "Maxtor nforce 4 data corruption". Besides the data corruption, you will have problems booting into WinXP if you can do it at all.
My next disclaimer is that the on board NiC cards have intermittant connectivity issues. I have spent countless hours tracking down this problem and have yet to find a solid solution short purchasing a PCI Nic ... bleh.