Asus A7M266 or MSI K7T266

What is the better choice here, the Asus A7M266 or the MSI K7T266, i'm seeing some stability problems with A7M posted here. I will be getting the AMD 1.333mhz cpu and pc2100 ddr memory i will be networking 2 computers together, mostly gaming pc's. I currently have an overclocked celeron 566 with a abit bx133raid board and it crashes every 20 mins in a game i have 2 cpus networked like i said sharing a cable connection. vid card is a EGA GForce2 MX wich overheats pretty niceley added a blue orb fan wich makes more noise than a plain flying over my house but it helps. using win me (Maybe the problem?)

Anyway the MSI said the USB is optional, so how do you add the option?
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  1. Hello -

    Well no matter which way you go, the shear power of the Athlon 1.33 upgrade will blow you away; but you can't go wrong with MSI if you want a rock solid mobo.

    This said, I'd caution against jumping on the DDR bandwagon just yet unless you are a very experienced hardware tweaker, while some people have sorted it out its still got its share of bugs, and doesn't yet provide that much extra performance. If there is one thing I've learned it's to let the other kids be the first one on the block with the new toys and wasting all day determining fixes.

    The KT133A chipset (i.e. A7V133) is a mature platform, and teamed with a Promise ATA100 controller and quality memory (like Crucial PC133 CL2) it will just kick ass.

    Later Jim

    <font color=blue>via is laughing at us mcdonald hamburger eating american pigs</font color=blue> :cool:
  2. Well I wanted to go with the DDR because the pc2100 512meg chip is the same price as a pc133 512 meg chip right now and i figure even though they cant use the full capability of the chip in the future i will have it. Memory is at its cheapest right now and i wanted to take advantage of it. is it the memory or the motherboard that is unstable? DDR wise that is.
  3. Surprisingly, I have also read quite a few posts (here and in other forums) about various A7M266 problems. While MSI's K7T266 may need a few bios/driver updates before reaching its performance potential, I have not read of any stability/compatibility problems. So of the two, I would definitely go with the MSI board.

    BTW, where are you seeing a 512MB PC2100 stick at the same price as a 512MB PC133 stick?
  4. (but I think he meant 512 MB as in 256 + 256)

    After I found that site, I won't buy memory anywhere else. And no, I don't work there.

  5. It's not the memory, good quality DDR is fine; although this said you are dealing with slower latencies (2.5/3/3) for the time being so in general the advantages are minor.

    The basic problem is that it's a new technology (with new, stricter parameters) and is still getting perfected; although when it sorts out I'm positive it will be awesome. Also, Asus et al is in business to sell product and not beyond releasing technology prematurely or using cheaper solutions (chipsets that only require a 4 layer mobo etc.), particularly when the media hype is creating demand... that's why I'm waiting a bit longer before I migrate my systems to DDR: I'd like to see the memory latency reduced, chipsets improved and with more variety and quality (and bandwidth increased (300MHz DDR is in the works).

    Still, I understand the gotta have it's:) Definately go with MSI for DDR.

    Later Jim

    <font color=blue>via is laughing at us mcdonald hamburger eating american pigs</font color=blue> :cool:
  6. Well the reason behind my insanity is if i get the DDR ram now so when a better MB comes out i will already have it instead of getting 133 sdram and then buying the ddr again later, is this a good or bad move? also is the p4 1.5 more stable than the amd 1.33? they are both about the same price around $100 diff for me to build.
    also i beleave i did see the 512 ddr for $230.00 on its 1 stick not 2.
  7. I just installed my A7M266 with an Athlon 1.333 and 256 megs of DDR 2100. Windows installed flawlessly (as flawless as Windows can be anyway)and have no problems to report yet. A person has to draw the line somewhere when it comes to waiting for new technology. I couldn't wait anymore. Crips....I had a PII 233 MHz for gods sake!!

    PS, I did notice a little difference in performance between the PII and the 1.333 Athlon ;)
  8. well its a good move if the mobo maker will support future incarnations of DDR (doubtfull, but who knows), but otherwise it doesn't matter... at current prices it doesn't much matter because the whole mess can be replaced in a year anyway.

    remember, only four years ago intel was demanding a Pentium 4 1.5Ghz price for a 200MMX pentium, which now sells for $20... and I doubt the price drop is due to reduced fab costs:)

    in any case it sounds like you want DDR so you should go for it, and MSI won't do you wrong.

    pee 4 vs. Athlon is not about stability, it's about value. The Thunderbird just stomps all over pee 4 where the rubber hits the road, and for less money.

    with the exception of online gaming at work, of course ;-)

    Later Jim

    <font color=blue>Via laughs at mcdonald hamburger eating american pigs</font color=blue> :cool:
  9. I read over at firingsquad that asus will not be shipping anymore a7m's to the USA. I also read somewhere you can't overclock the cpu on this board
  10. I can definately say go with the A7M266....Two reasons, 1 is because I own an A7M266 and its a dream, 2 is the MSI K7T266 uses the K7T133A chipset I beleive which basically blows ass and scored benchmarks almost as crappy as an SDRAM system!!!

    Hope this sheds some light for you.

  11. Ok in light of that, wich would be better the MSI K7Master or the Asus A7M266? they both use the AMD 761 chipset. Toms review shows the K7Master as having 4 memory banks and the msi site shows only 2 am i missing something? and why does the asus say the usb ports are optional how do you add them?
  12. Hey, before you post chit like that you better do more reserch. Just because THG had a bad review doesn't mean the K7T266 is a bad board. I own this board with a 1.33 and 512 PC2100 Crucial. It is rock stable running memory at CL2. The reason the performance isn't that great yet is it is still under a pre-release BIOS. Once the BIOS is released the performance will pass your A7M266 I guarantee it. But hey its your choice not mine. Oh and it doesn not use the K7T133A Chipset ( I don't even know of that chipset) It uses the KT266 Chipset.

    Crap, all the good ones are already taken.
  13. The K7 Master is a good board also. It only has 2 banks, the other 2 were removed due to some timeing problems. I have the K7T266 and would recomend that instead. Once the BIOS is released im sure the performance will pass any AMD chip board. There is a review that already shows it equal to the K7 Master but I don't know what settings they used. Its on I think.

    Crap, all the good ones are already taken.
  14. They reason I changed my mind back to the amd chipset is because of the review:
    it shows the amd beating the new kt266 chipset still.
  15. Here's my $.02: I purchased an A7m266 and a K7T266PRO two weeks ago to go with my new 1.33 Athlon and 512MB Crucial PC2100 (2x256). I wanted to try them both before I made my decision.

    I installed the MSI board and it ran stable right out of the box. The Asus board was DOA. The MSI board has three DIMM slots vs. the Asus' 2. MSI has IDE Raid and Asus doesn't. MSI allows control over CPU frequency multiplier in BIOS, Asus left off the jumpers that were on it's pre-release board for this function and and I can't tell what you can do in BIOS as the board is DOA. I've had the MSI board running rock solid without a single crash now for 2 weeks running the CPU at 11x133=1467Mhz and without any extraordinary cooling measures beyond a standard Athlon approved fan/heatsink (Vantec 62540D) and my Antec SX830 case (highly recommended - comes with two rear coolers built in, easy to remove HD cage, a breeze to work in).

    Yeah, I read Tom's review saying the AMD 760 is still faster than VIA KT266. I've seen another review that finds the opposite. All I know is that the VIA board is running stable and is certainly fast enough for my needs now. I also expect it to improve in performance with each new BIOS release and probably meet or exceed the ASUS board. If not, I'll still be happy.

    Now your milage may vary, but for me I'll be sticking with the MSI Board.

    Ain't this fun!
  16. Thanks for the post Jablumen, I've seen so many posts about the A7M266 having stability problems i'm not sure i want to even try it. but the K7Master is still in the running.

    All these decisions are driving me mad! aint it fun?
  17. Yeah, there are a lot of problem-posts - re A7M266. I'm sure that if you are lucky enough to get a good (stable) A7M266, it will be 'a dream', but so many out there are finding it's more like a nightmare'!
  18. yeah if you can find it, good luck. Oh and if you do, check the rev, because rev. 1.0 is only 200 FSB and 1.1 is 266FSB.

    Crap, all the good ones are already taken.
  19. You said the MSI K7T266PRO had Raid, is that the K7T266PRO-R? Also how do you get the USB ports on it? it shows them as options? and will i be able to run other sound cards with it instead of the one built in?
  20. Jablumen,
    I have K7T266 Pro coming tomorrow. With all of the reviews on Anandtech and here I was thinking about sending it back. But your post sounds encouraging. I'm building my first and will be getting some help. I've got a 133 T'Bird coming. Can you give me any more info ie what Bios you're running? What locaton that resistor was in? Also, I'm driving myself nuts over the HSF issue. How do you like the Vantec? I'm only going 256MB for now (Crucial) Any help would be great! Thanks in advance.
  21. Hey can you please tell me how it goes, i'm in bad need of a new system and the K7T266 is what i'm really thinking of getting due to the amount of HELP ME posts on the A7M266 e-mail me when you get it. Also do you need to fix the resistor problem?!
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