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Advice would be appreciated on Motherboard Choice

Last response: in Motherboards
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March 29, 2006 12:48:45 PM

I am about to give up on my MSI RM482M4 as the basis for a Media Center mainly because of problems. I would appreciate suggestions on alternatives. The essential requirements are:

Socket 939; good onboard graphics; on-board LAN (preferably 2); on-board sound (5.1plus); at least 2 (preferably 3) plain vanilla PCI slots (any 'Express' slots would be bonus). Serial ATA(300 preferred); Proven quality.
April 1, 2006 4:07:57 PM

Do a Google on 'Socket 939'. There are tons of motherboards which meet your needs.
April 1, 2006 4:45:13 PM

Quote:
I am about to give up on my MSI RM482M4 as the basis for a Media Center mainly because of problems. I would appreciate suggestions on alternatives. The essential requirements are:

Socket 939; good onboard graphics; on-board LAN (preferably 2); on-board sound (5.1plus); at least 2 (preferably 3) plain vanilla PCI slots (any 'Express' slots would be bonus). Serial ATA(300 preferred); Proven quality.


What are your problems with the MSI board. You say RM482M4 do you mean RS482M4-ILD? I have the RS482M4-ILD board myself and I love it. I also have built many other computers with that same board. A couple of them were built as developer stations with 4400+ X2 CPUs. I have had a couple bad boards myself, one with video issues and other with the IDE controllers.

What kind of problems are you having? :wink:
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April 1, 2006 7:47:33 PM

Small but annoying problems include lost access to BIOS (clear CMos to cure), OS (Windows MCE) does not follow Bios settings with to Boot sequence (cannot get rid of 'Realtek' option); blue screen with dire warnings (twice); poor website and Digicell locks up when used.

Problems of my own making in choosing the board are) the limitation to 2 PCI slots - aggravated by the fact that I do not need the PCI-Express slots and b) the limitation to SATA 150 - not SATA 300.

I agree that the price for the spec is good but it just does not feel solid. (It is my first MSI board)
April 3, 2006 10:24:26 PM

Quote:
Small but annoying problems include lost access to BIOS (clear CMos to cure), OS (Windows MCE) does not follow Bios settings with to Boot sequence (cannot get rid of 'Realtek' option); blue screen with dire warnings (twice); poor website and Digicell locks up when used.

Try flashing the BIOS.
April 4, 2006 8:20:33 AM

I wondered about downloading the BIOS but, frankly with the Live Update feature being part of a dodgy Digicell, I am not keen to go down that route.

As I said, clearing the CMOS helped with the most serious problem and I am continuing to firefight the original setup - due largely to budget constraints. This includes a cheap case which I have re-engineered to some extent but still might be the cause of some problems and might be replaced if I can find another which meets the spec viz: front audio and USB (preferably also front firewire); tall enough to take full-height PCI cards e.g 135mm (width and depth not critical); reasonably quiet; silver or black with front accessible DVD and card reader (in the floppy bay) and good build. The Thermatake Tenor seems the best alternative so far but does of course mean a complete strip-out and re-assembly.

Thanks for your interest and support

Windows MCE
Athlon 3200
1Gbyte Corsair DDR400 RAM
80Mbyte SATA150 Maxtor
200Gbyte ATA Maxtor
Hauppage Winfast Digital TV Card
LG DVD Writer
Hiper 400w power unit in cheap generic (but good-looking) case
(To be added: 2nd digital TV card and 2nd LAN card - somehow, bearing in mind the shortage of PCI slots))
April 5, 2006 12:33:35 AM

Quote:
I wondered about downloading the BIOS but, frankly with the Live Update feature being part of a dodgy Digicell, I am not keen to go down that route.


The Live Update feature from MSI works great. You can create a BIOS flash floppy right from online. Boot to floppy and follow the procedure. The only thing you really have to worry about is not losing power during the flashing process. I do it all the time.

Anyway, just thought I would try and help you get your old board fixed. Good luck and hope everything works out. :wink:
!