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Generation Change: Eight Motherboards For The Athlon 64

Gigabyte GA-K8VNXP

Board Revision: 1.0

BIOS Version: M02 (August 27, 2003)

While the K8VNXP is a completely different board from the K8NNXP, it does have the same basic features and similar pros and cons. Among its disadvantages are once again the missing Cool & Quiet support and the lack of consistent implementation of the fan control going under the name of CPU Smart. It has no effect on the Northbridge and DPS module fans.

Among its advantages, of course, is the 1394b port the FireWire with up to 800 Mbit/s, the additional mass storage controller by GigaRAID (UltraATA/133 RAID) and the two network controllers (Gigabit and 100 Mbit/s). The Gigabyte doesn't need an additional Serial ATA controller for the K8VNXP since the VIA Southbridge VT8237 gives you two ports something the nForce3 150 regrettably lacks.

The additions are the same as for the K8NNXP, including Gigabyte's utilities and Symantec Anti Virus. An improvement is the choice of the DPS slot since this does not hinder the air flow through the power supply above the mainboard.

The very high base clock speed of 202.5 MHz helps the Gigabyte board achieve excellent results in most benchmarks that aren't much worse when run at standard speed.