Intel's 865/875 Superior Performance Song Remains the Same

Soyo P4I875P Dragon 2 V1.0

BIOS Version: 4AA3

Soyo's P4I875P Dragon 2 Ver. 1.0 is a revised version that is also Prescott-ready. The Soyo board is priced toward the upper end of the market and includes the features you might expect for your money: Gigabit LAN controller from Intel (CSA), additional PATA/SATA RAID controller from ALi, a PCI sound system from C-Media, the VT6303 FireWire controller from VIA, and a total of five fan headers. Numerous overclocking options in the BIOS make this board an interesting candidate for those with go-faster aspirations.

Because the board components are closely packed, there is a risk of not being able to fit long expansion cards in the PCI slots. However, dispensing with the ATA/133 channels of the ALi RAID controller will give you at least two PCI slots for long cards. We liked the passively cooled 875P module. Using a CPU cooler with a circular fin arrangement would provide sufficient airflow to cool the Northbridge, even on an overclocked system.

Unfortunately, the Soyo BIOS recognized our CL2 memory as CL2.5, which meant that we had to manually adjust the timings to maximum. We also had problems with their "System Performance" menu option - the system would not boot on the Fast or Turbo settings. We therefore carried out our tests in the Normal mode.