Market Survey, Part 2: Six Premium Pentium 4 LGA775 Boards

Gigabyte GA-8I925XE-G (Intel 925XE)

Board revision: 1.1

BIOS version: F2c

The second Gigabyte board, the 8I925XE-G model, is much more basic in its equipment, but nonetheless ranks as a high-end board. Its maker does without the powerful DPS module for power supply here, though a four-phase power converter is deployed anyway.

An ITE controller provides another two UltraATA ports, to supplement the single one provided by the Intel chipset. The Southbridge offers all of four SATA connections. The Broadcom network chip does Gigabit Ethernet and connects via PCI Express. There is also a FireWire chip from Texas Instruments.

The BIOS features and overclocking options are quite extensive and resemble those of the 8AENXP-DW. This board also had difficulty with CL3 memory, but increasing DDR2 voltage again resolved the instability.

Compared to its even better-equipped big brother, the included extras with the 8I925XE-G are relatively sparse. All necessary cables, a thorough manual, and the drivers needed are, however, on hand.

Unfortunately, this board did not run dependably at all times. It crashed in a few instances, the cause of which could not be determined by the end of testing. This fact is significant inasmuch as its far better-equipped big brother had no problems at all.

Gigabyte GA-8I925XE-G (Rev. 1.1)
Platform Sockel LGA775
Northbridge Intel 925XE
Southbridge Intel ICH6R
BIOS F2c (01/07/2005)
Memory DDRII-400 to 800
Connectors onboard/panel
USB 2.0 2 / 2
IEEE1394/Firewire none / 2
Serial COM Port 1 / none
Parallel LPT Port 1 / none
Game none / none
LAN 1 / none
WLAN none / none
SATA 4 / none
Audio analog 6 / none
Audio digital 2 / none
Connectors onboard only
PCIe 16x 1
PCIe 1x 2
IDE (PATA) 3 (6 channels)
Fan 4 pins (CPU) 1
Fan 3 pins (System) 2
Mass Storage Controller
ICH6R 2x IDE (ATA100)
4x SATA (RAID 0,1,0+1)
IT8212F (GigaRAID) 2x IDE (ATA133 RAID 1,0,0+1)
Broadcom BCM5751 1x 1 Gbit/s LAN
Realtek ALC880 7.1 AC97 (HD-Audio)
TSB43AB23 2x 1394a (400 Mbit/s)
Clock Setting in BIOS Measurement
200.0 MHz (FSB800) 201.0 MHz (+0.50 %)
266.6 MHz (FSB1066) 266.7 MHz (+0.00 %)
SPD Memory Timing Recognition Timing Result
FSB800 setting CL 3.0-3-3-6
FSB1066 setting CL 3.0-3-3-6
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