Abit AV8-3rd Eye
Board Revision: 1.1
BIOS Version: 1.7
The AV8 has already been on the market for several months, which is why it is based on an AGP chipset - the K8T800 Pro from VIA. Abit clearly put some thought behind the design, packing the board with an array of high-quality features. While the buyer doesn't get an additional mass storage controller beyond the two UltraATA/133 channels and two SATA ports, Abit thought to include a Gigabit Ethernet controller from VIA as well as a FireWire chip. Plus you get all the features of the µGuru feature (overclocking, monitoring) and a decent sound system with optical digital in/out. With the exception of the µGuru software, Abit saved some costs on the software.
Abit sent us an extensive manual in English and a brief installation guide that gives experienced users the most pertinent information at a glance.
Enthusiasts will enjoy the µGuruClock option. It's a small tabletop module that actually looks like a travel alarm clock. Once you connect the cables to the computer, the µGuruClock displays a host of features offered by µGuru. It's also possible to recall previously-saved overclocking settings during operation.