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Swansong for the XP Era: VIA KT880 Chipset Challenges nForce2

SiSoft Sandra 2004 Pro, Continued

Conclusion

Based on the benchmark results, only a user with an incredibly discerning eye for graphics could pick a clear winner. Otherwise, it's a true toss-up between NVIDIA's nForce2 Ultra 400 and the new KT880 from VIA.

Nor did we find any reasons to purchase one over the other based on driver considerations as both the Hyperion 4in1 driver set and NVIDIA's latest 3.13 version of its platform driver are fully developed, speedy products, meaning we're not likely to see any further improvements here in the future.

At the end of the day, however, we tend to give the nod to the VIA chipset compared to the nForce2 Ultra 400 from NVIDIA, based on the number of extras VIA offers. These include a Gigabit-capable network interface and two Serial ATA ports integrated in the Southbridge, which NVIDIA only offers as extras.

However, it is the overall package, as well as the motherboards themselves, that must be compared. For example, boards featuring an additional Serial ATA controller or a Gigabit networking interface don't necessarily have to cost more than highly integrated products, while these differences can also mean a lot.