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Abit NF7-M Motherboard

Page: 3/6
The Board

The board itself I found to be very pleasing, to the eyes and the brain. The layout of the board is agreeable. Yes, even the ATX power placement is agreeable for me! The placement of the DIMM slots is great, some new producers are putting them closer to their CPU socket, and this interferes with not only long heatsinks but with the AGP card. I found the DIMMs to be off to the side far enough to stay away from any heatsink and any of today?s longest cards! Even my GF4 doesn?t get near it! Another thing I like to see would be they kept the amount of capacitors down. This will mess up everything from running wires to using long cards, like a RAID card for instance. Those are almost a damn foot long! The orientation of the CPU allows also for larger heatsinks, the orientation is that the top of the CPU faces towards the top of your case. It?s spaced far enough away from the I/O panel so as not to run up close to it or against it. I was HIGHLY disappointed when I found there to only be room onboard for a chassis, power, and CPU fan, come on now that?s not near enough. I?m running 7 fans on my chassis alone. That?s not including the two 60mm fans on my CPU and the one on my AGP card, and oh yea the Copper Northbridge cooler I threw in!

Splat, it?s just so damn red. I?m used to seeing bland ass motherboards from ABIT, they work great, but they?re boring. This will add life to any system with a nice window kit! If your not familiar with a motherboard the beige box would be your CPU socket, to the right of that with the round fan is your Northbridge (lucky us it?s the nForce2 IGP+MCP2 chipset, speedy!), straight above those you see three long black bars. Those would be your DIMM slots, your 400MHZ and Dual Channel DDR compatible DIMM slots capable of housing 3GBs of registered RAM! To the right of those you have your two ide controllers; both are capable of utilizing two units (primary and slave). To the right of this you have a small black chip surround by a beige border, this is the BIOS chip with is easily replaceable. That brown bar in the center with the white clip is your AGP slot! Off the top right of your AGP port you have the Southbridge portion of your nForce2 chipset! Below this the beige bars are your PCI slots which are 66 MHz. Those two yellow jumper-looking things to the south of the PCI slots are for the ABIT Media XP product. This allows you to connect the product and bring to the front your speakers channels and an S/PDIF output connector.

In this picture you can see the onboard VGA, keyboard and mouse hookups, spdif hookup, the serial port, the printer port, and the hookups for your onboard six channel sound. Above the I/O panel you can see the atx power connector and the 12v power connector.

Here you notice that there are only five PCI slots. There is an unusually large gap between the AGP and the PCI connections. You can also see the South Bridge, not cooled, and the sticker in place of the RAID chip. This board, instead of RAID, has onboard video however?.which is totally and completely unimpressive to me.

Here you can see the primary and secondary ide controllers. The quick replaceable BIOS chip is also seen in the brown box. The large yellow jumper is the jumper used to clear the CMOS. We all know about that if we build computers, sometimes clearing the CMOS will clear up any settings that were wrong or anything along those lines. Below that you can see the battery for the CMOS.

Here you can see the DIMM slots and the floppy drive connector. I?m not exactly sure why this connector is up there but I like it. I think it might be because floppy drives are legacy products and are being phased out by most computer users and being updated with easier-to-use and larger capacity storage devices. I know myself in any system I build it goes without a floppy (God himself bless Nero and its ability to burn a bootable CD).

Here you can see the connections on the I/O panel of the board. The first noticeable thing (besides the out of this world clarity my camera decided it would produce) would be that you have to sacrifice one of your serial ports for a video port. This doesn?t affect most of us but if you have the old modems that use the serial port, or even the old serial networks, you shouldn?t have an issue if you only need to use one of these connections. Also, another noticeable thing would be the sp/dif connection right above?.oh yes folks?.the six channel sound. (*Choir chimes in singing halleluiah*) Beneath this we have our onboard LAN and USB 2.0 connections. (Must update to Windows XP Service Pack 1 to notice any speed different, this is because SP1 installs your USB 2.0 drivers used by windows.)

Just, damn, wow, it?s so nice. Here you can really get a feel for the nice burnt orange color the board is!

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