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ABIT SR7-8X SiS648 Motherboard Review

ABIT SR7-8X SiS648 Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: It's nice to see that manufacturers are quickly adopting the SiS 648 chipset as an alternative to Intel's i845D/E/G DDR chipsets.
 82% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: ABIT Sep 10 2002   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > ABIT SR7-8X

SiS 648 Northbridge and Overclocking

The architecture of the SiS648 northbridge is very similar to that of the SiS645. The main difference here is that we now have support for 8X AGP graphics cards, and a PC3200 memory divider. The Northbridge connects to the Southbridge via a direct 16 bit bridge running at 533 MHz and offers a total bandwidth of 1 GB/s. On this board the SiS 648 chipset was of the "A2" stepping.

Unofficially, the SiS648 also supports PC3200 (DDR400) memory. We tried to test this out with but were not able to get the Abit SR7-8X to run with any or the memory we tried (no matter what memory timings used) at 400 MHz FSB.

The SiS648 chipset itself is a little toasty after a few hours of use, and even though the passive green heatsink can cool the Northbridge, it would have been nice to see some form of active cooling on it.

Overclocking:

Our first 648 motherboard, the MSI 648 MAX wasn't the greatest of overclockers. It hit the wall at 143 MHz FSB, and stubbornly refused to budge an inch after that with the gear we used. Whenever we review Abit boards we usually expect them to be pretty good overclockers all things considered.

Knowing that the test Pentium4 1.6A can do 2.4 GHz easily, the first FSB setting I tried was 150 MHz. There was no POST. Feeling a bit discouraged, I played with the memory timings and voltages to try and get it to work, but it was all for not.

Lowering the FSB to 145 MHz didn't help, neither did 143... Finally at 140 MHz the system POSTed and booted into Windows for the first time. After a few more tries we settled for a 141 MHz FSB overclock. That is a bit discouraging, but then again overclocking is luck of the draw isn't it?

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Contents of Article: ABIT SR7-8X
 Pg 1.  ABIT SR7-8X SiS648 Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  — SiS 648 Northbridge and Overclocking
 Pg 3.  The Abit SR7-8X BIOS
 Pg 4.  Benchmarks: Sysmark 2002, Winstone
 Pg 5.  Benchmarks: Winbench, Sandra 2002
 Pg 6.  Benchmarks: PCmark 2002, 3DMark
 Pg 7.  Benchmarks: QIII Arena and Conclusions

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