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» Channels :: Mainboard
Gigabyte GA-7VRXP motherboard
By CPU-zilla
Category : Mainboard
Published by Jimmy Tang on Friday, 29th March, 2002
Rating : 4 out of 5 stars  
Price : SGD249


What We Liked

The board came with a lot of integrated peripherals which should appeal to users who wants good value for their money. Firstly, the board is integrated with the latest USB 2.0 interface. Based on the VIA VT6202 chip, you'll find two headers on the board to expand up to four USB 2.0 ports. Unlike NEC's USB 2.0 chip which officially support only Windows XP, the VIA USB 2.0 solution is compatible with all Windows versions - from Windows 9x to Windows XP. This should really appeal to users who is currently upgrading their hardware and has no intention of switching operating systems.

The VIA USB 2.0 chip with two on-board headers that gives you four USB 2.0 ports.

Besides USB 2.0, Gigabyte has also generously thrown in Promise's ATA133 IDE/RAID controller. Based on the PDC20276 controller, the board allows one to use it either as a normal IDE controller or RAID. With RAID, users can either setup their drive array to run in RAID 0 or 1. Adding more value to the board, Gigabyte also bundled three ATA133 IDE cables to help users get started RAID-ing their new system. We think this is really value for your money, and a good move by Gigabyte.

The Promise PDC20276 ATA133 RAID controller.

You'll find both ATA133 and RAID IDE connectors all at the same place. You can hook up to 8 IDE devices here.

Users would also find Realtek's RTL8100L LAN controller built on-board. With a 10/100Mbps Ethernet controller featured on the motherboard by default, users can save that extra S$20-S$30 on an Ethernet card while freeing up an additional PCI slot. Once again, this adds up to more cost savings to the user.

For users who cannot tolerate cheap software audio codecs, Gigabyte offers Creative's CT5880 hardware audio solution. Based on the Sound Blaster PCI128 audio solution, we believe it offers users an attractive high-quality audio for the occasional gamers and MP3 music enthusiasts. Don't forget that since it is hardware based, there's lower overhead on your processor too.

Hardware LAN and Audio solution from Realtek and Creative respectively.

Overclockers will find the GA-7VRXP attractive too, as it offers FSB adjustments from 100MHz to a whopping 200MHz at 1MHz steps. CPU core voltage can also be increased through the BIOS setup. However, Gigabyte only allows one to increase the core voltages by relative percentages only and not at fixed values like most motherboards offer. Only four options are available : normal, +5.0%, +7.5% and +10%.

Built on-board, you'll also find Winbond's SMART I/O chipset which allows one to attach a Memory Stick (MS), Secure Digital (SD) and a Smart Card (SC) reader. Not much were mentioned about these additional devices as they are optional.

The board came with Winbond's Smart I/O chip. You can see two headers here, one for SD and the other for MS.

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