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    FIC K8 800T Motherboard Review
    Author: Jakester
    Date Posted: December 26th, 2003
    SLRating: SLRating: 9/10
    Bottom Line: The FIC K8-800T is a very solid board and is also amongst the cheapest of the current Socket 754 motherboards. With a lot of solid features like on-board audio, lan, together with extra brackets for firewire and USB. If you want to overclock is it the motherboard for you? Find out in our official review.......

    Find the lowest price for this product
    Pages: 1 2 3 4 5
    >> Discuss This Article


    K8T800 Chipset:


    The FIC K8-800T is built with the VIA K8T800 chipset and I think we should take a look at its features and how it compares against the NVIDIA  nForce3-150 chipset. The biggest difference between the two chipsets is that VIA went with the classic North and South bridge architecture while NVIDIA compacted their chipset into a single chip. Of course, NVIDIA was able to do this because of AMD's decision to include the memory controller on the CPU. Since the memory controller is a part of the processor, a large portion of the chipset's responsibilities were eliminated and that is why NVIDIA went to a single chip solution. Which one was the better choice?

    Well, VIA points out that they are the only chipset to support fully the full-speed 800Mhz (1.6GHz) Hypertransport bus, which is true. VIA also claims that others cannot yet implement 800 Hypertransport because of excessive circuit noise. In order to deal with their problem, the competitors have had to either decrease the bus speed from 1.6GHz to 1.2 GHz or halve the size of the data packages from 16 bits to 8 bits. The following diagram found on VIA's website demonstrates this idea.


    So VIA's chipset is better since it is faster, right? Not if NVIDIA has something to say about it. They (NVIDIA) fireback at ATI's claims and point out that there is a 533 Mb/sec bottleneck between the North and South bridge of the K8T800 chipset, thus the higher Hypertransport speeds are negated. NVIDIA continues to say that their single chip chipset is faster because it runs at 600MHz DDR (1.2GHz effectively) which is faster than VIA's two-chip setup. The only way to find out which chipset is faster is of course to run some benchmarks.

    Below is a block diagram of the K8T800 system.
     


    Key Features of VIA K8T800 (from VIA's site)

    Supports full range of AMD Opteron/Athlon64 processors
    Hyper8 Technology enables 16-bit/1.6GHz HyperTransport processor-to-chipset link
    Support for AGP 8X/4X
    V-Link 533 MB/sec high bandwidth North/South Bridge interconnect
    Support for VIA Vinyl 5.1 & Vinyl Gold 7.1 Multichannel Audio Suite
    Serial ATA support for up to 4 devices
    Integrated V-RAID with RAID 0, RAID 1
    Parallel ATA133/100/66 support for up to 4 devices
    Support for up to 8 USB 2.0/USB 1.1 ports, UHCI compliant
    Support for VIA Gigabit Ethernet controller & Integrated 10/100 Fast Ethernet
    Integrated MC'97 Modem
    Advanced power management capabilities including ACPI/OnNow
    578-pin BGA North Bridge
    539-pin BGA VT8237 South Bridge
    Benefits of VIA K8T800

    VIA Hyper8™ Technology
    VIA's unique Hyper8 technology eliminates noise on the HyperTransport link between the processor and chipset, enabling the industry's only full-speed, full-spec 16-bit/1.6GHz implementation of the processor-to-chipset HyperTransport link.

    VIA Modular Architecture Platform
    To best exploit the rapid pace of innovation in the PC industry, particularly with reference to I/O technology, VIA have opted for a classic North/South Bridge configuration allowing for the most scalable mainboard design, enabling new functionality to be integrated in an expedient and practical manner, thus providing the fastest time to market with new features and system performance enhancements.

    Native Serial ATA/RAID Support
    The VIA DriveStation™ Controller Suite with native dual channel Serial ATA/RAID controller, provides direct support for two 150MB/s Serial ATA devices and its unique SATAlite™ interface expands support for two additional SATA devices. The V-RAID controller features native RAID 0 & RAID 1. The user friendly V-RAID software interface enables easy disk array configuration and management.

    VIA Vinyl Multichannel Audio Suite
    Delivering rich, warm surround sound at resolutions as high as 24/96 through up to six- or eight-channel outputs, the VIA Vinyl Audio 5.1 surround sound and VIA Vinyl Gold Audio 7.1 surround sound enables crisp, clear performance, representing the highest levels of audio quality in a mainstream integrated or onboard solution.

    Unified VIA Hyperion 4in1 Drivers
    VIA's unified approach to drivers has been established for eight generations of chipsets, allowing end users to benefit from seamless hardware and software compatibility.


     



    Specifications Go the the next page
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    1. Introduction
    2. K8 800T Info
    3. Specifications
    4. Setup/Benchmarks
    5. Conclusions

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