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Thread: nForce Boards




  1. #11

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    That is supposed to give the onboard video a 128-bit path to memory but the performance is lower which doesn't really make sense. Result is use a single stick of ram.
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  2. #12
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    Dec 2001
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    1,297

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    2

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    Actually the GF2 MX core buit into the GPU isn't on par with equivilent card (i.e, GF2 MX). There's a few reasons for this. In theory and what nvidia would like us to believe, it is, but in practice it isn't. I would disable the video even if you only had a GF 2 MX card.

    The reason is because it will eat up your memory bandwidth if you use the onboard video. Even with the Nforce 420.

    The built-in audio is a totally different story however. It really kicks ass. It's even better than if you had an SBlive! card. Mainly because of it's very low CPU utilization difference when you start upping the sampling rate and voices in games. This is where it will really shine over the SBLive!.

    It's onboard Ethernet, I have no idea about. Have yet to find any decent benchmark tests of that feature of the chipset.

    The nforce looks to be a promising chipset, but it's advances by using twinbank memory architecture (dual 64-bit memory controllers) seem to be negated by the Athlon's ****ty FSB.

    Regardless of any of that the Nforce chipset seems to be a good value. At least as good as other offerings by other chipsets. Like there doesn't seem to be any advantage to the nforce 420 over the KT266A, but I'd be more inclined to get the nforce because VIA chipsets are total **** IMHO. Nothing but one bull**** problem after another. One patch after another hoping eventually there will be a patch to address a specific issue with your system configuration which shouldn't be there in the first place if the chipset was worth a ****.

    I guess you can see I'm a little biased against VIA, but they've earned it. Many people have had good luck with them, don't get me wrong, but way too many have had nothing but headache after headache. While some of it may be attributed to ignorance on the system builder's part, many cases it isn't, but more of ignorance on the chipset manufacturer's part. With VIA you can usually look forward to workarounds and having to disable certain BIOS setting that can make a difference in performance, just to stabilize the system.

    I don't think I'll ever own another motherboard based on VIA chipsets again for as long as I live, if I can help it.

    I think if I were going to get a motherboard based on the Nvidia nforce chipset, I'd be inclined to get the A-bit NV7-133R. Nice thing about it, is they took out the GF2 MX core and opted for other nice features like RAID, and an extra UltraATA 133 controller. Much better options IMHO of what to integrate, since if you get one a board using the Nforce 420, as apposed the 415-D (identical to 420 in every way with the exception of builtin GF 2 MX), you're going to probably want a decent video card anyway if you play games.

    I was originally excited about the MSI K7N-420 pro, but after reading some reviews I was a bit disappointed. Seems like the A-bit is a better way to go. There's probably some other motherboards I haven't researched yet that are pretty good too.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    2

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    Quote Originally Posted by FA-MAS
    I read up on the board. The 2nd DIMM thing is, if you put a stick of memory in either DIMM 1 or 2 or both and DIMM 3, It will be running "twinbank". Supposedly if you don't do it this way, the memory performance is lower.
    Yes this is true. You'll need at least two sticks of DRAM to take advantage of the twinbank, but there's still the issue of the Athlon's frontsidebus.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
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    19

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    "Actually the GF2 MX core buit into the GPU isn't on par with equivilent card "

    Actually, I've found the opposite to be true with one caveat...you MUST be using 2 sticks of DDR to "activate" the twinbank architecture.

    "The reason is because it will eat up your memory bandwidth if you use the onboard video "

    If you are using 2 sticks of RAM, then you end up with (essentially) 2-64 bit memory controllers...one for the CPU (which can only utilise 64bit) and one for the GPU (on-board video). These memory contrlollers are interactive, so your processor will still be able to utilise the RAM in the second bank, but the second 64-bit stream will only work with the GPU.

    The built-in audio is a totally different story however. It really kicks ass. It's even better than if you had an SBlive! card

    Amen to that! It's the best audio chip I've found at ANY price!

    The nforce looks to be a promising chipset, but it's advances by using twinbank memory architecture (dual 64-bit memory controllers) seem to be negated by the Athlon's ****ty FSB

    I don't know if I agree with your conclusion here...IMHO, the bigger problem is Athlon's inability to address all 128 bits rather than it's FSB (though more speed couldn't hurt...<grin>).

    Regardless of any of that the Nforce chipset seems to be a good value. At least as good as other offerings by other chipsets. Like there doesn't seem to be any advantage to the nforce 420 over the KT266A, but I'd be more inclined to get the nforce because VIA chipsets are total **** IMHO

    I absolutely agree (I now own 2 MSI K7N420 Pro boards).

    I think if I were going to get a motherboard based on the Nvidia nforce chipset, I'd be inclined to get the A-bit NV7-133R

    Actually, I'd wait a few weeks...the new nForce boards should be out here in Oz by mid-August at the latest (according to MSI and others). These should have USB 2.0, Firewire, ATA133 native, GeForce4 MX440 on-board, and possibly some other new cool stuff!

    Cheers,
    Charles

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    1

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    Hello.
    I have a rather odd hardware problem and question:
    Firstly, I have a year and a half old Alienware Aurora DDR system with an AMD Athlon XP 2 gig processor, NVidia NForce motherboard with onboard 6.1 sound and appearently the GForce 2 FX GPU.
    My current situation is that the original GForce 3 card that came with the system developed heat problems and I had to start using an old TNT2 64 pro card I had from my previous system. I want to know how to enable the onboard video GPU on the NForce MB to increase my performance for now until I can upgrade in about 3 months.
    I have the driver for the GForce2 FX listed under device manager for display adapters enabled, no conflicts or problems reported there. But, when I plug my NEC monitor into the VGA port onboard the motherboard I power the system up and the monitor will not even come up, like I don't have it even plugged into the system.
    I am supposing that the GForce 2 FX GPU onboard my NForce MB has at least marginally better performance than the ancient tnt2 series. ANYTHING will be better than the horrible 10-15 fps I get in the 2 games I mainly play right now.
    Thanks. (:

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,790

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    If you have a video card, enabling the on-board video will net you even slower performance than you have now.

    FX5900 - 3DMark2001 [20,566] - 3DMark2003 [7,281] - Aquamark3 [56,694]
    Ti4400 - 3DMark2001 [16,028]

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