The system demoed above is FIC's Laguna prototype set top box/HTPC setup. It looks really nice and resembles an actual AV device.
The most essential conclusion: Abit AN7 is at least no worse than the Abit NF-S rev 2.0 motherboard. To be more specific, it is more attractive in terms of functionality: it offers better quality of integrated audio (in my humble opinion), wide potentials for adjusting the rotation of fans, support for BIOS setting profiles. But this was achieved due to a trade-off: the price of AN7 is somewhere in between 115-120$, while that for NF7-S is about ~110$ (including the Serillel adapter). The difference is not that great, but keep in mind that Abit motherboards are relatively more expensive as compared to other boards offering the MCP-T (for comparison - Epox 8RDA+ rev 2.x costs 83-85$). Actually, Abit produce has never been cheap...
The server prices look like they are designed to blow smoke in the eyes of Intel, while the mobile prices relate to the introduction of new chips yesterday and look towards the introduction of the Intel Dothan chips this coming Monday.
You can check prices on all AMD CPUs here.
Microsoft has said it will deliver server and client editions of Longhorn. A first beta of the client version is due early next year, the final version is expected out in 2006.
I was able to get the system to post on a 240MHz FSB and almost load up Windows XP before the system would crash and reset due to being far too hot. The system would also post at 250MHz but again crash, even at 230MHz the system was far too unstable in Windows XP. Compared to the nForce3 150 and K8T800 motherboards that struggled to hit a 210MHz FSB with my Athlon64 processor, this is quite an accomplishment. Unfortunately, without a more powerful cooling setup I am unable to test the overclocking abilities of this Athlon64 platform. As I have stated many times in the past, I don?t like to quote overclocking numbers with this Althon64 3200+ processor because at stock frequencies it runs abnormally hot. With a slight FSB increase it?s not uncommon to see an idle temp rise over 60 degrees with this Athlon64 processor.
It's been some time in coming but NVIDIA's all-new nForce3 250(Gb) is being earnestly rolled out by motherboard manufacturers. EPoX is one of the very first with its 8KDA3+. EPoX has dutifully followed NVIDIA's reference lead by implementing a beefed-up HyperTransport link, on-chip SATA, RAIDable PATA, on-chip GbE (albeit via a transceiver), and a hardware firewall. EPoX has then taken an individual design turn by adding in a PCI-based 4-port SATA controller from Silicon Image and decent 7.1 sound, run off AC'97, from Realtek. That's all well and fine, yet FireWire has been left completely out of the equation. If it was up to us, we'd dispatch the 4-port controller and add in FireWire; there's already plenty of storage in the 250Gb design.
We now understand from an unofficial source that these will launch at the Computex show in Old Taipei, which kicks off at the beginning of June.
AMD IS SHOWING off some mysterious motherboards which apparently take something called a 939 chip. No one knows where the missing chips are, not even AMD. And a man at the booth in Barcelona even refused to point out where the missing pin was, and to say why it felt it necessary to remove a pin from the motherboards.