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The best Gigabyte 4 me?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by levi675, Mar 13, 2004.

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  1. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    I've found some good deals on some Gigabyte MicroATX boards at Dumpinggoods.com but I don't what the difference is between the boards I'm looking at, or which onw is best.
    They are the GA-7VKML, GA-7VKMLP, GA-7VKMLS, GA-&KMLE
    They all have similar features, I just don't know how to read the fine print I guess. Does anyone hae a opinion?
    Here's some links:
    http://www.giga-byte.com/MotherBoard/Products/Products_GA-7VKMLE.htm
    http://www.giga-byte.com/MotherBoard/Products/Products_GA-7VKML.htm
    http://www.giga-byte.com/MotherBoard/Products/Products_GA-7VKMP.htm
    http://www.giga-byte.com/MotherBoard/Products/Products_GA-7VKMLS.htm
    ect.
    I also have my eye on a ASUS A7V8X-MX
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...&category=42012&sspagename=STRK:MEBWA:IT&rd=1
    Would this be the best bet? (this particular sale has ended, but the seller said I could contact him afterwords if I want one)
    TIA
     
  2. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    I think I've narrowed it down to the Gigabyte GA-7VKMP (I need the USB 2.0 ports) or the ASUS A7V8X-MX with the 8x AGP slot.
    Only about a $5 difference (Asus is more) with shipping incl.
    Keep y'all posted!
     
  3. Triple6

    Triple6 Moderator

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    All the Gigabyte boards are old stock. The fastest FSB they support is the 266Mhz while the fastest now is 333Mhz and 400Mhz. You're limiting yourself with upgradeability. The ASUS board would be a much better choice although i wouldn't be so quick to buy off Ebay. All new boards should have USB 2.0 and support at least the 333Mhz FSB if not the 400Mhz FSB.
     
  4. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the info Triple6. The Asus I'm looking at has USB 2 and 333Mhz.
    I know to be leary of E-bay, but it has a DOA guarantee and a return/refund option...I think the price is right. I'm on a bit of a budget on this one:)
     
  5. dustyjay

    dustyjay

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    I agree with triple 6, I would go with the ASUS board even though I am a fan of Gigabyte. Those particular boards do not get the greatest reviews. I have even heard some negative reiews on a couple of the VKML series boards. remember good deals are only as good as what you get. If it doesnt meet your needs or desires then how can it be a good deal?
     
  6. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    Okay, I have a follow up question: I'm running DDR PC2100 memory, which I assume this board will support, but will this board take an upgrade to 2700 or 3200? (I think that's the next step-up)
    I don't know exactly how to read memory specs when looking at boards..here's the specs

    P.S. I've heard I do AND don't have to re-install XP when swapping mobos. I really don't want to since I just did last week when I swapped my OS from the WDC to the Maxtor...

    Model A7V8X-MX
    CPU Socket A for AMD Athlon XP/ Athlon/ Duron Processor
    Max FSB. 333MHz
    Chipset VIA KM400 + VIA VT8235 CE
    Memory 2x DIMM for non-ECC DDR333/266/200 Max 2 GB
    Expansion Slots 1 x AGP 8X/4X
    3x PCI
    IDE 2x ATA 133 up to 4 Devices
    Serial ATA N/A
    RAID N/A
    Internal I/O Connectors 1 x USB 2.0 connector support additional 2 USB 2.0 ports
    CPU / Chassis FAN connectors
    20 pin ATX Power connector
    IDE LED connector, power LED connetor
    Chassis Intrusion
    S/PDIF out connector
    CD / AUX audio in
    Front Audio Panel connector
    GAME/MIDI connector
    Back Panel I/O Connectors 1 x LPT
    1 x COM
    1 x PS/2 Keyboard
    1 x PS/2 Mouse
    1 x VGA
    4 x USB 2.0
    1 x LAN
    Audio Ports
    Integrated Video Integrated VIA UniChrome Graphics
    Integrated Audio ADI AD1980 6-channel CODEC
    Integrated LAN VIA VT6103 10/100 Mbps Ethernet
    Integrated 1394 N/A
    System BIOS 2Mb Flash ROM, Award BIOS, TCAV, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.3, ASUS EZ Flash, CrashFree BIOS, ASUS C.O.P. (CPU Overheating Protection)
    Form Factor Micro ATX
    Dimensions 9.6"x 9.6"(24.5cm x 24.5cm)
     
  7. dustyjay

    dustyjay

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    Well the max FSB being 333Mhz limits the useful ram speed to PC2700. So if you plan to do a memory upgrade thta is what you should use withthis board. Yes this board will support the PC2100. Are you planning to use parts from your Emachines computer such as processor and such? if so your processor has an FSB of 266Mhz so you would be better off sticking with the PC2100 ram. What you actually have installed on your present computer is 768Mb ram. The integrated Video is using some of that and usually is not reported.

    As to reinstalling WinXP. Yes you will have to do that. The new motherboard will have completely different driver requirements and will not work with the old installation.

    All of the hardware listed in your signature will work on the new mobo. However you may need a different case and power supply. Emachines is probably using a propriotary Case and power supply. you should get a 350watt minimum PSU better 400Watt or more. However if the mobo will fit the case I would just upgrade the Powersupply.

    If the WinXP disk you have is the one provided by Emachines you will need to get a new copy of the OS. This is beacuse the OEM Version of windows you got with the Emachines is Licensed to you using it on the Computer you recieved it with, hence it is tailored to fit the FIC mobo and probably will not install properly in the first place. If the OS you have is a full install version then you can install it on the computer witht the new MOBO and be legal and it will work just fine. You will have to reactivate it though. and it will probably end up that you have to do this over the phone (free call takes about 10 minutes).

    I hope I did not scare you away from the upgrade with this. You will probably be a lot happier with the new MOBO as compared to the original.
     
  8. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    Eek!
    Yea, this is why I've searched long and hard for a MicroATX (that's worth it's salt) that will fit my case..I anticipate getting a new PS (only if I needed it) someone said my 250W would support what I'm running, but that's the top end (with a Radeon 8500 and two case fans)
    But a new copy of XP? Crap. The HomeXP came on the disks with the eMachine..I thought XP's drivers would pick up the new hardware, if I took some time and disabled the old stuff...crap
    I paired down some bells and whistles after my last install, but it still took a few days (almost a week) to get stuff the way I like it

    Thanks for the heads-up DustyJay, food4thot..

    Remember EVIL and LIVE are both annagrams of LEVI...LOL
     
  9. dustyjay

    dustyjay

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    I would replace the PSU were I you. But then I am me so it is your choice if you are sure it has a standard ATX power connector.

    You can get an OEM copy of Win XP home for about $90. I know it is not cheap but it beats spending $199 for a A new Full version. The OEM version I am talking about is not computer specific, and is a full install. They are just Discounted to builders of retail systems, like your Mom and Pop computer shops.
     
  10. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    Thanks again for your help dustyjay, I will definitely consider that!
     
  11. levi675

    levi675 Thread Starter

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    The power connector is a 20 pin ATX..is that standard?
     
  12. dustyjay

    dustyjay

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