Foxconn's WinFast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS - HotHardware

Foxconn's WinFast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS

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A few months ago, we took a look at a sampling of Athlon 64 Socket 939 motherboards, and ended up giving an Editor's Choice award to the NVIDIA nForce 3 Ultra based MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum.  At the time, the K8N Neo2 Platinum struck the best balance between features, performance, overclockability, and price.  Another motherboard tested in that round-up was also powered by the nForce 3 Ultra, and two others were based on VIA's K8T800 Pro. Since then, a few new PCI Express enabled chipsets for the Athlon 64 have sprung up, but they haven't begun shipping in any real volumes just yet.  Plus, PCI Express graphics cards are more expensive than their AGP counterparts for the most part, and folks who already own high-end AGP graphics cards probably aren't too keen on abandoning their investments just yet. Fortunately, there's a lot of life left in AGP, and some new chipsets from companies like Silicon Integrated System, or SiS, and ALi are still being introduced.
The SiS755FX Chipset

Today on HotHardware, we're going to take a look at a motherboard powered by the SiS755FX chipset, the Foxconn WinFast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS.  With the 755FX, SiS has added support for Socket 939 Athlon 64 processors, dual-channel memory, and a 1GHz HyperTransport clock.  Other than these three additions though, the 755FX chipset is essentially identical to the 755.  The 755FX also uses the same SiS964 Southbridge as the 755.  The SiS755 chipset wasn't very popular, but it was one of the higher performing Athlon 64 chipsets available when it was initially released.  As a result, we were eager to see what the FX version chipset could do.  Here's what we discovered putting the 755FX based Foxconn WinFast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS through the wringer.

Specifications & Features of The WinFast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS
Full-Featured Socket-939 Mobo
Processor
_AMD Athlon 64 / Athlon 64 FX, Socket 939 (939-pin)

Chipset
_SiS755FX + 964

Memory
_Dual channel, unbuffered, 2.5V DDR266/333/400, (4) 184-pin DIMM sockets, max 4GB
_DDR400 w/ 2 DIMMs Installed
_DDR333 w/ 4 DIMMs Installed

Graphics
_Discrete (non-integrated) - use expansion slot

Expansion Slots
_1 x AGP 8X, 5 x PCI

IDE

_2 x ATA/133 + 4 x SATA/150 (up to 2 x 2-drive RAID 0, 1 arrays)

Audio
_Integrated, 7.1 channel, including front audio and S/PDIF headers (Realtek)

LAN
_Integrated Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000) controller (Realtek)

IEEE-1394
_Integrated (VIA), 1 x rear + 1 x front I/O header

Internal
_1 x floppy disk drive
_2 x USB 2.0 headers (supports 4 ports)
_1 x IEEE-1394 header
_Front audio header
_1 x S/PDIF (coax out) header
Rear Panel
_1 x PS/2 keyboard
_1 x PS/2 mouse
_1 x RJ45 (LAN)
_4 x USB 2.0
_1 x line-in/line-out/mic (audio)
_Additional line-out for 7.1 channel audio
_1 x coax S/PDIF
_1 x parallel (SPP/ECP/EPP)
_1 x COM (16550-compatible UART)
_1 x IEEE-1394

BIOS
_4Mb flash EEPROM w/ LAN boot, PnP, ACPI, WfM, DMI 2.0

Features
_Wake-on-LAN (WOL)
_Suspend-to-RAM (STR)
_Suspend-to-disk (STD)
_SuperUtilities - SuperBoot, SuperBIOS-Protect, SuperRecovery, SuperSpeed, SuperStep, SuperLogo, and SuperUpdate

Accessories
_Support CD, user's manual (or installation guide)
_Rear I/O shield
_1 x floppy drive cable
_1 x HDD/ODD drive cable (supports UDMA/ATA 33/66/100/133 drives)
_RAID driver on floppy disk(s)
_2 x SATA data cables
_1 x SATA power cable (supports 2 drives)
_1 extra HDD/ODD drive cable (supports UDMA/ATA 33/66/100/133 drives)
_Rear cable/bracket assembly w/ 2 x USB 2.0 ports
_Processor heat sink retention mechanism

Form Factor
_ATX, 12.0" x 9.6" or less - see User Manual

   

The Foxconn Winfast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS ships with a "no-nonsense" accessory bundle, which is perfectly fine considering this is a value priced product. Among the accessories included with the board, we found two 80-wire IDE cables, a single floppy cable, a pair of SATA cables, and a 4-Pin-to-Dual-Sata power cable splitter.  We also found a couple of user's manuals outlining the features and installation of the board, a driver CD-ROM, and two floppy disks - one with SiS RAID drivers, the other with Silicon Image SATA drivers. Also included with the board were a processor heatsink retention mechanism and back plate, a USB case bracket, and a custom back panel I/O shield.  The processor heatsink retention mechanism is the same as what would usually come pre-installed on other Socket 939 motherboards, but you'll have to install it yourself with the Winfast 755FXK8AA-8EKRS.

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