Shuttle AV14 Socket 370 VIA Apollo Pro 133A - HotHardware

Shuttle AV14 Socket 370 VIA Apollo Pro 133A

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Shuttle AV14 Socket 370 Motherboard
It's does everything right...but nothing great.

By, Marco ?BigWop? Chiappetta
10 / 12 / 2000

  
Installation and Setup
Ummm...ATX = Easy

The board ships with all the usual amenities. There is a useful manual that covers all the board's features, all necessary floppy and hard drive cables (including an 80-Pin cable needed for UDMA / 66 operation) and a CD containing the VIA 4-in-1 driver set. The drivers on the CD were a little outdated though.  Should you purchase this board, your first priority is heading to VIA's driver download page and downloading the newest release.

Installation of this board is a complete breeze.  Once you've mounted the board in your case using the proper stand-offs, set the multiplier for your processor, plug in all your components and you're ready to fly.  Every other setting is available to you via the system BIOS, which is good for both the novice and the power user. Award's newer 6.00G BIOS is used on the AV14.  This newer revision of the very popular Award BIOS has a ton of tweaking options, we're sure to see it on many more future products.

Physical inspection of the board shows that Shuttle take's pride in their products.  All connectors and traces are clean and solid but the AV14's layout could have been thought out a little better.  One thing we did like was the placements of a couple of the fan headers.

The fan headers all the way out to the edges makes for a nice clean case if you bundle the wires nicely.  We sure wish they would have thought about that when it came to the ATX and floppy connectors though.

I'm pulling the cables straight out for the sake of getting a good pic but this placement is very poor.  In most instances, the AV14 is going to be mounted in a tower type case, which means the power supply and floppy cables are going to be draped directly over the processor. (You can see a piece of the Socket 370 at the upper right.)  The potential for having the floppy and ATX cables obstructing airflow over your processor's heatsink is very real.  If you have this board or any other with a similar layout, take special care to route your cables neatly and bundle them tightly.

Our last concern is with the placement of large capacitors fairly close to the Socket 370 connector.

Notice the lower-left hand corner where the heatsink just barely clears the capacitor.  With a slightly lager heatsink, we may not have been able to get it mounted properly.  On the flip side, having these "larger" capacitors filtering the power to the CPU results in greater stability.  We are happy to report that throughout testing we did not experience a single crash.  Those seeking excellent stability will not be disappointed in the AV14.

Now we know what the Shuttle AV14 is made of and what it looks like but I'm sure you're all wondering, "How does it perform"?  It actually performs quite well....

 

Benchmarks, Overclocking and Conclusion

 

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