ECS K7S5A Feedback

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Joined: Nov 2000
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point Posted: Mon, Feb 18 2002 3:53 PM
Average Price: $58.00

Product Description:

[list]
K7S5A
SiS 735 Chipset
[*]Socket A for AMD Athlon/Duron (K7) processors
[*]Two 184-pin DDR DIMMs and two 168-pin DIMMs with DDR SDRAM or SDRAM support, up to 1GB(DDR or SDRAM)
[*]LAN: MAC integrated in SiS 735 & PHY on board
[*]AC97 Audio Codec on board
[/list]


K7S5A has a Socket-A processor socket for an AMD K7 type processors. You can install any one of these processors on the mainboard. The mainboard supports front-side bus speeds of 200/266MHz. This mainboard uses the SiS 735 chipset which supports a 4X AGP slot for highly graphics display, DDR interface and Ultra DMA 33/66/100 function, provides outstanding high system performance under all types of system operations. The mainboard has a built-in AC97 Codec, provides an AMR (Audio Modem Riser) slot to support Audio and Modem application, and has an built-in 10BaseT/100BaseTX Network Interface (optional).

-- Review --

Coming from the background of Abit and Asus motherboards for almost any of my personal computers, I decided to go out on a limb with the ECS K7S5A board for my linux server. Well, it never made it into my linux server... in fact, its running in my personal gaming machine. I have a sound blaster live! platinum 5.1 sound card that sounds like SH*T in windows 2000 with my old Abit KT7A motherboard. The problem doesn't exist in windows XP or in 98SE... and no fix that I've tested fixes the problem in win2k 100%. With the SIS735 chipset, my sound is cleaner then ever, and my machine is stable now. I don't lock up in any games, and none of my USB products drop out for any whacky reasons.

The board is great for the budget minded person. It supports both SDRam and DDR (which was a big + seeing that I have 512 CAS 2 SDR Ram from my KT7A) and everything on the board is layed out nicely. There were no capacitors in the way surrounding the socket, and even the CPU lifting bar is metal, a big plus in my book. The PCB is black, which is a change from the standard green/orange most people are used to using. The bios is 'ok' for being a budget board, but not near as many features as an Abit board, or an Asus board. But, I don't overclock so no big deal. The case button and LED hookups are layed out towards the bottom, but are so compacted together, that it takes a little patience putting them out.

One thing that irritated me is that the 2nd USB cable off my Abit will not work with the USB Header on the ECS. They have reversed the pins, and changed it slightly... so if you want a second batch of USB ports in the back, better buy the addon w/ the motherboard.

The board runs fine. Games work great. The only time I ever see a performance problem is when I have too much running across the IDE channels at one time. IE: when I am burning a CDR, surfing the web, listning to mp3's, and moving stuff from my computer to my linux box, it tends to slow down just a little bit for a few seconds, but jumps right back up to performance after the buffer clears. I don't know if its just me, or if I need to update the drivers.

No native win2k support when first installing... meaning you have to use the drivers off the cd when first installing win2k.. It doesn't support it out of the box. Which, is no biggie. Most everyone needs to download drivers anyways ,). I just recommend keeping the cd around when you reinstall. XP not tested.

ECS Link to Mobo
> point
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(Invalid input detected at '^' marker)
> sh ru
(No current configuration in NVRam)
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