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MSI MS6163PRO
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Date: Dec 15, 2001
Section:Motherboards
Author: HH Editor
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MSI MS6163PRO - Page 1

 Micro-Star International's MS-6163 Pro

 
These days there are a new breed of motherboards being brought to market by a few key manufacturers that are designed with the hardcore "overclocker' in mind. Micro-Star International sent us their crowned jewel in this exciting new arena, the MS-6163 Rev. 2.0, otherwise know as the MS-6163 Pro. Here's what we thought.

The Specs

  • CPU: Support Intel(R) Pentium(R) II/III & CeleronTM processor up to 550MHz or faster.
  • F.S.B. supports 66/75/78/81/83/90/95/100/105/110/112/115/117/120/122/124(31)
    124(41)/126/133/135/138/140/142/144/150/155MHz 26 settings.
  • Vcore adjustment: Up to 15%
  • Vio adjustment: 3.3/3.4/3.5/3.6v
  • Memory: 3 DIMM. Max. 768MB SDRAM (Supports ECC)
  • I/O: 2 Serial, 1 Printer, 2 USB, Floppy, IrDA, Audio, Game
  • Slot: 5 PCI, 2 ISA, 1 AGP
  • Audio: Creative(R) ES1373 (Optional)
  • BIOS: CPU Plug & Play, Voltage and Bus Frequency/Ratio Setting, ACPI, DMI,
  • PnP Green, PC 97/98
  • TOP Tech. III (Optional)
  • System Hardware Monitor (Winbond 782, Optional)
  • CPU Plug & Play III
  • CPU Core Voltage Adjustable
  • PCI Chipset Core Voltage Adjustable
  • PC Alert II
  • SoftCooler II
  • 3D! Turbo II
  • F. Factor: ATX
  • LAN Wake Up Function
  • Modem(Internal/External) Ring Wake Up Function
  • Keyboard Power On Feature
  • Diagnostic LEDs
  • STR (Suspend to RAM) (Optional)

The MS-6163 Pro has some pretty unique features. There are 4 Diagnostic LEDs on the board which, depending on the state they are in, tell you what is happening with your system. Hopefully you'll see the happy quartet of LEDs all shining brightly. If you see some other combination, then all you have to do is look at the error table in the user manual to see what your problem is.

Also, something I have never seen before is the
Chipset Voltage Adjust. In addition to CPU Core Voltage adjustments, you can actually boost the Intel BX Northbridge chipset voltage to 3.4, 3.5 and 3.6V if you want. I played with this a little but didn't see any benefit in my system. You may find it settles things down a little. I am not sure on this however.

One small note of caution. The BIOS, while it is jam packed full of additional features, does not have the ability to set the AGP multiplier/clock division from the FSB speed. As a result, I am not sure what the AGP clock was that we tested the board at based on our 124 MHz. FSB. It does have the ability to select various PCI clocks however. Regardless, this may or may not affect overclocking of your system if the video card you are running can't handle the speed of the FSB setting.

Finally,
MSI really packs in some cool software with the MS-6163 Pro. Take a look at PC Alert and 3D! Turbo II!

3D Turbo (click images)

PC Alert (click for larger view)

While PC Alert is nothing too innovative beyond the usual hardware monitoring package, it does do a nice job of keeping tabs on your board. Yes, those temps are high there aren't they.  We are used a Peltier Cooled P3-450 for testing and it really puts out the summer winds.

3D Turbo on the other hand is a really nice utility! This is the first time I have seen a Motherboard Manufacturer bundle a Video Card Tweaking/Overclocking Utility in with the package! It worked like a charm with the TNT2 card we used but would only tweak the image properties of a V3. for some reason, it didn't know what to do with the V3 core clocks.

 


Testing - Don't just sit there, crank it up!

(Our Test System)

Full Tower ATX Case w/ 300W PS, Pentium3 -450 Overclocked to 558 MHz. MSI MS-6163 Rev 2.0 Motherboard, 128MB of PC100 CAS2 RAM, IBM Deskstar 10GXP 10GB 7200 RPM EIDE UDMA Hard Drive, Leadtek Winfast S320II w/ 32MB, Toshiba SDM1202 3rd. Gen. 4.8X DVD/32X CDROM, Win 98, DirectX 6.1, Nividia Reference Drivers V2.08

 


So we fired this bad boy up and here's how it did!

ZD Winbench 99

(click for larger view)

The numbers speak for themselves. These are hands down THE best Application Benchmark numbers we have seen to date from our P3-450 overclocked @ 558MHz. The CPU/FPU numbers are in line with others in it class.

 Wintune
CPU (1) Intel Pentium III@558 MHz
Video Board NVIDIA RIVA TNT2
Video Mode 1024x768@16bits/pixel
RAM 128 MB
OS Windows 98 4.10.1998

 

Area Tested

Value

CPU Integer 1620.223 MIPS
CPU Floating Point 646.3247 MFLOPS
Video(2D) 120.9534 MPixels/s
Direct3D 158.8012 MPixels/s
OpenGL 132.5097 MPixels/s
Memory 949.4211 MB/s
Cached Disk 104.292 MB/s
Uncached Disk 3.141145 MB/s

Once again, top notch performance!  

Stability

One area that this board really excels in is stability. For over a month now, we have been running our P3-450 @ 558 MHZ. in various other BX boards. In order to do this, we had to boost the core voltage of the CPU to at least 2.1V. The MS-6163 Pro handled 558 MHz. and let our overworked and under paid CPU stay at default voltage. This was a great testament to its design and quality.

 
     

And the Survey says!!!

The Micro-Star International MS-6163 Pro gets a Hot Hardware Temp-O-Meter rating of...

93 !!! Get out the Oven Mitts Alice!



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