975X Express Motherboard Round-Up: Foxconn, Abit, and MSI

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Our Test Systems and PCMark05

 

How we configured our test systems: When configuring our test systems for the following benchmarks, we first entered their respective system BIOSes and set each board to its "Optimized" or "High-Performance Defaults." We then saved the settings, re-entered the BIOS and set memory timings for DDR2-800 at 4,4,4,12 and manually set each board's FSB to keep the playing field level.  The hard drives were then formatted, and Windows XP Professional (SP2) was installed. When the Windows installation was complete, we installed the drivers necessary for our components, and removed Windows Messenger from the system. Auto-Updating and System Restore were then disabled, and we set up a 1024MB permanent page file on the same partition as the Windows installation. Lastly, we set Windows XP's Visual Effects to "best performance," installed all of our benchmarking software, defragged the hard drives, and ran all of the tests.

HotHardware's Test Systems
AMD & Intel Inside!
System 1:
Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800
(2.93GHz)

Abit AW9D-MAX
Foxconn 975X7AB-8EKRS2H
MSI 975X Platinum v2
2x1GB

Corsair PC-6400

CL 4-4-4-12 - DDR2-800

GeForce 7950 GX2
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD740 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows XP Pro SP2
Intel INF 8.0.1.1002
nForce 4 Drivers v6.86
NVIDIA Forceware v91.27
DirectX 9.0c
System 2:
AMD Athlon FX-62

(2.8GHz)

Asus M2N32-SLI Deluxe
(NVIDIA nForce 590 SLI)

2x1GB Corsair PC-6400
CL 4-4-4-12 - DDR2-800

GeForce 7950 GX2

On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio


WD740 "Raptor" HD

10,000 RPM SATA
Windows XP Pro SP2
nForce 4 Drivers v6.86
NVIDIA Forceware v91.27
DirectX 9.0c

 

Futuremark PCMark05
More Synthetic CPU and Memory Benchmarks

For our first round of synthetic benchmarks, we ran the CPU and memory performance modules built into Futuremark's PCMark05 suite. 

"The CPU test suite is a collection of tests that are run to isolate the performance of the CPU. The CPU Test Suite also includes multithreading; two of the test scenarios are run multithreaded; the other including two simultaneous tests and the other running four tests simultaneously. The remaining six tests are run single threaded. Operations include, File Compression/Decompression, Encryption/Decryption, Image Decompression, and Audio Compression" - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.

From this point forward, we'll be comparing the performance of the three 975X-based motherboards we tested to each other, and to an AMD Socket AM2-based Asus M2N32-SLI powered by an Athlon 64 FX-62 processor. We've included the performance of the FX-62 strictly for reference.

As you can see, according to PCMark05's CPU performance module, all three of the 975X boards perform within a few points of one another, with the Abit AW9D-MAX technically finishing in first place, followed by Foxconn's offering.


"The Memory test suite is a collection of tests that isolate the performance of the memory subsystem. The memory subsystem consists of various devices on the PC. This includes the main memory, the CPU internal cache (known as the L1 cache) and the external cache (known as the L2 cache). As it is difficult to find applications that only stress the memory, we explicitly developed a set of tests geared for this purpose. The tests are written in C++ and assembly. They include: Reading data blocks from memory, Writing data blocks to memory performing copy operations on data blocks, random access to data items and latency testing."  - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.

Our results in PCMark05's memory performance module were also tightly grouped. In this test though, Foxconn's 975X7AB took the pole position by about 20 points, followed by the Abit AW9D-MAX and then MSI's 975X Platinum v2.


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