Asus and Albatron 848P Motherboard Review

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Intel 848P Motherboard Review - Page 3

Albatron PX865PE Lite Pro vs. Asus P4P800S-E
Budget boards take a bite out of the market

by Robert Maloney
November 20th, 2003

How We Configured Our Test Systems:

To help fully explain the scores we listed in the following benchmarks, we felt it was necessary to explain how the systems were set up before running the benchmarks. On all boards, we started off by manually optimizing the BIOS settings to the most aggressive system options available to us. The memory frequency was manually set to DDR400 with the CAS timings set to 2-5-2-2.  The hard drive was formatted in each case, and a fresh version of Windows XP Professional with Service Pack 1 was installed. After the Windows installation was complete, we installed the latest Intel chipset drivers for the 865PE and 848P or SiS AGP and MiniIDE drivers on the 648FX, and upgraded to DirectX 9.0a.  We then installed the drivers for the rest of the components, using drivers supplied on each manufacturer's CD, except for the Tyan Tachyon G9500 Pro.  For this card, we installed ATi Catalyst drivers, version 3.4, to keep the testing consistent.  Auto-Updating, Hibernation, and System Restore were disabled, and then we set up a 768MB permanent page file. On these test systems we set the visual effects to "best performance" in system performance to limit any effects these settings would have on the benchmarks.   Satisfied that every thing was set up correctly, we installed all of the benchmarking software, defragged the hard drive, and rebooted one last time.

HotHardware Test Setup
Let's get on with the show
Motherboards Tested:
Abit IS7-G (Intel 865PE)
Albatron 865PE Pro II (Intel 848P)
Asus P4P800 Deluxe (Intel 848P)
Gigabyte GA-8S648FX (SiS 648FX)

Common Hardware:
Intel Pentium 4 Processor 2.4GHz / 800MHz FSB
512MB (256MB x2) GEIL DDR433 SDRAM (2-5-2-2)
Tyan Tachyon G9500 Pro (based on Radeon 9500)
Western Digital 20GB ATA100 Hard Drive
52x Creative Labs CD-ROM
Antec TruePower 350Watt PSU
Software & Drivers:
Windows XP with Service Pack 1
DirectX 9.0a
ATi Catalyst Drivers, v3.4
Intel Chipset Software, v5.02.1002
SiS AGP Driver, v1.16.01
SiS MiniIDE driver, v2.04

Benchmark Software:
SiSoft Sandra 2003
Futuremark's PCMark 2002
Futuremark's 3DMark 2001 (Build 330)
Futuremark's 3DMark03 (Build 330)
ZD eTesting labs' Business Winstone 2002
ZD eTesting labs' Content Creation Winstone 2002
Novalogic's Comanche 4 Demo
ID's Quake 3 Arena (Point Release 1.32)
SiSoft Sandra Benchmarks
Synthetic testing

SANDRA (the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is an information and diagnostic utility put out by the folks at SiSoftware.  It's a quick and easy way to compare the CPU, Memory, and Hard drive performance of a given system against an internal database of similar systems and drives. These benchmarks are theoretical scores, and can't necessarily be measured in ?real-world? terms, but provide a good way to make comparisons amongst like components.  All of these tests were run with our CPU set to its default clock speed (~2.40GHz / 12 x 200MHz).


( ALU MEASURED IN MIPS / FPU MEASURED IN MFLOPS )


( MEASURED IN IT/S )


( MEASURED IN MB/S )

In Sandra's CPU benchmark, the ALU scores were all comparable, with the range of difference only 25 MIPS from top to bottom.  The FPU scores were all grouped closely together, although the Gigabyte 8S648FX board seemed to fall back slightly from the other three.  The Multimedia Performance test points to the same results.  Integer based calculations are all very similar, with a slight nod going to the Asus P4P800S-E.  Floating Point calculations also had the P4P800 S-E in the lead, followed by the Albatron PX865PE and then the Abit IS7-G.  Gigabyte's board was in sole position of last place, 3-4% behind the others.  The dual DDR-channels led to the Abit IS7-G's landslide victory in the Memory Performance Module.  There's approximately 65% more bandwidth available to the IS7-G when compared to the I848P boards and 70% over the 648FX.  The two I848P boards were at similar levels, with both boards utilizing some kind of memory performance boost set in the BIOS to lower latencies.  The difference between the I848 boards and the 648FX equates to about 7% in added bandwidth.

Winstones and PCMark2002 Benchmarks  


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