ASUS P5GDC-V Deluxe Vs. Soltek SL-915GPro-FGR - Intel 915G Doubleshot

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The ASUS P5GDC-V Deluxe Up Close


Specification of the ASUS P5GDC-V Deluxe
Covering All of the Bases
CPU
- LGA775 socket for Intel Pentium 4/Celeron CPU
- Compatible with Intel 04B and 04A processors
- Intel Hyper-Threading Technology ready

Chipset
Intel 915G
Intel ICH6R

Front Side Bus
800 / 533 MHz

Memory
- Dual channel memory architecture
- 2 x 240-pin DIMM sockets support max. 2GB DDR2 533/400 non-ECC memory
- 4 x 184-pin DIMM Sockets support max. 4GB DDR 400/333 non-ECC memory
(Note: DDR and DDR2 memory can not be used simultaneously)

Graphics
Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900

Expansion Slots
1 x PCI Express X16 slot for discrete graphics card
2 x PCI Express X1
3 x PCI

Storage
Intel ICH6R South Bridge:
- 1 x Ultra DMA 100/66/33
- 4 x Serial ATA with Intel Matrix Storage Technology with RAID 0, 1 support
ITE IDE RAID controller:
- 2 x Ultra DMA 133/100/66 with JBOD, RAID 0, 1, 0+1 support

LAN
Marvell 88E8053 PCI-E Gigabit LAN Controller, features AI NET2

Audio
C-Media High Definition Audio 8-channel CODEC
Coaxial, Optical S/PDIF out on back I/O port
Features Dolby Digital Live technology

IEEE 1394
TI 1394 controller supports 2 x 1394 ports

USB
Max. 8 USB 2.0 ports

ASUS AI Proactive Features
AI NOS™ (Non-delay Overclocking System)
AI NET2 network diagnosis before entering OS
Stack Cool™ patented fanless cooling system
Overclocking Features
AI NOS™ (Non-delay Overclocking System)
AI Overclocking (intelligent CPU frequency tuner)
CPU, Memory, and PCI-E x16 voltage adjustable
SFS (Stepless Frequency Selection) from 100MHz up to 400MHz at 1MHz increment
Adjustable FSB/DDR ratio. Fixed PCI/PCI-E frequencies.
ASUS AI Booster utility
ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)

Other ASUS Special Features
CrashFree BIOS 2
Q-Fan2
Multi-language BIOS
MyLogo

BIOS
4 Mb Flash ROM,AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.3

Back Panel I/O Ports
1 x VGA out
1 x Parallel
1 x Optical + 1 x Coaxial S/PDIF Output
1 x PS/2 Keyboard
1 x PS/2 Mouse
1 x RJ45
4 x USB 2.0/1.1
1 x IEEE1394
8-Channel Audio I/O

Internal I/O Connectors
2 x USB 2.0 connectors supports additional 4 USB 2.0 ports
1 x IEEE1394 connector
1 x COM connector
1 x GAME/MIDI connector
CPU / Chassis / Power Fan connectors
Front panel High Definition Audio connector
Chassis Intrusion connector
CD audio-in connector
24-pin ATX Power connector
4-pin ATX 12V Power connector

Support CD
Drivers
ASUS PC Probe
ASUS LiveUpdate Utility
Anti-virus software (OEM version)

Form Factor
ATX Form Factor, 12" x 9.6"(30.5cm x 24.5cm)

The P5GDC-V Deluxe is a well balanced 915G board that aims to ease the transition from existing technology to the next generation of hardware.  The board focuses on supporting the newer Intel's LGA775 based Pentium 4s and PCI-Express for the latest video cards, yet leaves doors open for existing hardware as well. 

The most flexible feature of the P5GDC-V Deluxe is its DDR/DDR2 capability.  With DDR2 still relatively new, making the move at this point may be a costly endeavor with little performance gains.  High latencies are still the name of the game with DDR2, which can offset some of the performance gains to be had by switching.  With the P5GDC-V, you have the option to use your existing DDR until you are ready to move to DDR2.  The board supports a total of 4GB of DDR memory up to 400MHz and 2GB of DDR2 up to 533MHz.  Naturally, you can't mix and match DDR and DDR2 at the same time.

    

The ASUS P5GDC-V offers a single PCI-E 16X slot for the latest video card evolution while coming equipped with two PCI-E 1X slots for future peripherals.  The board also comes with integrated video which supports up to 32MBs of onboard memory, a potentially useful option for those looking to put off a PCI-E video card purchase (if you aren't a serious gamer).  ASUS also accommodates existing PCI with a total of three slots on the board as well.  For storage, the board comes with four SATA ports driven by the ICH6R Southbridge which supports Matrix RAID Technology.  Additionally, two IDE ports are provided that are powered by an ITE RAID controller supporting JBOD, RAID 0, 1 and 0+1.  There is a single IDE port powered by the Southbridge as well.

    

The layout of the board is quite good.  The ASUS P5GDC-V offers a lot of options, yet doesn't look overly crowded.  The biggest complaint we have is with how the two power connectors are split from one edge of the board to the other.  Aside from that, the layout is clean, well spaced and balanced.  One point to consider is the ATX power requires a 24-Pin connector.  While the best procedure is to get a new power supply, a quick search on Google should help locate a 20-to-24-Pin adapter that will be an affordable alternative for around $15.

The P5GDC-V Deluxe really does offer a lot of options, along with eight USB 2.0 ports, two FireWire ports, 7.1 channel audio driven by C-Media's CMI9880 CODEC, and Gigabit LAN.  Top that off with ASUS's AI Proactive features including their AI NOS (Non-Delay Overclocking) system for automatic clock adjustments, AI Net 2 Network Diagnostics for locating cable failures and Stack Cool fanless cooling system, the P5GDC-V is a serious contender.  The Stack Cool feature is a rather ingenious design, where a PCB plate is mounted on the reverse side of the CPU socket to help dissipate CPU temperature.  Additionally, a heat sink was mounted on the MOSFETs and Chipset for added temperature control.  While extensive temperature testing was not conducted, ASUS claims temperatures can be reduced by up to 10 C.  This should certainly aid in thermal control when overclocking is planned.

Next, we'll take a closer look at the BIOS that comes with the ASUS P5GDC-V Deluxe.

Tags:  Intel, Asus, LTE, GDC, SHO, UX, hot, pro, 5G, K

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