IWill KK266Plus KT133A Motherboard Review

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The IWill KK266Plus KT133A Motherboard Review - Page 2

The Iwill KK266Plus KT133A Motherboard
Its Nice, but DDR is here...

By, Marco Chiappetta
September 27, 2001

THE BIOS:

If you take a look at these shots, you'll see the very common Award BIOS...

                   

                   

                   

The Iwill KK266Plus' BIOS is very complete.  There are many options for tweaking memory timings, AGP settings and a good array of overclocking options.  From within the BIOS, users can manipulate the CPU multiplier (as long as you've "unlocked" your CPU), adjust the VCore voltage and increase their FSB in 1MHz. increments.

Layout and Quality
Good Stuff...

THE LAYOUT:

Anytime we have a new product in the lab, we like to give it a thorough physical inspection...

                      

The first thing we noticed when we initially removed the KK266Plus from it's packaging was the warning sticker covering the socket.  This is a very minor thing, but the information on this sticker could help some first time system builders to avoid some problems.  With the sticker removed, a thermal probe is clearly visible right in the center of the socket.  Also worth mentioning is that there is plenty of room surrounding the socket.  Overclockers looking to install an oversized heatsink should have no problems whatsoever.

             

The Iwill KK266Plus has an almost perfect slot configuration...1 AGP slot, 6 PCI slots and one ISA slot.  Equipping the board with an AGP Pro slot would have been ideal though.  The IDE and floppy drive connectors are well placed, making it easy to route cables neatly in your case, especially if it's a mid-tower.  Then we see the internal case connectors, that are well laid out and clearly labeled.  

             

The Iwill KK266Plus has a very good on-board audio solution.  The C-Media CMI8738 chip is capable of 6 channel (5.1) audio output and supports the most common "3D sound" standards, EAX, DirectSound 3D and A3D.  There is small ribbon cable that connects the audio plate to the extra audio outputs.  There is also an optional "Superport" connector available that adds SPDIF and optical connectors as well.  The on-board audio worked very well, in our opinion comparable to a SoundBlaster Live! or Vortex 2, but not quite on the level of cards like the Game Theater XP or Audigy.

             

There is also a very nice active cooler mounted to the Northbridge, but we were a bit disappointed to see that there was no Thermal Interface Material used.  We would have been much happier if we found some thermal paste applied to the Northbridge before the cooler was installed.  Another small gripe, which is very common on many current motherboards, is the lack of space between the RAM clips and video card.  Should a user want to swap out a DIMM, they will have to remove their video card.  To end the inspection on a positive note, we'll highlight the cleanly laid out 3-Phase power array, and point out that the KK266Plus is equipped with 4 fan headers, but only 3 are "free"...one of them is used by the Northbridge cooler.

There is also a KK266Plus-R available that adds an on-board R.A.I.D. controller.  In some of the above pictures you can see the locations where the controller chip and drive connectors would be located...

Overclocking and Some Numbers...

 
Tags:  Motherboard, T1, Will, review, board, view, IE, AR, K

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