/ Setup and Overclocking
i815E gets friendlier
speaking, the i815E Pro is laid out pretty well
and most connections are made fairly easily.
ATX power connector is behind the CPU socket,
which is by no means optimal. However, it is
fairly close to the edge of the PCB which does
allow you to tuck the ATX Power cord away fairly
neatly and keep it from obstructing air flow
around the CPU Heat Sink.
speaking, with BIOS driven CPU setup
as the defacto standard for many of the big
motherboard players these days, installation was a
breeze. The MS-6337's BIOS menus are very
full featured and "tweakable".
Let's have a quick look.
you ever seen such beauty is a BIOS CPU Setup
Menu? OK, so maybe associating the word
"beautiful" with a computer component
REALLY shows of our deep "geekedness"
around here but we were genuinely impressed.
These days, BIOS screens all pretty much have the
same options in this area with the only variance
being how high the front side bus speed can be
the MS-6337's BIOS allows you to tweak the front
side bus in 1MHz. increments or just hit enter and
type in your clock speed up to 166MHz. It
also allows you to tweak both core and I/O
voltages. Finally, the menu shows you with
respect to your CPU multiplier, what overall bus
speeds will be driven at a specific Front Side Bus
speed that you dial in for the processor.
Ever wonder what speed the AGP Bus was running at
on an i815 board when set to 145MHz. FSB?
This little feature takes all the guess work out
of it. As the saying goes, sometimes
"little things mean a lot".
should note however, that there is a small fly in
the ointment at the time we were writing this
review. It seems that with the exception of
the original release version of the BIOS, Core
Voltage settings are not currently working
correctly. We were able to set the voltage
on BIOS version 1.0 but with 1.2 and later, we set
it to a specific voltage and it wouldn't affect
the output from the regulator on the board.
We then checked the BIOS to make sure it was set
and indeed it still showed the 1.8V that we dialed
in but the monitors were showing 1.7 or less going
to the CPU. Again, with BIOS version 1.0
this was not a problem and it worked
flawlessly. However, version 1.0 does not
have the spiffy bus speed tables listed in
it. We have contacted MSI about this small
anomaly and they assured us of a fix
shortly. We are confident that this won't be
a problem for long.
MSI was one of the first manufacturers to release
a BIOS update utility that can be run from a
Windows environment. Flash upgrading your
BIOS could not be easier now thanks to a small
program that is included in the package.
Once installed and executed, it fires up your web
browser and links to the MSI download site.
for full view
then checks your BIOS version and detects whether
or not you need an update. At that point, if
you are behind a revision, it will execute the
"WinFlash" program and upgrade you BIOS
right then and there. After that your
machine is reset automatically and you are
done. We tried it and it worked
flawlessly! Bravo MSI, bravo.
With The MS-6337
has it down cold.
were wondering whether that missing heat sink on
the i815E chipset was going to be a problem with
stability, this is the section that should shake
things out for you.
up our board with a quality standard fan blown
heat sink. Granted the Alpha PEP66 that we
used is a higher end product but we used nothing
that exotic in our efforts simply to show you what
sort of "out of the box" experience you
can expect. However, we did use BIOS
revision 1.0 so that we could tweak the voltage of
the CPU and put the MS-6337 on a level playing
field with others we have tested. Here are
the results from our 933MHz. P3.
opinion is that not having passive cooling on the
chipset was not a limitation in any way. The
MS-6337 is a very stable board. This clock
speed was achieved at default voltage and a high
end of 1088MHz. was achieved at 1.8 volts with
full stability. Remember, for you
"doubting Toms" of the world, it
would be fairly easy to install a small heat sink
on the chipset, if you wanted a little extra peace
and The Rating