MSI K9A2 Platinum AMD 790FX Motherboard

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Test System and PCMark Vantage


How we configured our test systems: When configuring our test systems for this article, 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 either DDR2-800 with 5,6,6,15 timings.  The hard drives were then formatted, and Windows Vista Ultimate was installed. When the Windows installation was complete, we updated the OS, and installed the drivers necessary for our components. Auto-Updating and Windows Defender were then disabled and we installed all of our benchmarking software, defragged the hard drives, and ran all of the tests.
  

 HotHardware's Test Systems
 AMD - Dual-Core 

System 1:
AMD Athlon X2 5200+
(2.6GHz - Dual-Core)

MSI K9A2 Platinum
(AMD 790FX Chipset)

2x1GB OCZ Gold XTC PC2 8800
CL 5-6-6-15 - DDR2-800

Sapphire RX2600XT
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD740 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows Vista Ultimate
Catalyst 7.12
DirectX Redist (November 2007)

System 2:
AMD Athlon X2 5200+
(2.6GHz - Dual-Core)

Gigabyte GA-M59SLI-S5
(NVIDIA nForce 590 SLI Chipset)

2x1GB OCZ Gold XTC PC2 8800
CL 5-6-6-15 - DDR2-800

Sapphire RX2600XT
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD740 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows Vista Ultimate
Catalyst 7.12
DirectX Redist (November 2007)

 Futuremark PCMark Vantage
 Synthetic Benchmarks

For our first round of benchmarks, we ran all of the modules built into Futuremark's PCMark Vantage test suite.  Vantage is a new benchmarking tool that we've incorporated into our arsenal of tests here at HotHardware.  Here's how Futuremark positions their new benchmarking tool:

"The PCMark Suite is a collection of various single- and multi-threaded CPU, Graphics and HDD test sets with the focus on Windows Vista application tests. Tests have been selected to represent a subset of the individual Windows Vista Consumer scenarios. The PCMark Suite includes CPU, Graphics, Hard Disk Drive (HDD) and a subset of Consumer Suite tests."




Overall, the tried and true nForce 590 chipset posted a better result than the AMD 790FX.  Naturally, we would expect the tables to be reversed when tested with a Phenom processor since the 790FX would have an advantage over the 590 in that area.  As we proceed to break down the overall score, we'll get a clearer picture as to what areas of the the tests favor one chipset vs. the other.
 


The first specific test we'll cover is the PCMark Vantage "Memories" suite which is comprised of the following tests:

Memories 1 - Two simultaneous threads, CPU image manipulation and HDD picture import
Memories 2 - Two simultaneous threads, GPU image manipulation and HDD video editing
Memories 3 - Video Transcoding: DV to portable device
Memories 4
- Video Transcoding: media server archive to portable device



With our Athlon X2 5200+, the Gigabute GA-M59SLI-55 posted more efficient memory scores than the K9A2 Platinum.  We logged a variance of 155 points, which equates to a lead of 5.3% for the Gigabyte board.
 
 

Vantage TV and Movies suite includes the following tests:

TV and Movies 1 - Two simultaneous threads, Video transcoding: HD DVD to media server archive, Video playback: HD DVD w/ additional lower bitrate HD content from HDD, as downloaded from the net
TV and Movies 2 - Two simultaneous threads, Video transcoding: HD DVD to media server archive, Video playback, HD MPEG-2: 19.39 Mbps terrestrial HDTV playback

TV and Movies 3 - HDD Media Center

TV and Movies 4 - Video transcoding: media server archive to portable device, Video playback, HD MPEG-2: 48 Mbps Blu-ray playback




With Vantage's 'TV and Movies' test, the Gigabyte board managed a small lead over the K9A2 Platinum, topping it by 16 points, or 1.5% overall.

Tags:  AMD, MSI, ATI, Motherboard, MS, 790FX, fx, board, platinum, PLA, AR, AM, K

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