- Micro-Star International, has long been
known for top quality motherboards designed with the
Performance or Power User in mind. In
addition, they are typically one of the first few
vendors out of the gate with a new technology or
motherboard platform. The third Pentium 4 or
Socket 423 based motherboard to be tested here at
HotHardware was sent to us from this veteran player
in the field.
The MS850Pro is an
i850 based motherboard from MSI that goes head to
head with the likes of the Asus
P4T and Gigabyte
GA-8TX. Let's see how this product from
MSI stacks up versus this stiff competition.
of The MSI 850Pro
layout and an easy upgrade
Supports Socket 423 for Intel(R) Pentium(R)
Processor up to 1.5GHz or faster
Intel(R) 850 chipset
Up to 2GB Maximum memory (RAMBUS)
AGP Pro Interface with 4x SBA/Data Transfer
AC?97 Controller Integrated
2 full IDE channels, up to ATA100
Low pin count interface for SIO
4 USB Ports
Supports 400MHz FSB
Supports four 168-pin Gold-lead RIMM
Supports a maximum memory size of 2GB.
One CNR (Communication Network Riser) slot.
One AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port) Pro
slot. Supports up to 4x mode
Five 32-bit/33MHz Master PCI Bus slots.
Supports 3.3v/5v PCI bus Interface.
An IDE controller on the ICH2 chipset
provides IDE HDD/CD-ROM with
PIO, Bus Master and Ultra DMA 100 operation
Can connect up to four IDE devices.
Super I/O Controller
Winbond W83627HF-AW I/O controller
1 Floppy port supports 2 FDD with 360K,
720K, 1.2M, 1.44M and 2.88Mbytes.
2 Serial ports (COM A + COM B)
1 Parallel port supports SPP/EPP/ECP mode
1 IrDA connector for SIR
ICH2 chip integrated
Creative CT5880 (Optional)
-- 64 Voice WaveTable Synthesizer
-- Sound Library of over 4000 different
-- Support SPDIF (AC3)
-- Support Microsoft Direct Sound, Direct
Sound 3D, Direct Music, and
The mainboard BIOS provides "Plug &
Play" BIOS which detects the
peripheral devices and expansion cards of
the board automatically.
IDE drive auto configure, Advanced Power
Management (APM) 1.2, ACPI
1.0, DMI 2.0, ECC/Parity support.
ATX Form Factor : 12inches(L) x 9.6inches(W)
x 6 layers PCB
9 mounting holes
you can't live with them and you can't shoot 'em...
I think I knew a girl like that once. A
necessary evil, connectors, whether they be power,
EIDE, DIMM Sockets, or even IO Plugs, are always the
largest components on a motherboard and generally
cause the most heartburn during assembly and system
setup. MSI does an admirable job of locating
all three power connectors for the P4 platform, ATX,
AUX, and ATX12V, on the edge of the board and out of
the way of the CPU and DIMM sockets.
addition, the board has "press fit" style
CPU heat sink retention clips, shown below,
that do not require bolting down to a chassis.
As a result, you can mount this P4 board in any
standard ATX case. As long as you have an ATX12V
compliant power supply, as an upgrade, it's plug
heat sink retention clips provided with the MS
850Pro are easily the best design we have seen thus
far. They are a hinge based lever style clip
that really holds the sink in place and is amazingly
easy to install and release once mounted.
We've got to hand it to MSI on this design, nicely
MS 850Pro's BIOS, Setup and Overclocking