Soyo's SYK7VTA KT133 Motherboard

Soyo's SYK7VTA KT133 Motherboard - Page 2


Soyo's SY-K7VTA - KT133 Motherboard
AMD Socket A Technology From Soyo, Solid As A Rock

By, Dave "Davo" Altavilla
10 / 25 / 2000

Alright then, let's dig a little deeper into the options that Soyo SY-K7VTA BIOS provides. 
Installation / Setup With The SY-K7VTA
Very forgiving

In general, the "feel" of this board when setting it up was very forgiving.  We had no issues with resource conflicts and the board booted upon first power up.  However, the SY-K7VTA does have a fairly unique feature should something go awry on you during installation.  Soyo's "Voice Doctor" feature will give you audible voice instructions through the PC Speaker diagnosing a problem.  We removed the SDRAM DIMM module and hit the power button at one point and guess what?  It worked...  A female (albeit faint) voice was heard telling us that main system memory was not present and to check for proper installation.  This was a nice touch indeed. 

And now we give you the BIOS setup...

 CPU FSB Settings                                 CPU Voltage Settings

SDRAM Timings                                   Health Monitoring

As you can see, the BIOS provides an excellent array of Front Side Bus Speed settings and it also has the ability to tweak the CPU Core Voltage well above specifications.   However, as most of you are aware, bus speed settings above 110MHz. on the Athlon or Duron EV6 DDR bus are rarely usable.  We have seen a few boards that handle well up to 115MHz. but those are few and far between.  The SY-K7VTA is not one of them. 

This is a good point for a lead into to over-clocking with this board.

The Hot Hardware Crew would like to thank our friends at PCNut Computers for providing the AMD T-Bird Athlon chip used in this review.  Our chip was a "special" so to speak, in that it was hand picked by PCNut and the L1 Cache Bridges were reconnected with a conductive pencil.  This will allow multiplier changes as long as the motherboard supports it.  Unfortunately, the SY-K7VTA does not.  Let's have a look at this little baby. 

Click to see the Blueness

This is known as a "Blue Core" T-Bird that was manufactured at AMD's Dresden plant and has copper interconnects internally.  The folks at PCNut have proven this chip out to 1.1GHz. with full stability!  If you shake you funky groove thang over to PCNut real quick, they may even have a few of these left.  So, what are you waiting for?


Overclocking With The SY-K7VTA
One step away from greatness

As we mentioned before, the SY-K7VTA (at least the rev. we tested) does not have the ability to change CPU Multiplier settings.  Although, we have heard of reports on the net that Soyo may be adding this feature in future revisions. 

We were able to bump the FSB up a little bit with the help of voltage but it wasn't much to write home about.  Click it...

We were only able to get a measly 3MHz. (6MHz. DDR) boost to the FSB.  We could boot the system at 107MHz. FSB but it would lock upon loading Windows and that was at any voltage we selected.  If there was only the ability to change the CPU Multiplier, this board could really shine here.  With it's plethora of voltage settings in the BIOS, it is a natural for this.  AMD's platform just doesn't like its bus speed messed with too much, as has been widely reported.  As a result, the only real way to successfully over-clock the T-Bird is through multiplier adjustment, so we were left a little short with the K7VTA.

As a side note, we did check to see that AGP 4X was at least setup properly.

Things look good here.  Let's move out...




Tags:  Motherboard, T1, board, AR, K

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