nForce 650i SLI Shoot-Out: MSI P6N SLI vs Abit Fatal1ty FP-IN9 SLI

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We are going to start this nForce 650i SLI comparison off by taking a look at the features, specifications, bundle and board layout of the MSI P6N SLI Platinum.

Whether it's video cards or motherboards, MSI consistently tries to deliver something unique with many of its products. In this case, the "Platinum" moniker signals the presence of an extra feature or two. When you check out the specs and features below, you may notice the inclusion of an external eSATA port and support for not one but two IEEE1394a (FireWire) ports. Another cool feature to take note of is the clear CMOS button that is included on the board. Kudos to MSI for the high convenience factor there! You won't see these features on many other nForce 650i SLI boards. Check out the table below to see what else the P6N SLI Platinum brings to the table.

    

MSI P6N SLI Platinum
Specifications & Features
CPU
• Supports Socket 775 for Intel Core2 Quad, Core2 Extreme, Core2 Duo, Pentium 4 (Prescott, P4EE), Pentium D, Pentium XE/Celeron D processors in LGA 775 package
• Supports FSB 533/800/1066/1333* MHz (FSB 1333 requires FSB 1333 CPU and manual FSB adjustment in the BIOS)
• Supports Intel 05B/05A and 04B/04A processors
• Supports EIST techonology
• Supports Intel Hyper-Threading (HT) Technology
• Supports Intel Dual Core Technology to 1066MHz and up

CHIPSET
NVIDIA nForce 650i SLI (C55) Chipset
• Supports FSB 533MHz, 800MHz, 1066MHz & 1333MHz* (FSB 1333 requires FSB 1333 CPU and manual FSB adjustment in the BIOS)
• Supports Dual channel DDR2 533/667/800 memory interface up to 8GB
• Supports Dual PCI Express 16X interface with either 1x16 or 2x8 operation

NVIDIA nForce 430i (MCP55) Chipset
• Integrated Hi-Speed USB 2.0 controller, 480Mb/sec, 8 ports
• 4 Serial ATAII ports w/ transfer rate up to 3Gb/s and support RAID (0,1, 0+1 & 5)
• 2 channel Ultra ATA 133 bus Master IDE controller up to 4 IDE drives
• PCI Master v 2.3, I/O ACPI 2.0 Compliant

MEMORY
• Supports dual channel DDR2 533/667/800, using four 240-pin DDR2 DIMMs
• Supports the memory size up to 8GB
• Supports 1.8v DDR2 SDRAM DIMM

EXPANSION SLOTS
• Two PCI Express X16 slots (supports PCI Express BUs specification v1.0a compliant) (The 2nd PCI Express X16 slot will operate at X8 mode when SLI Technology has been enabled)
• One PCI Express X1 slot
• Three 32-bit Master PCI Bus slots
• Support 3.3V/5V PCI bus interface

ON-BOARD IDE / SATA
• Two IDE controllers on the NVIDIA nForce 430i chipset provides IDE HDD/CD-ROM with PIO, Bus Master and Ultra DMA133/100/66 operation modes
-- Can connect up to 4 IDE devices
• NV RAID supports 4 SATA II ports (SATA1-4); Transfer rate is up to 300MB/s
• NV RAID
-- Supports up to 4 SATA
-- RAID 0 or 1, 0+1, 5, JBOD is supported
-- RAID function work w/ SATAII H/D

EXTERNAL eSATA RAID
• 1 SATAII port by Sil3531 (back panel)
• Supports RAID 0

IEEE 1394a
• VIA 6308P chipset
-- Supports up to 2 x 1394 ports
-- Transfer rate is up to 400Mbps

AUDIO
Realtek ALC888 HD Audio
• Flexible 8-channel audio with jack sensing
• Compliant with Azalia 1.0 spec

LAN

• Supports 10/100/1000 Fast Ethernet by Realtek® RTL8211BL


ON-BOARD PERIPHERALS
• 1 floppy port supports 1 FDD with 360K, 720K, 1.2M, 1.44M and 2.88Mbytes
• 1 Serial port (COM 1, supported by pin-out)
• 1 parallel port supports SPP/EPP/ECP mode
• 1 audio jack (5-in-1), coaxial/optical SPDIF out
• 8 USB 2.0 ports (Rear x 4 / Front x 4)
• 1 RJ45 LAN jack
• 1 D-Bracket 2 pinheader
• 2 IEEE 1394a connectors (Rear x 1 / Front x 1)
• 1 CD-in pinheader
• 1 eSATA port

SYSTEM BIOS
• The mainboard BIOS provides "Plug & Play" BIOS which detects the peripheral devices and expansion cards of the board automatically.
• The mainboard provides a Desktop Management Interface(DMI) function which records your mainboard specifications.
• Supports boot from LAN, USB Device 1.1 & 2.0 and SATA HDD

FORM FACTOR
• ATX Form Factor - 11.96 in. (L) x 9.61 in. (W)
• 9 mounting holes

SPECIAL FEATURES
• Live Update
• Dual Corecell
• MSI Dual CoreCenter
• DOT

     

Opening the MSI P6N SLI Platinum box reveals a decent sized bundle. The package includes a Quick User's Guide, Quick Installation Guide, Quick Guide poster, driver/utility CD, two 4-pin to SATA power connectors, SLI connector, a bracket to hold the SLI connector in place, FireWire bracket, USB/diagnostic LED bracket, chipset fan, round floppy cable, round IDE cable, four SATA cables, one eSATA cable, and a rear I/O cover. We like that MSI throws in about everything you need to utilize all the features of this board.

Tags:  MSI, nforce, sli, MS, Fatal1ty, shoot, force, Abit, SHO, N9, TAL

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