Legit Motherboard Reviews
Foxconn Intel i945/i955 Dual Core Motherboards
|Product:||Foxconn 955X7AA-8EKRS2, 945P7AA-8EKRS2, & 945G7MA-8EKRS2 Motherboards|
|Date:||Thu, Aug 04, 2005 - 12:00 AM|
|Written By:||Rich Caporali|
The Foxconn 955X7AA
From the outset I was impressed by the great layout and look of the 955X7AA. Built upon a"Candy Apple Red" PCB and based on the feature rich 955X chipset, with active cooling on the NB, passive cooling on the SB, and cool strips embedded in the PCB, this board seems like it should be a great performer.
The area around the CPU is well laid out and very open. I had no issues using either a Zalman CNPS 7700 or a Thermalright XP-90C, two of the more popular cooling choices on the market. both fit well and provided cooling benefits to the boards mosfets, RAM, and NB chipset.
What seperates the 955X from the 945P is mainly the memory usage, as well as a few other modest optimizations. The 955X supports up to 8 GB of 240 pin DDR2-667 RAM, while the 945P supports up to 4GB of the same DDR2 memory. In my opinion, 8 GB of memory is slight overkill, but this definitely leaves this board well stocked for the future. The 955X also supports ECC-RAM, not that this will affect most home users, but it makes the 955X a good alternative for a server or workstation PC when coupled with Intel's Pentium D dual core processors.
The 955X7AA features a single x16 PCI-E slot, three 32 bit PCI slots, and 3 x1 PCI-E slots, a very good combination for any system layout you choose, though a second x16 slot, like that found on the ASUS P5WD2 Premium, would have been a nice touch.
The 955X features a wide variety of storage configurations, all of which are first rate. The 955X7AA supports SATA II, which doubles hard drive bus bandwidth from 1.5GB/sec to 3.0 GB/sec. The 955X7AA features a total of eight SATA connectors, four SATA II and four SATA. RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5, 10, and Intel Matrix Storage Technology are supported for SATA drives. In addition, the board includes support for up to four ATA /133 drives with RAID. With this wide array of storage solutions, the 955X chipset seems to be a long term solution for any Intel based system.
Like the 925XE chipset, the 955X supports Azalia High Definition Audio. With onboard sound becoming top quality, it might only be a matter of time before sound cards become obsolete. As for the integrated LAN, the 955X features a pair of 10/100/1000 (GbE) LAN Broadcom ethernet ports. Aside from that, the 955X7AA also has four rear USB 2.0 ports, a single IEEE 1394 port, a single S/PDIF optical, and a single s/PDIF coax port for sound.
Overall the 955X7AA is not ony a great looking board, but coupled with the benefits of the 955X chipset, it is also a full flavored board that should prove to be Foxconn's flagship board for the forseeable future. Lets move onto to the 945P and 945G boards before putting these babies to the fire.
Next Page - The Foxconn 945P7AA
Page 1 - Introduction
Page 2 - The Foxconn 955X7AA
Page 3 - The Foxconn 945P7AA
Page 4 - The Foxconn 945G7MA
Page 5 - The BIOS
Page 6 - Test Setups
Page 7 - CPU Testing
Page 8 - Memory Testing
Page 9 - Graphics/Game Testing
Page 10 - Final Thoughts