ECS A780GM-A Motherboard Review – AMD 780G Chipset

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Hard Drive and Audio Performance

HD Tach RW; Version 3.0.4.0

HD Tach will test the sequential read, random access and interface burst speeds of your attached storage device (hard drive, flash drive, removable drive, etc). All drive technologies such as SCSI, IDE/ATA, 1394, USB, SATA and RAID are supported. Test results from HD Tach can be used to confirm manufacturer specs, analyze your system for proper performance, and compare your performance with others. HD Tach is very easy to use, quick, and presents data in easy to read graphs, including the ability to compare two storage devices on screen at the same time for easy analysis.

AMD 780G Hard Drive Performance

AMD 780G Hard Drive Performance

Benchmark Results: Using a Western Digital WD1500ADFD Raptor hard drive as a secondary drive we tested hard disk performance on the 780G platforms and the results are shown above. Both the ECS and Gigabyte boards had the same random access score and the burst speed and average read speeds were too close to call a winner.

Rightmark Audio Analyzer; Version 6.0.6

The Rightmark Audio Analyzer suite is designed for testing quality of analog and digital paths of any audio devices, be it a sound card, an MP3 player, a consumer CD/DVD player or an acoustic set. The results are obtained by playing and recording test signals passed through the tested audio path by means of frequency analysis algorithms. To complete this test we ran an external loopback (line-out – line-in) for the audio on the motherboard.

AMD 780G Hard Drive Performance

The Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H was able to complete the testing with no problems at all, but the ECS board was unable to run this test, which brings us to our concerns on the audio. The audio on the ECS A780GM-A pops when Windows Vista is on the splash screen when Windows is loading all the right drivers and crackles when games are being loaded. Something didn’t seem right and Rightmark Audio Analyzer confirmed this.

AMD 780G Hard Drive Performance

Even with everything cranked up to high the input level would be too low.  If we unplugged and plugged back in the speaker jack a few times we could get the input level to increase, but then we were left with inter-channel leakage and distortion.  We tried a few different cables, but since we have no problems on other boards combined with the fact the audio pops when the OS loads we feel safe to assume something more serious is wrong. We searched for newer drivers over at the IDT website, but found that IDT doesn’t offer consumer support and ECS has no newer drivers. It is possible that the IDT 92HD206 audio chip is faulty.

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