ECS put together a decent board in the form of the NF650iSLIT-A. It is a board that performs wonderfully at stock settings. As you could see in our testing, the lack of being able to keep tRCD settings for the memory really only hurt in a few of our benchmarks. Overall, the board hung with its competition, which is quite a statement since we have it up against the likes of chipsets like the Intel 975x and Nvidia 680i, as well as a proven winner in the Asus 650i board. In fact, it beat out these boards in some of our tests, proving that ECS and this chipset are both to be commended.
As far as layout is concerned, there are relatively few issues with the board. I would rather see the 4-pin 12v connection be at the top edge of the board, and certainly I would like to see different clips used on the pci-e slots. Also, worth noting is that fact that if you wanted to cool the southbridge with a fan, you likely will not be able to use the second pci-e slot.
The bundle is not much to write home about when you compare it the bundle that comes with the ECS 680i board that we just reviewed. But it is adequate, and will get you started with the essentials.
Overclocking and tweaking on this board is what will make it or break it for some. ECS has come a long way in their enthusiast line, but they still need to put a little more attention into some things. They especially need a little work in their bios department, as it seems like every ECS board we have looked at in the last several months has had some bios issue. This NF650iSLIT-A is no exception. Not being able to set the tRCD and have it stick is a major issue. We are confident that ECS can fix this issue, and we have contacted them, but it generally takes a little time for them, and most enthusiasts do not like having to wait! Also, not having a CPU multiplier adjustment can be a hindrance to some who are after insanely high bus speeds.
ECS has developed a good board here. With the price being right at
$120, it certainly is good value for what you get. The question is, is
it the best value for what else is out there in that price range?
Once last thing to consider, Nvidia is getting ready to launch the 680i
LT chipset which could have a negative impact on the sale of this board
due to its aggressive pricing. If nothing else, this board should go
down in pricing, making it an even more attractive.
The Legit Bottom Line:
The ECS NF650iSLIT-A motherboard proved to be a solid board, but competing 650i motherboards can be found at the same price point with better BIOS features. The NF650iSLIT-A is ideal for mainstream consumers who aren’t worried about overclocking and just want a stable SLI motherboard and that works when you turn it on.