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- Chipset KX133: finally at the level of Intel?


- KA7: description and characteristics

- You try and overclocking

- The competition

- Conclusion

Released page
5/30/2000


Author:
Juan Herrerías Rey
 

Articles about basic badges


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ABIT KA7: KX133 + overclocking


 

You try and overclocking

We it are going to say high place and skylight: the ABIT KA7 is the best badge to do overclocking of an Athlon; something logical, since it is made by a company specializing in this itself. And why? Because it includes the SoftMenu III:

  • 14 bus speeds (100, 101, 103, 105, 107, 110... 133 MHz);
  • possibility of increasing the bus speed MHz to MHz, up to +28 MHz (to obtain 102 MHz we would select 101 + 1, for example);
  • entire control of voltages (nucleus of the mike and I/O);
  • speed selection of the memory (speed of the bus or speed of the bus more - or less - the speed of the PCI).
Enormous fan for Athlon

... Every configurable from the BIOS, of course, and without need to open the casing of the mike; very clean.

Also, we have 4 connectors for fans and the space for ENORMOUS fans, like the one that we use for the test: spendthrift of 12 x 7,5 x 4,5 cm and two fans of 6 x 6 cm. Calm, a monster like that is not by no means necessary to be successful in the overclocking... but since we had it and it fits: why not?

Well, the case is that we install an Athlon to 700 MHz, 128 MB of memory PC133 and one TNT2 Ultra (certainly, a very advisable configuration nowadays) and we started doing tests. We were not disappointed with the badge by no means, realizing without problems the tests Winstone Business99 in only 10 minutes and let's give them of Quake III at full speed.

Confirmee who was working perfectly at the normal speed, we happen to overclockear:

  • 750 MHz (107 x 7), stability 100 %;
  • 770 MHz (110 x 7), stability 100 %;
  • 784 MHz (112 x 7), the first sporadic problems in the tests.

Raising the voltage 0,05 V, putting it in 1,65 V (a little, of course, dangerous if the mike is not well refreshed) and putting the memory at the speed of the bus we come to 805 MHz with the same stability as to 700 original MHz. There stop we (an Athlon is a slightly expensive toy as to fry it), but it is not necessary the definitive limit...

Certainly, the 700 MHz Athlon has a divisor of cache memory of 1/2, while those 750 MHz or more they have it of 2/5 ó 1/3; for it, his cache memory is more rapid, being more rapid one of 700 overclockeado to 750 that that of 750 "official". As for the voltage, the 850 MHz Athlons use 1,70 V, so it is not rare to have to raise it a little as we approach this number.

 

The competition

The KA7 is an excellent badge with chipset KX133, but it is neither the only one of the market nor much less; we have others, of which we have chosen three:

 

ASUS K7V

Gigabyte GA-7VX

AOpen AK72

Grooves DIMM

3

3

3

AGP-PCI-ISA-AMR

1-5-0-1

1-5-1-1

1-5-1-1

Speeds bus

100-103-105-110. up to 155 MHz

100-110-115-120. up to 143 MHz

100-110-115-120. up to 147 MHz

Integrated audio

Yes (for CODEC AC97 software)

Yes (for chip PCI Creative CT5880)

Yes (for CODEC AC97 software)

Comments

It has no ISA
High price

Double BIOS

Bad situation of the connector of feeding

The three are very advisable badges, each one with his peculiarities; any of them not even (the ABIT) is clearly top, this time to choose it is necessary to base in small details... and in the price, skylight. The best of these three in overclocking undoubtedly is the ASUS, others two give few intermediate bus options; nevertheless, there would not come to him badly a groove ISA or PCI instead of the AMR, to have slightly any more of space for fans or a more accessible price.

The Gigabyte is very finished, a checker of "real" sound includes, not for software, and a double BIOS if it trumps the first one (something rare, but by no means impossibly: virus, frustrated updates...). And the AOpen has the high habitual quality, but unfortunately it places the feeding connector between the memory and the mike, what prevents from installing very big fans.

 

Conclusion

The KA7 is an absolutely advisable badge, especially for those who are going to do overclocking. His design is very interesting, without groove neither for modem AMR nor checker for software since most of the users of badges ABIT do not use any of these two things... And they are right, I would say.

The fourth groove for memory is an interesting added one, which allows infinity of options of configuration or enlargement of the same one, for example re-using already acquired modules; although, of course, most of users have enough with 3 grooves.

As badge of mark that is, the problems are solved by rapidity, and we already have BIOS reviews in www.abit.com.tw/english/download/bios-ka7.htm; as for the manual, the habitual one of ABIT: EVERYTHING explains it ABSOLUTELY to the perfection... but only in English, how unfortunately it is habitual on the market of basic badges; and I doubt that it changes in the future, simply it does not salt profitably to translate them for the Spanish.

Finally, to say that if the KA7 is almost the perfect badge for Athlon, his "older sister" the KA7-100, with his checker UltraDMA100 and support of 8 devices IDE, we have left small doubt that this title will be deserved. If we have occasion to prove it, already we will tell you if it is like that...

 


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