ECS: RD480 in the Extreme

by Gary Key on 4/4/2006 3:40 AM EST


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  • Per Hansson - Saturday, April 08, 2006 - link

    Well, from your last mobo review: "Attention - Per Hansson by Gary Key on: Mar 23, 2006 12:06 AMRating: 4
    Our next article will have a high resolution picture of the capacitors and other items of importance in a pop-up window. I am sure the capacitors utilized on this board will be of interest to you. ;->"
  • Gary Key - Saturday, April 08, 2006 - link


    Well, from your last mobo review: "Attention - Per Hansson by Gary Key on: Mar 23, 2006 12:06 AMRating: 4

    Please email me - I have the photographs. We are doing some revisions on the engine and could not get these in but I did take the photographs for you.
  • Stas - Wednesday, April 05, 2006 - link

    I always had nVidia and ViA chjpset based mobos. Now I really want an ATi based mobo. Very nice perfromance and overclockablility. It's good that ECS made a board like that, better for the competition. I got tired of seeing 1337 ASUS and DFI mobos, now it's time for less popular companies. Reply
  • SilverTrine - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    And somehow Nvidia gets a pass for all their issues. The original Nforce was a totally unstable board on par with something like Abits awful KG7. Yet the fanboism let many to the slaughter with that board. Nforce 2 also had severe USB and IDE problems, yet fanboism kept most of that in the dark.
    Hopefully we can all get past the fanboism and be honest about things, as long as people are getting paid to post on boards that is a pipe dream though. We simply have to call these vultures on their conduct.
  • QueBert - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    I owned a number of Nf2 MB's, and now a Nf3. SW-IDE doesn't work at all on any of them for me. Infact on 1, it actually caused my burner to not burn until I uninstalled them. Nf3 I have the lovely NF Firewall thing, does this work even somewhat for anyone? I'm not a fan boy, but from my past Nvidia experince (and remember I run a NF3 board now...) the ATI couldn't possibly be much worse. could this board be bad? sure, you can take a decent chipset and ruin it with a poorly designed motherboard. Reply
  • bob661 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    I'm going to test the firewall sometime when I get the chance. I'm willing to bet I won't have problems but I could be wrong. Reply
  • Regs - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link


    However, those poor peripherals relying on the ATI SB450 are still suffering, not quite as much, but they do qualify for assistance.

    Examples of the peripherals that are suffering? Any one else want to fill me in?
  • Gary Key - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    The Firewire and Marvel Gigabit Ethernet controller are tied to the SB450. The performance of these items are sub-par compared to results on other boards. This is explained in the test detail sections and the final words recap. We have a new bios today that should bring the performance of both peripherals up to par with other boards that utilize this same components. However, there is nothing that can be done with the USB 2.0 performance although it really is not that bad. :) Reply
  • JakeBlade - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    I find it amazing that this website can test a motherboard more thoroughly than the company who makes it. Pathetic. Reply
  • highlnder69 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    You might want to fix the word mothergoard in the title to be motherboard.. Reply
  • Gary Key - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link


    You might want to fix the word mothergoard in the title to be motherboard..

    This item was changed along with the sound reference to Abit that two of us missed a few times at 3:40 this morning. Sorry about the issues! :)

    We do have another bios to test today, so far it has fixed the Firewire and Marvel Ethernet throughput issues. Time to test stability and overclocking.
  • Ryan Norton - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    Seriously, I love AT and their reviews are consistently great, but I bought into the A8R-MVP hype and was completely let down. I don't OC my ass off so my disappointment isn't quite the same as someone who wants to run a 3000+ at 325 HTT at 2.8GHz blah blah but still. Not saying AT is at fault, ASUS mostly is: just that no amount of praise can overcome the perception of RD480 boards in the PC enthusiast world now. ESPECIALLY praise for OCability =^) Reply
  • bob661 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link


    but I bought into the A8R-MVP hype
    I heard that there are some pretty pissed off owners of this board out there. ATI is new to the chipset game and they'll need some time to mature like every other manufacturer out there.
  • Ryan Norton - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    Yeah, and like I said, I'm not one of them, since I really don't OC much. I was more excited about the layout and passive chipset cooling, which HAS lent itself to a very quiet PC in my Antec P180. Still (and I've got little evidence to back this statement up) the indelible sense of disappointment has crept into my overall appraisal of the board. I replaced an MSI Neo4 Platinum with it and would probably go back to that board were I able to replace its chipset fan (a real leafblower sound-alike) with a passive solution, but my 7800GTX hangs right over that area. The BIOS is very counterintuitively laid out, and not being able to choose which PCIe x16 slot the video card sits in is also annoying.

    You should go read the A8R-MVP section of the Asus website forums (finding them is a PITA since there are few static links available over thre) and read the bitching. I think most of the AT forumgoers' collective experiences with the board ended up here:">;thre...
  • bob661 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    Thanks for the link. Reply
  • seanp789 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    The final words page has a link at the bottom to ethernet performance. a page 14 that does not appear to exist. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    The article was modified from being 16 pages originally to being 13 pages -- no content was changed, but the layout was modified. You probably just saw the article in a transitory state. Sorry. Reply
  • Patrese - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    Great review, it seems that the manufacturers are using Anandtech as beta testers for BIOS... :) Is it really too hard to release a mobo with a properly working BIOS? It seems to be happening everytime...
    BTW, this board is too purple to be an Abit, as stated on the last page: "In the on-board audio area, the Abit board offers"
  • Visual - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    WTF is a video shunt card? Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    A video shunt card is the PCB card used in some Crossfire designs for the second x8 slot when you want the other video slot to be x16. When the card is out you have 2 x8 slots, when it's in you have one x16. nVidia uses a similar "paddle" card on their nForce4 SLI design.

    ATI also has a BIOS switching option on more expensive Crossfire boards. It turned out the simple paddle was the most trouble-free on the Rx480 Crossfire, but most RD580 use the BIOS-switching design and have been trouble-free.
  • Beenthere - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    SOS, DD.

    STILL not ready for Prime time but an "E" for effort with an updated BIOS.

    Skip the ATI chipset S939 mobos - they are all flops. Hopefully the socket AM2 mobos will be far better than the S939 ATI based crap. ATI must be really disappointed in the Asian mobo makers who refused to deliver a properly operating mobo.
  • rjm55 - Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - link

    Ever since I read about nVidia paying people to post anti-ATI stuff on Forums I've wondered. Do you suppose it's in NV's interest to drum up that the ATI chipset is immature? I only ask cause the same two names always post crap comments about ATI and the A8R-MVP every time a motherboard review goes up at AT.

    I also bought an A8R-MVP. I was disappointed it required 2T Command Rate above about 260 until I realized the 2T on Asus was just as fast as iT on other boards. At 2T i reached 320. I haven't had a problem other than that and it's the best $95 I ever spent on a board. I liked it so much I bought an A8R32-MVP which I like ever better.

    Why don't you jerks that trash these ATI boards tell us SPECIFICALLY what is wrong and provide some evidence so others can take a look at your problems and fix them for you?

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