The Test

In recent times, choosing a motherboard cannot be completely determined by a Winstone score. Now, many boards come within one Winstone point of each other and therefore the need to benchmark boards against each other falls. Therefore you shouldn't base your decision entirely on the benchmarks you see here, but also on the technical features and advantages of this particular board, seeing as that will probably make the greatest difference in your overall experience.

How I Tested

  • Each benchmark was run a minimum of 2 times and a maximum of 5 times, if the motherboard failed to complete a single test within the 5 allocated test runs the OS/Software was re-installed on a freshly formatted Hard Drive and the BIOS settings were adjusted to prevent the test from failing again.  All such encounters were noted at the exact time of their occurrence.

  • Business Winstone 98 & 3D Winbench 98 was run at each individually tested clock speed, if reliable scores were achieved with the first two test runs of the suite an average of the two was taken and recorded as the final score at that clock speed.  If the test system displayed erratic behavior while the tests were running or the results were incredibly low/high the tests were re-run up to 5 times and an average of all the test runs was taken and recorded at the final score at that clock speed

  • All video tests were conducted using an AGP video accelerator

  • No foreign drivers were present in the test system other than those required for the system to function to the best of its ability

  • All foreign installation files were moved to a separate partition during the test as to prevent them from effecting the test results

  • All tests were conducted at 1024 x 768 x 16-bit color

  • 3D Winbench 98 tests were double buffered and conducted at 800 x 600 x 16-bit color

Test Configuration

Processor(s): AMD K6-2 350 AFR
Intel Pentium MMX 233
Cyrix M-II 300
RAM: 1 - 64MB Memory Man PC100 SDRAM DIMM
Hard Drive(s): Western Digital Caviar AC35100 - UltraATA
Video Card(s): Matrox Millennium G200 (8MB SGRAM - AGP)
Bus Master Drivers: Microsoft Win98 DMA Drivers
Video Drivers: MGA Millennium G200 Release 1677-411
Operation System(s): Windows 98
Motherboard Revision: FIC PA-2013 Revision 2.0

 

Ziff Davis Winstone 98 - Windows 95 Performance

  Business
AMD K6-2 300 - 100MHz x 3.0 23.6
AMD K6-2 333 - 95MHz x 3.5 21.0
AMD K6-2 300 - 66MHz x 4.5 23.1
Intel Pentium MMX 200 - 100MHz x 2.0 18.2
Intel Pentium MMX 233 - 66MHz x 3.5 17.9
Cyrix M-II 300 66MHz x 3.5 22.3

The Final Decision

Provided you can't get your hands on a California Graphics Photon 100HC, or if you feel more comfortable knowing that the 112MHz FSB setting is reliable and at your fingertips, then the FIC PA-2013 makes for an outstanding ATX Super7 motherboard.  If you're willing to make the jump to the Aladdin V chipset however, there is a better alternative...we'll soon see the return of one of FIC's most fearsome competitors to the lime light...we all remember the good old T2P4 motherboard now don't we?

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