BIOS Settings

Here are my Recommended BIOS Settings for those of you who have been having problems with the P2L97 and higher bus speeds, I'm not sure why though since it was very stable when I tested it. Below are my recommended settings for bus speeds < 66MHz, and 75MHz. If you are using Non-EDO RAM, then use the settings the in the 2nd (Non - EDO) column, if you are using SDRAM/EDO RAM with a 50/60/66MHz bus speed use the 3rd (66MHz Setting) column. The next column should be used if you are using the 75MHz bus speed and EDO/SDRAM. Finally, if you are looking for the safest and most stable setting, use the last column. There are more Chipset Features Setup options than those I have listed here, but they pertain to HDD settings as well as Serial/Parallel Ports and have nothing to do with memory timings so I left them out intentionally.

ASUS P2L97 Chipset Features Setup
Item Non - EDO 66MHz Setting 75/83MHz Setting Safe Setting
Auto Configuration: Disabled Disabled Disabled Disabled
EDO Read Burst Timing: x333 x222 x222 x333
EDO Write Burst Timing: x333 x222 x222 x333
EDO RAS# Precharge Time: 4T 3T 3T 4T
EDO RAS to CAS Delay: 4T 3T 3T 4T
SDRAM CAS# Latency: 2T 2T 3T 3T
SDRAM RAS to CAS Delay: 3T 2T 3T 3T
SDRAM RAS Precharge Time: 3T 2T 3T 3T
MA Wait State: Slow Fast Fast Slow
16-bit I/O Recovery Time: 1 BUSCLK 1 BUSCLK 1 BUSCLK 4 BUSCLK
8-bit I/O Recovery Time: 1 BUSCLK 1 BUSCLK 1 BUSCLK 8 BUSCLK
Graphics Aperture Size: 64MB 64MB 64MB 64MB
Video Memory Cache Mode: USWC USWC USWC UC
PCI 2.1 Support: Enabled Enabled Enabled Disabled
Memory Hole At 15M-16M: Disabled Disabled Disabled Disabled

 


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.

Test Configuration

Processor(s): Intel Pentium II - 300 (512K ECC)
BIOS Revision: Std BIOS
RAM: 2 - 32MB Megatrends SDRAM DIMMs 2 - 32MB Corsair SDRAM DIMMs
Hard Drive(s): Quantum Fireball ST (3.2GB) Ultra ATA
Video Card: Matrox Millennium II (4MB WRAM) & ATI 3D Rage Pro (AGP Tests)
Busmaster EIDE Drivers: Intel v3.01
Video Card Drivers: MGA Millennium 4.03.00.3410
OS: Windows 95 Service Release 2
Cooling: Boxed Pentium II Heatsink/Fan
2 - 3" Case Fans
Enlight 7230 ATX Mid Tower

 

Windows 95 Performance of the ASUS P2L97 (PCI Video)

CPU Business Winstone 97 Business Graphics Winmark 97
Intel Pentium II - 375** 71.8 183
Intel Pentium II - 338* 68.6 167
Intel Pentium II - 333** 68.0 166
Intel Pentium II - 308 67.3 142
Intel Pentium II - 300* 66.6 148
Intel Pentium II - 300 66.4 146
Intel Pentium II - 266 62.9 132
Intel Pentium II - 233 59.0 119

* This speed was achieved using the 75MHz bus speed (75 x 4.0 = 300MHz, 75 x 4.5 = 337.5MHz ~ 338MHz)
** This speed was achieved using the 83.3MHz bus speed (83.3 x 4.0 = 332MHz ~ 333MHz, 83.3 x 4.5 = 375MHz)

Windows 95 Performance of the ASUS P2L97 (AGP Video)

CPU Business Winstone 97 Business Graphics Winmark 97
Intel Pentium II - 375** 73.0 188
Intel Pentium II - 338* 69.1 171
Intel Pentium II - 333** 68.7 170
Intel Pentium II - 308 67.8 148
Intel Pentium II - 300* 67.0 150
Intel Pentium II - 300 66.9 150
Intel Pentium II - 266 63.4 136
Intel Pentium II - 233 61.2 124

* This speed was achieved using the 75MHz bus speed (75 x 4.0 = 300MHz, 75 x 4.5 = 337.5MHz ~ 338MHz)
** This speed was achieved using the 83.3MHz bus speed (83.3 x 4.0 = 332MHz ~ 333MHz, 83.3 x 4.5 = 375MHz)

 


The Final Decision

When I first reviewed this motherboard I didn't experience any problems at all with it, however according to most users (not all however) there are a few reliability problems with the P2L97. In response to this ASUS has revised the motherboard by doing a few things:

  • removing the jumperless setup

  • dropping the price

  • making a few more modifications, 'under the hood'

All of these changes have been made in the newest revision of the motherboard, 1.05. So if you do decide to get the P2L97, be sure it is a revision 1.05 motherboard.

Index

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