We recently previewed the 785G chipset and had to stop testing as the early beta drivers were not mature enough to provide a full performance analysis. We have since received two updated sets of drivers and are glad to report that significant progress has been made in enabling a variety of features missing in the first set. However, a full NDA is in effect on the chipset now so that is about as far as we can take it today.

In the meantime, AMD is allowing limited press coverage (pictures with just a few words of text) on the 785G motherboards. We still have boards from MSI, Biostar, ECS, and ASRock coming along with additional models from Gigabyte and ASUS that we hope to provide a quick glimpse at before the NDA lifts next month.

The star of today's show is ASUS' M4A785TD-V EVO that features AMD's 785G/SB710 chipset combination along with 128MB of DDR3 SidePort memory. The AMD 785G features the updated HD 4200 graphics engine that adds DirectX 10.1 and UVD 2.0 features along with multi-channel LPCM audio output to the mix compared to the previous generation HD 3200 on the 780G chipset. This particular board is part of ASUS' new EVO lineup that features improved cooling (StackCool 3), components, software, and specific BIOS options to provide additional performance over their entry level products.

The SB710 Southbridge provides IDE support, five 3Gb/s SATA ports with RAID 0, 1, 0+1 options, and a 3Gb/s eSATA connection on this board.

This particular board features DDR3 support which means an AM3 based processor is required. The four DIMM slots support up to 16GB of memory.

The CPU area is open and we were able to squeeze a Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme in and still utilize the first DIMM slot with low rise memory modules. ASUS implemented a 8+2 phase power design on this board along with upgraded capacitors. The 785G and MOSFET heatsinks work surprisingly well, especially with radial cooling devices.

The slot arrangement offers a variety of options and spacing is decent. We are not sold on the need for three PCI slots, but otherwise this layout works well. There are two PCIe 2.0 x16 slots (x16, x4), one PCIe x1 slot, and three PCI slots. ATI Hybrid CrossFireX support is featured on this board.

The I/O panel contains a PS/2 combo mouse port, optical S/PDIF out port, HDMI/DVI-D/D-Sub ports, eSATA port, IEEE 1394a port, Gigabit Ethernet LAN port, six USB 2.0 ports (total of 12 on the board with the headers) , and the audio panel. LAN support is via the Realtek RTL8112L controller, IEEE 1394a support comes by the VIA VT6308P chipset, and audio output is provided by the VIA VT1708S 8-channel HD audio codec.

We will be back in August with a full review of the 785G chipset along with several motherboards based on this new chipset.



View All Comments

  • strikeback03 - Monday, July 27, 2009 - link

    I was wondering about that too. Doesn't an NDA hurt them in this situation? Real review sites can't publish details, but any Joe who wants to can buy the board and blog a "review" which may or may not be well done but will see traffic just because it is there. Reply
  • cactusdog - Monday, July 27, 2009 - link

    ....Oh the other model is the GA-MA785GPM-UD2H


    Not the UD3P...but yeh 2 models for sale.
  • doncerdo - Sunday, July 26, 2009 - link

    So, remind me again, why are 3 PCI slots too much? A quick check on newegg shows that there are a ton more expansion cards in PCI than PCIe. Progress is good when there are actual improvements, but simply for the sake of progess, its pretty dumb. Reply
  • Rocket321 - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    I've always thought "sideport" sounded like something dirty....It makes me giggle. Reply
  • Lanska - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    3 PCI it's not so many: really only two of them will be availaible after installing one high end card. If you install two cards in crossfire so only 1 PCI can be used. TV Tuners are most of all PCI only specially some unique models, Creative X-Fi Elite Pro also PCI only, but also cheaper X-Fi PCI models I think nobody will change for PCI-E X-Fi Titaniums, and a lot of other PCI devices, specially in science, business and others. Reply
  • will792 - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    Does chipset allow concurrent use of 2 digital video outputs (HDMI and DVI)? It was a big flaw in 790GX. The current price gap between 30" LCDs and 19"-24" models makes dual monitor setup cheaper while having more screen pixels. Reply
  • Gary Key - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    No, you cannot have two concurrent digital outputs on this chipset. That said, it is fully capable of it, but it will never happen with the current DRM climate in the Entertainment industry and Congress here in the states. Reply
  • will792 - Sunday, July 26, 2009 - link

    Fail to follow any link to DRM. All video cards allow 2 digital outputs that can be used concurrently so integrated video should do the same. Reply
  • buzznut - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    I have been extremely curious about one thing that I have heard nothing about so far. Articles have mentioned the hybrid crossfire, but its implementation so far has a left lot to be desired. I want to know what graphics cards will be available this time (hopefully more than two models will be compatible.) I have a 790gx that I thought of using, but I understand that combination with an HD3450 would be useless for gaming. Plus it is ATX and I want a micro board.

    I want to build an htpc and this board would do nicely, but I want to game a bit as well. I'm hoping a HD4650 or 4670 would do hybrid crossfire, but possibly with onboard plus a 4350 would be sufficient? What do you think?
  • johnsonx - Saturday, July 25, 2009 - link

    What does GPU NOS signify? Reply

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