Intel D845PEBT2: Basic Features

Motherboard Specifications

CPU Interface
Intel 82845PE MCH
Intel 82801DB ICH
Bus Speeds
Core Voltages Supported
I/O Voltages Supported
DRAM Voltages Supported
Memory Slots
2 184-pin DDR DIMM Slots
Expansion Slots
1 AGP 4X Slot
5 PCI Slots
Onboard RAID
Silicon Image 3112A Serial ATA RAID
Onboard USB 2.0/IEEE-1394
USB2 Supported through South Bridge
Agere (Lucent) FW323 IEEE-1394
Onboard LAN
Intel Kinnereth (ICH4)
Onboard Audio
Analog Devices AD1980 SoundMAX
BIOS Version Tested

Intel packs on some very nice and unique features with the D845PEBT2.

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Intel uses a fairly uncommon (rare for most motherboards we've reviewed) sound chip for the D845PEBT2; the onboard sound is powered by Analog Devices' AD1980 SoundMAX chip. This is exactly the same sound chip found on Gigabyte's 845PE board (8PE667 Ultra).

The LAN chip Intel uses for this board is simply the one integrated into the ICH4 South Bridge, dubbed Kinnereth. This is a fairly simple 10/100 LAN chip, although not too many motherboard makers use the ICH4's integrated LAN for whatever reasons. FireWire support is provided through Agere/Lucent's FW323 controller, which supports as much as three different FireWire ports.

The D845PEBT2's I/O configuration is very nice as well. Intel decided to include two PS/2 ports, one parallel port, one serial port, four USB 2.0 ports, a LAN port, a FireWire port, and a Game Port. The AD1980 AC'97 codec drives the audio ports on the back, including the five 1/8" jacks for 6 channel analog output as well as the two digital outputs in the form of an optical and RCA SPDIF connector.

Intel also includes another very nice feature; an onboard Serial ATA controller by Silicon Image. Dubbed the Si 3112A controller, this Serial ATA chip is capable of supporting up to two independent Serial ATA devices as well as RAID 0 (striping) and RAID 1 (mirroring). Although Serial ATA drives have yet to hit the market, with this board you're ready for the transition as it can ship with two optional Serial ATA cables. The pictures shown below are what the Serial ATA connectors look like bare and then how they look with two Serial ATA cables attached.

Serial ATA connectors

...with cables plugged in

Intel also supports the usual amount of USB 2.0 ports through native support through the South Bridge. You're allowed up to six USB 2.0 ports via the 845PE chipset; put more simply, you can add another two USB 2.0-compatble ports to your system through the single USB header available on this board. You already have four rear USB 2.0 ports though, so this may not even be necessary for some.

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