For over two years now AnandTech has been reporting on the good and the bad of motherboards, covering close to 200 motherboards and rating them based on a number of set standards.  But a single motherboard review can only go so far as to give you, the reader, a general idea of whether or not the board deserves your consideration, a much more broad roundup is necessary for a true buying decision.  At the same time, a large roundup of 10 or more motherboards often removes the closer comparisons we'd like to make between individual boards due to time and length constraints.  The solution?   A head to head comparison of a select few motherboards that are similar in functionality but differ to the point that there can be only one winner with the remaining competitor(s) emerging as the sore loser. 

The basic premise of these comparisons is that ultimately, when you are looking to purchase a motherboard the final decision  comes down to which motherboard out of a select group is the best for your needs.  So without further ado, let's get to the first Head to Head comparison on AnandTech, taking place in the Super7 arena we have the Epox MVP3G2 and the Tyan S1598.  

Epox MVP3G2 Review | Tyan Trinity S1598 Review


The super7 motherboard market hasn't exactly been saturated with good or even decent quality motherboards since the advent of the standard last year.  The reasons for this lack of enthusiasm for the standard on the part of motherboard manufacturers stems from a number of concerns.  At first, most motherboard manufacturers were very skeptical as to how long the standard would last with AMD as its sole supporter (at the time AMD didn't have the best record of delivering on their promises on time).  Other concerns included upsetting the microprocessor giant, Intel, by supporting the production of more Socket-7 motherboards after Intel had officially abandoned the standard in favor of the Pentium II's 242-pin Slot-1 connector.  The end result was that the majority of manufacturer did not support the standard, and those that did at the launch of the first Super7 processor, the AMD K6-2, weren't of the best in quality or reliability compared to their LX and later, their BX counterparts. 

Finally, well over a year later, motherboard manufacturers are starting to realize that maybe AMD does have something on their hands with the K6-2 and K6-III processors, and maybe they should get on the bandwagon.  After all, as the old adage goes, it's better late than never.   Unfortunately for many manufacturers, the "never" route will be the one most traveled, but what about those manufacturers that chose to support the standard?   Among those are the two we are taking a look at today, Epox and Tyan.

Corporate Background Information

Epox has supported the Super7 motherboard market since the start with some of the first MVP3 boards ever to hit the market (MVP3C-M and MVP3E-M).  Not only was Epox among the first to support the Super7 standard, they were also among the first to do so with some style as all of their Super7 motherboards have been praised by users and reviewers alike. 

Tyan has been pro-Intel for quite some time, and their presence in the Super7 market has been limited.  Their first Super7 product came under the Trinity name and boasted a few neat options, however the success of the model wasn't as great as Tyan is used to with their other workstation/server motherboard products.

Both Epox and Tyan were founded in 1989 the only difference being that Epox started out manufacturing x86 motherboards while Tyan focused primarily on manufacturing Sun compatible systems prior to their public entrance in 1991.  Of the two companies Tyan is the larger company in this Head to Head however with both having had equal amounts of time to establish themselves, which comes out on top when the playing field is leveled and the only basis for competition are their products alone?

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