While Las Vegas' Fall Comdex and Taipei's Computex may be big computer shows, the largest of them all is CeBIT which is held in Hannover, Germany. Unfortunately, due to the close proximity of CeBIT to the Intel Developer Forum that we just recently got back from, we were only able to get limited coverage from the show floor courtesy of our resident Cooling Products Editor, Tillmann Steinbrecher, who currently lives in Germany.

Not too long after publishing his roundup on Heatsinks for use with the AMD Athlon processor, Tillmann brought us back what he considered to be one of the most prevalent faces at this year's CeBIT, Athlon motherboards.

We have seen the number of Athlon motherboards grow considerably since the introduction of AMD's flagship processor back in August of 1999. At the time of the release of the Athlon there were a total of two motherboards available, the Gigabyte GA-7IX and the Microstar MS-6167. Those two were joined by FIC's SD-11 and later by the ASUS K7M as well as a solution from Biostar, but in the end, the number of Athlon motherboards was no where near the number of motherboards available for the Pentium III platform.

At last year's Fall Comdex in Las Vegas we did notice a few more Athlon motherboards but that was nothing compared to the twenty Athlon motherboards Tillmann was able to take a look at while at CeBIT. While this short article will start and conclude our coverage of CeBIT, there were some other interesting things that took place at this year's CeBIT.

3dfx displayed the Voodoo4/5 running on some demo systems, but the chips were not up to par with what the final shipping silicon will be capable of achieving. This isn't a huge surprise since it wasn't too long ago that 3dfx told us that they still hadn't had silicon of their V4/5 parts. It may have been a mistake for 3dfx to demo their Voodoo4/5 at CeBIT since it attracted quite a bit of attention, it seems like if anything 3dfx wanted to show the world that they do indeed have a working sample of their upcoming parts. What this ended up turning into however, was more of a "we've waited all this time for this?!?" response from those that saw the demos of chips only running at 100MHz. Luckily these demos were on very early hardware and it was expected that they operate at a frequency lower than what they'd be shipping at. Regardless, there hasn't been a change in the specs for the V4/V5 clockspeed, so there's no reason to worry.

AMD showed off their 1.1GHz (1116MHz to be exact) Thunderbird platform at CeBIT, just like they did to us at the Intel Developer Forum a couple weeks ago. In spite of these recent demonstrations, AMD's next clock speed release won't be based on the new Thunderbird core but the K75 core that we've been used to. The Thunderbird core will eventually make its introduction around the April/May time frame, just in time for E3 which, if you recall, is where AMD first introduced their K6-2 from 2 years ago. We'll have more information about Thunderbird as well as Intel's competing solution, the Willamette in an upcoming article about the future of the desktop, workstation and server PC markets based on current roadmaps.

But now to the topic at hand, Athlon motherboards, so without further ado let's get to the pictures...

AOpen AK-72
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