ABIT was the first company to blatantly admit to us that their 820 sales have not been doing so well and they also basically said that they wouldn't be releasing any new 820 products either. Their flagship products have always been their BX based motherboards, at least for the past two years, and although they would like that to continue it isn't going to be entirely possible since the chipset will be phased out in the future. Naturally you would think that they would replace it with the i815/815E, however according to ABIT, Intel is not able or willing to allocate enough chipsets that would allow them to move the i815 to the position of their flagship product.

The first motherboard that caught our eye was the VP-20, pictured above. The reason it caught our attention wasn't because it was a dual processor motherboard based on the Apollo Pro 133A chipset but because it is a microATX motherboard. When the microATX specification became a standard, could you ever imagine having a dual processor motherboard available in such a small footprint form factor?

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On the topic of Apollo Pro 133A based motherboards, we have ABIT's VH6 which is basically a Socket-370 version of the BH6 that makes use of the 133A chipset. Hopefully the board will be better than ABIT's first VIA based Pentium II/III solution, the VA6.

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We mentioned that ABIT was looking to transition to the i815 chipset instead of depending solely on the BX chipset for their flagship products, the first such transitional board is the SE6 which is based on the i815E chipset. The 'E' denotes the implementation of ICH2 on the motherboard design meaning that it supports ATA 100 as well as 4 USB ports.

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In order to help get rid of the remaining ICH parts they have in stock, ABIT basically made an i815 version of the 815E based SE6. The SL6 is no different than the SE6 other than the obvious features it lacks because it uses the regular ICH instead of the newer ICH2.

Index ABIT (continued)
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