DDR SDRAM is making a strong push as the memory of the future, especially in the Socket-A motherboard market thanks to chipsets from AMD, VIA, and ALi.  Pro 266For those Intel CPU fans out there, a viable DDR solution has not been available until the recent introduction of the VIA Apollo Pro 266.  As we found in our VIA Apollo Pro 266 Review, from a performance point of view, there’s really no reason for you to upgrade if you’ve already got a good i815 motherboard and PC133 SDRAM.  The simple fact of the matter is that the Pentium III cannot take full advantage of memory bandwidth beyond PC133 due to its 133MHz FSB limitation.  Nevertheless, the Apollo Pro 266 provides a healthy alternative to the i815 chipset, provided that the price of DDR SDRAM drops close to that of ordinary PC133 SDRAM in the near future.  Of course, the Apollo Pro 266 does give you the option of buying DDR SDRAM now that you may be able to reuse in the future, whereas PC133 is looking more and more like a dead end all the time. 

A couple weeks ago, we looked at the Gigabyte GA-6RX, an Apollo Pro 266 board that offers decent performance and features at a reasonable price.  With several other Apollo Pro 266 boards lying in the AnandTech Labs, the ASUS CUV266 caught our eyes.  Being just released during CEBIT 2001, ASUS seems to have put a lot of effort into making this board a nice alternative to their CUSL2, our Editor’s Choice for the best i815E motherboard.  Without further ado, let’s take a close look at this motherboard and see if it can live up to those lofty standards.

CPU Interface



VIA Apollo Pro266
VT 8633 North Bridge
VT 8233 South Bridge

Form Factor


Bus Speed

66 - 193MHz (in 1MHz increments)

Core Voltages Supported

Auto Detect
1.65 - 1.95V (in 0.05V increments)

Memory Slots

3 184-pin DDR DIMM Slots

Expansion Slots

1 AGP Slot
5 PCI Slots (5 Full Length)
1 ACR Slot

On-board Audio

C-Media CMI8738


Award Medallion BIOS 6.0

A unique layout

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