TechSpot

Is this a good mobo?

By mossimoboy
Nov 13, 2005
  1. Alright, I know I've been asking a lot of questions lately, I've been thinking about upgrading my computer, and you guys seem to know alot.

    I have a Seagate 7,200 RPM 80GB HDD,
    Liteon Combo CD/DVD Drive,
    1x 512 Non-ECC Unbuffered ram, 1x 1024 Non-ECC Unbuffered ram.
    And my good ol' GeForce FX5200.. (Its doing pretty well for a PCI card) [Upgrading to a 6800GT PCI-e once I get enough money, stickin' with the 5200 for a while.]

    And I am thinking about upgrading my processor to an Athlon 64 3200+ (Venice)
    with a Chaintech VNF4 Ultra Zenith ATX mobo.
    http://www.chaintech.com.tw/tw/eng/product_spec.asp?MPSNo=13&PISNo=318
    Just wanted to know if it was a good board.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. spartanslayer

    spartanslayer TS Rookie Posts: 394

    there is a risk

    Unless you know and love the company, its always a good idea to get a motherboard from a wellknown company, such as asus, msi, or gigabyte. Depending on how much money you were thinking of spending, this for $85 is a good deal from MSI.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813130491

    Hope that helps.
     
  3. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Yeah, the vnf4/ultra here is awesome for the price. I'd highly recommend it if you're on a budget and want high performance as well.

    Your ram won't run in dual channel, but should work ok in single channel.

    One hitch with your setup though. The vnf4/ultra NEEDS a pci-e video card to even boot properly, a pci card cannot be used. A pci card can be used to add secondary displays, but can't be used as the primary display. So if you don't have the money for a 6800gt now, you could just get a cheap pci-e card for now like this.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814127178
    or this
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814102625


    You probably will have to reinstall windows, and that may have problems with "activation" if you've switched boards, but a call to microsoft should fix that.

    Hope this helps.
     
  4. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    I used chaintech for my previous build, I was just on a huge budget, and now I'm upgrading to a better PC.
    My current chaintech board is decent, as I said, I was on a major budget, so I didn't choose the best board, and its MicroATX, no overclocking, but the board is very stable. I trust chaintech.

    And are you sure my pci card wont work? :(
     
  5. spartanslayer

    spartanslayer TS Rookie Posts: 394

    like i said

    If you trust them, go ahead and use them. I have no clue who they are, I just like to stick to wellknown companys. I hope I didn't offend you. Sorry.
     
  6. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Here's where I read the pci issue thing.
    http://forums.anandtech.com/message...eyword=&STARTPAGE=3&FTVAR_FORUMVIEWTMP=Linear
    Go to the first post by "MajorPayne".

    Other options would be to get another board that would support pci video, maybe like this one(I haven't used asrock brand board, but they are supposedly made by asus).
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813157081

    Or you could get a board with integrated video and use that until you can get a 6800gt, like this one.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813128315
    or this.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813131570
     
  7. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    No apologies needed spartan, I wasn't offended.

    vnf4ultra, I was really looking for an ATX board for my atx case.
    I guess none of the ATX have onboard video though.

    But one thing I did notice in his post.
    >>this is only an issue if you are trying to run a legacy PCI video card as your ONLY video.
    Is legacy a brand or type of card? Or are are PCI cards legacy?

    Well, I don't really have enough for another card at the moment, so I hope
    I don't have a "legacy" card.

    I might buy the ASRock mobo, but two things, how do you know it supports PCI?

    Thanks
     
  8. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Legacy basically means "outdated" and is referring to pci cards in general.

    I saw an article somewhere(might have been ocworkbench) about the asrock that showed them using three graphics cards at once(a pci, pci-express, and agp). Most boards support pci video, the vnf4ultra though is an exception for whatever reason.
     
  9. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    Thanks for the help.. I'm really annoyed and confused though (not at you guys at techspot you've been great for helping me.) I just cant seem to find a mobo that will just work...

    I read customer reviews on asrock board and they say it cant overclock and its not very reliable..
    I read reviews on vfn4ultra and people have trouble with drivers etc.

    AHH!!
    I might just go with an AGP board.. But then again I really want PCI-e..
    see the problem is i need a new power supply, and a new gfx card if I buy any board w/ pci-e (they all use nvidia nforce4..) but i dont have enough money for it all.

    I dunno what to do i might just give up but thanks for all the help.. I wouldve been screwed if I didnt post because i wouldve bought it and it wouldnt of worked..
     
  10. gary_hendricks

    gary_hendricks TS Rookie Posts: 107

    I'd recommend getting a DVD writer as well - its really a necessity these days.
     
  11. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    That has nothing to do with the topic..
     
  12. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    I looked through several boards, and found one that might suit you.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813128301
    It does cost more than the vnf4/ultra, but it's a nforce 4 sli chipset, which means you could use two video cards to increase performance if your budget would allow two nvidia cards at some time in the future.
    It says in the one review that it supports pci video if you use the bottom pci slot.

    It seems like it has fair oc'ing. I like the gigabyte board that I've used, but it's odd in that you have to "unlock" the bios oc'ing options by pressing ctrl + f1.

    It looks like this board supports 20 and 24pin power supplies as well.

    What power supply do you have?
     
  13. gary_hendricks

    gary_hendricks TS Rookie Posts: 107

  14. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    vnf4, where did you read about the PCI video on the Gigabyte? (one customer reviewed that PCI did not work)
    And for your question about my PSU, I have a stock 250V or W whatever one PSU's come in. (it came with my econobox compaq)

    Thanks for all the help BTW.
     
  15. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    It seems it has issues with ati 9xxx series pci, but nvidias seem to work.
    http://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/FeedBack/CustRatingReview.asp?Item=N82E16813128301

    Of course I can't "guarantee" that the board will work with your card, but if two reviewers say so, and one is using an identical card to the one you have, it's a good sign.

    A 250w psu would probably not be enough for a amd64 system, if you need a psu, here's one that's fairly cheap, but still decent.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817104901
     
  16. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

  17. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Sure that psu looks great, I just went through and found the cheapest with at least 350w by a reliable brand, but if you can afford the 400w version, go for it.
     
  18. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    Alright, I guess I'll do it, I was just a little hesitant of buying a PSU with no reviews.

    Thanks for all your help.
     
  19. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    Hey vnf4ultra, sorry to bring this up so late but, will the vnf4ultra work with a power supply that has a 4 pin addon for power supplies?
    I read somewhere it didnt...
     
  20. gemmi_2481

    gemmi_2481 TS Rookie

    chaintech suck... if your after a cheap mobo... go for a winfast.

    sell loads of them and never have any back

    cane
     
  21. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    mossimoboy, I don't understand what your asking. The vnf4/ultra can be used with psus with either a 20 or 24pin main power connector, but either way it needs the separate 4 pin power connector connected to its connector.

    I don't think chaintech "sucks", the vnf4/ultra has been a good board so far, for a good price as well.
     
  22. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    Sorry, I had just read on that thread where you read the PCI thing that some guy fried his mobo with a 20+4 pin connector instead of a 24 pin.

    Also, would I just install my two ram modules in 1 blue slot and 1 black slot?
    or 2x blue slots or 2x black slots.

    Edit: Well it looks like from the compatibility list it doesnt support my ram :'(
     
  23. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    IIRC, the guy who fried his board used an improper adapter converting from a 20 pin power supply to a 24 pin board, but an adapter is not required, you can let 4 pins "blank".

    Your ram could still work, not all compatible ram is on the list. I think it's the two slots(side by side) closest the cpu, of same color.
     
  24. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    Alright, thanks for all your help, I'm going to go ahead and buy it. I've got a bit of money saved for a PCI-express video card.

    I'll read through the manual when I get it, I was just skimming through the online version.

    Again, thanks.
     
  25. mossimoboy

    mossimoboy TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    .. Sorry for all the grief I'm causing here, I'm pretty much a n00b to pc's.
    Does the VNF4/Ultra require a Hyper-Transport CPU? Or will it support just a 1000MHz FSB cpu?

    Also, thought you might find this interesting, but one reviewer said they got thier PCI card to work in the system, so I hope that works. And does the board support Non-ECC unbuffered ram? I didn't see anything in the manual about that.

    Also, what does this statement iply? That the motherboard cant support ddr400 in certain slots?
    "Due to CPU specifications limitation, two DDR400 memory modules
    inserted into DIMM1/3, three DDR400 into DIMM1/2/3, or four DDR400
    into DIMM1/2/3/4 is not recommended."


    AND finally, based on what you said, this PSU should work?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E16817153023
     
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