KA11 motherboard review
Klein on May 5, 2000
Only a few
months ago, the best choice for a Pentium III motherboard was
a BX motherboard. Now that Intel has CPUs supporting the
133MHz bus option, there is one problem. What motherboard do
you want for those CPUs?
You can always use the BX and overclock it, but for
most of you, that won't be an option.
are two choices for 133MHz bus Pentium III owners, motherboard
that use the VIA 133 chipset and motherboards that use the
i820 chipset. The
later of the two, the i820, only performs at its peak when
expensive RDRAM is used and until the price of RDRAM goes
down, the VIA 133 motherboards make a great choice for people
who want true 133MHz front side bus speed.
board is the KA-11, made by none other than FIC. The KA-11
includes VIA’s updated 133 chipset known as the VIA 133A.
This small update now includes AGP 4X support.
The older 133 only had AGP 2X, but still included the
all the important aspects that make the 133MHz bus great.
The most important feature to this is the AGP 1/2
option, which keeps your AGP video card within specifications
while running at the 133MHz front side bus.
That option is not included in the now aging BX
installation of the motherboard went all right from the
hardware aspect. The board supports UDMA 66, so I didn't have
to worry about using the ATA66 controller card I have.
As like most
VIA 133 motherboards, this one included onboard audio via the
Creative CT5880 chip, or better known as the Sound Blaster
128. While this onboard audio chip is good, it isn't as great
as the Aureal Vortex 2 SQ2500 I have.
So, I did what some of you would have started off
doing, looking for a jumper or BIOS setting to disable the
onboard audio. I looked and looked, but came up empty.
turns out that on my particular revision of the board, PCB
version 2.2; there is no option to turn it off.
The only way for me to get around this and to use the
SQ2500 was to have windows disable it.
I was looking on their web site for information on this
matter and found that PCB version 2.3 does address this issue
by allowing you to disable the onboard audio. The only trouble with that is you don't know what PCB
revision you may buy, unless you take a look at the board
to next page !