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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [03.07.05]
Manufactured by: Soltek

Lowest Price Finder $122

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I have to admit, I have mixed feelings about the Soltek SL-K890 Pro939. Performance-wise, it fares quite well against an NFORCE4 Ultra. Unfortunately there are some things holding it back.

First of all, the VT8237 Southbridge is already outdated compared to those from NVIDIA and Intel. NCQ is one feature that gives remarkable performance increases, and although Soltek added to the SATA capability with an extra RAID controller, this is one feature that is noticably absent. When paired up with the VT8251 Southbridge, this platform will get four SATA-II controllers, with NCQ support as well as 300 MB/s capability.

Sound is another issue; although NVIDIA are not currently pushing their sound spec harder, the VT8251 will make a huge improvement when it arrives, in all its Hi-Definition glory.

I normally don't like to harp on board layout issues, but the K890 Pro939 had so many small things that annoyed me, it just left a sour taste in my mouth after installation, and it will likely do the same for you.

However, when all is said and done, the Soltek SL-K890 Pro939 is priced well, at around $120, and performs perfectly fine. If you can't find a board with a better layout and chipset for less, this would make a suitable platform to base a lower-budget PCI-E/Socket 939 system on.

The SL-K890 Pro939 is not much more than average, and we know Soltek can do better, especially if they put more thought into their layout. I'm looking forward to their version that uses the VT8251 Southbridge!

  • Solid cable bundle
  • Performs up to par
  • Good Overclocking and Tweak features

  • Lacks features compared to competing chipsets
  • Poor board layout
  • USB runs at 1.1 speed (may be a hardware issue with our beta sample)
  • No manual fan controls in the CMOS

Final Score: 79%