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Reviewed by: Stephen Waits [07.23.01]
Manufactured by: GigaByte



Ok, so we've got a board that's pretty easy to use for Joe user. The board's stable, it's got some nifty on board sound, but it seems a little dumbed down when it comes to what a hardcore user might want. Of great importance, though, is how the board performs. This is as much a factor of its chipset as the board's implementation, and here's Sandra's take on the 7VTX.

Test system specs.

Athlon 1.2 (1.2x100)
256MB CAS 2.5 DDR Supplied by Crucial
GeForce 2 MX
Maxtor 20GB ATA100 7200RPM

Sandra's CPU scores put the Athlon a little ahead of the pack, which is certainly a good thing here. I get a nice warm fuzzy feeling when I see a lower clocked Athlon spanking around a P4 with a 400MHz lead in clock speed.

Sandra's multimedia scores confirm that both Gigabyte and Via have done a good job here. Performance is exactly where it should be in relation to the other chips, which confirms that the board isn't holding back the processor at all.

Sandra's memory scores are perhaps the most interesting of the bunch. If you take a look at the graphs, the Gigabyte board, outfitted with Crucial's CL2.5 DDR, actually performs better than the Sandra reference system with faster CL2 DDR. Sweet. The memory performance isn't quite at the level of AMD's own 760, but for Via, it's pretty damn good. Checking out the bottom of the graph to see how things stack up against SDRAM, DDR looks pretty good. Sure, it's not a huge jump in performance, but with Crucial selling DDR and SDR at the same price, the significant jump in FPU performance is well worth no extra cost.

With Intel languishing on Rambus, DDR is easily the way of the future. The 7VTX looks to be an excellent implementation of the KT266 chipset, or, at least a better implementation than some other boards out there.

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