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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [08.28.00]
Manufactured by: MSI



Here's something that can make or break a good board; features.  Here's a short 'at glance' list:

  • Supports AMD Duron and Athlon (Socket-A Only)
  • Up to 1.5GB of memory; 3 DIMMs PC133, PC100, HSDRAM
  • 6 PCI slots, 1 AGP 4x Slot, 1 AMR slot
  • UltraDMA/66 IDE support
  • Standard ATX form factor (30.4cm x 20.3cm)
  • PC Health Monitoring
  • Diagnostic LEDs

You want the full list? Again, we're not going to waste a whole page on that, check out MSI's product page.

The board did come with a heatsink attached to the cool-looking crooked northbridge chip, but I took it off so you can see it better (on the previous page).  I would have taken the opportunity to apply some heatsink paste, for better conductivity, but MSI took care of that for me...

As you can (not) see, there are no pesky dip switches onboard.  All FSB settings are done in the BIOS.  There are jumpers for you to set the multiplier speed.  This brings me to mention the MAJOR negative of this board, but I'll get into that later (hint: your unlocked Duron will be useless for overclocking).

You'll also notice the audio connectors (below the LPT1 port).  This was an option included on our test board.  I don't think it matters either way, as most of use probably have either a SB Live or Vortex 2 sound card.  You are able to turn the audio off in the BIOS, thankfully.

Like I mentioned before, there is a lot of room for your fat heatsink.  Unfortunately, you won't be able to put it to good use, since this is the last motherboard you'll want to outrageously overclock your Duron or Thunderbird CPU... This is the "Good Stuff" page, so I won't get into that just yet though :)


MSI has introduced a cool new way to update your BIOS.  Gone are the old days of unzipping a BIN file with a really long name, going into DOS, and flashing your board with a 30 character-long command that you have to write down every time.  MSI calls theirs "Live BIOS", and have even trademarked the term, "Simply by one CLICK".

We tested it out, and it worked great! Just head to this page, where you will be warned that if your Power Supply or OS fails, it's not MSI's fault.  It took quite a bit more than one click, but it will certainly be easier and less stressful for some than doing it through DOS.  The K7T Pro also supports the old-fashioned BIOS updating method.

More Good

Well what can I say? The K7T Pro was very stable! This was my personal first attempt at building an AMD-based PC, and it went without a hitch! Tests showed our Duron 600 to be perform just as it should (you'll see some results later on).  If you were building a basic Duron or Thunderbird-based system for the NON-overclocker, you needn't look further than the K7T Pro.  The lowest I could find it for was about $125.  Compare that to Asus' $150+ A7V.  There is one rather large disadvantage to the K7T Pro (and the Duron, if you happen to own this board)...

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