NF7-S replaced my A7N8X-Dlx


A

Alan

As stated yesterday, I bought a NF7-S to replace my defunct A7N8X (rel 1),
(I am still awaiting a reply from Asus as the dealer felt the scratch voided
my warranty). By the way, I have been pro Asus for years, every computer I
have in my home and office has been built on an Asus board, this is my first
Abit.

So far, I like what I have installed. Here are some comparisons I made, and
some answers to the points indicated by others who offered their advise on
my last thread. 'Best Nforce Ultra 400?........'

CPU: Barton 2500
Mem: 2 x 512 OCZ EL3500 (copper)
Video: Matrox G450 (agp)

1. Tape protection is all the way to the edge of the board.
2. Extremely quiet chipset fan, certainly not audible above case and PS
fans. Infact I am running this one with the stock AMD Xp2500 fan (3750 rpm)
and the overall noise is 5db less than the A7N8X where I ran the dr thermal
heatsink at 5000 rpm. (I have a digital sound meter placed at my seat, total
noise level 51/52 db)
3. So far a very stable board.
4 Great software - Winbond Doctor - lets you see the limits of your Bios
settings (temps, voltages and fans).
5. BIOS also has more adjustments yet is simpler to setup, (select your
processor and go).
6. Toslink out (SPDIF) included.
7. Only 1 Network port, but this is all I need (and we are able to Internet
share)
8. Much easier reset on the BIOS than the Asus, you do not have to remove
the battery. Simply reset jumper which has a nice finger pull, a nice plus.
And it has actually reset everytime, not after several tries.
9. Manual on the Asus is better and more complete.
10. I couldn't connect the front panel audio connectors to the NF7 board.
(Perhaps I have missed something here).
11. AGP slot for the card has a lock, not AGP Pro though.

12. Performance and overclocking:

Virtually the same performance, straight out of the box. However the
tweaking is considerably with Abit.

The overclocking of the XP2500 is much improved. (Asus was version 1 with
the latest bios 1004). This NF7-S is version 2.

The A7N8X - could not get the XP2500 to 200 FSB even if I clocked down to
10x. I achieved 189 at 11.5 clock, with 1.80 v. but it wasn't stable and
wouldn't make it through Prime95. Best rendering time on my Solidworks
drawing was 39 seconds. I ran this board for best stability at 11.5 x 183
and 1.70 v for best stability and performance, rendering time was 42 sec..

The NF7-2 runs at 200 FSB up to 11.0 clock speed without any problem. I
could get it to 11.5 x 200FSB but the voltage and temp was not comfortable
for me. I also ran this board as high as 10 x 220 which gave me the highest
memory bandwidth on SiSoft. My temp was still getting up to 43C - 31C inside
case. I noticed that the voltages do not wander as much with this board,
Voltage is set at 1.75 and it reads 1.74-1.76, perhaps the extra 12V
connection helps here.

I am currently running this board at 10.5 x 200 at 1.75V and 1.7 chipset
with a CPU temp of 41C - 31C under load (right now 38C at 27C inside case).
The stability is good so far but my rendering time for Solidworks dropped
from 39 seconds down to 29!!. (this is a hand-held test so I might be out
slightly). The SiSoft tests only indicate a 3% performance boost, but my
drawings is what I use this computer for.

Difference in price (at today's price $159) is about $25 less than
A7N8x-dlx, big difference in price from my original purchase on the A7N8XD -
$232.

Also note, I had to search through many dealers to find one that actually
had the Abit NF7-S board in stock, at most is was sold out or they chose not
to inventory the Abit boards. Everyone of them had the Asus though.


Thanks for reading,

Alan
 
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W

Wookie

Nice comparison. I have an NF7-S and had a hard time finding it in local
stores ... had ot go mail order. The AUS boards are everywhere. I've had
ASUS and ABIT boards, both companies make good boards. Both companies are
hard to get a response back from. I personally went with the ABIT because
it overclocks better and was cheaper .. and people who had the A7N8X and
tried an ABIT board said the ABIT board was slightly better. Now if we can
only get NVIDIA to make some great drivers !!!
 
M

Mark H

Cool, glad it worked out, I also based my decision on cost as the 1700
tbred and nf7-s is a wicked combination, with the retail heat sink it
runs at 2200mhz all day. The xtreme overclockers have gotten the 1700
past 4ghz but I'm not about to buy a refridgerator to do it{maybe
later}<g> The one place I can fault Abit for their manual is no
updates. They dont even update the pdf's. However on the whole I learned
more,and more importantly faster, from Abit's manual than say PC-chips,
and the obvious tremendous help from this newsgroup.


Alan wrote:



--
Mark H --- Frag on !
NF7-S v2.0 Win2k-sp4
512k micron Bios 18
[email protected] 1.65v
Radeon 9500 np 128
audigy & soundstorm
zoomless modem
 
A

Alan

Chris:
Thanks for reading.

I almost purchased the SATA hd as they are only $35 more, but held back so I
do not have any first hand knowledge there. The possibility of a stability
issue outweighed the benefits for me.

Look in google for posts regarding this, and be sure to focus upon the board
of your choice. Asus and Abit do not use the same SATA chip.

Hope this helps,

Alan

Chris said:
Alan said:
As stated yesterday, I bought a NF7-S to replace my defunct A7N8X (rel
1),

Thanks for reading,

Alan

Thanks for posting this alan, that is the sort of setup that I am likely to
be building next [nforce2v2+xp2500] and was good to see your thoughts.
My only other concern is, is it worth getting a SATA hd and how does it
affect overall sys performance? At the moment I run a 40Gb ata100/7200
which will be a bit too small once i start video editing in the near future.
At the moment nearly all i do is play games mostly on the net.

chris

abit kd7, xp2400 + slk800, 2x256 OCZ PC3200 @2700spd, 3db gf4ti4400, winxp
home, 450w qtec psu
 
C

Chip

[snip]
of your choice. Asus and Abit do not use the same SATA chip.

I think they do actually. I believe they both use the Silicon Image
SI3112A. BTW the corruption problems are fixed now anyway.

Chip.
 
A

Alan

Chip:

Thanks, for supplying the correct information.

Alan


Chip said:
[snip]
of your choice. Asus and Abit do not use the same SATA chip.

I think they do actually. I believe they both use the Silicon Image
SI3112A. BTW the corruption problems are fixed now anyway.

Chip.
 
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R

RickB

Alan said:
As stated yesterday, I bought a NF7-S to replace my defunct A7N8X (rel 1),
(I am still awaiting a reply from Asus as the dealer felt the scratch voided
my warranty). By the way, I have been pro Asus for years, every computer I
have in my home and office has been built on an Asus board, this is my first
Abit.

So far, I like what I have installed. Here are some comparisons I made, and
some answers to the points indicated by others who offered their advise on
my last thread. 'Best Nforce Ultra 400?........'

9. Manual on the Asus is better and more complete.

Couldn't agree more, the ABIT manual seems to have been written by a 5th
grade Asian child that is still learning English.
10. I couldn't connect the front panel audio connectors to the NF7 board.
(Perhaps I have missed something here).

Nope, you didn't miss anything here, there are no additional hookups for
front panel audio on the ABIT board. This was a big reason I returned my
NF7-S. Plus the Asus came with a gameport (pci add-on) and serial port on
the back panel. The ASUS also has a jumper for a case alarm plugin which is
cool since my new Thermaltake Xaser III has exactly that.
Difference in price (at today's price $159) is about $25 less than
A7N8x-dlx, big difference in price from my original purchase on the A7N8XD -
$232.

Wow, where the heck do you shop?? I bought the ABIT from Googlegear.com for
$104 USD and the ASUS from Newegg.com for $129 USD.
Also note, I had to search through many dealers to find one that actually
had the Abit NF7-S board in stock, at most is was sold out or they chose not
to inventory the Abit boards. Everyone of them had the Asus though.
Are you talking about searching brick and mortar dealers?? Online retailers
such as Newegg.com, Googlegear.com and Pricegrabber.com have had both boards
in stock for the past month or so.

RickB
 
N

Nick M V Salmon

RickB said:
computer



Couldn't agree more, the ABIT manual seems to have been written by a 5th
grade Asian child that is still learning English.


Nope, you didn't miss anything here, there are no additional hookups for
front panel audio on the ABIT board.

From my NF7 / NF7-S manual;

"FP102 Header: Front Panel Input/Output Signals Header."

Left & Right Stereo analogue connections or SPDIF connection...

I agree it's mildly irritating that there's no Midi + Gameport but most game
controllers are USB these days methinks...

[UK]_Nick...
 
A

Alan

Thanks for taking the time to post Rick:

I also found the connections after I posted too.

Actually my shopping isn't too bad, I am Canadian so my prices are $0.65 to
$0.70 against the US dollar. If we purchase these across the border, we pay
more for shipping, broker and duty fees plus the warranty becomes
questionable. (not that we don't have our problems with warranty anyway)

I don't play any games, and I have never connected anything to my COM ports
for about 2 years. Virtually everything is PS2 ports or USB/Firewire. I am
glad you like the Asus board, I had mine for 8 months, (used for 6 1/2) due
to problems and replacement.

I will say that since my post, this Abit board is outstanding. Today I took
my drawing file to a friend with a Dell, dual Xeon CPU, 1 GB ram, and a
$1000 video card for a reference rendering test. The rendering time is
almost double mine (mine is overclocked his isn't). I couldn't achieve this
degree of performance with my Asus A7N8X, the version 2 might be different.
Also, I have not heard back from Asus to see if they believe that my board
remains under warranty. I have sent them about 4 emails.

Take care, and thanks for taking the time to respond,

Alan






RickB said:
Nick M V Salmon said:
RickB said:
As stated yesterday, I bought a NF7-S to replace my defunct A7N8X
(rel
1),
(I am still awaiting a reply from Asus as the dealer felt the scratch
voided
my warranty). By the way, I have been pro Asus for years, every computer
I
have in my home and office has been built on an Asus board, this is my
first
Abit.

So far, I like what I have installed. Here are some comparisons I made,
and
some answers to the points indicated by others who offered their
advise
on
my last thread. 'Best Nforce Ultra 400?........'

<snip>

9. Manual on the Asus is better and more complete.

Couldn't agree more, the ABIT manual seems to have been written by a 5th
grade Asian child that is still learning English.

10. I couldn't connect the front panel audio connectors to the NF7 board.
(Perhaps I have missed something here).

Nope, you didn't miss anything here, there are no additional hookups for
front panel audio on the ABIT board.

From my NF7 / NF7-S manual;

"FP102 Header: Front Panel Input/Output Signals Header."

Left & Right Stereo analogue connections or SPDIF connection...

I agree it's mildly irritating that there's no Midi + Gameport but most game
controllers are USB these days methinks...

[UK]_Nick...

Yeah, I remembered that after I posted but I was more referring to the front
panel MIC connection.

RickB
which
is Googlegear.com
for
 
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B

Ben Pope

Alan said:
As stated yesterday, I bought a NF7-S to replace my defunct A7N8X
(rel 1),

12. Performance and overclocking:

Virtually the same performance, straight out of the box. However the
tweaking is considerably with Abit.

The overclocking of the XP2500 is much improved. (Asus was version 1
with the latest bios 1004). This NF7-S is version 2.

OK I just wanted to reiterate this to potential listeners... the Rev2.0 of
the A7N8X is bound to be much improved over the older 1.0x versions. They
have supported 200MHz FSB out of the box. It uses a different stepping of
the nVidia nForce northbridge - this is common between the Rev1 and Rev2 of
both the Abit and of the Asus.

Ben
 

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