Gigabyte GA-F2A75M-D3H Budget FM2 Motherboard

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Gigabyte GA-F2A75M-D3H Budget FM2 Motherboard

November 15, 2012 by Lawrence Lee

Product
Gigabyte GA-F2A75M-D3H
FM2 microATX Motherboard
Manufacturer
Gigabyte
Street Price
US$80

The launch of Trinity gives AMD a more worthwhile platform for mainstream users put-off by the pricing of the AMD FX and Intel Core i5/i7 product lines. Trinity offers plenty of bang for your buck, with true quad core CPUs and world class integrated graphics starting at about US$100. Often lost in the value equation is the cost of motherboards. Traditionally AMD boards have been more affordable than Intel counterparts sporting the similar features, and we're glad to say that this trend continues.

The first FM2 board we reviewed, the ASUS F2A85-M Pro at US$130 is actually the most expensive model currently on the market. Though we were pleased with the ample feature-set and in particular, the inclusion of ASUS' excellent Fan Xpert 2 fan control software, we don't feel it's the type of board that the majority of prospective Trinity buyers are looking for. Our general rule of thumb is the motherboard should not cost more than the processor.

A value processor isn't much of a value without a comparable motherboard and at US$80, the Gigabyte F2A75M-D3H more closely fits the bill. Notably, this model uses the older A75 chipset which debuted with Llano/FM1 last year. The latest A85X chipset incrementally improves the Trinity experience, only adding the option for a 8x/8x CrossFireX mode and a couple of extra SATA ports. The budget A55 chipset, on the other hand, is very basic, lacking native SATA 6 Gbps and USB 3.0 controllers. A75 is a reasonable compromise between the two.

Gigabyte GA-F2A75M-D3H: Specifications
(from the product web page)
APU FM2 Socket:
1. AMD A series processors
2. AMD Athlon™ series processors
(Please refer "CPU Support List" for more information.)
Chipset 1. AMD A75
Memory 1. 4 x 1.5V DDR3 DIMM sockets supporting up to 64 GB of system memory
2. Dual channel memory architecture
3. Support for DDR3 1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz memory modules
4. Support for AMD Memory Profile (AMP)/ Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) memory modules
“Memory support is dependent on memory module compatibility and system OS”.
(Please refer "Memory Support List" for more information.)
Onboard Graphics APU: To use the onboard graphics ports, you must install an AMD APU with integrated graphics.
1 x D-Sub port
1 x DVI-D port, supporting a maximum resolution of 2560x1600
* Support for 2560x1600 resolution requires both a monitor and cable that support Dual Link DVI.
* The DVI-D port does not support D-Sub connection by adapter.
1 x HDMI port, supporting a maximum resolution of 1920x1200
Audio 1. Realtek ALC887 codec
2. High Definition Audio
3. 2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
4. Support for S/PDIF Out
LAN 1. Realtek GbE LAN chip (10/100/1000 Mbit)
Expansion Slots 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
* For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16 slot.
1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4)
1 x PCI Express x1 slot
(All PCI Express slots conform to PCI Express 2.0 standard.)
1 x PCI slot
Multi-Graphics Technology Support for AMD CrossFire™ technology
Support for AMD Dual Graphics technology
* Only A series APUs support AMD Dual Graphics.
Storage Interface Chipset:
1. 6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors supporting up to 6 SATA 6Gb/s devices
2. Support for RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 10, and JBOD
USB Chipset:
1. Up to 4 USB 3.0/2.0 ports (2 ports on the back panel, 2 ports available through the internal USB header)
2. Up to 8 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (4 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB headers)
Internal I/O Connectors 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
1 x APU fan header
2 x system fan headers
1 x front panel header
1 x front panel audio header
1 x S/PDIF Out header
1 x USB 3.0/2.0 header
2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
1 x serial port header
1 x parallel port header
1 x Clear CMOS jumper
1 x Trusted Platform Module (TPM) header
Back Panel Connectors 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
1 x D-Sub port
1 x DVI-D port
1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
1 x HDMI port
2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports
4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
1 x RJ-45 port
3 x audio jacks (Line In/Line Out/Microphone)
Unique Features Support for @BIOS
Support for Q-Flash
Support for Xpress Install
Support for EasyTune
* Available functions in EasyTune may differ by motherboard model.
Support for Smart Recovery 2
Support for Auto Green
Support for ON/OFF Charge
Support for 3TB+ Unlock
Support for Q-Share

From the look of it, the F2A75M-D3H has almost everything offered by the A75 chipset but nothing more. The board has six SATA 6 Gbps ports with some RAID options, two USB 3.0 ports and an onboard header, S/PDIF and HDMI. Missing are a DisplayPort output, eSATA, and wireless connectivity options like Bluetooth and WiFi.


The box.


Package contents.

Like its feature-set, the F2A75M-D3H's bundle is quite bare. Just the basics are included: Documentation, driver disc, I/O shield, and a couple of black SATA cables.



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