Intel DG35EC: G35 mainstream mATX board

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FAN CONTROL

To test the fan control system, we lowered the CPU cooling fan's voltage to 5V, stressed the system with Prime95 and monitored the speeds of the fans connected to the board. Noctua 80mm (1920 RPM at 12V) and Scythe 80mm (1600 RPM at 12V) fans were connected to the chassis fan headers, while a Scythe 92mm PWM fan (2500 RPM at 12V) was connected to the CPU fan header.

Throughout testing, the Noctua fan spun at 1140 RPM, while the Scythe 80mm stayed constant at approximately 800 RPM — indicating that the chassis fan headers are set to output about a flat 7V by default. The CPU fan's speed was unreadable (though it was spinning) until the CPU temperature reached 47°C, at which point the fan speed reached 700 RPM. It then increased about 200 RPM for every degree of temperature rise until it maxed out at 2500 RPM at approximately 56°C.


SpeedFan correlations.

As Intel does not provide any monitoring software for the DG35EC, we used SpeedFan. System, and AUX temperatures can be ignored as they were both way beyond reason, but CPU and Core 0/1 rose as the system was stressed. Core 0/1 was consistantly 10°C higher than the CPU reading.

Speeds from all three fan headers are reported, though none of them would give a reading if the fan connected was spinning below 650 RPM. The same is true in the BIOS' hardware monitoring section. All three fan headers can be controlled in SpeedFan by setting PWM modes 2 and 4 to "Manual PWM Control" in the Advanced menu. Both chassis fan speeds are tied to Speed04 and can be controlled fully from 0V to 12V. The CPU fan control was almost absolute with SpeedFan able to lower our Scythe 92mm PWM fan's speed to a paltry 200 RPM. One of the advantages of having a PWM controller is the ability to keep a fan spinning at very low speeds, making the fan's starting voltage irrelevant.

COOLING

To test the cooling on the board, we lowered the CPU cooling fan's voltage to 7V to reduce the amount of top-down airflow the nearby components received. We then stressed the system with Prime95 and ATITool and whipped out our handy IR thermometer to check the results. After about 20 minutes of load, the hottest point on the northbridge heatsink read only 52°C and the southbridge 51°C . Both could be touched for a few seconds before the heat became unbareable. A couple of MOSFETs near the northbridge were over 75°C, but the rest of them were in the 60°C range. Cooling is clearly not an issue for this board.

3D PERFORMANCE

As the DG35EC uses the same chipset and integrated graphics as the P5E-VM HDMI, 3DMark results were very similar.

3D Performance: Futuremark Comparison
Test
NF610i-ITX
(GF7050)
DG35EC
P5E-VM
M3N78 Pro
(GF8300)*
MA78GM-2SH
(HD3200)*
(GMA X3500)
3DMark05
900
1157
1263
1669
2293
3DMark06
328
656
676
902
1116
All results with 2GB of system RAM and 256MB of VRAM assigned.
*AM2 systems were equipped with a X2 4850e (2.5GHz) processor.

As we have stated before, the GMA X3500 IGP gets trounced by the IGPs available on the AMD side. If you're a gamer, discrete graphics card is a must-have if you're using an Intel board with X3500 integrated graphics.



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