CPUs|Motherboards

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition for AM3

CPUs|Motherboards
The Phenom II processor was a step in the right direction for AMD. It generated more performance per clock and allowed for higher frequency chips. Priced aggressively, the Phenom II X4 920 and 940 Black Edition were price-competitive alternatives for Intel's Core 2 line. AMD had, in essence, caught up. The X4 920 and 940 however are AM2+ processors, and AMD is currently transitioning to the AM3 socket with DDR3 memory support. Today AMD unveils the newest AM3 members of the Phenom II family: The X4 945 matches the X4 920's 3.0 GHz frequency while the X4 955 Black Edition becomes AMD's new flagship CPU, clocked at 3.2 GHz.

Asus M4A78T-E AM3 motherboard

CPUs|Motherboards
The Asus M4A78T-E is an AM3 ATX motherboard based on the 790GX/SB750 chipsets. It is another feature-rich board with integrated graphics, CrossFireX, and support for AMD's newest AM3 processors. We will be using a X3 720 Black Edition processor for testing and we'll also plop it into a comparable AM2+ board to see if AM3/DDR3 results in any real-world improvements over AM2/DDR2.

MSI KA760GM: 780G Minus the HD

CPUs|Motherboards
The KA760GM is a simple mATX motherboard from MSI based on AMD's 760G chipset. As a budget version of the venerable 780G chipset, one would expect 760G to run a bit slower with perhaps a slower clock speed or less a shader or two, but surprisingly 3D performance was not compromised.

790GX Showdown: Gigabyte vs. MSI

CPUs|Motherboards
The Gigabyte GA-MA790GP-DS4H and MSI DKA790GX Platinum motherboards are based around the same AMD 790GX and SB750 chipsets and sport similar features. Which board will prevail in this head-to-head contest?

Phenom II: AMD pulls closer

CPUs|Motherboards
AMD hopes to wipe the slate clean and re-draw the desktop processor battlefield with its new Phenom II. The X4 940 is a 45nm 125W processor with 6MB of L3 cache and a clock speed of 3.0GHz - much higher than the original Phenoms. Does it compete with Intel Core i7?

Zotac GeForce 8200-ITX WiFi: A Compact AM2 Solution

CPUs|Motherboards
Finally, an affordable mini-ITX motherboard for the AM2/AM2+ socket. The Zotac GeForce 8200-ITX is priced well, powered by the formidable GeForce 8200 chipset and they even threw in WiFi. Does it deserve your hard earned lucre?

Asus P5N7A-VM: Geforce 9300 IGP

CPUs|Motherboards
nVidia has been the laggard in chipsets for Intel processors, but their GeForce 9300 may help them turn things around. We checked out the 9300-based Asus P5N7A-VM, and we liked what we saw.

Asus P5Q-EM G45 mATX motherboard

CPUs|Motherboards
The PG35 chipset P5E-VM HDMI was one of the best LGA775 mATX boards of the last generation. With so many features it made an excellent ATX replacement and stood alone in its class for almost a year. Now, poised to replace it is the Asus P5Q-EM. Sporting a similar feature-set, but based around the new G45 chipset, it has some big shoes to fill.

Intel Core i7: Nehalem Launched

CPUs|Motherboards
Core 2 has dominated desktop processors for the last couple of years. Now comes Core i7, Intel's next gen architecture with the capacity to scale up to eight Hyper-threaded cores. What does the new platform bring to silent computing?

Asus M3A78-T: AMD's IGP Gets Another Boost

CPUs|Motherboards
The oddly named M3A78-T is yet another in a recent line of ATX boards from Asus with onboard graphics. Along with the 790GX northbridge chip, the M3A78-T also features the improved SB750 southbridge that brings RAID-5 support to AMD's SATA controller for the first time. The board also has a whack of other features including CrossFire and Hybrid CrossFireX, FireWire, eSATA, HDMI and S/PDIF outputs. This isn't your grandmother's motherboard.

Intel DG45FC: Loaded LGA775 Mini-ITX Board

CPUs|Motherboards
HDMI and DVI video outputs, along with 4 SATA, eSATA, gigabit ethernet, S/PDIF and the G45 Express chipset featuring X4500 graphics make this new Intel C2D LGA775 mini-ITX board quite a loaded package at a pretty reasonable price.

Intel DG35EC: G35 mainstream mATX board

CPUs|Motherboards
We take a look at another G35-based socket-775 m-ATX board, this time directly from Intel. How does it fare against other small boards with integrated graphics?

Intel D945GCLF m-ITX: Atom For The Desktop

CPUs|Motherboards
Intel's second generation embedded-processor mini-ITX board features the Atom 230, which boasts one of the lowest TDP of any CPU in years. How does the new D945GCLF fare against its predecessor and other mini-ITX boards?

Zotac NF610i-ITX: Compact, low cost, Core 2 solution

CPUs|Motherboards
Zotac's offers a low-cost mini-ITX board with removable socket-775 CPU options using the nForce 610 chipset. Is it suitable for the DIY system builder? The answer depends on your objectives.

Gigabyte GA-MA74GM-S2: AMD 690G, Take 2

CPUs|Motherboards
The new AMD 740G chipset is a refresh of the popular 690G. Gigabyte's budget priced GA-MA74GM-S2 shows us what the die shrink has done by giving us the lowest idle power draw for any micro-ATX board to date.
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