ATI Reference Board and System Setups

ATI Reference Board

Though this particular board won’t be seen in any retail channels, its always interesting to investigate the reference board to see what you can expect for retail boards.

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Chipset Preview - Chipsets 62

Click to Enlarge

Here is the full motherboard shot.  Nothing too exciting here if you have seen any PCI Express motherboard before.  And yes, that is a fish on the bottom left corner of the PCB. 

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Chipset Preview - Chipsets 63

The reference board featured a single x16 PCIe connector for the graphics card as well as three additional x1 PCIe connectors and two legacy PCI connectors. 

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Chipset Preview - Chipsets 64

Here are the four SATA connectors and two PATA channels for your storage needs.  Above them is the south bridge that feeds them all. 

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Chipset Preview - Chipsets 65

Here are the external connectors on the board.  The interesting note is of course the VGA and DVO outputs that support two displays right off the motherboard. 

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Chipset Preview - Chipsets 66

Finally, an up-close of the north bridge shows two things: a small heatsink and fan that means the chipset uses little power and dissipates less heat than the other chipsets on the market AND a video memory chip partially hidden under the heatsink.  Try as I might, I couldn’t get the heatsink off the board, and I didn’t want to risk killing the board yet, so I’ll leave it be until I can get it off safely, but the memory chip clearly says “SAMSUNG 428.”  This is ATI’s HyperMemory at work.

Test System Setups

Our system setups were pretty simple across the board:

AMD Test System Setup

CPU

AMD Athlon 64 4000+

Motherboards

ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 Reference Board
NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra Reference Board
VIA K8T890 Reference Board
NVIDIA nForce3 Ultra Reference Board

Power Supply 

Antec 480 watt

Memory 

2x512MB Corsair Micro DDR500
2x512MB Kingston HyperX 4300 DDR

Hard Drive

250 GB Maxtor 7200 RPM SATA

Sound Card

Creative Labs Live!

Video Card

ATI X800 XT

Video Drivers

ATI Catalyst 4.9

DirectX Version

DX 9.0c

Operating System

Windows XP w/ Service Pack 1

 

 Intel Test System Setup

CPU

Intel 560
Intel 550
Intel 3.46EE
Intel 3.4EE

Motherboards

Intel 925X Refeence
Intel 925XE Reference

Power Supply 

Antec 480 watt

Memory 

2x512MB Corsair Micro DDR500

Hard Drive

250 GB Maxtor 7200 RPM SATA

Sound Card

Creative Labs Live!

Video Card

ATI X800 XT

Video Drivers

ATI Catalyst 4.9

DirectX Version

DX 9.0c

Operating System

Windows XP w/ Service Pack 1

 

The benchmarks used were:

  • SiSoft Sandra 2004 SP1
  • AIDA32
  • Cachemem
  • Quake III: Arena
  • Unreal Tournament 2003
  • X2: The Threat
  • 3D Mark 2001: SE v330
  • 3DMark03
  • 3DMark05
  • Far Cry 1.1
  • Doom 3
  • PCMark04
  • Business Winstone 2004
  • Content Creation Winstone 2004
  • Webmark 2004
  • Sysmark 2004
  • LAME MP3 Encoding
  • XMPEG / DivX Encoding
  • WinRAR Compression
  • CineBench 2003
  • ScienceMark 2.0 Beta
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