ULI M1697 Chipset & Specs

The EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI is capable of SLI and at a cheaper price point. The board overclocks extremely well, but is it too much of a good thing? Yes, we managed to get SLI working with v81.98 drivers… read on!
When the ULi M1697 chipset was launched a few months back, it had all the traits of becoming a great budget solution with nearly all the features of the AMD nForce 4 chipset and a cheaper price too! With an ULi engineered patch that enabled SLI and reports of being a great overclocker, the ULi M1697 was quickly becoming a poor (or smart) person’s solution for a cheap yet fast gaming and overclocking computer.

EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Motherboard Review - SLI Killer? - Motherboards  66
 

Besides being our first hands-on look at ULi’s M1697 chipset here on PC Perspective, today we’re also examining the package prepared by the folks at EPoX – the EP-9U1697 GLI motherboard. With NVIDIA just completing aquisition of ULi, the M1697 may be the last of its kind we’ll see on the market for a while.
 
The ULi M1697 Chipset
 
The ULi M1697 is unique in the AMD chipset arena as it is the only chipset to natively support SATA-II and HD Audio. There are some compromises however notably in the 10/100 network controller.
 

EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Motherboard Review - SLI Killer? - Motherboards  67

The following is a summary of current Socket 939 PCI-Express chipsets currently available. These specifications are by no means concrete as different manufacturers may choose to implement a given chipset different to suit their product line (i.e. use AC’97 instead of Azalia).
 
 
ULi M1697 NVIDIA nForce 4 X16 NVIDIA nForce 4 SLI VIA K8T900 ATI XPress 3200 ATI XPress 200 CrossFire
PCI Express
# PCI-E Lanes 20 40 20 22 40 22
#16X 1 ** 2 1 ** 1 ** 2 1

# 1X

3 4 4 4 4
# 2X 1
Dual Graphics Suppoer Unofficial SLI SLI SLI  – CrossFire CrossFire
SATA-II
# Controllers / Lanes 1 * * * * *
# Connections 4 * * * * *
RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5 * * * * *
SATA
# Controllers / Lanes 2 2 4 1 1
# Connections 4 4 4 4 4
RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5 0, 1, 0+1, 5 0, 1, 0+1, 5 0,1 0,1
ATA-133
# Controllers / Lanes 1 1 1 1 1
# Connections 2 2 2 2 2
RAID No 0, 1, 0+1, 5 0, 1, 0+1, 5 No 0, 1
Audio
Azalia AC ’97 v2.3 AC ’97 v2.3 Envy 24 Azalia AC ’97 v2.3
PCI
? 6 6 5 7 5
USB 2.0
8 10 10 8 8 8

* Manufacturers may choose to add this functionality seperately.
** 16X slot configurable to two 8X slots for dual graphics cards.
 
EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Specifications
 
The specifications for the EP-9U1697 GLI follows pretty closely to the reference specification of the M1697 chipset. To keep the product in an affordable price bracket, the onboard audio uses a standard AC’97 codec (ALC655) instead of HD Audio.
 

EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Motherboard Review - SLI Killer? - Motherboards  68

 
The specification mentions dual 16x PCI-E slots which isn’t accurate as the EP-9U1697 has a single 16x slot that can be changed to two 8x slots for dual graphcis cards.
 

Socket Type:

Socket 939

Chipset:

ULi M1697

Processor:

AMD Athlon-64 and Athlon-64 FX

Max FSB:

2.0 GTs HT FSB

Memory:

4 x DDR SDRAM PC2700/PC3200 Dual Channel, 4GB max.

AGP/VGA Slot:

Single 16x / dual 8x for GLI support*

PCI Slot:

3x PCI, 1x PCI-E x1

IDE:

2 x E/IDE Ultra DMA/133, 4 drives max.

SATA:

4 (SATA II, RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5)

USB:

8 (4 Rear, 4 Pin Header) USB 2.0

Network:

Integrated 10/100 LAN

Audio:

Realtek ALC65X selectable 2 or 6-CH audio with SPDIF header

SPDIF:

Yes

BIOS:

Award/Phoenix BIOS v6.0

Power BIOS:

Yes

LED Debug:

P80P LED Debug Display

Size:

ATX (305mm x 245mm)

Accessories:

IDE/Floppy Cables, SATA Data/Power Cables, I/O Shield, CD Driver, Manual


(*corrected from “Dual PCI-E x16 for GLi Support”)

Source: EPoX’s website

« PreviousNext »