MSI K9N Platinum nForce 570 Ultra

Article Index
MSI K9N Platinum nForce 570 Ultra
Board Layout - Up Close
A Pretty Standard BIOS
Test Setup, Network Performance and More
Applications Benchmarks
Application Benchmarks - Continued...
Game Performance and Benchmarking

Product: MSI K9N Platinum Motherboard
Provided By: MemoryExpress
Price: ~ $129CDN Online

Introduction:

For year or so, AMD enjoyed increasing market share with their very popular K8 series of Socket 939 processors.  With an integrated memory controller and a very efficient architecture, AMD was a very popular choice with enthusiasts and gamers.  Intel lost ground but has made up for it with their impressive Core 2 Duo processors.  AMD has answered with an updated CPU.  They are still based on the same basic architecture, but with support for DDR2.  Today we are looking at an MSI motherboard that is built for AMD's AM2 processor series, and is aimed at the everyday users to the budget gamer.  This board has some nice features for a good price, but isn't a top-end board by any means.  Let's take a look at the K9N Platinum.


K9N Platinum Box

This board is ready to go and supports every current AM2 processor out of the box.  AMD is very good about this.  There are many cases when Intel releases a new processor that won't boot on a motherboard until the BIOS is flashed.  We had no problems booting a 4200+ X2 on this board.

MSI has included a pretty impressive bundle for the price with this board.  They throw in PCI Slot Firewire bracket that includes both 4-pin mini and standard 6-pin.  Also in the box is a USB PCI bracket that has diagnostic LEDs.  They also throw in a rounded 80-pin IDE cable, a rounded Floppy cable, four SATA cables, a couple of Molex to SATA power adapters, a backplate for the motherboard, driver CD and a manual.  They've included virtually everything you need to get a full system up and running.

Decent Bundle
 Decent Bundle

The Motherboard
 The Motherboard

As you can see in the picture on the right, the board has a very colorful presentation.  There really isn't much of a theme that I can tell.  The PCB is nice and dark - which is a nice change from green and red.  The top PCIe slots are white, the second PCIe 16x looking slot is yellow, there are a couple of white PCI slots as well as an orange one that is reserved as a communications slot.  The IDE connector is yellow, and the DDR2 slots are green and orange.  To top things off the SATA connector cluster is purple.  I think they must have got a deal on different colored components.

Special Features:

  • 11.96 in.(L) x 9.61 in.(W); ATX
  • 4 DIMMs w/ DDR 800+ up to 8GB
  • 2 PCI-E 16X (2nd PCI-E 16X slot runs 1X speed); 2 PCI-E X1; 3 PCI; 10 USB
  • Realtek 7.1 CH HD audio
  • Dual Gb LAN
  • IEEE 1394
  • RAID(0, 1, 0+1 & 5); SATA2; ATA133
  • Live Update
  • Dual Corecell
  • MSI Dual CoreCenter
  • DOT
  • DigiCell
  • nVidia Firewall

Specifications:

CPU

  • Supports 64-bit AMD® Athlon™ 64 / Athlon 64FX / Athlon 64 X2 processor (Socket AM2)
       
    Chipset
  • NVIDIA ® nForce 570 Ultra Chipset
  • HyperTransport link to the AMD Athlon 64/Athlon 64FX/Athlon 64 X2 CPU
  • Supports 1 PCI Express x16 interface / 3 PCI Express x 1 connection
  • Independent SATAII controllers, for six drives
  • Single Fast ATA-133 IDE controller
       
    Main Memory
  • Supports dual channel DDR2 533/667/800, using four 240-pin DDR2 DIMMs.
  • Supports the memory size up to 8GB
  • Supports 1.8v DDR2 SDRAM DIMM

Due to the High Performance Memory design, motherboards or system configurations may or may not operate smoothly at the JEDEC (Joint Electron Device Engineering Council) standard settings (BIOS Default on the motherboard) such as DDR2 voltage, memory speeds and memory timing. Please confirm and adjust your memory setting in the BIOS accordingly for better system stability.
Example: Kingston HyperX DDR2-800 PC-6400 operates at 2.0V, 4-4-4-12.
For more information about specification of high performance memory modules, please check with your Memory Manufactures for more details.

Slots

  • Two PCI Express X16 slot (supports PCI Express Bus specification v1.0a compliant)
  • 2nd PCI Express X16 is compatible with PCI Express x 1 (MSI PCI-Express Lite Slot)
  • Two PCI Express X1 slot
  • Three 32-bit Master PCI Bus slots, one orange slot reserves as communication slot.
  • Support 3.3V/5V PCI bus Interface
  • On-Board IDE/SATA
  • An IDE controller on the nVIDIA nForce 570 Ultra chipset provides IDE HDD/CD-ROM with PIO, Bus Master and Ultra DMA133/100/66 operation modes.
  • Can connect up to 2 IDE devices
  • NV RAID supports 6 SATA II ports (SATA1-6). Transfer rate is up to 300MB/s.
  • NV RAID (Software)
  • Supports up to 6 SATA
  • RAID 0 or 1, 0+1, 5, JBOD is supported
  • RAID function work w/ SATAII HDDs
       
    BIOS
  • The mainboard BIOS provides "Plug & Play" BIOS which detects the peripheral devices and expansion cards of the board automatically.
  • The mainboard provides a Desktop Management Interface (DMI) function which records your mainboard specifications.
  • Supports boot from LAN, USB Device 1.1 & 2.0 and SATA HDD
       
    Audio
  • Chip integrated by Realtek ALC883
  • Flexible 8-channel audio with jack sensing
  • Compliant with Azalia 1.0 spec
       
    LAN
  • Supports dual LAN jacks
  • Dual LAN supports 10/100/1000 Fast Ethernet by nForce 570 Ultra
       
    IEEE1394
  • VIA 6307 chipset
  • Supports up to 2 x 1394 ports
  • Transfer rate is up to 400Mbps
       
    On-Board Peripherals
  • 1 floppy port supports 1 FDD with 360K, 720K, 1.2M, 1.44M and 2.88Mbytes
  • 1 serial port
  • 1 parallel port supports SPP/EPP/ECP mode
  • 1 audio jack (5-in-1), coaxial/fibre SPDIF out
  • 10 USB 2.0 ports (Rear x 4 / Front x 6)
  • 2 RJ45 LAN jack
  • 1 D-Bracket 2 pinheader
  • 2 IEEE 1394 a connectors (Rear x 1/ Front x 1)
  • 1 CD-in pinheader
  • 1 IrDA pinheader
       
    Dimension
       11.96 in (L) x 9.61 in(W) ATX Form Factor
       
    Mounting
       9 mounting holes

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On the next page we'll get a little more personal with this board.