[mythtv-users] good microATX board

Stephen Tait tait at digitallaw.co.uk
Tue Sep 7 12:36:11 EDT 2004

At 15:55 07/09/2004, you wrote:
>Hey all,
>Anyone know a really good MicroATX board? I'm looking for an AMD
>system along with onboard audio and LAN (onboard graphics not needed).
>  I'll be pairing this with an Antec Aria case.  Also, quieter is
>better, so as someone suggested, I'd like to be able to support the
>athlon mobie procs (though I doubt this will happen).
>Currently, I'm looking at MSI.
>Thanks for the input, in advance.

Can't vouch for MSI as I've never used them, but I'm sure they're pretty good.

Against my better judgement, I got a Gigabyte board. My friend was bitten 
in the past where he bought one of their boards, and found it had a bug in 
the AGP bus; namely if he used the nVidia drivers, the machine would lock 
hard after a bit of pottering about with OpenGL. Anyway, I got myself a 
snappily titled GA-7VM400MF-P* 

Despite the VIA chipset (a KM400), it's been remarkably stable, and can 
last up to a month before ivtv starts throwing fits. I would've have 
preferred an nForce2 board, but there weren't any available in the UK at 
the time I was building this mythbox. One gotcha! is that it doesn't play 
nice with some AGP 4x cards (refuses to boot); I had to splash out (and in 
retrospect was glad I did) on my dirt cheap nVidia MX-4000 or whatever it's 
called, which has shown itself to be a great little performer. It's 
adequately passively cooled by the airflow through the case, although I'm 
tempted to stick a bigger sink on the nbridge. Not an amazing board, but 
you could do alot worse!

One thing I have noticed is that most (if not all) nForce boards come with 
active sinks on the nbridge. As long as your case gets decent airflow, you 
can happily replace this with a passive sink like wot Zalman make. IME 
those lickle fans on the nbridges are noisy as hell and the first thing to 
die in any system.

Hope that's useful

*My other motherboard is a 1024 node Itanium cluster with a petabyte of RAM 

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