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Old 24-10-2007, 01:17 PM   #1
BenchZowner
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Abit IP35 Pro Review

Hello guys,

I think it's 'bout time to publish a new review after so much time
Here's my new victim, the Abit IP35 Pro motherboard.
A socket775 motherboard equipped with Intel's P35 Express Chipset and DDR2 memory support.

It's kinda cheaper than the competitors products in the States, and even cheaper ( don't ask me why ) in Europe as spotted while I was attending the overclocking event by Plaisio Computers in Athens, Greece.

Some quotes from the review:

By BenchZone's review
In late May Intel introduced their latest mainstream chipset, the P35, a chipset of the 35 Series which comes with native 1333 ( 333MHz Quadpumped ) FSB, support for DDR2 and DDR3 memory, and last but not least, official support for the soon to be launched Penryn ( 45nm ) family processors, with the first of them, the Core 2 Extreme QX9650 ( Yorkfield core ) in November 12th.
We've already reviewed a pretty good P35 motherboard from Asus, the P5K3 Deluxe which is a socket775 + DDR3 motherboard, and today we will show you the
Abit IP35 Pro, which is a DDR2 P35 motherboard and comes in a relatively good price and some nice features.
And yeah, we're going to grab the chance and do a P35 + DDR2 vs P35 + DDR3 comparison in this review for you to check, is the pricey DDR3 worth its money yet, or the "classic" force ( DDR2 ) is still adequate to feed those powerful Core 2 Series processors ? We'll find out soon.
By BenchZone's review
In this review we will be comparing the Abit IP35 Pro motherboard against the Asus P5K3 Deluxe in all fareness, both motherboards will be running the CPU at the same frequency, the same FSB frequency, and all the components & settings fully tweaked ( RAM timings, Straps, Chipset latencies, etc ).
I decided to make some better use of this review, and grabbed the opportunity to compare the performance difference ( if there's any ) between DDR2 & DDR3, using the same chipset, BIOS settings, etc.
I don't remember if I mentioned it before, but repeating things can't be bad, let me remind you that we always use a "everyday" configuration for our reviews, including this one.

General Performance ( CPU, Memory sub-system )

We used the same settings ( FSB, CPU Frequency, and memory frequency/timings sets ) to compare the boards in various widely used applications & benchmarks, like SuperPi, WinRAR, Hexus PiFast, etc.

Gaming Performance

For the gaming tests for this review, I decided to split it up to two parts, one part to check the boards' performance ( chipset, BIOS, memory sub-system, etc ) via moving the stress on the CPU + RAM + Chipset, by using a low resolution, low graphics details, no Anti-Aliasing & no Anisotropic Filtering.
For the second part, I used some "real-life" gaming settings ( medium resolution, medium graphics details, some anti-aliasing & anisotropic filtering ) to "simulate" a more real-life gaming test & to see if there's anything to gain ( in real-life conditions ) from moving from P35+DDR2 to P35+DDR3.
Sorry for using such an old graphics card, I wasn't at my place and that slow ( nowadays ) graphics card was the only VGA available when I was testing the motherboards :-(

Audio Performance

We went ahead and tested some onboard Audio solutions to check how they're doing against our SoundBlaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS.
We used games & gaming benchmarks ( 3D Mark03 Sound Tests ) to check how much each sound card is taking up CPU cycles, and how they affect our gaming experience ( FPS performance ).
We also used RightMark's Audio Analyser to test the sound cards audio quality.
Each sound card passed a 30 minutes warm-up phase playing a specific tracklist in Winamp prior to testing.

Storage Controllers Performance

We used some Hard Disk Drive & Storage Controllers performance testing programs ( SimplySoftware's HDtach & Roadkil's DiskSpeed ) to measure the performance of a...numerous amount of Storage Controllers for this review. We would test RAID 0/1/5/10 performance but...I couldn't carry that many HDDs with me :-D

Network Adapters Performance

We tested the Networking Adapters to let you know what kind of performance you can expect from these motherboards.
To test the network adapters we created a RAMdisk [ main memory ( RAM ) space allocated as a hard disk drive ] to be able to provide our networking adapters with a huge amount of continuous data flow.
We transfered a big RAR archive from PC1 to PC2 using a 10m FTP Cat5e Cross-Over cable to connect the two PCs directly ( peer to peer ) and used NetWorx to measure the average & maximum transfer rates.

USB Controllers Performance

We used a USB 2.0 HDD Enclosure from Akasa ( thanks Cate! ) to test the average transfer rates of the USB 2.0 ports of the motherboards.
Our test HDD can output way over 60MB/s average in the test partition, that's more than the theoritical maximum transfer rate of USB 2.0 ( which is 480MBPS )
We used SimpliSoftware's HDtach to measure the transfer rates ;-)

Overclocking Performance

More and more people are getting into overclocking the easy way or the hard way nowadays, so we decided to extend our overclocking tests & measurements for our reviews to the max :-)
We are testing the Max Stable FSB ( FrontSide Bus ) frequency of each board ( with the same processor of course ), the max stable usable PCI-Express BUS Frequency ( over a specific frequency some components might not work, we report the max stable frequency where all the components work perfectly ) [ the first components to 'malfunction/disappear' first are the SATA Controllers ], and the max memory clocks ( the highest stable memory frequency reached with each motherboard ) [ 2 sticks used with the controller in Dual Channel mode ] { now we'll be running the same test for 4 sticks as well }

More details can be found underneath each results chart.
Here's the link to the full review

Hope you enjoy it
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Old 24-10-2007, 04:11 PM   #2
Overclocka
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Re: Abit IP35 Pro Review

Excellent review, you were certainly very comprehensive in your testing and I certainly enjoyed the read

I can certainly say that I will be visting your site again in the future, fantastic work
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Old 25-10-2007, 12:12 AM   #3
BenchZowner
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Re: Abit IP35 Pro Review

Thanks for the comments m8
Like some others here & there ( don't wanna mention names because I might miss someone that I'd like to include and create some "misunderstandings" ) I'm totally addicted to hardware, in every aspect, from the average joe kind of work, to the power users, and the extreme overclocker...
Thus I like to cover everything possible in a review
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Old 25-10-2007, 12:52 AM   #4
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Re: Abit IP35 Pro Review

Nice.. very very thorough - must of taken ages to run all those test!
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Old 25-10-2007, 12:55 AM   #5
BenchZowner
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Re: Abit IP35 Pro Review

Heh we've spent so much time testing SuperPi tweaks, tweaking RAMs, finding the LoDs for 3D Marks, etc...driving to get dry ice or nitrogen...well I have to be fair and push the same amount of time to the reviews as well

Talking about ages...how many hours do you think I'll sit tight and enjoy a HD 2600XT running the X3: Reunion benchmark and some DirectX 10 Benchmarks ?
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