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Soyo unveils motherboard for AMD's Socket A CPUs

Posted: 20 May 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:sy kt333? dragon ultra motherboard? socket a motherboard? cpu motherboard? cmi 8738?

Soyo Computer Inc.'s SY-KT333 Dragon Ultra is the company's fastest motherboard yet for those building AMD Socket-A systems. The board supports DDR333 memory, digital sound, USB 2.0, ATA-133, 10/100 Ethernet and the Via KT333/8233A chipset. A heat dissipation feature keeps the board cool.

The SY-KT333's bundled sigma box has two front USB 2.0 ports and a combination Compact Flash card and Smart Media reader/writer, allowing users to easily transfer data from digital cameras, PDAs, MP3 players, and other mobile devices that use Smart Media. The sigma box occupies a standard 3.5-inch drive bay.

Soyo says the board maximizes Via Technologies' KT333/8233A chipset, which now fully supports DDR memory modules at 333MHz. The chip set solves bottlenecks created by increasing processor speeds, and accelerates the memory bandwidth by 20 percent to 2.7Gbps, against 2.1 Gbps with existing 266MHz memory.

The SY-KT333 also boosts performance with ATA-133 (133MBps) support for hard drives, and has USB 2.0 on board.

The motherboard can be expanded via three 184-pin DDR SDRAM 2.5V DIMM sockets, which support up to 3GB of DDR333 memory. Its five 32-bit bus-mastering PCI slots comply with version 2.2, and its Universal AGP Pro slot supports 1x/2x/4x mode.

An on-board CMI 8738 audio chip provides six-channel digital audio and eliminates the need for a sound card. The sound chip also supports optical output and Sony/Philips Digital Interface Format output.

Soyo is bundling an SPDIF audio card that allows digital audio signals to be transferred from one device to another without having to convert them first to analog.

On-board 10Mbps/100Mbps Ethernet comes standard, as does a Realtek 8100B controller. Soyo has also embedded a HiPoint IDE-RAID chip to provide ATA133 IDE RAID at Level 0 (data striping), Level 1 (disk mirroring) or Levels 0+1.

The SY-KT333's on-board Ultra I/O chip supports two RS-232 serial ports, one parallel printer port, one FDD port, an IrDA port with optional cable for transceiver, and four USB 2.0 portstwo in the rear and two in the front.

The board also features two PCI bus-mastering ATA133 E-IDE ports, as well as Ultra DMA 66/100/133 IDE ports supporting four independent channels to accommodate eight IDE devices, including two for RAID.

Soyo says it has integrated many enhanced overclocking, system management, and security features into the motherboard. Users can customize their boards to specific applications by adjusting the CPU front-side bus, core voltage and multiplier, and can tweak AGP Pro voltage through the Award PCI BIOS setup.

On-board hardware-monitoring support is also included. Soyo's bundled 8-in-1 Software CD Pack includes Norton AntiVirus 2002, Norton Ghost, Adobe Active Share and Acrobat Reader, Vcom AutoSave, WinDVD, eWalla text and voice messaging, and Imagemore photographic collection.

The SY-KT333 is priced at $179. An upcoming Platinum Edition will sell for $195. Volume discounts are available.

EE Times

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