iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






ABIT NF7-S (NVIDIA nForce2) Mainboard

Although this board doesn't belong to the MAX series this is a very functional solution ready to satisfy all needs of a today's user. 


  • Package of a standard design; 
  • Documentation: user manual in 6 languages; 
  • Cables: 1 Serial ATA, 1 ATA66/100/133 and 1 FDD; 
  • ABIT Serillel adapter for connection of ATA devices with a Serial ATA cable; 
  • Power splitter for connection of the Serillel adapter; 
  • Bracket with 2 USB ports; 
  • Bracket with 2 IEEE 1394 ports; 
  • Bracket for the rear computer panel; 
  • Diskette with drivers for the Serial ATA controller; 
  • CD containing: 
    • drivers; 
    • user guides for the NVIDIA based boards from this company; 
    • DirectX 8.1; 
    • system monitoring utility; 
    • Adobe Acrobat Reader. 

The layout is far not ideal, but this is the cost of integrated features and a standard size. Location of the audio-ins, power supply, IDE and SATA connectors and outputs for the brackets with the peripheral ports doesn't make it simple to handle the cables inside the computer case; when a video card is installed it's difficult to handle the memory modules and the IDE cable. It's not difficult to reach the only jumper when the board is already installed. Its functions are shown on the textolite.

The 3-channel switching voltage regulator incorporates 6 capacitors of 2200 uF and 4 of 1200 uF. 

The following controllers are integrated: 

  • audio controller based on the chipset's capabilities and Avance Logic ALC650 AC'97 codec supporting 5.1 audio systems and having connectors for front audio inputs/outputs; 
  • network controller based on the chipset's capabilities and supporting 10BaseT/100BaseTX; 
  • Serial ATA RAID controller based on the Silicon Image Sil3112ACT144 chip supporting RAID 0 and 1 on the SATA150 protocol; 
  • IEEE 1394 bus controller based on the chipset's capabilities. 

Non-unsoldered connectors: TV-Out (it will be available in the model with an integrated video adapter). 

The system monitoring is supported by the Winbond W83627HF-AW chip. What is controlled: 

  • processor voltage, AGP bus, +3.3, +-5 and +-12 V, VBAT and +5 V Standby; 
  • speed of 3 fans; 
  • temperatures of the processor (a built-in sensor) and the board (a built-in sensor). 

There are 2 connectors for adjustable and 2 for unadjustable connection of fans (one of them is connected to a fan on the heatsink of the chipset's north bridge). 

Brief characteristics of the board: memory slots - 3 DDR SDRAM; expansion slots - AGP/ 5 PCI; I/O ports - 2 COM/ LPT/ 2 PS/2/ 6 USB 2.0 / 2 IEEE1394; dimensions - 305x245 mm. 

Adjustment can be carried out with: 

jumpers and switchesJumper to clear up the CMOS 
BIOS based on the AwardBIOS 6.00PG of PhoenixSetup of memory timings+Row-Active Delay, RAS to CAS Delay, Row Precharge Delay, CAS Latency
Setup of memory frequency+FSB:DRAM = By SPD, 3:3, 3:4, 3:5, 3:6, 4:3, 4:5, 4:6, 5:3, 5:4, 5:6, 6:3, 6:4, 6:5
Setup of AGP bus- 
Setup of PCI bus- 
Changeable scaler of AGP and PCI buses+66-99 MHz in 1MHz steps
Manual assignment of interrupts+ 
Changeable FSB frequency+100-237 MHz in 1, 2, 3, 5 MHz steps
Changeable CPU multiplier+x5-x22
Changeable core voltage+1.1-1.85 V in 0.025V steps
Changeable memory voltage+2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7 V
Changeable chipset voltage+1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 V
Changeable AGP bus voltage+1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8 V

We used the latest available version of the BIOS - BIOS 10. 

The board excellently matches the most advanced chipset for AMD processors and provides a wide range of adjustable settings and perfect overclockability, offers a nice speed and loads of various controllers. 

Test results: 


Dmitry Mayorov (destrax@ixbt.com

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