iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Albatron PX865PE Pro (i865PE) Mainboard

The PCB design of this model differs from the top model in the line - PX865PE Pro II (though boards based on the same chipset and coming from the same company usually differ only in the number of additional chips). However, the fact of an individual layout is not directly connected with the board's quality. I just wonder why a mid-level version is so big in this case - such boards are usually made narrower to save on textolite and space in the PC case. 

There are some downside in the PCB design, and one of them is that the FDD connector is put on the left edge (it can be a problem if you still need this unit). Among other downsides are crowded connectors around the memory slots, and locking of them when a video card is inserted. Also, it's not difficult to reach the only jumper when the board is already installed. Its functions are indicated on the PCB. The 3-phase switching voltage regulator incorporates 7 capacitors of 2200 uF and 3 of 1500 uF. There are also voltage regulators of the AGP bus (2 1000 uF) and of the memory (2 of 1000 uF). 

The board measures 305x245 mm ("wide ATX", 9 screws fastens it). 

There is no wasted space for components that didn't get included in the final design - the same PCB is used for the PX865PE model which doesn't have a network controller unsoldered. System monitoring is supported by Winbond W83627HF-AW chip (which also functions as LPC Super I/O). It controls: 

  • processor voltages: +3.3, +5 and +-12 V, VBAT and +5 V Standby
  • rotation speed of 2 fans; 
  • temperatures of the processor (built-in sensor) and the board (built-in sensor). 

The Intel PAT technology is named Performance Enhancement Mode and can be enabled in the BIOS Setup. With this technology you get one more option - enable/disable Extreme Timing. 

Ports & connectors onboard

  • Socket 478 with preinstalled CPU cooler holder;
  • 4 slots for DDR SDRAM DIMM (grouped in pairs, differ in color);
  • AGP slot (not Pro, with a retention clip);
  • 5 PCI slots (32bit, 33MHz);
  • Standard power supply connectors (ATX and 4pin for 12V);
  • 1 FDD;
  • 2 IDE slots (Parallel ATA) - on chipset;
  • 2 Serial ATA slots - on chipset;
  • 3 connectors for brackets carrying 2 USB (2.0) ports each;
  • Connector for a standard IR module;
  • Connector for audio-out from CD/DVD drive;
  • S/PDIF;
  • Case open detection header;
  • 3 connectors for fans (2 with regulation of rotations, 1 without it).

Rear panel (left to right, units)

  • PS/2 ports for keyboard & mouse;
  • 2 USB (2.0) and 1 RJ-45 (Ethernet);
  • COM ports (2) and LPT port;
  • 3 Audio (Line In/Out, Mic) and Game port.

The back panel is absolutely standard and doesn't require a special I/O shield. 


  • Package of a new design picturing an insect;
  • Documentation: a user manual in 3 languages, a poster with a brief description of the board's installation in English;
  • Cables: 1 SATA (with PCPlug-SATA power supply adapter), 2 ATA66/100/133 and FDD;
  • Bracket with 4 USB (2.0) ports;
  • CD with software:
    • drivers;
    • PC-cillin 2002.

Integrated controllers

  • audio controller based on the Avance Logic ALC650 AC'97 codec; 5.1 audio system supported, front audio-outs and S/PDIF connector provided;
  • network controller based on the 3COM 910-A01chip supporting 10/100 Base-T (Fast Ethernet).


jumpers and switches Jumper to clear the CMOS  
BIOS based on Phoenix AwardBIOS 6.00  Setup of memory timings + CAS Latency, RAS Precharge, RAS to CAS Delay, Active to Precharge Delay, Performance Enhancement, Extreme Timing (only with PEM enabled)
Setup of memory frequency + DDR/CPU = Default, 1.33, 1.6, 2, 2.5, 2.66
Setup of AGP bus -  
Setup of PCI bus -  
AGP/PCI frequency setup + AGP(PCIx2) = Auto, 66-108 MHz in 1.33MHz steps
PCI IRQ manual assignment +  
FSB frequency setup + 100-550 MHz in 1MHz steps
CPU clock ratio + x8-x50
CPU voltage control + Default, +0.1, +0.2, +0.3 V
DIMM voltage control + Default, +0.1, +0.2, +0.3 V
NB voltage control -  
AGP voltage control + Default, +0.1 V

We used the BIOS R1.15 as the latest available version. 


This board can't boast of its functionality but it's inexpensive, fast and has good tools for overclocking. At the same time, there is also a version with higher functionality and respective components, as well as an unsophisticated PX865PE. 

Test results: 


Dmitry Mayorov (destrax@ixbt.com)

Vladimir Rybnikov (puree@ixbt.com

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