iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Chaintech 9EJS1 (Zenith series) i845PE Based Mainboard

This model is based on the same model as the 9EJL2 of Apogee series, but this one has a full suite of peripheral controllers and a richer accessory pack. 


  • Package of the stylish design with a handle; 
  • Documentation: user manual, a poster with brief installation steps - in English; 
  • Cables: 2 ATA66/100/133 and FDD - they are covered with green cambric to improve ventilation inside the case;

  • CBOX2 panel with 4 USB 2.0 ports, Audio-In/Out, 1 FireWire port and 2 7-segment LEDs which monitor the POST procedure during booting of the system and a processor's temperature; 
  • Bracket with Rear and Bass/Center connectors; 
  • Bracket with S/PDIF-In/Out connectors (TosLink); 
  • Optical cable with TosLink connectors and TosLink-miniTosLink adapter; 
  • Bracket with 2 FireWire ports; 
  • Thermo grease; 
  • 2 CDs containing: 
    • drivers;
    • user guide; 
    • Norton Internet Security 2002; 
    • Norton Antivirus 2002; 
    • Adobe ActiveShare; 
    • Adobe Acrobat Reader; 
    • Adobe eBook Reader; 
    • ImageMore. 

The downsides in the layout are the following: audio-ins are next to the back panel, IDE RAID connectors are behind PCI slots and numerous connectors between DIMM slots and the board's edge (which makes difficult to handle the memory modules). It can be difficult to reach some jumpers when the board is already installed. Their functions are shown on the textolite. 

The 3-channel switching voltage regulator incorporates 8 capacitors of 3300 uF and 3 of 1800 uF. 

The following controllers are integrated: 

  • audio controller based on the chipset's capabilities and C-Media CMI8738/PCI-6ch-LX chip supporting 5.1 audio systems and having connectors for front audio outputs and for SPDIF; 
  • network controller based on the Realtek RTL8100B chip supporting 10BaseT/100BaseTX; 
  • IDE RAID controller based on the Promise PDC20276 chip supporting RAID 0 and 1 on the ATA133 protocol; 
  • FireWire bus controller based on the Texas Instruments VIA VT6306 chip. 

Thanks to the ITE IT8712F-A I/O controller the board supports (and have connectors) a SmartCard Reader. 

Non-unsoldered connectors: AC'97 codec and a serial port connector. 

The system monitoring is supported by the ITE IT8712F-A chip. What is controlled: 

  • processor voltage, memory, 1.5, +3.3, +5 and +-12 V, VBAT and +5 V Standby
  • speed of 2 fans; 
  • temperatures of the processor (a built-in sensor) and the board (a built-in sensor). 

There are 2 connectors for adjustable and 1 for unadjustable connection of fans (it's connected to a fan on the MCH's heatsink). 

Brief characteristics of the board: memory slots - 2 DDR SDRAM; expansion slots - AGP/ 6 PCI/ CNR; I/O ports - 2 COM/ LPT/ 2 PS/2/ 6 USB 2.0 / 3 FireWire; dimensions - 305x230 mm. 

Adjustment can be carried out with:

jumpers and switches Jumper to clear up the CMOS  
Jumper to set a FSB frequency Auto/100/133 MHz
Jumper for starting up computer from a PS/2 keyboard  
Jumper for starting up computer from USB keyboard  
Jumper turning the network controller on/off  
Jumper turning the audio controller on/off  
BIOS based on the AwardBIOS 6.00PG from Phoenix Setup of memory timings + CAS Latency, Active To Precharge Delay, RAS to CAS Delay, RAS Precharge
Setup of memory frequency + Auto, DDR266, DDR333
Setup of AGP bus -  
Setup of PCI bus -  
Changeable scaler of AGP and PCI buses + AGP(PCIx2) = Synch., 66, 75, 88 MHz
Manual assignment of interrupts -  
Changeable FSB frequency + 100-200 MHz in 1MHz steps
Changeable CPU multiplier + x8-x50
Changeable core voltage + 1.1-1.85 in 0.025 V steps
Changeable memory voltage + Default, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, 3.0, 3.1 V
Changeable chipset voltage -  
Changeable AGP bus voltage + Default, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.9, 2.0, 2.1 V

We used the BIOS of 01.11.2002 as the latest available version. 

The board provides a rich set of peripheral controllers and excellent tools for tweaking and overclocking the system; at the same time, its speed is brilliant even in the standard mode and its unique accessory pack puts it in the line with the best models based on this chipset. 

Test results: 


Dmitry Mayorov (destrax@ixbt.com

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