iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Gigabyte 7NNXP (NVIDIA nForce2 Ultra 400) Mainboard

The board has a perfect accessory pack and functions - it's the top model in this company's line. We have tested a preproduction sample.

Since the board houses so many various controllers it was a problem to  place each one ideally, and as a result, the audio-ins are in front of the PCI slots, and the IDE RAID are behind them. It's hard to plug in cables into connectors on the left edge. Besides, the memory slots have too many connectors around. It's not difficult to reach the jumper when the board is already installed. Its functions are indicated on the PCB. The 3-phase voltage regulator incorporates 2 capacitors of 3300 uF and 3 of 1000 uF. 

No wasted space for components that didn't get included in the final design. The board measures 305x245 mm ("wide ATX", 9 screws fastens it, all edges are fixed). System monitoring is supported by ITE IT8712F-A chip. It controls: 

  • processor, memory voltages, +3.3, +5 and +12 V;
  • rotation speed of 3 fans; 
  • temperatures of the processor (built-in sensor), the board (built-in sensor).


  • DualBIOS (backup Flash EEPROM chip with BIOS copy);
  • DPS2 (external VRM module for more stable operation of the CPU).

Ports & connectors onboard

  • CPU socket (Socket A/Socket 462);
  • 4 slots for DDR SDRAM DIMM (paired slots are of the same color);
  • AGP Pro slot without a retention clip;
  • 5 PCI slots (32bit, 33MHz);
  • Power supply connector: standard ATX and 4-pin one for 12 V;
  • FDD;
  • 4 IDE (Parallel ATA) - 2 on chipset and two from IDE RAID;
  • 2 SATA connectors of the external controller;
  • Connector for a bracket with 2 USB ports;
  • Connector for a bracket with IEEE 1394 (FireWire) ports;
  • Connector for a bracket with audio S/PDIF connectors (see the accessory pack description);
  • Connector for audio-out from CD/DVD drive;
  • 4 fan connectors (3 with rotation control, 1 without it).

Rear panel 

  • PS/2 ports for keyboard & mouse;
  • 2 USB (2.0) + RJ-45 (Ethernet);
  • LPT port and 2 COM ports;
  • 2 USB (2.0) + RJ-45 (Ethernet) again;
  • 3 audio connectors (Line In/Out and Microphone).


  • Package of an ordinary design;
  • Documentation: user manual for SATA RAID in English;
  • 3 ATA66/100/133 and FDD cables;
  • 2 SATA cables without power supply adapters;
  • Bracket with 2 SATA connectors for external SATA devices, SATA cable and power supply adapter;
  • Bracket with 2 USB ports;
  • Bracket with 2 IEEE 1394 ports;
  • Bracket with Sub/Center, Rear and SPDIF-Out (Coaxial and TosLink) connectors;
  • DPS module;
  • I/O Shield;
  • CD with software:
    • Drivers;
    • Adobe Acrobat Reader;
    • Gigabyte @BIOS;
    • Gigabyte DMIView;
    • Gigabyte EasyTune4;
    • Gigabyte FaceWizard;
    • Gigabyte Windows Utility Manager;
    • Gigabyte IA Panel;
    • Gigabyte Management Tools 2.0;
    • DirectX 9.0.

Integrated controllers

  • audio controller based on the chipset and Realtek ALC650 AC'97 codec; 5.1 audio system supported, front audio-outs and S/PDIF port provided;
  • 2 network controllers, one based on the chipset, the other on the Intel RC82540EM chip; both support 10BaseT/100BaseTX;
  • SATA RAID on the Silicon Image SiI3112ACT144 chip, supports RAID 0 & 1 on the SATA150 protocol;
  • IDE RAID on the ITE IT8212F chip, supports RAID 0, 1 & 0+1 on the ATA133 protocol;
  • IEEE 1394 (FireWire) buses on the Agere FW323-06 chip.


jumpers and switches CMOS clear jumper  
BIOS based on Phoenix AwardBIOS 6.00PG  Setup of memory timings + CAS Latency, T(RAS), T(RCD), T(RP)
Setup of memory frequency + By SPD, Auto, 50%, 60%, 66%, 75%, 80%, 83%, 120%, 125%, 133%, 150%, 166% and 200% of FSB clock
Setup of AGP bus +  
Setup of PCI bus -  
AGP/PCI frequency setup + AGP(PCIx2) = Auto, 50, 66-100 MHz in 1-3 MHz steps
PCI IRQ manual assignment +  
FSB frequency setup + 100-300 MHz in 1-2 MHz steps
CPU clock ratio + x5-x22.5
CPU voltage control + 1.1-1.85 V in 0.025V steps
DIMM voltage control + Normal, +0.1, +0.2 V
NB voltage control -  
AGP voltage control + Normal, +0.1, +0.2, +0.3 V

We used the BIOS 11 as the latest available version. 

Test results: 


Dmitry Mayorov (destrax@ixbt.com)
Vladimir Rybnikov (puree@ixbt.com)

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