iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






MSI K7N2G-LISR (NVIDIA nForce2) Mainboard

The board based on the PCB common for the whole series differs from its nForce2-ST based predecessor in increased functionality and enriched accessory pack. 


  • Package of the standard design; 
  • Documentation: user manual in 6 languages; 
  • Cables: FDD, 2 Serial ATA, ATA66/100/133; 
  • D-Bracket (2 USB + 4 LEDs for POST procedure indication); 
  • S-Bracket (Rear, Center/Sub and S/PDIF-Out (Coaxial and TosLink)); 
  • Bracket with S-Video and Composite TV-Out; 

  • Bracket with 2 FireWire ports; 
  • Bracket for the rear computer panel; 
  • 2 CDs containing: 
    • drivers; 
    • DirectX 8.1; 
    • Adobe Acrobat Reader; 
    • VNC; 
    • 3Deep; 
    • PC-cillin 2000; 
    • X-Setup; 
    • InterVideo WinDVD 5.1; 
    • MSI GoodMem (for memory optimization); 
    • MSI InfoView (information on system devices); 
    • MSI i-Speeder (for optimization of Internet access and network connection monitoring); 
    • MSI Live Update 2 (for auto update of drivers and BIOS); 
    • MSI LockBox (for computer access restriction); 
    • MSI Password Keeper; 
    • MSI PCAlert IV (system monitoring); 
    • MSI SecureDoc (file encryption); 
    • MSI SmartKey. 

In spite of a great deal of integrated controllers and connectors, the downsides are not that awful: IDE and SATA, audio-ins and power supply connectors can prevent handling cables and installation of long expansion cards. It can be difficult to reach some jumpers when the board is already installed. Their functions are shown on the textolite. 

2-channel switching voltage regulator incorporates 6 capacitors of 2200 uF and 3 of 1500 uF. 

Integrated controllers: 

  • audio controller based on the chipset's APU and Avance Logic ALC650 AC'97 codec; 5.1 audio system supported, front audio outputs and SPDIF connectors provided; 
  • network controller based on the chipset; 10BaseT/100BaseTX supported; 
  • IDE RAID controller based on Promise PDC20376 chip; supports RAID 0 and 1 via ATA133 and SATA150 protocols; 
  • FireWire controller based on the chipsets, 2 ports supported. 

Non-unsoldered connectors: none. 

System monitoring is supported by Winbond W83627HF-AW chip. What is controlled: 

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

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

Brief board's characteristics: memory slots - 3 DDR SDRAM; expansion slots - AGP/ 5 PCI/ ACR; I/O ports - 1 COM/ LPT/ 2 PS/2/ 6 USB 2.0 / 2 FireWire; dimensions - 305x230 mm. 


jumpers and switches Jumper to clear up the CMOS  
Jumpers for setting FSB frequency 100 and 133/166 MHz
BIOS based on Phoenix AwardBIOS 6.00PG  Setup of memory timings + T(RAS), T(RCD), T(RP), CAS Latency
Setup of memory frequency + FSB:DRAM = By SPD, 2:1, 5:3, 3:2, 4:3, 5:4, 6:5, 1:1, 5:6, 4:5, 3:4, 2:3, 3:5, 1:2
Setup of AGP bus -  
Setup of PCI bus -  
Changeable scaler of AGP and PCI buses + AGP(PCIx2) = 66-120 MHz in 1MHz steps
Manual assignment of interrupts +  
Changeable FSB frequency + 100-200 MHz in 1 and 2 MHz steps
Changeable CPU multiplier + x7-x13
Changeable core voltage + 1.55-1.8 V in 0.025V steps
Changeable memory voltage + 2.5, 2.6, 2.7 V
Changeable chipset voltage -  
Changeable AGP bus voltage + 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 V

We used the BIOS 1.2 as the latest available version. 

This is the most functional solution among those based on the integrated nForce2 version; it can easily compete against discrete solutions and offers competitive accessories and overclockability. That is why it can be a good choice for an efficient modern PC if integrated graphics is needed. 

Test results: 


Dmitry Mayorov (destrax@ixbt.com

Write a comment below. No registration needed!

Article navigation:

blog comments powered by Disqus

  Most Popular Reviews More    RSS  

AMD Phenom II X4 955, Phenom II X4 960T, Phenom II X6 1075T, and Intel Pentium G2120, Core i3-3220, Core i5-3330 Processors

Comparing old, cheap solutions from AMD with new, budget offerings from Intel.
February 1, 2013 · Processor Roundups

Inno3D GeForce GTX 670 iChill, Inno3D GeForce GTX 660 Ti Graphics Cards

A couple of mid-range adapters with original cooling systems.
January 30, 2013 · Video cards: NVIDIA GPUs

Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Surround 5.1

An external X-Fi solution in tests.
September 9, 2008 · Sound Cards

AMD FX-8350 Processor

The first worthwhile Piledriver CPU.
September 11, 2012 · Processors: AMD

Consumed Power, Energy Consumption: Ivy Bridge vs. Sandy Bridge

Trying out the new method.
September 18, 2012 · Processors: Intel
  Latest Reviews More    RSS  

i3DSpeed, September 2013

Retested all graphics cards with the new drivers.
Oct 18, 2013 · 3Digests

i3DSpeed, August 2013

Added new benchmarks: BioShock Infinite and Metro: Last Light.
Sep 06, 2013 · 3Digests

i3DSpeed, July 2013

Added the test results of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 and AMD Radeon HD 7730.
Aug 05, 2013 · 3Digests

Gainward GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST 2GB Golden Sample Graphics Card

An excellent hybrid of GeForce GTX 650 Ti and GeForce GTX 660.
Jun 24, 2013 · Video cards: NVIDIA GPUs

i3DSpeed, May 2013

Added the test results of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770/780.
Jun 03, 2013 · 3Digests
  Latest News More    RSS  

Platform  ·  Video  ·  Multimedia  ·  Mobile  ·  Other  ||  About us & Privacy policy  ·  Twitter  ·  Facebook

Copyright © Byrds Research & Publishing, Ltd., 1997–2011. All rights reserved.