Ultra (VIA KT400) Mainboard
This board has the least combination of functions in the MSI's line based on
this chipset. Besides, we tested a preproduction sample.
- Package: cardboard box laminated with a glittering red and blue cover;
Documentation: user manual, installation manual for PC2PC Bluetooth, guide for
computer assembling, installation manual for Serial ATA RAID - in English;
Cables: 1 ATA66/100/133, 2 SATA and FDD;
- Bracket with 3 IEEE 1394 ports;
for the rear computer panel;
- Diskette with drivers for IDE RAID;
2 CDs containing:
- DirectX 8.1;
Adobe Acrobat Reader;
- MSI DVD;
MSI Fuzzy Logic (for auto CPU overclocking);
- MSI GoodMem (for memory
- MSI InfoView (information on system devices);
MSI i-Speeder (for optimization of the Internet access and monitoring of network
- MSI Live Update 2 (for auto update of drivers and
- MSI LockBox (to lock a computer access);
MSI PCAlert III (for system monitoring);
- MSI SecureDoc (for file
- MSI SmartKey (for working with SmartKey).
The layout has typical drawbacks: when a video card is installed it's difficult
to handle the memory modules, connectors on the left edge an additional power
supply connector are in bad positions. It can be difficult to reach some jumpers
when the board is already installed. Their functions are shown on the textolite.
The 2-channel switching voltage regulator incorporates 9 capacitors of 2200
The following controllers are integrated:
- audio controller
based on the C-Media CMI8738/PCI-6ch-MX AC'97 codec supporting 5.1 audio systems
and having connectors for front audio inputs/outputs.
connectors: numerous controllers and their connectors which will supplement the
board in its advanced versions, and a connector for the Bluetooth module.
The system monitoring is supported by the Winbond WT83697HF chip. What is controlled:
- processor voltage, +-5 and +-12 V, Battery, +5 V SB;
of 2 fans;
- temperatures of the processor (a built-in sensor) and
the board (a built-in sensor).
There are 2 connectors for adjustable
connection of fans.
Brief characteristics of the board: memory
slots - 3 DDR SDRAM; expansion slots - AGP/ 6 PCI; I/O ports - 2 COM/ LPT/ 2 PS/2/
6 USB 2.0; dimensions - 305x230 mm.
can be carried out with:
|jumpers and switches||Jumper
to clear up the CMOS|| |
|Switches to set a
mode of the Center/Subwoofer channel||Center/Sub / Sub/Center|
|BIOS based on the AMI 3.31a||Setup of memory timings||+||CAS
Latency, Precharge Time, Pulse Width, RAS to CAS Delay, Bank Interleave, 1T Command,
Fast Command, DQS Input Delay, Burst Length.|
|Setup of memory
frequency||+||Auto, DDR200, DDR266, DDR333, DDR400|
|Setup of AGP bus||+|| |
of PCI bus||+|| |
of AGP and PCI buses||-|| |
assignment of interrupts||+|| |
FSB frequency||+||100-280 MHz in 1MHz steps|
|Changeable CPU multiplier||+||x6-x15|
|Changeable core voltage||+||1.5-1.85 V in 0.025V
|Changeable memory voltage||+||Auto,
2.6, 2.7, 2.8 B|
|Changeable chipset voltage||-|| |
|Changeable AGP bus voltage||+||Auto, 1.6, 1.7,
We used the latest available version of the BIOS -
The main downside of the board is typical of cheap solutions
of brand-name companies: even at the lowest price in the MSI line the board is
still dearer than its competitors from the low-end market, and its functions are
weaker. Nevertheless, the model is worthy, and if you are ready to pay for the
name (which implies high quality), and if you don't need integrated controllers
of various peripherals, this will be a good choice.
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