This section of the review of the ECS KN1 Extreme is going to be short. ECS just doesn抰 add any exclusive programs for configuring and monitoring the mainboard. The software bundle you receive with the board includes NVIDIA抯 utilities (nTune, nvMixer, nvRAID, and Firewall 2.0), and Award抯 WinFlash program for re-flashing the BIOS from Windows.
Testbed and Methods
We will offer you the results of our traditional performance tests now. We will compare the ECS KN1 Extreme to the mainboards on NVIDIA抯 nForce4 Ultra and SLI chipsets we have tested earlier and to the MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum which is based on NVIDIA抯 previous chipset, nForce3 Ultra. To make the comparison correct, we had to use analogous graphics cards based on the ATI RADEON X800 XT GPU, with AGP 8x and PCI Express x16 interfaces. Otherwise the test systems were identical.
So, we used the following hardware in our tests:
- AMD Athlon 64 3800+ CPU (2.4GHz, 512KB L2 cache);
- Chaintech VNF4 Ultra VE (NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra);
- ECS KN1 Extreme (NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra);
- EPoX 9NPA+ Ultra (NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra);
- Foxconn WinFast NF4UK8AA-8EKRS (NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra);
- MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum (NVIDIA nForce3 Ultra);
- MSI K8N Diamond (NVIDIA nForce4 SLI).
- 1024MB DDR400 SDRAM (Corsair CMX512-3200XLPRO, 2 x 512MB, 2-2-2-10).
- Graphics cards:
- PowerColor RADEON X800 XT (AGP 8x, 500MHz/500MHz);
- PowerColor RADEON X800 XT (PCI Express x16, 500MHz/500MHz).
- Western Digital Raptor WD740GD HDD (Serial ATA-150).
We performed our tests in Windows XP with Service Pack 2.
We benchmarked the ECS KN1 Extreme in its regular mode (the CPU frequency was set as 12 x 200MHz), i.e. the Load Performance option was turned off. By enabling this option you can increase the performance of the computer by no more than a fraction of percent.