ASUS P3V4X - Three User Experiences

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We have added a second page with additional user comments: Page 2

GEORGE IOS’s REVIEW UPDATE 3/21/00:

Although my CPU (550E FPO/BATCH#: Q947A003) runs now at 804Mhz(146×5.5), and I am very happy with it (I get similar benchmarking results with DAN EDGAR). I’ve noticed some things that for someone like me (hmmm…perfectionist?) are more than noticeable, they are annoying. When I play music(CD AUDIO) with media player
or Creative Playcenter (SBLive) it seems that I can’t do anything else with my computer. The system is very, very slow….like the SBlive is using all my CPU power for it self!!!

I can’t even open a window without waiting a few (2 to 5) seconds!!! I’ve done all the right things to keep resources up, but I discovered that it isn’t a “Resources” issue, ’cause during playing music and after I stop the player my resources are around 85 to 90%, which is fine! It might be an IRQ problem – I am not sure…or it’s an incompatibility issue with the SBLive.

I’ve heard there are some issues with the SBLive! and the Coppermine. For that reason I updated the drivers of my SoundBlaster to the latest ones but the problems remains. Hmmm..I don’t know, maybe it’s
just me, and there is nothing wrong with the mainboard, but if anyone has similar problems, please email me.

Another problem is that my mouse (Microsoft Intelli Wheel mouse) sometimes freezes (instantly but enough to be noticed) and after a while it recovers. That happens when I want to listen to CD-AUDIO, watch some movie with Media Player or Watch DVD using the DVD
Station player of my Real Magic Hollywood Plus. I updated to the latest drivers too, but that problem also remains.

These problems aren’t really important (Hmmm…maybe they are just for me) and shouldn’t be a reason for someone not to buy this mainboard. This mainboard could and can be the “Key” for people who want to overclock their CPU without the risk high AGP bus issues of BX chipset based mainboards.

I receive emails from people who bought the MSI MS-6309 mainboard and they can’t pass 140 FSB with various CPUs and ask me how did we (me and my friend) manage to reach 160 FSB.

For those people I want to say that maybe my friend bought the “SUPER” MS-6309. I do not know. 🙂 It just worked. Luck is a part of the game. Since he bought a PIII 600E he can’t confirm the 160 FSB with his CPU. I can’t lay my hands to that mainboard also though, ’cause he lives now 100 miles away. He visited me and during his vacation bought the “SUPER” thing. 🙂

As for the ASUS P3V4X, I think it’s the best Via Apollo PRO133A based mainboard till now (ABIT Via based mainboard is on it’s way, I think). ASUS P3V4X is a sure “card” when you want to overclock your CPU. I will agree with DAN EDGAR though “The ASUS P3V4X may
be one of the best VIA 133A motherboards currently available; however, be prepared to deal with “immaturity” issues due to the relative newness of the VIA 133A chipset” but good things in life come with work and patience.

CONCLUSION:
This mainboard is awesome, it can make your overclocking dreams come true, but you have to work on it.

Dan’s UPDATE 3/20/00:

ASUS HAS NOT been resting upon its somewhat thorny laurels.
I updated my Asus BIOS to the 1003 BIOS and went looking for trouble.

Why me? Because a whole lot of people seem to think that if you write about something you must know what your talking about. Go figure. From out of my personal darkness and confusion comes my all-new and improved Asus update.

What did I get? Well first off, a FAST WRITES option. Fast writes is an alternative to sidebanding adopted to gain harmony and play-ability on a overclocked AGP bus. Unfortunately, if you select this option in the BIOS you get a blank screen with a cursor dead, I do mean dead – in the middle of the screen. So why bother? Well next I tried The 3.59 VIA AGP drivers, same blank screen. “Wait”, I thought. “Why not try…..”.

Reboot and deselect Fast Writes and the USWC, (a new cache mode for video memory, which your video card must support). Reboot: BINGO! Unreal Tournament’s looking good and greed is growing in my lusty heart. Reboot, reselect USWC and boot…..YES! Check UT and things still look good. Reboot and select Fast Writes again…..YES YES YES!

Check with PowerStrip…NO Fast Writes… Check with Sandra….. NO NO NO!
So… Fast Write’s still not an option. Well how are things otherwise? Hard to say, I just updated to Sandra 2000 so I don’t know if this is better reporting of VIA chip or a real improvement. It feels real.

Here are the new stats:

  • CPU Bench:
  • Dhrystone: 2024 MIPS 1227315
  • Whetstone: 1006 Mflops 540928
  • Multimedia:
  • Integer MMX 2361 it/s
  • Floating point SSE: 3144 it/s
  • Memory:
  • CPU: 400
  • FPU: 465

These scores slaughter an Athlon 600 at 750MHz. And BX? B-who? Guys, I think the best is yet to come with this board. But what do I know – I just write about the stuff I like to play with.

Daniel

SUMMARY: The ASUS P3V4X may be one of the better VIA 133A motherboards currently available; however, be prepared to deal with “immaturity” issues due to the relative newness of the VIA 133A chipset.

COMMENTS FROM DAN EDGAR:

PC NUT was kind enough to send me an ASUS P3V4X to review. I asked other users of this board to send in their comments to include also. This is my setup:

  • CASE: I have an EAGLE tool-less case, with TWO 80MM INTAKE FANS at the bottom, TWO 80MM EXHAUST FANS at the top.
  • POWER SUPPLY: 450 WATT SERVER, (the better to run Peltiers with my friend…..) It has TWO 80MM FANS of its own- one sucking heat from just above my Intel 500 E chip (overclocked to 750 MHz and 1.60 V-Core), and one expelling it outside my case.
  • MOTHERBOARD: My current foundation is an ASUS P3V4X.
  • PROCESSOR: I use a ALPHA HEAT SINK AND FAN on my 500E CHIP which runs at 48 C under 100% CPU load.
  • HARD DRIVES: I use 2 WESTERN DIGITAL EXPRESS 9.1 GIG hard drives currently running in RAID (0), striped formation.
  • MEMORY: I employ a single stick of MUSHKIN PC 133 HSDRAM.
  • GRAPHICS CARD: I’m currently using an ASUS DDR GEFORCE with my INTEL
  • HEAT SINK AND FAN attached to it’s Graphics processing unit.
  • SOUND CARD: Music arrives to my ears from a MONSTER MX 300 sound card attach to 4 CAMBRIDGE SATELLITES AND SUBWOOFER.

A new motherboard can be enough to make nearly anyone feel like an orphan or the founder of a new dynasty; usually, for a time at least, both. Recently Humphrey Chen of PC NUT (Da’ Head Nut) remarked to me in an e-mail that he felt that reviewers to often review a product, drop it and move on to the next review, seldom going back to see if improvements in drivers or BIOS had changed things after the review was written. This simple observation set me to ponder the nature of reviews and what it is we should expect from them.

What is a review? It’s a chance to “see” a product before you buy; it’s a chance to borrow experience from the reviewer that we ourselves may be lacking. An opportunity to compare an item with others of like kind without having to buy a half-dozen pieces of equipment to make such comparisons. And finally, make no mistake, it is the manufacturers cheapest form of advertisement. So it is both early warning and possible propaganda.

A reviewer could spend his/her life on a single peace of equipment, if he/she were to try to check on compatibility issues much beyond what he/she happens to have installed on one or two machines used for “test beds”. So later reviews often can assist us they have the benefit of large numbers of people with wildly varying parts, reporting on their experiences. A simple rule: Check the dates of the reviews you read and look for progress in BIOS and drivers in later reviews. Also look for problems unlikely to be fixed by either one.

The new is seldom beautiful; the new lacks the refinement of the mature. Put another way, what you see now is not always what you will get, later.

The P3V4X: One of the motherboards that incorporates the “VIA 133A” chipset as opposed to one of the Intel chip sets. Here-to-for the advantages and disadvantages of which have caused a split between overclockers and average users alike. Why? Because VIA represents the new, the immature. The new because it gives the user asynchronous ram speeds. (you can use 66, PC100, PC133 ram with either a 66MHZ, 100MHz or a 133MHZ CPU, interchangeably!) And It offers AGP X 4. As well as a new Video memory caching mode (USWC) for cards which support it.

The immature because VIA is the new, the unrefined, but potentially expansive – in short it has all the draw backs and advantages of youth. It has been SLOW, particularly in the memory handling department. Being young it has been cranky and quarrelsome, The 133A did not play well with others. Conflicts abounded. Game play often disappointed.
Many users turned away wanting VIA to do what the BX, 810 and 820 could not, yet do it as fast or faster than an Intel board without these new features.

“Hey it’s been two years since BX was a baby, Why is VIA slower?” Because BX represents a mature chip set. It’s perfect, therefore dying. VIA offers us a new rebirth, new potentials and possibilities, Therefore it’s awkward, slow and easily dismissed as unworthy. But is it unworthy? Has Intel done any better at bringing these new feature to silicon. HA! There you have it, If it was easy to do these things, Why hasn’t anyone done them better than VIA?

I’m begging the point a bit – we buy expecting a thing to work. We pay now, it should work now, right? Wrong! We pay now hoping it will work soon. To a large extent I believe soon has arrived for the 133A in the form of Asus’s P3V4X motherboard. Many won’t want this compromise of growth vs. speed. But for those of us who welcome it, I don’t think there will be to much to disappoint.

The ASUS P3V4X Manual is quite a bit better than I’m used to, but could still use some improvement. Too many settings (particularly memory settings) go unexplained. Asus’s PC Probe is a truly excellent utility, many miles ahead of Soyo’s Motherboard Doc. I actually prefer it to MBM!

After installing, the first thing I rushed to do was benchmark my memory. I set-up SiSoft Sandra and ran benches with a straight 500E setting in the BIOS. No longer having a BX board for comparison (My wife has placed her computer off limits to my experiments), I’ll have to go by Sandra’s estimate of what a BX board with a P-3 500 chip and 128megs of ram should do, which is 280 CPU memory and 260 FPU.

How did the VIA post? Very close by this comparison. In fact slightly edging out the old king of speed: 289 CPU and 270 FPU. No, not wildly impressive, but it is adequate memory performance. I do need to qualify these scores just a bit as I am using Mushkin Enhanced Memory PC 133 Ram. I doubt that Sandra had this ram in mind when posting their averages for BX usage of ram.

Now to put some juice to the chip and see what’s what at top speed. First I updated the BIOS to Ver. 1002 (As 1003 would not fully boot for me at any speed). I stayed with the 4.17 VIA drivers as many have reported much slower performance with the 4.19 and 4.20 drivers. Then I ran though the BIOS tweaks one by one looking for improvement.

I tried booting to 750 MHz – smooth! The first time ever at 750 on a VIA board! But would my Asus GeForce run at speeds it has never run before? Like a champ! Everything about Unreal and Q-3 was better!.. better speed, better picture quality and with everything turned on, my joystick remained light as a feather! Oh happy, happy man!

What about memory at this speed? CPU 397 FPU 377 – an average of five benchtests. Top score? 400 CPU memory and 380 FPU memory! As best as I can gather this performance is just 3% behind a BX board or a negligible difference between them.

As you can see from my system specs, I run a Promise Raid (0) setup; how would hard drive performance hold up? Again using Sandra: 20,667!! Two thousand points above my Soyo 133 board. This I attribute to increased bus speed. The Soyo could not go beyond 722 MHz and a FSB setting of 144 – any higher and my GeForce would go into the drink and simply not run at all! But what about stability?

I received this board on Friday; by Monday I was set up with a clean install. The only crashes I experienced were from, get this, accessing the Asus site on the web. One way or another this has got to be Asus’s fault – talk about ease of fixing blame for a crash!

There are still some unresolved issues with this board: The ultra 66 seems not to work as yet and IRQ’s are in short supply (I find this most troubling as it could prevent someone from being able to boot all their gear). It is my feeling that much of the controversy about various reviews (see forum) is due to the various and unfinished drivers and BIOS updates.

I’m very happy with this board: The drivers and BIOS are still, you guessed it, immature. Growth prospects are, I think, excellent. I would like to very much thank the over dozen people who wrote to me of their experiences. I wanted very much to list them and give them the individual credit they deserved but I crashed and had to reinstall windows, losing my saved e-mail (Not a new mother board related crash, as I was trying to avoid a re-install when I first got the Asus). It will have to suffice to say that without their help and the help of the forum at large, this would not have gone as well as it did and many hours of painstaking work would still lay ahead for me before I could even start this review.

I do have some of their more recent contributions, but felt it unfair to list some, but not all. So, Thanks guys you were great! And thanks again to PC NUT for sending me the ASUS.

Email Dan

COMMENTS FROM TOMMY LOI:

About a month ago, I was looking for a new motherboard that would support Pentium III Coppermines, ATA66, AGP4X, and offer an above average level of stability. My friend, being an ASUS enthusiast, immediately recommended the new ASUS P3V4X (He works at a local computer store and did extensive testing on this new board, and he exclaimed its stability). “Betray Intel?” I asked myself. Oh, what the hell, I only live once!

Here’s my slow and simple computer configuration:

  • Celeron 366A @ 550MHz (5.5×100)
  • Matrox Marvel G400 TV 16MB
  • Corsair PC133 1x64MB
  • BusLogic MultiMaster PCI SCSI Host Adapter
  • SBLive! Value Version 1
  • Network card

The first step was to setup the BIOS. To take advantage of the PC133 memory, I set the memory bus speed to 133MHz while the CPU FSB was at 100MHz. The 133A chipset was designed to support this asynchronous setup. As for the rest of the BIOS, there wasn’t really anything else out of the ordinary for me. Something to note here: The ESCD bootup screen never recognized any NIC that I installed, but since updating to BIOS 1002, it was detected on the ESCD screen.

Okay, so it’s time to install both Win98SE and W2K Pro on a dual-boot system. I usually never care about the shipping drivers with any computer product because, bluntly, they’re never the most updated ones. It stayed true in this case, so I downloaded the newest VIA 4-in-1 drivers (v4.20). Although I did try running Win98 without the VIA drivers installed (with drivers for the other parts installed), it did not work properly! I couldn’t even shutdown/restart without manually pressing the power/reset button!

You definitely have to install the VIA drivers when in Win98, especially the AGP driver: Otherwise bootup is choppy (after splash screen and just before showing the desktop). Even the newest VIA drivers 4.20 are not reliable. However, 4.17 that shipped with the board worked well. I believe a few other review sites agree that 4.17 work better with this board. Also, I had problems burning with the VIA Busmaster drivers installed (both versions 4.17 & 4.20, with Yamaha 6416S and Ricoh RW7060S). It worked fine with MS Win98 drivers.

VIA states on their website that W2K has embedded drivers and the only problem is with USB. I guess not. Under W2K Pro 2195, there are IRQ routing problems. All my add-on peripherals that needed an IRQ were sharing IRQ 9! The bit of slowness and lagging was proof of that.

And I sense that multitasking is not as good with the BX chipset (I had the same exact configuration on Abit BX6-2, and no crashes) but with this one, there could be crashes sometimes when I’m trying to use almost all of my peripherals at once. It’s just a gut feeling. Maybe you might look into that, since no sites have looked into these kinds of little things. Everyone’s already written about the performance already.

My final words: This board should be pretty stable if installed properly. Although there are still some driver and incompatibility problems, I really enjoy this board. I like it more than the line of Abit BX boards that I’ve tried out already!

Email Tommy

COMMENTS FROM GEORGE IOS:

UPDATE 3/17/00:

“My previous unsuccessful overclocking attempts were made with the memory set to “4/3” through the Bios. I had success when I tried to overclock at 146 FSB when the same setting was set to “AUTO”. Because of my memory (137MHz Cas2 is the best it can go and 146 Cas3) the system can’t boot into windows (it can post though) at higher FSB settings like 148MHz,150MHz etc. This means that with a better memory stick probably my overclocking would be successful at higher FSB settings.

The problem is that I can’t understand why the mainboard can’t even post from 146FSB to 166FSB when the memory is set to “4/3”!!! What’s wrong with the “4/3″ setting is still a mystery for me and ASUS Tech hasn’t responded yet to my email. I will post as soon as I receive their answers. Good Luck to all of you.”

This is the original email I sent to ASUS Tech support: I haven’t received a reply yet, but I hope they will send me one soon. From what I’ve written to them, you will find out what
my problems are:

“Hello. I have written you before about my ASUS P2B. Well I decided since ASUS has proven to me that every mainboard of that brand is extremely optimized and stable to go for it and buy again an ASUS mainboard. So I bought a P3V4x (’cause of its overclocking
abilities) for my new Pentium III 550E.

This mainboard is awesome – I like it very much, but I have some problems with it and some questions to ask.

First of all I want to tell you that my CPU is tested to an MSI 6309 (Via Apollo PRO133A chipset) mainboard and it could hit 880MHz!!! Yes, that is correct (160×5.5=880). With this mainboard (ASUS P3V4x rev 1.02) I managed to make 792MHz out of my CPU but no more. Why? I know I shouldn’t exceed your specifications, but then why all the Bios settings and the Dip Switches?

It posted once at 146 FSB and booted into windows but I haven’t managed to make the motherboard post again at that FSB setting. And of course 150FSB is out of the question. These speeds and up to 144 were achieved with upping the CPU core voltage to 1.7 v. My memory is PC-133 but I set the 4/3 setting through bios.

I flashed the old bios with the new one 1003 from www.asus.com.tw, so I think there isn’t a bios issue. I’ve also noticed (actually a friend of mine) that there is an undocumented jumper just below the CPU fan connector. I think this has something to do with increasing the VIO voltage (PCI and AGP)! Will that jumper help my overclocking? I haven’t tried it yet cause there is no confirmation about this jumper yet.

Also I’ve noticed that the UDMA 66 might not be working or might not be performing well ’cause I get low benchmarks results to the benchmark utility by SiSoft Sandra 2000: It’s around 11500 and I know that I should exceed the 15000 if UDMA was on. Is there anything I should do just to make my overclocking possible? I will do everything you suggest.

By the way MSI isn’t a better brand and I doubt they built a better mainboard than P3V4x but is there a way to prove it to my friend? I will post whatever is your answer to the www.overclockers.com so that I can help others defeat these problems too.

My system specifications are:

    Pentium III 500 E (100MHz )

  • Gigabyte converted card 6R7+ (rev 1.1)
  • 3DFX Voodoo3 3000 AGP
  • SBLive! Value.
  • Real Magic Hollywood Plus.
  • Generic 128MB of PC-133 memory.
  • WD Expert 18,6G (7200rpm UDMA66)
  • Quantum EL 5,1(UDMA33 5400rpm)
  • Pioneer A03S DVD
  • Ricoh MP7060A CD-RRW”

Email George


3/29/00: A brief summary of things to do in order to bring about compatibility between the Asus P3V4X and the LeadTek GeForce:

  • 1. Download and install the 1003 Asus BIOS.
  • 2. Locate the I/O voltage jumper, right up against the CPU fan plug on the Asus motherboard. Change it from its default setting of 1 — 2 to a setting of 2 — 3.
  • 3. Download and install the 5.13 detonator drivers from Nvidia.
  • 4. Acquire a decent fan replacement for the LeadTek fan.
  • 5. Download and install coolbits (see below) (3DGPU).
  • 6. If you are the proud owner of a Sound Blaster live soundcard, download and install the latest drivers from Creative.
  • 7. You can also use either the Win98SE vgart from the Leadtek site or the 4.17 AGP driver with the Nvidia 5.13 drivers.

If the foregoing does not fix whatever problems are having with this combo, e-mail me and describe your symptoms. Overall these difficulties seem to arise out of the fact that LeadTek sought to improve upon the Nvidia reference design in order to bring its customers a better product.

Unfortunately this brought about certain incompatibilities between it and the Asus motherboard which utilizes the VIA chipset. With the exception of the fan on the LeadTek card, none of these problems appear to be cast in stone – they are all driver related and therefore fixable. Not having this card myself I cannot say for sure, but I am fairly certain that these fixes properly applied will have you been gaining in no time. If not, as Mick Jagger would say “come write to me”.

Email Dan

The basic fact is that people trying to use the Leadtek Geforce with the ASUS P3V4X are having problems ranging from strange pixels, lock-ups and assorted disasters. No one has pinned down exactly what causes these problems; other GeForce cards seem to run great on this Asus board. Problems identified to date:

Symptoms:

  • Light spotting, even in 2D;
  • Very high Card Temps and even high Motherboard temps;
  • Complete failure to run even in 2D;
  • Strange fan noises.

I have received many helpful instances of fixes which work for some. Overall it appears to be a driver issue; unfortunately, given the diversity in systems, there is no magic bullet. However, outlined below are fixes that generally appear to work and are worth trying out:

  • Humphrey at PC Nut has put this duo together without these problems. I asked him what Drivers and BIOS he responded: “BIOS 1002, nVidia 3.62 (I know it’s old, but works the best with any VIA chipset board
    including Athlon & 133A), and VIA 4.17 4-in-1 driver.”

  • Email from Paul; “I was a victim of the Leadtek Geforce incompatibility until I went to this page and followed the instructions for the settings. You must add a key into the registry; I have the Asus P3V4X (1003) and the ddr revision b and it works like a charm!
    3DGPU
    Go to the link and look 1/3 way down the page; you can either add the key manually or run a real quick program (Coolbits) to do it. I ran the program; once you restart you have an extra option for videocard bus and memory speed in the hardware configuration tab. I used all of the settings to get my Leadtek ddr rev b cruising along.”

  • Many Leadtek cards are having fan problems which may be leading to heat problems. Leadtek is replacing fans, but perhaps you might be better off jut scrounging a 50mm fan and putting one on the card yourself. Voids the warranty but perhaps a better fix than what Leadtek provides.

Overall it appears that there is a major driver issue that is not a simple fix. Some have absolutely no problems and are the lucky ones; others are trying a mix of driver, BIOS and registry hacks. I wish I could tell you one size fits all, but I’m afraid not.

Email Dan

EMAIL FROM DREW:

First I had a Soyo SVBA133 motherboard and I was able to get my 500E to 775 @ 1.7 with the 155MHZ bus. Then I decided to upgrade to a 600E, so I went to the store to buy one and the P3V4X by ASUS was calling my name. I bought one with my 600E and loved it so much I had to go back and buy a second one.

I pulled the 500E off my Soyo board (which was a 6BA +4 – used the BX for performance gain) and tossed it on my P3V4X. I started out at 140; would post then 142; got up to 144 and it would intermittently post; at 146 the board said no way. Well now I was pissed since I knew it could go up to 775 on the Soyo.

This got me thinking – I set the manual jumpers to 150 @ 1.7 and it posts. “Hot Damn!” I said but that’s the highest I could go manually. 😮 ( Next I used SoftMenu for 155 but no post. I had to reset the CMOS to 160, still the same. Then I said “Hell last is 166” so I upped the voltage a little more 1.75.

Voila – I got a post and boot into Windows at 830MHZ with a 500E with just a PEP66 cooler on it. I don’t know what the temp is since the ASUS probe utility doesn’t seem to work on this board.

It tells me my fan rpm is 2200 when at first says its 3500. This is a great chip – too bad 166 is as high as I can go with the P3V4X. I’d recommend the Asus to anyone if they don’t mind not being able to hit 146-160fsbs. I’m using a Guliimot TNT2 Ultra and 128MB ECC Siemens memory in a In-Win q500 case.

Email Drew.

EMAIL FROM SERGIO:

I have had the Asus P3V4X for about a week now – no major issues at all. I had to reinstall the SB Live drivers, but other than that the board setup was as easy as can be. I am using a PIII 450 @648 with no problems. On the ABIT BH-6, I could only achieve 623. AGP speed is no longer an issue! Please note the 3Dmark2000 benchmarks attached.

The Leadtek GeForce DDR runs without issue on it. I love the thing. I have enclosed 4 hypersnap shots to demonstrate that the combo is indeed installed and running smooth. Hope this gives credibility to these two component’s integration. I would hate this issue to sway others away from this board. The negative reports concerning the P3V4X seem to be more bark than bite. I am one satisfied customer.

Sergio J. Davini

EMAIL FROM WIL:

I was reading your evolving article on the ASUS P3V4X and noticed that you were posting HSDRAM bandwidths. Well, it seems like people are just forgetting/ignoring the fact that this chipset supports NEC’s Virtual Channel Memory.

I am running a Cel. 366A @ 577 (104 FSB) with (1) 128 MB stick of VCM. Here are my Sandra 2000 benchmarks:

CPU/Memory bandwidth = 361 MB/s
FPU/Memory bandwidth = 431 MB/s

On Friday, my PIII 550E will arrive and I’ll be able to see how (since no one else seems to know) VCM works at higher FSB speeds. You can pick up that VCM here:

Kingston

Wil Bloodworth

DAN EDGAR

Asus Has quietly RE-enabled Sidebanding for it’s Geforce cards. After installing the Asus Geforce BIOS update and the new 3.75 beta 2 drivers I found sidebanding was indeed enabled.
So I retried the 4.0 AGP from VIA. Still sucks. But AGP 3.59 works great.

The 3.75 drivers are beta and are quirky. Nothing can make them use a refresh rate above 60 MHz in UT. So I went back to the Nvida 3.77 drivers I’ve been using. Sidebanding remained in effect, and I was once again able to run my usual 1280X1024 at 85 Hz.

Game play seems unchanged by this. But that’s a point in Asus’s favor (kinda) in as much as I’m running my 500E at 750. It wasn’t so long ago that this would have made UT unplayable. I spent weeks searching for a way to disable sidebanding altogether. As a matter of fact my Multimedia scores are exactly the same as when I was using Fast Writes.

Strange indeed are the ways of Asus and Nvida. I decided to get a bit creative and use the Sidebanding Registry hack to disable sidebanding to see if fast writes was now an option. No Go. Without sidebanding my Sandra scores remained exactly the same. Somebody pass me a new beta please!

EMAIL FROM DANIEL KOKINDA:

I installed the P3V4X about a week ago with an Iwill Slocket II and 650E. I had all sorts of problems. I have a Leadtek GeForce SDR and now I see that maybe that is the problem. The screen would flicker and spots would appear in places they shouldn’t. I tried Leadtek’s driver build 109 and Nvidia’s latest drivers and still no good.

I have since put my old Abit BE6 board in and it runs like a champ. On both boards I could only get my 650E to run at 124 fsb but I’m beginning to think my video card might have been the
problem. It wouldn’t even post on the Asus board, but on the Abit board it will post and try to start windows but a no go. Maybe if I get a new video card I can hit 133 or higher.

Another problem I had was that my Diamond Monster Sound MX300 would make my system crash. I don’t know if that was video card related or not because if I would install the drivers for one it would work fine till I installed the drivers for the other. Maybe later I will get a different video card and try again. This gives me an excuse to get a DDR card. Hope this helps, it hasn’t been a fun experience as of yet.

Daniel Kokinda
Anchorage, AK


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