Appendix III. Core 2 Motherboards – A Complete List of
Table of Contents
- Overview of Recent Chipsets for the Intel Platform
- Intel 865 Chipset Motherboards
- Intel 945/946 Express Chipset Motherboards
- Intel 975X Express Chipset Motherboards
- Intel 965 Express Chipset Motherboards
- Intel 3 Series Chipset Motherboards
- Intel 4 Series Chipset Motherboards
- Intel Tylersburg/Summitlake Chipset Motherboards
- NVIDIA nForce4 Series for Intel Chipset Motherboards
- NVIDIA nForce 500 Series for Intel Chipset Motherboards
- NVIDIA nForce 600i Series Chipset Motherboards
- NVIDIA nForce 700i Series Chipset Motherboards
- NVIDIA GeForce 7-Series GPU and nForce 6-Series MCP Motherboards
- NVIDIA GeForce 9-Series mGPU and nForce 7-Series MCP Motherboards
- ATI Chipset Motherboards
- SiS Chipset Motherboards
- VIA Chipset Motherboards
- Mobile Intel 945 Express Chipset Motherboards
- Mobile Intel 965 Express Chipset Motherboards
For those who are interested in building a Core 2 system, I collected a list of motherboards (ATX and microATX) supporting Core 2 processors. This part begins with a preliminary section: a brief overview of chipsets for the Intel platform. Then a list of motherboards follows. Motherboards are classified by chipset and then form factor. Each motherboard is hyperlinked to the manufacture's website. A brief description of specifications is included. To make the description concise and readable, I assume the following specifications are standard for today's desktop motherboards:
- FSB 1333 MTps support
- Dual-channel memory controller supporting DDR2-800, 4 DIMMs, 4GB maximum
- 1 x VGA for a microATX board
- 1 x PCI Express x16 (x16 electrically), 1 x PCI Express x1, 2 x PCI
- 1 x PATA, 4 x SATA at 3.0Gbps
- RAID 0/1/01 or 10/5, NCQ, Hot-Plug
- 8 x USB 2.0
- 1 x PCI Express Gb LAN
- 7.1 Ch. HD Audio
- 1 x coaxial S/PDIF out and/or 1 x optical S/PDIF out
- 2 x IEEE 1394
A name in italic letters like Bearlake is a codename. In motherboard lists, I used various abbreviations:
- Active/Passive means that the cooling method of northbridge/southbridge is active/passive (i.e. heatsink with fan/heatsink only), etc.
- PCIe x16/PCIe x1/PCI: 2@(16,4)/1/3* means that there are two PCI Express x16 slots, each of which can run at the maximum speed of x16, x4 respectively (but may not run at that speed concurrently), one PCI Express x 1 slot, and 3 PCI slots, and one of the PCI slots cannot be used when a two-slot video card is installed, etc.
- PATA/SATA/eSATA: 1/4/2 means that the number of PATA controllers is 1 (so 2 PATA devices), the number of SATA ports is 4 and the number of external SATA ports is 2, etc.
- RAID implies NCQ and Hot-Plug and vice versa for Intel and NVIDIA chipsets. So I won't write them for brevity. SiS, Uli, VIA southbridges are different. I did not mention RAID capability of additional storage controllers.
- No S/PDIF means no onboard S/PDIF header. No S/PDIF (need an optional bracket) means that there is an onboard S/PDIF header, but a bracket is not included in the retail package.
- FSB: 600MHz means that the maximum selectable FSB frequency available in the BIOS setup is 600MHz, etc. The front side bus transfers data four times per cycle (the technology called QDR, quadruple data rate, or quad pumping), thus FSB can be expressed in two units
- MHz (mega hertz)
- MTps (mega transfer per second)
- 200MHz = 800MTps
- 266MHz = 1066MTps
- 333MHz = 1333MTps
- CPU frequency = (FSB in MHz) x (CPU multiplier)
- DRAM frequency = (FSB in MHz) x (FSB-DRAM ratio) x 2
- CPU: 1.725V means that the maximum CPU voltage available in BIOS is 1.725V, etc. The default CPU voltage is around 1.3V, depending on each CPU core.
- DRAM: 2.1V means that the maximum DRAM voltage available in BIOS is 2.1V, etc. The default voltage by the JEDEC DDR2 DRAM specification is 1.8V.
- NB: 1.25–1.65V means that the northbridge voltage can be adjusted from 1.25V to 1.65V in BIOS, etc. The default voltage depends on chipset and motherboard.
- Max FSB: 300MHz (E6400, x8, VR-Zone) means that the maximum stable FSB reported in VR-Zone is 300MHz, with Core 2 Duo E6400 and multiplier x8, etc.
- FSB: — means that there is no FSB adjustment option in BIOS, etc.
- FSB: ? means that I have not been able to confirm FSB yet, etc.
You can also view a list of motherboards in the Excel worksheet format: