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Any performance reasons not to use mATX board?

184 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  archtech
I'm thinking of switching my current AMD-based HTPC to a PIII to make it easier to quiet/cool. Is there any performance reason not to use an mATX board? I've built plenty of ATX boxes but haven't even considered mATX to this point.

I know there aren't as many PCI slots, but I'm not worried about that. I came across a pretty good deal on an Intel D815EPFVL ( http://channel.intel.com/business/ib...DS/d815efv.htm ), and it has the features I want (ATA100, onboard LAN).

Also, is there any problem mounting it in an ATX case (KS-780)?

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The chipsets are the same as their full-size counterparts, so you're not likely to see any performance hit with this MB. I'd still go for a full-size 815 or even a VIA board before I went with a smaller mini MB. You never know when those slots are going to fill up. Also, I'd steer away from anything integrated, too, even Ethernet. You never know when something better comes along (like Giagabit) that you'd want to upgrade. It also makes it trickier to troubleshoot glitches when there's a bunch of perephrials soldered onto your MB.

I just "upgraded" my BX board to a VIA board because I managed to fry my old board when I forgot to unplug the PS after powering down and removing a PCI card (doh!). The new MB, the Tyan Trinity 400, is a VIA board and will accept both Slot 1 and Socket 370 processors. I was having trouble finding a replacement for my old Slot 1 processor. Now, I can upgrade to a faster 370 processor with this MB w/o replacing it. I initially was worried about VIA 4-in-1 compatability problems, but these were unfounded concerns. I was o'clocking my old BX board and this one is much more stable (though limited in its o'clocking potentiall... but that's probably helpful for stability sake).

I'm assuming an ATX case will work with the standoff spacing of an mATX board, but I don't know for sure. mATX cases would be pretty limited in their cooling aboility, I'd imagine.

Just a thought,

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