- Cool System Monitor software.
- Fast RDRAM support.
- New i850 chipset.
- CNR slot.
- Rapid BIOs.
- 400MHz system Bus (100MHz x
- Low temps on CPU when running
- No AGP pro.
- Difficult CPU mounting hardware.
- Can't use Voodoo cards for video.
- Hard to access advanced BIOs
- Gaming not that great.
- Benchmarks slower than other
boards in almost every area.
- LAN port
didn't work (see notes).
If you're looking for a motherboard
that's stable and slow then step right up partner. This 3 legged
horse is for you!
Last month I had a system meltdown
of my FIC
AZ11 motherboard with 800MHz Athlon T'bird cpu. Don't know
what happened. It just started acting strange, you know what
I'm talking about if you are a system builder or computer enthusiast.
I thought it was time to get
a new system. Something I could really get my teeth into. I started
shopping around and found this Intel board, the D850GB.
This board is pricey. At $215
that's a pinch. This board better perform I thought to myself
as I flipped out the American Express card. I needed a cpu so
I picked up a 1.3Ghz CPU that was bundled with 128MB of RIMM
memory. Don't forget the special power cable you'll need to power
that AMP hungry CPU. That'll set you back another 9$. And don't
forget that you'll need a special P4 ready case and power supply
(ATX12V) on top of all of that.
So I run home in between client
calls to assemble my system. I'm late of invoices, email and
general computer duties so I needed to get to work.
Got the system put together in
SX1240 tower case, plugged in all the wires, special power
supply cable, special mounts for the CPU and on the safe side
I left out all my cards but the video to start the scratch installation
process. Got through that okay, but it kept detecting a UNKNOWN
DEVICE whenever I got to the desktop. I pointed the New Hardware
Found dialog box to the CDROM for detection but it didn't find
anything. Of course Intel's skimpy manual doesn't mention it.
Okay so I got everything loaded.
Everything with the exception of the LAN port built on the mobo.
I loaded the driver and still nothing... Popped in a Kingston
KNE110TX NIC to get online with my DSL and found some updated
drivers. Downloaded and applied those but still nothing. tried
to call Intel but the hold time didn't jive with my schedule
so I dropped the issue until I had time to look into it.
A few days go by and its time
to call Intel. I called the motherboard assistance line at 800-404-2284.
I took everything out of the system but the video card, a Radeon
DDR 32. Got a tech on the line at 7am sharp when they open. We
spent the next 3 hours diagnosing the LAN port not working, we
did everything under the sun, flashed the BIOs, reinstalled drivers,
removed drivers, registry tweaks, you name it. nothing worked.
The tech wanted to keep trying (guessing) the problem and I had
enough and said I wanted another board. I told the tech that
I bought this board because of the Intel moniker and expected
nothing but top quality support... he gave me another number
to call... okay. My fingers start walking. I called 800-INTEL4U
(800-468-3548) and got another tech on the line (it's now close
to 12 noon. I started this expedition at 7am, remember... I had
to give the girl my case number (don't you love those. I guess
there are just tons of John Smith's calling Intel for tech support)
and was told its going to take 20 working days for my board to
be repaired... that's repaired... not replaced. My brand new
out of the box 4 day old 215$ Intel motherboard is going to be
hoisted up on the rack. I informed the tech on the phone that
I expected more from Intel for a DOA board. She said okay...
I wanted another cross shipped and she said they don't do that.
The policy is what it is. She said if I wasn't satisfied with
her answer she would escalate it. She said that a manager would
call me within 30 minutes to talk about it.
25 minutes later... phone rings...
I re-explain the situation. Manager says that's tough. The policy
is what the policy is. I tried to persuade him with the fact
the I run a website with 2,500 visits a day and that didn't phase
So, the morel of the story is.
If you want a Intel motherboard, you need to heed these pathetic
policies that the brass dream up. Intel basically caters to the
big OEM guys like Gateway and Dell and the little guys like you
and me are NOT AS IMPORTANT. Intel says they stand behind their
product. What you need to know is they stand WAY BEHIND their
Summary; if you got money to
burn, and a tolerance level of a dead person buy Intel, otherwise
get the replacement board I got which is a ASUS
P4T. I just installed this board today so a detailed analysis
isn't ready yet. So far so good. The P4T is quick, boots up as
fast as the Intel (if not faster) and is cheaper by 6 bucks with
loads more features.