Gigabyte have released a slightly different KT400 board to ABIT and ASUS, first on the list is the lack of Serial ATA, it does however still use RAID and as such still has 4 IDE ports. There are only 2 USB ports on the back panel. A little short for today's demanding needs on USB. They do however provide you with an adapter to add an extra 4 ports. You also have an adapter to add 3 Firewire ports.
A big plus for gigabyte is the fact that they use a Dual BIOS system and they have a stylish overclocking utility called easytune 4, a little more on them later.
Lets have a look at the full run down of the boards specs.
Gigabyte have started to introduce a dual BIOS system. Its a pretty basic idea which has took its time in being implemented in motherboards. The idea is that if the BIOS fails the backup BIOS will allow the user to still use the motherboard an try and sort the problem with the main BIOS. As flashing the BIOS is becoming more and more popular now, this is a welcome feature. Before this an error when flashing the BIOS could potentially render the motherboard useless.
EasyTune 4 is a stylish windows overclocking utility, exclusively for gigabyte motherboards. This handy utility also does system hardware monitoring and voltage changes etc.
You only have to look at the picture above to see that EasyTune 4 offers a lot of flexibility to the settings of your motherboard. Obviously it cannot override hardware settings, for example it can't change the multiplier on locked CPU's. However the ability to change voltages and FSB from within windows is a great use to the performance tweakers amongst you. I have to add the mandatory warning here that playing with system setting like these can potentially damage your computers hardware.
What is Q-Flash™
Q-Flash™ is a BIOS flash utility embedded in Flash ROM. With this function, user no longer needs to boot in to OS when he wants to update his BIOS.
Easy to use
Q-Flash™ allows users to flash BIOS without any utility in DOS or windows. And it is especially useful for the system with Windows 9X/Me/NT/2000 or other operating system without pure DOS mode. Having Q-Flash, no more fooling around with any instructions and operating system, since the utility is in the BIOS.
© 2001 Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd. All rights reserved
Mixed feeling with the gigabyte offering of the KT400. The lack of using new technology such as the Serial ATA is a downer for me looking at the future. Also I personally prefer the back panel to have most of the connectors on rather than having to add extra slots that come optionally in the box. On the plus side, the Dual BIOS is a great idea, which I am impressed with. Also the software bundle is good, EasyTune 4 is a fine utility and Q-Flash as well gives this board the option to be played about with. This might not be for everyone, but I know a lot of you like to squeeze every last bit of performance out of your machines.
Overall I think this board is worth making a purchase.
PCMall.com U.S. Visitors can buy here
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