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Asus A7N266-C in the test: The nForce 415-D now also without graphics

Asus A7N266-C in the test: The nForce 415-D now also without graphics

MCP, MCP-D?

Before it comes to internal skills If the southbridge of the nForce goes, the connection between the two components should also be briefly considered. While both components of a PC communicated with each other recently via the 133MB/s fast PCI bus, VIA with the 266MB/s strong V-Link and SiS with the even 1.2GB/s multi-thread I/O link already had the first Steps towards a self-sufficient and fast bus. And continuing this trend, nVidia has also integrated its own data path into the nForce with the licensing of AMD's previously unpublished 'Hyper-Transport'. This allows data to be exchanged with a maximum of 800MB/s and should easily be sufficient for the current traffic. The PCI bus remains free for data exchange between plug-in cards and EIDE drives.

The Soutbridge Variants: Not enough variety, there are also two different models of the nForce Southbridge. Could the northbridgeYes, already shining with innovative technology, the MCP-D version almost manages to go one better. In addition to the features of the 'normal' MCP version with the help of its Audio Processing Unit (APU), it offers real-time processing of Dolby Digital 5.1 audio data and the ability to produce 256 stereo audio streams or 64 3D and 192 Process audio streams in hardware. DirectX 8.0 and 3D Positional Audio are fully supported. Other features that both MCP and MCP-D offer include the obligatory ATA100 controller for up to four devices, six USB ports, 10/100 Mbit/s LAN and sound/modem according to AC97. Without wanting to exaggerate, we must congratulate nVidia on the currently most highly integrated Southbridge.

Nvidia nForce

To make the confusion perfect for some customers, the nForce architecture allows any northbridge (IGP/SPP) to connect to each of the two Southbridges (MCP). However, nVidia pretends to identify a combination of IGP-128 and MCP-D as nForce 420- D . Whether the mainboard manufacturers adhere to it is another question.

And what is our test board A7N266-C with nForce 415-D? Anyone who has read carefully should have the answer ready: To order the brand new SPP without graphics and the Dolby-Digital Southbridge MCP-D.

On the next page: Scope of delivery and documentation