Motherboard: AOpen AK89 Review :: Conclusion

04-07-2004 · Category: Motherboards

By Benjamin Sun

If I sound like I'm impressed with AOpen's board, there's a reason for it. Too often second-tier manufacturers skimp on included features such as keeping the maximum number of USB ports that the chipset supports, or lack of an S/PDIF cable or Firewire. All of these features are not only supported by the AK89 Max, the cables are also included to enable them. Kudos to AOpen for this.

AOpen designed this board for easy overclocking usage, with both the WatchDog ABS and OverHeat Protection allowing for easy safe overclocking. I don't overclock my computer components as a rule, as I've yet to see an application requiring the extra speed. The games I play play great at default speeds of the CPU and most games that are demanding are more video card limited than CPU limited.

If I was looking for an Athlon 64 board based upon an nForce3 chipset today I would choose the AOpen AK89 Max board because of the extra features and components included with this board. However, with the nForce3 250GB and nForce3 250 announced just yesterday, the features needing an extra chip like Gigabit LAN and Serial ATA RAID will be integrated into the chipset. I'm sure AOpen will do a board with the new chipset and at that time I would probably recommend that board.

I can't wait to see how the K8T800 versus nForce3 250GB competition plays out. Hopefully the boards will be competitive with both feature set and performance. Until I get my hands on a 250GB board I'd still recommend a K8T800 based board for the AMD Athlon 64 platform because of native support for SATA and native Gigabit LAN support.