ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review :: Setup and Bundle

06-24-2005 · Category: Motherboards

By Tulatin

The bundle included with the Fatal1ty AA8XE is one which covers all of the bases of the motherboard, with a few extras to boot. While most manufacturers throw in the cheap, bland ribbon cables and easily breakable SATA cables, ABIT chose to give us rounded IDE cables and locking SATA ones - that click into place, thus removing the ever present issue of snapping the cable head, the drive's connector or the motherboard's header - a relief in itself. Also included in the package is an interesting device called the "OTES Ram Flow"- while the spring loaded mounting arms and usefulness of this product are questionable (since DDR2 runs so cool, why cool it further?), it's nice to see ABIT keeping both the gamer and overclocker in mind. After all, most of us have experienced just what heat can do to a rig - often causing a crash in perfect time to coincide with Murphy's Law. Also in the box was a combined header, which consumes both Firewire and a single USB header, which is typical of Abit - providing enough outputs while still leaving room for front panel headers is their style.


ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review

Aside from these basic items, Abit also includes two separate user manuals (one for the uGuru feature set, one for the motherboard itself, as well as a floppy driver diskette which is necessary for installing Windows when RAID is enabled, as well as a driver CD.


ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review

Taking a peek into the uGuru software, we find that it is essentially an all inclusive suite, allowing for windows based overclocking with full FSB, Divider and Voltage controls. Along with this utility (OCGuru), comes uGuru Windows bios - essentially just the ability to flash the bios from windows and uGuru black box - a full scale system activity recording utility which monitors nearly everything within the system, then produces a conclusive report of the cause of your crashes - if you're afflicted by them that is. Finally, we come to realtek's audio drivers They allow for near full control of the soundcard, complete with sampling rates, speaker configuration and sampling rate selection.


ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review

Setting this motherboard was a breeze, except for the risks of damaging the CPU socket. Everything works as it should right off the bat, which just made it sweeter when we fired the motherboard up, and were greeted by the plethora of LEDs onboard, which work for full case lighting as well as behind motherboard lighting. Definitely a cool feature Abit! The only (and major) issue to setting up on this motherboard is one that has always been present with the OTES shroud in place - that is, how much it can interfere with mounting heatsinks. Ask any IC7-Max3 owner about how hard it is to get the stock heatsink off their motherboards, and they'll more than surely have a story - sadly, Abit seems to have not learned their lesson, and while there are cutouts within the shroud to allow for larger sinks, we're sure that this board will run into issues with the big boys of cooling.


ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review
ABIT Fatal1ty AA8XE Motherboard Review