Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review :: The Board

07-06-2005 · Category: Motherboards

By Benjamin Sun
ASUS P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Spec Sheet
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Motherboard Photo
Part NumberP5ND2-SLI Deluxe
ManufacturerASUS
Price CheckFind Best Price
DownloadsBIOS
Drivers
Manuals
ChipsetNvidia nForce4 SLI (LGA775)
North BridgeNvidia nForce4 SLI MCP LGA775
SocketLGA775 Socket
Processor TypesPentium 4, Pentium D, Celeron D
Number of CPUs1
Front Side Bus1066/800MHz
Memory TypeDDR2
Memory ChannelsDual
Maximum Memory8GB
External GraphicsPCI Express x16
IGP None
South BridgeNvidia nForce4 SLI MCP
Audio8-channel
IDE133/100/66/33
SCSINone
SATA3.0 GB/s
RAID0, 1, 0+1, 5
LAN10/100/1000
FirewireIEEE 1394a
USBUSB 2.0
Expansion Slots
  • 3 x PCI
  • 2 x PCI Express x1
  • 2 x PCI Express x16
BIOSAWARD
Form FactorATX
Motherboard Photo

The P5ND2-SLI board is based upon NVIDIA's nForce4 for Intel SLI chipset. This is one of the first chipsets to support dual-core CPUs besides Intel's 955X and 945G chipsets. The P5ND2-SLI supports all released Intel LGA-775 CPUs including the 3.8GHz 670, the 840Extreme Edition (Dual Core) and the various other Intel CPUs released in the last year. Older Intel chipsets like the 925XE and other chipsets from companies like ATI (Radeon Xpress200) do not support the Dual Core CPUs.


Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review DIMM Slots

DIMM Slots

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review CPU Fan Header

CPU Fan Header


Memory support on the motherboard is provided by 4 240-pin DIMM (Dual In-line Memory Modules). If you have a 64-bit supporting Intel CPU like the 6xx or 8xx series, the motherboard supports up to 8GB of memory when a 64-bit OS like Windows XP 64-bit Professional is installed or Linux. When using a 32-bit OS the maximum supported memory on the motherboard chipset is 4GB. The nForce4 for Intel SLI supports DDR2 memory running up to 667MHz.


Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review x16 Slots

x16 Slots

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review x16 Slot 1

x16 Slot 1

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review x16 Slot 2

x16 Slot 2

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review x1 Slots

x1 Slots

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review PCI Slots

PCI Slots


Expansion on the board is excellent, as is to be expected from an SLI motherboard. First thing you'll notice when taking the motherboard out of the box is the 2 long PCI Express x16 slots. ASUS also includes two PCI Express X1 slots in between the SLI slots, and three PCI 2.3 compliant slots. This is equivalent to having a AGP slot and 6 PCI slots on older motherboards. Be aware that installing a PCI Express x1 card into the slot adjacent to PCI Express X16 slot #1 may not be possible if the video card is of the two-slot variety.


Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review SATA Ports

SATA Ports

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review Empty SATA

Empty SATA

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review eSATA+EZPlug

eSATA+EZPlug

Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review Sideways IDE

Sideways IDE


In my opinion, a Deluxe board should support the maximum hard disk drives that the chipset supports. Asus includes 4 SATA2 compliant ports controlled by the NVIDIA MCP chip, and a Silicon Image Sil3132 controller with two additional SATA2 ports (one on the back input/output ports). nForce4 supports the new SATAII standard, providing up to 300MB/second transfer rates (double that found on SATAI). I have seen motherboards with more SATA ports, but truthfully, 6 ports is more than most people need. There are two blank spots on the board where two more SATA ports might fit, but not on this model. IDE drive support is provided by 2 IDE ports, one positioned sideways to the board.


Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review Intel PHY

Intel PHY


The rear input output ports on the board are very interesting. ASUS decided to include a SATA port on the rear bracket. This allows for an external SATA drive to be mounted. It's a cool concept found in few motherboards today. ASUS includes two LANs onboard, one using a Marvell chipset and the other an Intel PHY. The Intel chip uses the PCI bus, which can be easily clogged when using a Gigabit Ethernet connection. The Marvell PHY offers PCI Express connectivity, allowing for full use of the Gigabit Ethernet without clogging the PCI bus. Also interesting on the board is the inclusion of 3 USB headers allowing for up to 10 USB devices to be connected to the board when using brackets.


Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review
Asus P5ND2-SLI Deluxe Motherboard Review

On-board sound is provided by the Realtek ALC850 CODEC. This provides support for up to 7.1 surround sound and most of the sound APIs available on the market today. NVIDIA has not provided support for the High Definition Audio standard Intel is promoting with their motherboards, which is kind of disappointing. Hopefully, NVIDIA will release a motherboard chipset with HDA support soon. In the meantime, the 850 CODEC is sufficient for most users. The ALC850 supports the various sound APIs including EAX 1.0, 2.0, A3D (Aureal), and Direct3D Sound.