MSI K9A2 Platinum Review :: MSI K9A2 Platinum Features

05-04-2008 · Category: Motherboards

By Ben Sun
MSI K9A2 Platinum Spec Sheet
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Part NumberK9A2 Platinum
Price CheckFind Best Price
ChipsetAMD 790FX
North BridgeAMD 780G
Processor TypesAthlon 64 X2 Dual Core / Athlon 64 / Sempron, Phenom
Number of CPUs1
Front Side Bus1066/800/667/533/400
Memory TypeDDR2
Memory ChannelsDual
Maximum Memory8GB
External GraphicsPCI Express x16
IGP None
South BridgeAMD SB600
SATA3.0 GB/s
RAID0, 1, 0+1, 5
LAN10/100/1000 x2
Expansion Slots
Form FactorATX
Motherboard Photo

AMD CPUs including the Phenom X4 9750 and the Phenom X3 8750 CPUs that were just launched. MSI needs to update their spec sheet. Note, that for the latest CPUs you need to have the latest BIOS update to 1.4 from the MSI website. That’s one advantage of the AMD platform; a simple BIOS update may be all that is needed to install a new CPU.

MSI K9A2 Platinum Review

HyperTransport 3.0 is the latest version of the bus that AMD uses to communicate between the CPU and the chipset. The AMD 790FX chipset supports HT 3.0 for up to 5200 megabits/second bandwidth between the chipset and CPU. When an older chipset like the AMD 690G works with a newer CPU like the Phenom X3, HyperTransport is limited to the 2.0 specification as the chipset doesn’t have the speed of the CPU, but with the 790FX chipset this isn’t an issue as the chipset fully supports HTT3.0.

AMD video cards have a feature that NVIDIA video cards can’t do at the moment, they can put four cards in CrossFireX mode while NVIDIA has limited this to three. The 790FX chipset is the first one with support for four ATI cards in CrossFireX mode. The MSI K9A2 Platinum has four PCI Express x16 slots for that express purpose. Note, that the last PCI Express x16 slot may interfere with your FDD port as the heat sink of a HD3870 covers the port when installed. When four video cards are installed, the chipset operates the cards in x8 x8 x8 x8 mode.


  • Supports 64-bit AMD® Phenom FX / Phenom processor (Socket AM2+)
  • Supports Phenom FX CPU: FX-82
  • Supports Phenom CPU: 9700, 9600, 9500 & 8000 Series
  • Supports 64-bit AMD® Athlon 64FX / Athlon 64 X2 / Athlon 64 processor (Socket AM2)
  • Supports Athlon 64 CPU: 3500+, 3800+
  • Supports Athlon 64FX CPU: FX-62
  • Supports Athlon 64 X2 CPU: 3800+, 4000+, 4200, 4400+, 4600+, 4800+, 5000+, 5200+, 5400+, 6000+, 6400+


  • AMD 790FX (AMD RD790) Chipset
  • HyperTransport connection to AMD Phenom/Athlon processor
  • HyperTransport supporting speed up to 2.6GHz (5200mt/s)
  • Supports 4 PCI-E x 16, & 1 PCI-E X 1
  • ATI SB600 Chipset
  • Supports SATAII controllers for four drives
  • Supports single channel Ultra DMA 66/100/133 master mode EIDE controller
  • ACPI & PC2001 compliant enhanced power management
  • Supports Hi-Speed (USB2.0) controller 480 mbsec transfer rate up to 10 ports

Main Memory

  • Supports 4 240-pin DDR2 SDRAMs up to 8GB memory size
  • Supports Dual Channel DDR2 800/1066 DDR2 SDRAM
  • Supports 1.8v DDR2 SDRAM DIMM

Example: Kingston HyperX DDR2-800 PC-6400 operates at 2.0V, 4-4-4-12. For more information about specification of high performance memory modules, please check with your Memory Manufactures for more details.


  • Four PCI Express X16 slots , support ATI CrossFire Technology (PCI Express Bus Specification v2.0 compliant)
  • {Slot configurations: Dual CrossFire (16X+16X), Triple CrossFire (16X+8X+8X), Quad CrossFire (8X+8X+8X+8X)}
  • One PCI Express X1 slot
  • Two 32-bit PCI slots (3.3v/5v PCI Bus Master slots)


  • An IDE controller on the ATI SB600 chipset provides IDE HDD/CD-ROM with PIO, Bus Master and Ultra DMA133/100/66 operation modes.
  • Can connect up to 2 IDE devices
  • SB600 supports 4 SATA II ports (SATA1-4). Transfer rate is up to 300MB/s.
  • Supports up to 4 SATA
  • RAID 0 or 1, 0+1 is supported
  • RAID function` work w/ SATA/SATAII HDDs
  • Promise T3 controller supports 2 SATAII (SATA5/6)(SAS ready) & 2eSATA ports
  • RAID 0, 1, or 0+1 is supported
  • RAID function work with SATA/eSATA HDDs


  • The mainboard BIOS provides "Plug & Play" BIOS which detects the peripheral devices and expansion cards of the board automatically.
  • The mainboard provides a Desktop Management Interface (DMI) function which records your mainboard specifications.
  • Supports boot from LAN, USB Device 1.1 & 2.0 and SATA HDD


  • 8 Channel software audio codec Realtek ALC888
  • Compliance with Azalia v1.0 spec.
  • Flexible 8-channel audio with jack sensing


  • Realtek® 8111B LAN chip
  • Supports 10Mb/s, 100Mb/s and 1000Mb/s
  • Compliance with PCI-Express v1.0a


  • VIA VT6308P controller
  • Support up to 2 IEEE 1394 ports (rear x 1 / front x 1)
  • Transfer rate up to 400 mbps.

On-Board Peripherals

  • 1 floppy port supports 1 FDD with 360K, 720K, 1.2M, 1.44M and 2.88Mbytes
  • 1 serial port (supported by pin-out)
  • 1 audio jack (5-in-1), coaxial/fibre SPDIF out
  • 10 USB 2.0 ports (Rear x 4 / Front x 6)
  • 1 RJ45 LAN jack
  • 2 eSATA ports
  • 2 IEEE 1394 a connectors (Rear x 1/ Front x 1)
  • 1 CD-in pinheader


  • 12 in (L) x 9.75 in(W) ATX Form Factor


  • 9 mounting holes