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Since NVIDIA Corporation still does not provide finalized software for its Socket 940 and Socket 754 chipsets and some mainboard makers put nForce3 platforms on hold, VIA Technologies manages to win loads of contracts this Fall. EPoX, a beloved company by enthusiasts committed to AMD processors, this week unveiled its first mainboard powered by VIA K8T800 for 64-bit Socket 754 chips.

EPoX EP-8HDA3+ does not provide anything really special, just like practically all mainboards by this company, nevertheless, it still brings some interesting capabilities for enthusiasts. Firstly, it features onboard diagnostic LEDs the firm is well-known for; secondly, it has onboard Gigabit Ethernet controller; thirdly, it equips EPoX renowned set of tuning, tweaking and overclocking functions; finally, it has 6 Serial ATA-150 ports, just as ABIT KV8-MAX3.

Check out the whole list of EPoX EP-8HDA3+ specs:

  • Supports Socket 754 AMD Athlon 64 processors;
  • VIA K8T800 and VT8237 core-logic;
  • 2 DIMM slots for up to 2GB of PC2100, PC2700 or PC3200 DDR SDRAM;
  • 5 PCI and 1 AGP 8x slot;
  • 2-channel integrated ATA-33/66/100/133 controller;
  • 2 Serial ATA-150 ports with RAID support;
  • 4 additional Serial ATA-150 with RAID support (Silicon Image 3114 controller);
  • 10/100/1000Mb/s Ethernet adapter from 3Com;
  • 8 USB 2.0 ports;
  • 2 FireWire (IEEE1394) ports;
  • Integrated AC`97 6-channel audio solution with S/PDIF connector;
  • Loads of additional functions and technologies from EPoX;
  • Probably overclocking and tuning functions;
  • Onboard diagnostic LEDs;
  • ATX Form-factor.

As always, actual pricing and availability are not mentioned because they can vary from region to region.

In general, it is certainly not a cheap mainboard and can even boast with some advanced options, but given that there is a number of products with similar functionally in the market and the fact that EPoX is a bit late with its announcement, I would doubt the EP-8HDA3+ is actually a remarkable solution for hardcore enthusiasts who would certainly prefer ABIT’s MAX3. However, in case it is priced at a user-friendly price-point and you do not require expensive and robust functionality from companies like ABIT or ASUS, the mainboard is most likely worth considering in your Fall 2003 64-bit upgrade plans.

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