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Soltek today unleashed its new Socket 478 mainboard based on VIA PT880 chipset. The newcomer is able to work with variety of chips, including yet unannounced Prescott microprocessors.

The new Soltek SL-PT880PRO-FGR has black PCB with violet slots installed. The mainboard resembles the company’s “Black Thunder” series that is rather popular among enthusiasts. Besides the exclusive color, the SL-PT880PRO-FGR is Soltek’s second product to be based on VIA PT880 core-logic.

The PT880 is VIA’s first chipset to enable dual-channel DDR memory controller – dubbed VIA DualStream64 – a kind of memory controller able to work with two memory modules simultaneously to provide double bandwidth. Besides the advanced DualStream64 technology, VIA’s PT880 offers plethora of must-have capabilities, like 800MHz Quad Pumped Bus, Hyper-Threading and AGP 8x. VIA Technologies suggests using VT8237 I/O controller with the PT880 North Bridge to provide up to 6 PCI slots, 8 USB 2.0 ports, 2-channel ATA-33/66/100/133 controller, Serial ATA-150 ports with RAID support, 6-channel audio-solution, MC97 Modem and other important input/output means. 

Soltek’s SL-PT880Pro-FGR mainboard adopting VIA PT880 + VT8237 core-logic boasts with Pentium 4 processor with SSE3 technology support, features 4 DIMM slots for up to 4GB of PC2100/PC2700/3200 memory (dual-channel memory bus support: memory modules used should be identical and installed in pairs), an AGP 8x slot, 5 PCI slots, 2-channel ATA-33/66/100/133, 2 Serial ATA-150 ports with RAID support, additional Promise controller bringing 2 extra Serial ATA-150 ports and an ATA-33/66/100/133 channel. The mainboard is equipped with Gigabit Ethernet controller for Enterprise class connectivity, offers 6-channel AC'97 audio, up to 8 USB 2.0 as well as 2 FireWire ports. Additionally, the product brings some features for overclockers and tweakers.

In early September 2003 we had an opportunity to benchmark Soltek’s SL-86SPV2-RL mainboard also based on VIA PT880 core-logic. The product did not show absolutely impressive results, but promised to provide the nice price/performance ratio. 

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