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MSI details its 790FX Phenom/Quad CF board

MSI details its 790FX Phenom/Quad CF board

The MSI K9A2 Platinum - AM2+, Quad/Tri-core Phenom compatible, PCI-Express 2.0 and Quad CrossFire

No doubt you're probably bored of the glut of Intel news that has filled the tubes over the last few months, and you'll therefore be pleased to hear that MSI has finally given AMD fans something to harp about: its K9A2 Platinum.

Based the latest AMD 790FX chipset, which offers 32 PCI-Express 2.0 lanes spread over either two x16 or four x8 slots. This is AMD's equivalent to the Intel X38 chipset which also offers some of the same features.

The K9A2 Platinum supports both new AM2+ and AM2 processors: either Phenom, Athlon or Sempron, and has four PCI-Express x16, two PCI and one PCI-Express x1 slot. AMD still uses DDR2 memory but with socket AM2+ and Phenom, 1,066MHz will be considered fairly 'standard.'

Other on-board features include a Realtek Gigabit Ethernet port, Realtek High-Definition audio, ten USB 2.0, two VIA 6308P Firewire and six SATA 3Gbps ports - two of which are from a PCI Promise controller. Powering most all of this is the antiquated ATI SB600 chipset, which fortunately has a single IDE channel but only four native SATA 3Gbps ports.

An orientation change to the CircuPipe heatpipe array featured on the P35 and X38 MSI boards is included on top of the 790FX chipset now instead. The design change is described as providing a 20 percent performance increase over 'the others'. However, I don't really see how claiming you're more power efficient than Nicole Kidman can help though.

Finally there's five phase power, but the four-pin 12V and Molex power sockets are nestled between the rear I/O and heatpipes. Software features provided include Dual CoreCell and D.O.T. Express on the fly overclocking as well. From the looks of the board, the K9A2 Diamond should have a second Gigabit Ethernet and perhaps offer the SkyTel card we saw with the P35 Diamond.

If you're still interested in Phenom, is this the kind of board for you? Or is it lacking in certain features? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

29 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
E.E.L. Ambiense 10th October 2007, 22:50 Quote
Wow. I like the heatpipe array. Looks nice on layout too.
mattthegamer463 10th October 2007, 23:04 Quote
I still think 4 PCIE slots is a waste still. It taunts us of 4-card SLi.

I'd like to see AMD get back in the game with Phenom. Competition drives innovation.
2JSC 11th October 2007, 00:11 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattthegamer463
I still think 4 PCIE slots is a waste still. It taunts us of 4-card SLi.

I'd like to see AMD get back in the game with Phenom. Competition drives innovation.

You mean 4-Card Crossfire :D - Thats what I want! But yes - I am really awaiting Phenom so I can maybe build a new system then.
MonkeyNutZ 11th October 2007, 00:23 Quote
Screw this, I can't wait for a mATX 790 board.
devdevil85 11th October 2007, 00:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattthegamer463
I still think 4 PCIE slots is a waste still. It taunts us of 4-card SLi.
It's called futureproofing.....as long as performance scales when adding more cards, then you're set for longer than single- or even double-slot solutions offered currently....also, if I remember right, CF allows you to use your older card w/o bottlenecking newer cards you would decide to upgarde to later in the future....(I hope I'm right on that because I don't like SLI's offerings of only being able to use the same card configuration)

Futureproofing is my main concern when buying a mobo, so features like DDR3 support will need to be offered before I will decide to upgrade.....Phenom should be good, so we'll have to see what AMD has up their sleeves....
Tulatin 11th October 2007, 01:01 Quote
Yeah, because futureproofing by giving us useless slots is that much more important than futureproofing by giving MORE SATA.

There's one other problem - that board has 32 lanes, and that's it.

Which means, try using that x1 slot with all 4 x16s in use. Nothing should happen. It's also why there's a promise PCI contoller...
chrisb2e9 11th October 2007, 01:29 Quote
how many sata ports do you need?
anyway, looks like a nice board. and thats coming from an intel fanboy.
samkiller42 11th October 2007, 02:19 Quote
Where can i fit an alternative Sound Card if i have 4 x2xxx series cards? Other than that, looks a nice board, and as chrisb2e9 said, thats comming from an intel guy.

Sam
MasterYoda34 11th October 2007, 04:16 Quote
Probably the best board ever to come from AMD/ATI.
tech3312 11th October 2007, 04:19 Quote
i kno what will be awesome but highly there going to do it 4 8800 gtx 768MB graphic card quad sli
that would be awesome

i have two imangine 4
Kiet-the-Kougah 11th October 2007, 04:47 Quote
I don't know if anyone noticed but MSI has finally gotten on the bandwagon with the coloring of their RAM slots. No longer will you need to remember to put sticks in opposite colors! Kudos to the people at MSI who finally got that small but important (at least for beginners) detail done.
noobarino 11th October 2007, 06:31 Quote
yay
culley 11th October 2007, 07:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tulatin
Yeah, because futureproofing by giving us useless slots is that much more important than futureproofing by giving MORE SATA.

There's one other problem - that board has 32 lanes, and that's it.

Which means, try using that x1 slot with all 4 x16s in use. Nothing should happen. It's also why there's a promise PCI contoller...

Who knows what ATI/Nvidia are releasing next year, supposedly they are both releasing new versions of the current high end graphics cards at 65nm which will make them much smaller, They could also be pushing for phsyics cards aswell later on next year, and even sound cards will be pushed onto PCI-E soon, and lanes are more capable now there 2.0.

It's got 32 lanes spread over PCI-E 2.0, the other two are x4 PCI and the other one is 1x PCI, if i am correct in thinking.

Also who needs more sata ports nowaday anyway, you've got 1TB drives and 6 is enough for that matter.

EDIT:

After do some researching i found some articles to back me up, The PCI-E is using the RD790 chipset, while normal PCI is using the old SB600 chipset, so to conclude there would not be no disadvantage using four PCI-E lanes and using a x1 or x4 PCI.

I also think your abit of an AMD hater to be honest, lol.
Redbeaver 11th October 2007, 08:32 Quote
Phenom!!!!!!!!! :D

*cant wait* :)

i wanna wait for Nvidia's Nforce780/790 tho... coz im still an SLI sucker and nvidia fanboi... but Phenom is definitely the way to go. or, well, the way to wait ;) gotta wait for some performance comparison!

and DFI's offering FTW!!
[USRF]Obiwan 11th October 2007, 10:36 Quote
Yeah! imagine 4x 8800GTX in your system, and then imagine you montly electric bill...

It must be a shocking imagination!
kenco_uk 11th October 2007, 11:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by culley

Also who needs more sata ports nowaday anyway, you've got 1TB drives and 6 is enough for that matter.

Me, for a start.

It's not all about sata hard drives y'know. I have four of them atm, together with 3 optical (dvd) sata drives. I have embraced sata connectors, mainly because they are a lot tidier than ide cables. Other reasons are they allow more airflow, they can be tucked away easily and they are easier to plug in, etc.

I can't understand why there's an ide port on that board and why there aren't eight sata ports, myself. And as for the floppy port - sure, it probably costs a tenth of a penny to put it on, but with boards being able to boot from a usb drive or be able to access a usb device in bios, why insist on including it?
Bindibadgi 11th October 2007, 11:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiet-the-Kougah
I don't know if anyone noticed but MSI has finally gotten on the bandwagon with the coloring of their RAM slots. No longer will you need to remember to put sticks in opposite colors! Kudos to the people at MSI who finally got that small but important (at least for beginners) detail done.

No, you still need to put sticks in opposite colours - AMD dual channel memory is next to each other, Intel is stagnated.

I moaned at the motherboard product managers when I was in ShangHai and we had another motherboard PM from Taiwan come down to the offices a few weeks ago and I moaned again at this exact point but they still seem to have ignored me

The promise controller is there because SB600 has only 4 native SATA ports, not 6 like has been standard for ages elsewhere.
Paradigm Shifter 11th October 2007, 11:37 Quote
I'm also a little disappointed to see only six SATA ports... I'm also kinda ambivalent about seeing them vertically mounted. Other than that, the board looks pretty good. :)
teamtd11 11th October 2007, 11:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
AMD dual channel memory is next to each other, Intel is stagnated.

Is this on am2 aswell? because im using a 5000+ brisbane, and my memory is [empty][stick][empty][stick] and thats dual channel for me :?
Bindibadgi 11th October 2007, 11:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by teamtd11
Is this on am2 aswell? because im using a 5000+ brisbane, and my memory is [empty][stick][empty][stick] and thats dual channel for me :?

Check in CPU-Z. It should be next to each other, has always been.
Mother-Goose 11th October 2007, 11:54 Quote
Small heatpipes seem to indicate this thing won't run too hot either?!
mclean007 11th October 2007, 11:56 Quote
[QUOTE=Bindibadgi]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiet-the-Kougah
AMD dual channel memory is next to each other, Intel is stagnated.
errr... staggered?
nitrous9200 11th October 2007, 22:14 Quote
My computer has ram sticks in alternating slots, and it shows up as dual channel in the BIOS and CPU-Z.
http://valid.x86-secret.com/show_oc.php?id=253510
teamtd11 16th October 2007, 22:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
Check in CPU-Z. It should be next to each other, has always been.

cpu-z says dual channel, and ram is in slot #1 and #3
One-go 4th November 2007, 04:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tulatin
Yeah, because futureproofing by giving us useless slots is that much more important than futureproofing by giving MORE SATA.

There's one other problem - that board has 32 lanes, and that's it.

Which means, try using that x1 slot with all 4 x16s in use. Nothing should happen. It's also why there's a promise PCI contoller...


i realy wonder , who told u this board have 32 line? even old MSI K9A Platinum have 40 lines. this board have 52 lines not 32.

http://news.softpedia.com/news/AMD-s-RD790-Revealed-43296.shtml
Woodstock 4th November 2007, 05:11 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Article


Based the latest AMD 790FX chipset, which offers 32 PCI-Express 2.0 lanes spread over either two x16 or four x8 slots. This is AMD's equivalent to the Intel X38 chipset which also offers some of the same features.
Bindibadgi 4th November 2007, 12:51 Quote
That's the NB only, and doesn't count the interconnect between NB and SB and SB PCI-E lanes. The SB is still SB600 which is PCI-e 1.0
Disophisis 16th November 2007, 17:56 Quote
That's rather refreshing... I remember back when AMD was smashing Intel big time and I bought an Intel processor, and everyone was yelling AMD RULES! and then C2D came around and it smashed AMD pretty good, and all those fanboys that used to be huge AMD fans suddenly turn around and are yelling Intel rules... Now that AMD is coming back with some new processors and ATI has released some very competitive GPUs we are going to start seeing price drops all around the board (especially with Intel's new chips which retail for 1000+ while AMD is releasing their new quad cores for under 400.) Nvidia is going to start dropping prices as well in order to be more competitive, and in the end, We, the consumers will benefit from it.

I support AMD in this because if they come back I'll have a broader selection of CPUs to choose from :)
Disophisis 16th November 2007, 17:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MonkeyNutZ
Screw this, I can't wait for a mATX 790 board.

I was thinking the same thing!
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