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MOTHERBOARDS

VIA P4PB Ultra Review
By: Memphist0
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  • Rating: 3 stars3 stars3 stars3 stars3 stars / 30
    2004-07-26

    Table of Contents:
  • VIA P4PB Ultra Review
  • What's in the Box?
  • On-board Audio and Motherboard Layout
  • The BIOS
  • Benchmarks
  • Benchmarks Continued
  • Even More Benchmarks
  • Conclusion

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    VIA P4PB Ultra Review - What's in the Box?


    (Page 2 of 8 )

    Plainly with the design of the box art for the VIA P4PB Ultra VIA is trying to grab your attention and express this board has "Xtreme" performance.  While it highly unlikely I'd buy a motherboard based on the box art, it is a lot more impressive than the majority of the box art on other motherboards.

       

    VIA has almost gone overboard with the amount of extras included in the retail packaging of the P4PB Ultra. They want to let you know this isn't a cheapo motherboard -- when you first open the box and see the motherboard in its anti-static bag with a small card on top it reminds you of the motherboards DDR400 and AGP 8X capabilities.  Next after lifting out the motherboard you are welcomed by a plethora of goodies, including rounded IDE cables, User's Manual, Quick Installation Guide, Software and Driver's Disk, and some other goodies we will go into detail below.

       

    In the first picture above you see something your familiar with, extra USB connectors.  The interesting part about it is the motherboard already has two USB 2.0 connectors; this bracket adds four more and there are still two more USB 2.0 headers to add another four USB 2.0 connections for a total of ten USB 2.0 devices this motherboard can support. 

    In the next picture is my favorite accessory, a Memory Stick/Secure Disk/Smart Card reader.  It installs into a spare 3.5" drive bay (like you're really using the ones you have) and connects directly to the motherboard for fast transfers of data to and from the memory card of your choice.  Some of you may say 'so what', but this thing was really handy and fast to transfer a full memory stick (128MB) of pictures to my hard drive.  Yes, all cameras have a USB connection, but most are USB 1.1 and don't come close to matching this speed.

    The last picture is of a SPDIF header for RCA Coaxial cable and optical cable connections for digital output to your speakers or other devices.  Unfortunately the motherboard does not support digital inputs, but to be honest I don't think many people use them.

     

    The last couple of items are a power supply adapter and an I/O back plate.  The power supply adapter is in case you don't have a power supply that supports Pentium IV motherboards -- this adapter will help you out.  The I/O back plate I mention only because recently I bought a new motherboard that did not have one, and the I/O connectors on the motherboard didn't line up with the connectors from my old motherboard.  With more manufacturers using different I/O connector layouts, it's nice to see that VIA included one for you.

    And finally the most important thing in the box, the motherboard.  I really like VIA's choice of color for the PCB of the P4PB Ultra.  The blue looks really nice with my silver aluminum case which coincidentally has blue windows.  It also makes those bright orange IDE cables that are bundled with the P4PB Ultra stand out.  The silver Northbridge heatsink also really looks good on there, although I would have preferred an active cooling solution to this passive one.

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