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  Abit ST6-RAID 815EP B-Step Review. 
  Sep 21, 2001, 08:00am EDT 

Overclocking - SoftMenu III, Still the King

By: Dan Mepham

Abit, without question, pioneered jumper-free overclocking. And Abit still does it better than anyone else. The ST6-RAID, like most new Abit boards, features the excellent SoftMenu III.

SoftMenu III allows manipulation of FSB speeds from 50 MHz all the way to 250 MHz in 1 MHz increments. Certainly a 250 MHz FSB isn’t something most users will employ, but we’ve all seen the screen captures from the more courageous folks with access to LN2.

The board also allows manual selection of FSB:SDRAM:PCI clock ratios. For example, using a 4:4:1 ratio at lower FSB speeds allows uses to dial down the PCI clock, should it be desired. We should note that no ratio higher than 4:4:1 exists. In other words, a PCI divider of 4 (or ¼), is the highest available. Users can also specify CPU core voltages from within SoftMenu III, accurate to settings in 0.025V increments.


Fig 4. Dip switches can be used to disable SoftMenu III, if desired.

If you’d like to disable SoftMenu III, for whatever reason, it can be disabled, and settings can be specified manually via a bank of dip switches located on the board.

Hardware Monitoring Controller

Fig 5. Winbond's hardware monitoring controller.

The board boasts three fan headers; more than sufficient for the comparatively cool-running Coppermine and Tualatin cores. Hardware monitoring is provided courtesy of a Winbond controller. The 83627HF provides monitoring of all fan speeds, all voltages, and makes use of Intel’s accurate on-die temperature diode.

1. Introduction
2. Specs, Box Contents & Installation
3. Features & Layout
4. Overclocking - SoftMenu III, Still the King
5. Test Setup & Procedure
6. Test Results
7. Summary

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  Product Ratings 
Performance: 8/10
Stability: 9/10
Quality: 8/10
Features: 9/10
Layout: 8/10
Documentation: 7/10
Price: 6/10
Overall Rating: 9/10

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