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Gigabyte GA-G33M-S2H mATX Motherboard Review

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Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: Gigabyte
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Introduction, Features and Specifications

Introduction

For as long as I can remember, multimedia and gaming enthusiasts
have had to endure using mediocre micro ATX motherboards for their
HTPCs and LAN rigs. Motherboard manufacturers were forcing consumers to
choose between using larger ATX motherboards with loads of features or
micro ATX boards with the bare minimum to run their applications,
programs, and games. This wasn’t entirely the fault of motherboard
manufacturers, but they do take some of the blame for what features
they choose to incorporate into their boards.

In May, Intel released the G33 Express chipset that supports the latest multi-core processors up to 1333MHz FSB and
the upcoming 45nm platform. This chipset was also developed to support
the latest high-definition video capabilities as well as support HD DVD
and Blu-ray technologies. Gigabyte has taken full advantage of this
chipset’s performance capabilities with the GA-G33M-S2H. This mini mobo
packs a large punch and features a host of other features that should
excite both multimedia users and gamers alike.

Specifications (From Gigabyte-USA.com)

 
 Specifications
CPU
  1. Support for an Intel® Core™ 2 Extreme processor/ Intel® Core™ 2 Quad processor/Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor/ Intel® Pentium® processor Extreme Edition/Intel® Pentium® D processor/ Intel® Pentium® 4 processor Extreme Edition/Intel® Pentium® 4 processor/ Intel® Celeron® D processor in the LGA 775 package (Go to GIGABYTE's website for the latest CPU support list.)
  2. Support for Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology
  3. L2 cache varies with CPU
Front Side Bus
  1. 1333/1066/800 MHz FSB
Chipset
  1. North Bridge: Intel® G33 Express Chipset
  2. South Bridge: Intel® ICH9
Memory
  1. 4 x 1.8V DDR2 DIMM sockets supporting up to 8 GB of system memory
  2. Dual channel memory architecture
  3. Support for DDR2 800/667 MHz memory modules

(Go to GIGABYTE's website for the latest memory support list.)

Onboard Graphics
  1. Integrated in the North Bridge
Audio
  1. Realtek ALC889A codec
  2. High Definition Audio
  3. 2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
  4. Support for DTS (dts NEO:PC)
  5. Support for S/PDIF In/Out
  6. Support for CD In
LAN
  1. RTL 8110SC chip (10/100/1000 Mbit)
Expansion Slots
  1. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot supporting PCI Express x4 mode
  2. 1 x PCI Express x1 slot
  3. 2 x PCI slots
Storage Interface South Bridge:
  1. - 1 x floppy disk drive connector via the I/O controller supporting up to 1 floppy disk drive
  2. - 3 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors (SATAII0, SATAII1, SATAII2) supporting up to 3 SATA 3Gb/s devices
  3. - 1 x eSATA 3Gb/s port on the back panel supporting up to 1 SATA 3Gb/s device

JMicron 368 chip:

  1. - 1 x IDE connector supporting ATA-133/100/66/33 and up to 2 IDE devices
IEEE 1394a
  1. T.I. TSB43AB23 chip
  2. Up to 3 IEEE 1394a ports (1 on the back panel, 2 via the IEEE 1394 bracket connected to the internal IEEE 1394 headers)
USB
  1. Integrated in the South Bridge
  2. Up to 12 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (8 on the back panel, 4 via the USB brackets connected to the internal USB headers)
Internal I/O Connectors
  1. 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
  2. 1 x 4-pin ATX 12V power connector
  3. 1 x floppy disk drive connector
  4. 1 x IDE connector
  5. 3 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors
  6. 1 x CPU fan header
  7. 1 x system fan header
  8. 1 x front panel header
  9. 1 x front panel audio header
  10. 1 x CD In connector
  11. 1 x S/PDIF In header
  12. 1 x S/PDIF Out header
  13. 2 x IEEE 1394a headers
  14. 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
  15. 1 x parallel port header
  16. 1 x serial port header
  17. 1 x chassis intrusion header
  18. 1 x power LED header
H/W Monitoring
  1. System voltage detection
  2. CPU/System temperature detection
  3. CPU/System fan speed detection
  4. CPU overheating warning
  5. CPU/System fan fail warning
  6. CPU fan speed control
BIOS
  1. 1 x 8 Mbit flash
  2. Use of licensed AWARD BIOS
  3. PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.0, SM BIOS 2.3, ACPI 1.0b
Bundle Software
  1. Norton Internet Security (OEM version)
Operating System
  1. Support for Microsoft® Windows® Vista/XP/2000
Form Factor
  1. Micro ATX Form Factor; 24.4cm x 24.4cm
Unique Features
  1. Support for @BIOS
  2. Support for Download Center
  3. Support for Q-Flash
  4. Support for EasyTune
  5. Support for Xpress Install
  6. Support for Xpress Recovery2
  7. Support for Virtual Dual BIOS
Remark  
  1. Due to different Linux support condition provided
    by chipset vendors, please download Linux driver from chipset vendors'
    website or 3rd party website.
  2. Due to most hardware/software vendors no longer offer
    support for Win9X/ME. If some vendors still has Win9X/ME drivers
    available, we will publish on website.
  3. To enable hot plug capability for the SATA connectors
    controlled by the ICH9 South Bridge, you must install Windows Vista (on
    ICH9, hot plug is supported in Windows Vista only) and configure the
    SATA connectors for AHCI mode. (Refer to manual Chapter 2, "BIOS
    Setup," "Integrated Peripherals," for details on enabling AHCI.)

 

Features

-    Supports Intel Core 2 multi-core and upcoming 45nm processors

-    Solid capacitors design in CPU VRM

-    Dual Channel DDR2 800 for outstanding system performance

-    Integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3100 (Intel GMA 3100)

-    Integrated SATA 3Gb/s interface

-    Features high speed Gigabit Ethernet and IEEE1394

-    Integrated ALC889A 8-Channel High Definition audio with DTS support

-    Features full rate lossless Blu-ray/ HD DVD audio

-    Integrated HDMI interface for high Definition video (1080) playback with HDCP support

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