We hope this preview have given you a hint of what the dual-channel VIA PT880 chipset is. We have benchmarked the first mainboard based on it – Soltek SL-86SPV2-RL. We can’t say it blew our heads out. It didn’t match the best products featuring Intel’s i865PE and i875P chipsets. However, it did show acceptable performance and surpassed mainboards with single-channel chipsets in nearly all of the tests. Moreover, VIA PT880 has a potential of improving its performance in the near future as it supports QBM533 SDRAM. After such modules enter the market, PT880-based mainboards may speed up due to the higher bandwidth of this memory.
One more factor to be considered is price. VIA PT880 provides all necessary functions, thus making it possible to develop a modern mainboard like Soltek SL-86SPV2-RL without integrating any extra controllers. Considering that the price of VIA PT880 itself is not very high and approaches that of Intel’s single-channel chipsets, we may guess that PT880-based mainboards are going to be relatively cheap, in addition to their quite acceptable performance. For example, the Soltek SL-86SPV2-RL mainboard we have previewed today is going to cost less than $100. This makes it an optimal foundation for that mainstream computer system you’re assembling.
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