So the question is should you sell your granny on ebay and rush out and buy one? Well the answer to that is, a "probable maybe" ( who can name the film that that quote came from? ). Remember this is just a taster of what we have got to expect in the future. There really are some great features for us to look forward to with this setup. As is normal with nForce it comes with good onboard sound and all of the connectivity that you could wish for. There are however a few things worth considering. As these boards gain more and more features, the unified drivers are getting bigger and bigger. It does mean that when you update your drivers in the future you can expect to see 16 to 18 megs wanting to download, the international ones are frighteningly large. However this is nothing compared to an XP Service Pack download.
There is also this move to the AMD64 CPU. My concern is that unlike other AMD CPUs they are cripplingly expensive. The fiasco of the sockets has done some very real damage to the credibility of the AMD 64 bit platform. However as there is not meant to be a fourth socket on the horizon things are now worth considering. With XP having a 64-bit upgrade things do look a bit better. However as you would expect, no games are 64-bit as yet. The AMD64 is backward compatible and will operate fine in a 32-bit environment.
The other thing worth considering, with PCIExpress and DDR2 not far off, is whether this is the time to invest in this particular new platform. Or should you wait for the other new platform sitting in the wings. However there is always another new technology sitting in the wings I guess.
All of this should not detract from the main issues though, there are some really great features with this motherboard. The native firewall and the RAID options are really really exciting. If the performance we saw can be carried out at home, and there is no reason why not, then it is very fast RAID indeed. The AMD64 is a great CPU with some great overclocking potential. As long as you go into this with your eyes open ( well bank account at least ) then there are some great potentials with the nForce 3 just itching to be used to the extreme.
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