Apparently, the MSI motherboard is strongest in the WinRAR and SuperPI tests, but in the bandwidth test, Sisoft Sandra shows that the Asus card is quite superior. In the PCMark and 3DMark tests, the cards are pretty much equal at standard frequencies.
If D.O.T. is taken into consideration, the total test score proves the MSI as a winner. On several areas, the performance of the two cards is quite equal, but the Asus card takes a beating when it comes to the WinRAR, SuperPI and PCMark tests.
OVERCLOCKING: In order to discover the full potential of the motherboard, the multiplier was lowered and attempts were done to increase the FSB. But since it is not possible to lock the RAM clocks or to select a suitable ratio, the FSB could not be increased to more than 440 (stabile).
CONCLUSION: Generally, this is a neat product. The only complain in regard to layout is the misplacement of the floppy disc controller. The large passive cooling profiles are located close to the card, so that most custom coolers should be installable. Besides, during the test they worked as a charm and a finger could be held on them. Also, it is a nice feature with the CMOS CLEAR switch, which makes life a lot easier for people who mess around a lot with the settings.
The performance is very similar to that of the Asus Nvidia motherboard, with the Asus card being slightly superior. If the D.O.T. feature is used, though, the MSI card appears to be a tad better. For a user who has no plans of overclocking manually, this is a very decent card, and it only pushes performance when this is really needed – and it does it nicely.
The card manages manual overclocking quite well, and a FSB of 440 isn’t that bad. It is still a little unfortunate that there aren’t more dividers, making it possible to reach higher using slower RAM, without increasing the multiplier.
The accompanying software have some unfortunate bugs, but generally work pretty well – but this may be something that MSI might consider doing better in the future.
Bottom line: MSI have put together a nice product, with a few flaws that might irritate some users. The performance is good, and especially the D.O.T. feature has done surprisingly well during the test.
Reset switch (not jumper) D.O.T. Card layout Passive cooling Supports both DDR2 and DDR3 RAM
Cannot lock RAM Clock/no suitable ratio between FSB/RAM Cannot see shortcuts to Bootmenu and BIOS Flaws in the software (clock frequencies, sirens)