Abit AN-M2HD High Definition MotherboardFormer staff writer -
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Installation of the motherboard is no different than any other motherboard. The case that I chose to use for this project is the Apevia X-QPack 2. It is a micro case that accommodates the micro-ATX board very well. Since the X-QPack has a removable motherboard tray, all that was needed to do was screw on the motherboard, plug in the processor, add the RAM and attach the heatsink. I had chosen to use the Arctic Cooling Freezer 64 Pro, but after attaching it, there was not enough room under the stabilization rail in the case for it to fit. For visual purposes, the picture shown is with the AC Freezer 64 Pro, but the CPU cooler was changed back to stock, which had no clearance issues with the case. Hey it even works with the heatsink fan facing the I/O panel. Hmmm.
The Abit AN-M2HD utilizes the Phoenix-Award BIOS. Most features are standard as on many other motherboards, but Abit has an overclocking utility called "Soft Menu" so there are a few differences. As we look at the BIOS screens, I will comment on a few items that I felt stood out from the others.
Logo Screen, Standard and Advanced CMOS Functions:
The bootup logo screen (not shown) is black and has the Abit logo in the center; it is nothing too fancy, so I chose not to show it. The standard CMOS and advanced BIOS features are a mirror image of all modern motherboard's BIOS features. One particular difference is the order in which the options are laid out, you will notice that the "Soft Menu" feature is above the Standard and Advanced option. I will feature the Soft Menu last.
Advanced Chipset Features:
Advanced chipset features offer some options for changing your RAM, Northbridge HT, speed and width and IGPU configuration (memory utilization for onboard video). The options to setting your RAM timings are as what I have come accustomed to. The board does allow you to change the memory clock for CAS, tRAS, etc.