Gigabyte GA-P31-DS3L Reviewccokeman - November 8, 2007
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Putting the hardware together is just the first part of the system building process. Once the operating system is installed, the drivers specific to the motherboard and hardware must be installed in order to function properly. Manufacturers usually include a disk with all of the drivers for the motherboard as well as any integrated hardware such as the sound and LAN. Many times, the disc will autorun and pop up an installation GUI. If it does not, the user can always do a manual installation of the drivers. The GUI that pops up with the included disc is shown below. Each tab has a submenu to allow for the installation of the hardware specific to your build. You start the process by inserting the driver disc into any of the optical drives in the computer.
The install GUI has five separate tabs, each with a wealth of software available to use with this motherboard. Included are many applications and utilities so that they will not have to be downloaded. The first tab includes all of the device drivers specific to this series of motherboards. The second tab is where all the software and utilities are found. Included are some proprietary software as well as some well known software applications.
The third tab is the driver CD information tab which shows the items on the CD in an easy to read format. The hardware information tab shows just that, the motherboard hardware. It is shown in a format that groups the hardware by device type.
One of Gigabyte's proprietary applications is Easy Tune 5. This application is a monitoring tool as well as having the ability to overclock the system from within Windows. I will show the installation and configuration of this utility.
Once Easy Tune is installed and starts up, the application checks for any updates to the program. Turbo mode gives three quick and easy levels of performance. Click it and go.
CIA 2 mode is where the overclocking with preset profiles is allowed. The overclocking profiles are set to dynamically improve the system performance when needed.
Overclocking mode allows for manually setting the CPU FSB memory speed and voltages for both items. There are two different modes under this tab; easy mode, which adjusts CPU performance by percenteges, and advanced mode, which allows for manual setting of the CPU and memory FSB and voltages.
Under the PC Health tab there are three sub headings, Hardware Monitoring, Settings and Alert audio setting. Each has its own list of items to display.