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Shuttle AN51R Motherboard Review

Former staff writer    -   August 31, 2004
Category: Motherboards
Price: N/A


Introduction:
With their XPC line, Shuttle has grown immensely over the last few years. However, they have been around as an OEM main board builder for a long time. Today we are going to look at Shuttles latest main board; the AN51R, which is based around Nvidia’s newest chipset the NF3 250. Shuttle had arguably one of the most popular NF3 150 boards with the AN50R, for the price you got great overclocking ability for an NF3 150 board at a bargain price. Can Shuttle repeat the success they had with the AN50R with the AN51R? Let’s take a closer look and find out.




About Shuttle:
Established in 1983, Shuttle Inc. is an industry-leading producer of mainboards and small form-factor computers (XPC). Headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, with an extensive worldwide network of subsidiaries, re-sellers, partners and suppliers, Shuttle is recognized as a premier manufacturer of mainboards and barebones systems. Widely acclaimed, Shuttle has received numerous awards and accolades from independent media and analysts, affirming the superior quality of Shuttle products and services. Shuttle services a nationwide network of distributors and re-sellers with superior Marketing and Sales, Technical Support, RMA, Product Servicing, and Accounting and Inventory services. A commitment to customer satisfaction has made Shuttle the first choice of many system integrators, VARs, OEMs and ODMs.

About the NF3 250 Chipset:
There are a few variants of the NF3 250 Chipset. First you have the NF3 250Gb; for a board to be labeled with Gb at the end it must have the built in Nvidia hardware firewall, and Gigabit Ethernet using the hyper transport bus, also the Nvidia cross raid must be utilized as well. This feature gives you the ability to run a raid array across both PATA, and SATA drives supporting RAID 1, 0, 1+0, or JBOD (just a bunch of drives). If a board is missing any of these features it can’t be labeled as a 250Gb. Not every user will need all the features offered by the 250Gb, and the price is slightly higher for a 250Gb based board.

Boards labeled NF3 250 can have a combination of features found on the 250Gb, but will also be missing some features. The board we are looking at today only has the cross RAID feature, missing is the native Gigabit Ethernet which is being replaced by a Broadcom Gigabit Ethernet. Also there is no hardware firewall found on a 250Gb board. The only downfall to the Broadcom Ethernet is the increased latency. Where the Broadcom utilizes the PCI bus, the Native Gigabit Ethernet of the 250Gb uses the hyper transport bus. This offers low latencies as well as low CPU usage; Thus giving Vendors more flexibility in the board layout to make certain price points.

Specifications:

Processor

AMD Socket 754 Athlon™ 64

Chipset

NVIDIA nForce™3 250

System Buss

1600 MHz system bus with HyperTransport™

Memory

(4) DDR 266/333/400 DIMM slots (2GB max)

Graphics

8X AGP slot
Audio

 

6-channel audio
Digital (SPDIF) audio ports
Analog audio ports

Network

Gigabit LAN

Storage

(2) ATA133 headers
(4) Serial ATA 150
RAID (0,1, 0+1, JBOD) capable

BIOS

Award/ Phoenix in 4MB flash memory

Expansion

(5) 32-bit PCI slots

Back Panel I/O

 

PS/2 Keyboard socket
PS/2 Mouse socket
(4) USB 2.0 ports
FireWire® 400 port
Gigabit LAN (RJ45)
6-channel audio out
SPDIF I/O ports
Serial port
Parallel port
Clear CMOS button

Onboard I/O

(2) 2 x 5 pin USB 2.0 headers
(1) 2 x 5 pin FireWire®400 header
(2) 2 x 3 pin IrDA headers
(1)   FDD header (1)   Front audio headers
CD in AUX header
Dimensions (L x W mm)

305 x 244 (ATX)




  1. Introduction & Specifications
  2. Closer Look
  3. Closer Look (Continued)
  4. Testing
  5. Testing (Continued)
  6. Testing (Continued)
  7. Overclocking & Conclusion
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