Excerpt: With all the news and suspicion surrounding Abit over the last year or so, I really thought my review of the Abit Fatal1ty AN8-SLI motherboard would have been my last look at Abit's technology. That turned out not to be the case when a wealthy company stepped in and saved the Abit name from disgrace and further humiliation by injecting some strong cash flow and liveliness back into its bloodstream.
Excerpt: Since 1989 ABIT Computer Corporation established itself as a definitive leader in manufacturing computer hardware components and peripherals such as VGA and motherboard technologies, ultimately designing some of the most popular hardware solutions over the world. Today some 16 years later we have the nForce4 chipset featuring Scalable Link Interface (SLI) technology, which has proliferated its way around the world with amazing success.
Conclusion: Overall, the Abit AN8 SLI is an impressive motherboard! Being closest to the DFI LAN Party nF4 series, Abit has done a pretty good job with their AN8 SLI. Offering an impressively overclockerï¿½s friendly ï¿½Guru BIOS, the AN8 SLI boast up to 3.4VDIMM for power hungry BH5 or UTT memory chips. The package is also neat and comes with everything you need to get it started.
Pros: Overclocks very well, Up to 3.4VDIMM, Unique cooling design, Decent board layout, Nice orange PCB with Red LEDs, AudioMAX7.1 card, Supports NVIDIA SLI, Good price & performance
Cons: Memory tweaking options could be better, Issues with certain RAMs, 1T issue with 2x512MB TCCD
Conclusion: So you decided to go with an SLI setup for your next rig. Probably going to pair it up with a 3000+ Venice, which can be had for under $150 at such places as Newegg.com . Obviously you're intending on overclocking that Venice to the absolute limits. To take it there, you're going to need some capable memory, like OCZ's new Enhanced Latency PC4800, with timings as low as 2.5-4-4-10 at 600 MHz. A gig of that goes for $255 at Newegg.com . Now you need a motherboard..
Pros: uGuru. Nuff said., Low price for an SLI board, Superb overclocker, Great layout, Silent OTES eliminates the need for a small noisy chipset fan
Cons: AC'97 audio, no matter how you package it, still sucks, Some people may have to buy extra components that other boards already have, Only one USB bracket is included
Conclusion: The AN8 SLI is a very nice board. Once you get around the chaotic layout and learn what order to perform your installation the AN8 SLI is actually very nice to work with. The BIOS provides more options for overclocking and monitoring that most enthusiast boards on the market with more RAM adjustments than most will ever use. Being able to set each timing setting to Auto or a tweaked setting is a huge plus in favor of this board.
Conclusion: Abit has a long list of good features on the board. Overclocking options are near the top, along with the OCGuru features, and the Q-OTES heatpipe. The diagnostic LED will come in handy, and the 7.1 channel audio should be shielded from noise better on the separate card. We are also happy to see that Abit included Firewire as well. Abit does a great job on documentation, and they do one of the better jobs of BIOS updates.