Motherboard manufacturers are faced with a difficult task these days. The quality of chipsets from the likes of Intel, VIA and SiS has meant that producing a stable board is a non-event now. The number of discrete controllers on the market allow any competent manufacturer to produce a top-notch board. We believe it's a fallacy to state that certain manufacturers produce far more solid boards than the rest. That, really, isn't the case anymore.
If everyone who is anyone is competent, how do you differentiate your product from others ?. That's the question that's been running through the minds of tier 1 producers for some time. Given that most motherboards based on a certain chipset will usually perform to within a few percentage points of one another, boards need to be made 'better' in other areas.
ABIT reckons its latest Springdale boards are just that; better in other key areas. The AI7's name should give the reader a clue as to why ABIT has renewed faith in the i865PE chipset. Let's take a closer look now.