Performance

Test were run with a variety of processors and with both PC100 and generic EDO DRAM and the BIOS were adjusted accordingly...

Epox MVP3E-M Chipset Features Setup for Testing

 

BIOS Settings

 

EDO @ AGP bus

PC100@ CPU bus

Bank 0/1 DRAM Timing:

60ns

Turbo

Bank 2/3 DRAM Timing:

60ns

Turbo

Bank 4/5 DRAM Timing:

60ns

Turbo

SDRAM Cycle Length:

3

2

SDRAM Bank Interleave:

Disabled

4 Bank

DRAM Read Pipeline:

Enabled

Enabled

Sustained 3T Write:

Enabled

Enabled

Cache Rd+CPU Wt Pipeline:

Enabled

Enabled

Read Around write:

Enabled

Enabled

Cache Timing:

Fast

Fast

Video BIOS Cacheable:

Enabled

Enabled

System BIOS Cacheable:

Disabled

Enabled

Memory Hole At 15Mb Addr.:

Disabled

Disabled

Aperture Size:

64M

64M

AGP Transfer Mode:

2x

2x

I was interested to see how the board would function when using a PCI graphics card instead of the usual AGP card normally associated with Super7 mainboards.  Many of you have written to ask if you had to upgrade to an AGP graphics card right away.   One of the major features of the Super7 platform is that you can reuse virtually everything in your existing system that is PCI/ISA compatible.  I did use a VoodooČ card but as you will see in the final reality benchmark the ATI All in Wonder Pro 8MB PCI card performed quite well without the Diamond Monster 3DII.

Epox MVP3E-M Tests
Testing Configuration
Mainboard Epox MVP3E-M ATX
1024k L2 cache
BIOS Award 4.51PG
Processors AMD K6-2 333MHz, AMD K6-2 300MHz, Cyrix M-II 300, Intel P233MMX
RAM 64MB PC100 (7ns CAS 2), 64MB Generic EDO
Hard Drive Western Digital Caviar 33100 UDMA
Graphics Card ATI All in Wonder Pro 8MB PCI
3D Accelerator Diamond Monster II 3D 8MB (3Dfx drivers)
Operating System Windows 98

The Business Winstone 98 scores were about what I have come to expect from most Super7 mainboards.  Since most boards I have tested varied so slightly in the Winstone 98 Benchmark it is a good idea to choose a mainboard based on its included features and stability.

 

Business Winstone Scores
  AMD K6-2 300MHz AMD K6-2 333MHz Cyrix M-II 300 Intel P233MMX
  (100MHzfsb x 3) (95MHzx3.5) (66MHzfsb x 3.5) (100MHzfsb x 2.5)
64MB PC100 21.8 22.1 19 17.8
64MB EDO 20.2 20.5 18.7 17.2

OpenGL scores in QuakeII were probably a little lower than those that can be attained with an AGP graphics card nonetheless with the use of the Diamond Monster 3DII 8MB games based on the Quake engine are extremely playable.  One thing you need to be aware of however, is the need for efficient cooling when using a PCI card like the All in Wonder Pro as many times floating point intensive applications set off the alarm associated with the CPU temperature monitor Epox includes within the  Award 4.51PG BIOS

Quake II DemoMap 1 (OpenGL)
(640x480 - 3DfxOpenGL)
64MB PC100 37.1 39.2 24.2 27
64MB EDO 36.1 37.2 22 25.1

Direct 3D applications also take about a 7-10% performance hit when using a PCI based graphics card but the marks below still show the system to be more than effective and I have to admit that the game looks astounding played on this system.

 

ForsakenMark (Direct 3D)
(640x480 16bpp)
64MB PC100 67.22 69.25 42.55 54.33
64MB EDO 65.74 65.89 42.05 50.1

As I stated earlier Final Reality marks were high whether accelerated with VoodooČ or not as you can see below...

The upper marks indicate those attained with the Diamond Monster 3DII

Conclusion
There are a few blemishes on the report card for this board. First of all there are the restrictive voltage settings that can make overclocking the board difficult.  The lack of the 112MHz setting that has become common on many of the MVP3 based Super7 mainboards is also a point against as well as the lacking 5th PCI expansion slot so coveted on a few of the larger ATX boards currently available.  But on the plus side the large size and easy configuration are points for and the rock steady stability of the board and the Epox name all combine to insure good value for money and so we honor this mainboard with our Golden Super7 Award.  This mainboard is currently available for as little as $99.00 according to PriceWatch so if it look as though this one meets your needs, we at MediaTek wonder what you are waiting for...

awardgold.gif (6926 bytes)

MediaTek

Epox 51MVP3E-M

Performance 97
Value 94
Ease of Installation 98
Documentation 98
Stability 98
Overclockability 93

Overall Score

96.3


Last Updated on 9/3/98

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