The KA-11 is based upon the VIA Apollo Pro133A (694x), featuring an officially supported 133MHz FSB, AGP 4x and UDMA/66. Though FIC is generally considered an ‘average’ motherboard manufacturer and VIA chipsets have been hampered with a reputation of being ‘buggy’, our tests indicate that this is a very stable product. There are a few minor inconveniences, but once set up it was extremely stable under all test conditions.
For those who believe that VIA chipsets are still problematic, consider that during the past 6 months VIA has gained almost 40% market share in the chipset market – primarily due to large OEMs that have adopted the Apollo Pro chipset. Generally, large OEMs are fairly conservative in their choices because they cannot afford unreliable components (note what happened to Packard Bell). The one area where VIA still seems to need work is the AGP support, where performance does lag slightly behind the equivalent Intel chipsets.
Our test system included the following components:
- FIC KA-11 motherboard – provided by FIC
- Pentium III 500MHz processor – purchased
- Pentium III 500E processor – purchased
- Pentium II 300 (non-locked) processor – purchased
- IWill Slocket II – provided by IWill
- 128MB PC133 SDRAM – provided by Crucial Technology
- 128MB PC133 HSDRAM – purchased from EMS
- W.D 8.4GB UDMA/66 HDD – Purchased
- Diamond Viper V770 Ultra (32MB) – provided by Diamond
- Adaptec AHA-2940UW SCSI Controller – purchased
- Toshiba TA5401B 4x SCSI CDROM – purchased
Software used for evaluation:
- Winstone99 Business Tests (Win98, WinNT) – ZDBOp
- Content Creation 2000 (Win98, WinNT) – ZDBOp
- Burn-in Test (Win98, WinNT) – Passmark
- QuickTech Pro 2000 (Self-booting) – Ultra-X
- RAM Stress Test (Self-booting) – Ultra-X
Diagnostic Hardware used for evaluation:
- PHD PCI – Ultra-X
- PHD Plus – Ultra-X
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