A Vitesse VSC8201RX chip is
used to provide the Gigabit Ethernet on the KN8 SLi for fast data transfers.
The Realtek ALC850 audio
codec takes care of the 7.1-channel audio output.
This Texas Instruments chip
provides the IEEE1394 functionality, supporting up to 400Mbps.
The rear I/O shield itself
has vents to allow air to pass through the Silent OTES unit and escape.
Below the flat heatsink is
the nForce 4 SLI. It was produced in week 28 of year 2005 and revision A3. A
thermal pad is used under the chipset cooler, but ABIT could have done better by using thermal paste
The overall temperature of
the Silent OTES unit is acceptable, and there were no hiccups during the testing
of the board. I can say that the Silent OTES unit is doing its job well.
This board does not use
jumpers, neither does it provide an option in the BIOS to enable or disable SLI.
Instead, it uses a shadow card.
To run SLI, simply insert
two cards and connect them via the SLI Bridge. But if you wish to run a single
card only, it must be placed in the first PCI Express x16 slot and the
shadow card must be inserted into the second PCI Express x16 slot, else the
board would not boot.
Opening the box, you will
immediate note that ABIT has done away with the white boxes it used to provide
with all its motherboards. The cables, shield, driver diskettes and guides are
placed neatly in two columns. There is a Quick Installation Guide, a clearly written manual, a driver disc, a jumper settings
reference sticker, and two NVRAID driver disks for both 32-bit and 64-bit
Also included in the package, is a SLI Bridge holder, a rear I/O shield, one black FDD cable, one black
80-pin HDD cable, four grey SATA cables, a shadow card, a SLI Bridge and a PCI bracket
which provides two USB ports and two Firewire ports.