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We test the MSI 890GXM G65. With the six-core Thuban processor slowly rearing it's head and new technologies like USB 3.0 and SATA 6G on the horizon, AMD needed another update to their motherboard chipset, to get it prepared for the 6-core lovin abut as well as bringing support for the new interfaces.
While many 890GX boards utilize a full size ATX format, MSI's initial offering is the 890GXM-G65, a microATX style. Although the 890GX offers integrated graphics, it also has less PCIE lanes compared to an equivalent FX board. Just like the 785G, the 890GX uses the RV620 graphics core, which supports DirectX 10.1, Shader Model 4.1 and a host of video decoding and acceleration formats.
Now, concerning the 890GXM-G65 mainboard. To be honest, every time a new mainboard lands on my desk, I expect it to have huge flaws. In the recent past, I've done a lot of troubleshooting and beta-testing for boards and I do understand better how difficult it is to get a board just right from the absolute beginning ... sometimes it all goes well, but sometimes the flaws are innumerable.
The MSI 890GXM-G65 is an interesting board in that it has the features to be among the best in the business with the support for both USB 3.0 and SATA 6Gbps. The bundle is rather lackluster as I would like to have seen at least two SATA Data cables, one is a bit disappointing.
MSI released a definitely interesting motherboard. Consider it, if you have no prejudice towards microATX form factor, and if you're going to use as few expansion cards as possible. With this motherboard you can build a variety of PCs, including powerful gaming rigs with a couple of high-end graphics cards and a quad-core CPU.
The fact that the board performs so well even with a mATX form factor gives it a much wider appeal, as it could make it ideal for use in a Home Theater PC. Not only is it small enough to fit into the smaller cases that most HTPC users prefer, but it also comes with the strong-performing ATI Raedon HD 4290 IGP that has more than enough video connectivity for any type of user, including an HDMI port that supports full HD video and audio.
World-leading mainboard and graphics card maker, MSI, launches their brand new 890GXM-G65 mainboard using the AMD 890GX chipset to fulfill the increasing demand for perfect Home Theatre Personal Computers (HTPC). In addition to tailoring the latest AMD Phenom II processors, the 890GXM-G65 provides full support for the DirectX 10.1 and UVD 2.0 multimedia standards to significantly enhance high-definition audio and video effects.
Firstly this is an excellent HTPC or internet motherboard. The on-board HD4290 certainly wont win any awards for 3D performance, but it's definitely capable of running all the HD media we threw at it. It's compact and, because of everything being on-board and fanless (CPU apart) you wont have to have the speakers pumping to drown out your PC.
TechwareLabs takes a look at MSI's latest offering, the 890GXM-G65. Gearing towards both the HTPC and portable gaming market, does this board have what it takes to satisfy both groups or is it spreading itself too thin? Find out if this motherboard should be in your next build.
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