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Home > Hardware Reviews > PC Parts

Thursday, October 19, 2006
Foxconn 945G7AD Motherboard

2. The Package

Foxconn's retail package is very simple. Pricing starts from US $120, making it a very affordable solution for entry level users:

Below is a list of what's included in the retail package.

  • A flyer with installation and motherboard information
  • A CD with drivers
  • 1x UltraDMA cable
  • 1x FDD cable
  • 1x I/O shield
  • 2x SATA cables
  • 2x SATA power cables

The board itself, is very well layed out and most components can be easily identified.

Click to Enlarge!

The Intel GMA950 chipset is located under the heatsink near the bottom left corner, while the Intel 945G is at the centre, under the Foxconn labeled heatsink The user can install a PCI-E graphics card, that automatically disables the GMA950 chipset, for faster and better graphics capabilities. 3x PCI slots are also available, as are 2x2 ATA133 for HDD and optical storage drives, and of course 4x SATA2 connections.

There are several extra connections for USB, Front Panel Audio, COM2 and Firewire on the back. However, Foxconn hasn't included the associated cables for these in the retail package.

The back I/O panel has the usual connectors, 7.1 channel Audio jack (6 jacks), PS/2 keyboard and mouse, 1 x parallel, 4 x USB 2.0, 1 x 1Gbit LAN, 1 x 1394a, 1 x D-Sub15 VGA port and lastly, 1 x S/PDIF Coax out:

Despite Foxconn's attempts, there are some issues with the layout design. For example, you cannot use a bigger cooling fan than the stock, since there are components (see capacitors in photo below) that get in the way.

Another problem is the PCI-E slot, since in order to remove any installed card, you must be careful not to damage nearby components:

Lastly, if you have a PCI-E card installed, you cannot get access to the memory modules, there being no room to open/close the secure jack easily. So, you have to first remove the VGA card, install the memory modules and then re-install the VGA card. Not the best solution in our opinion.




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