Well, I'm still busy "conventionising" my typically unconventional hardware config
, but it seems nevertheless that this Asus M3A motherboard is currently optimal for use with Windows XP Professional x64
Just as a quick evaluation of AM2+ motherboards, Phenom notwithstanding, this one includes HD Audio
What is HD Audio ? It's audio using the new drivers model of Vista, so that HD Audio works in Vista but not XP, so that this mobo is XP-incompatible
... but it DOES work perfectly well in the XP x64
Then again, if you love Vista and want full surround 5.1 or 7.1 sound, then the AM2+ might be right up your street
, I have an unconventional hardware config, which may affect performance --- nevertheless, inside this current config, Windows NT ie XP x64 is 10% faster on my rig than Vista
, and I'm not talking benchmarks here --- I'm talking clock rate
This is the first time I've ever seen anything like this, and my best theory is that it's because I'm mixing and matching non-identical RAM sticks --- nevertheless the same stable overclock comes in at 2.48 Ghz in XP x64 ; but 2.20 Ghz in Vista, either x86 or x64 ... and BTW, I've managed to get up to 2.6 Ghz in the XP x64
, but that the Vista crashes at the equivalent (lower
) rate ...
I stress that this is a simple difference of handling by each OS of the same overclock
Having given the biggest LH/Vista-unfriendly mouthful I've had occasion to in over a year, I must however point out that the configuration repair tools that I have do NOT work in XP x64 (but they do work in Vista
), bearing in mind that the rig is inherently XP-incompatible
Soooooo ---- tentative conclusion, pending a potential resolution of my potential RAM issues : AM2+ quad core now?
If your OS of choice is Windows XP x64, I say Go For It !!!!
BUT -- Wait for the non-buggy Phenom chips and non-hindered mobos before the upgrade.
If your OS of choice is XP, "Forget it, you Luddite !!!
--- And stick with either your new Intel or your Legacy rig, boyo..."
For Vista, well ... I would wait --- and look for a less buggy version of AM2+ (or what the hey, why not wait for the AM3
), unless you're in my situation, and simply just can't wait --- and then if you want the budget solution AMD wins hands down, if you want Da Powah solution go to the Intel fans instead, and if you're somewhere in-between like me -------- well, just use your ingenuity