abit Fatal1ty F-I90HD Motherboard

Test Results - 3DMark, Gaming and High-Definition Playback

3DMark05 and 3DMark06

3Dmark05 and 06 are good performance indicators for general gaming performance. 3Dmark05 is a very good test of DX9 and 3DMark06 tests even further with advanced DirectX 9.0c techniques. The Radeon 1250 onboard GPU is going to be stressed to breaking with these tests.

I am comparing performance simply with one other motherboard running an X1600Pro card for reference only.

abit f-i90hd 3dmark05

With a reasonable performance in 3DMark05 the Radeon X1250 does pretty well.

abit f-i90hd 3dmark06

The X1250 suffers in the more stressful 3DMark06 test. This doesn't bode too well for more recent games.

Gaming Performance

Changing the normal motherboard testing for gaming I have decided to give you an idea of what gaming is like on the F-I90HD with a "best playable" settings list and some minimum, maximum and average FPS readings. This makes more sense as most people would be buying this as an "all in one" board for all their PC HTPC needs.

Counter-Strike: Source

Based on the excellent Source engine by Valve, Counter Strike is the worlds most popular online shooter. This makes it deal for a game to test out the onboard GPU on the F-I90HD. I tested using several 3 minute FRAPS benchmarks whilst playing in a DeathMatch on our own servers.

abit f-i90hd gaming performance

Managing 1024 x 768 with 2 x AA and 2 x AF the X1250 on the board did very well in my opinion. Gaming wasn't too bad although it could get very slightly laggy at times.

F.E.A.R.

F.E.A.R. is an intense graphical thriller first person shooter. Using lots of DirectX 9.0c features and effects the game is very intense on the GPU and was a killer when it first came out. Once again the tests were a 3 minute manual run-through of an intense part of the game using the awesome slow-motion effects as well as explosions.

abit f-i90hd fear settings

Once again a resolution of 1024 x 768 was achieved but note that every settings had to be put down onto Low and no AA could be used at all on the scene. Not too bad, but not very pleasant to play it has to be said.

Call of Duty 2


Call of Duty 2 is a fairly recent game that uses a lot of DirectX 9.0c features, including real time shadows, amazing smoke effects and some nice looking HDR effects. This makes the game very taxing. I played a fully patched up version of the game. Once again I played through the game with a three minute gaming session including explosions, smoke and also lots of snow. Let's see how the abit F-I90HD got on here:

abit f-i90hd cod 2

Playing at 800 x 600 with no AA and almost every setting on Low is pretty bad on Call of Duty 2 as the graphics are part of what makes the gameplay so good. Still at least you can play at this level I suppose.

Command & Conquer 3

C&C3 is the much awaited RTS from EA. Hugely popular and with some pretty nice visuals almost every modern PC should be able to play it. I tested a skirmish right at the end when I had a screen full of mechs to defeat the enemy. Let's see how the abit does here.

abit f-i90hd command and conquer 3

The image quality at 800 x 600 isn't great but the game was highly playable. Here are the settings used just for information:

abit f-i90hd command & conquer 3 setings

Some settings put down to minimum, but some maintained at medium which is good.

HD Playback - Windows Media and Quicktime

For the High Definition playback part of the tests I used Windows Media Player 11 and Quicktime 7. I did a quick run-through of a couple of WMHD trailers (freely available on Microsoft's website) and the excellent short animation movie Elephants dream.

abit f-i90hd t2 hd

abit f-i90hd elephants dream

Playback was smooth with no glitches apart from when switching from windowed to full screen when there was a slight delay. The board dealt admirably with the high-definition playback and using ATI's excellent AVIVO features on the film and trailers made them look polished and very smooth.

Note that to really test the HTPC capabilities of the board I hooked it up to a Sony Bravia 720p HDTV via HDMI. here the board shone through and did what it is good at. I installed Vista Home Premium on the PC and played a bit of media through the hookup. After initial trouble with the drivers I downloaded new ones and the experience was slick and easy.

Top marks here.

Gaming and Media - Sum up

Gaming on the abit Fatal1ty F-I90HD is stretching it a little in my opinion. Whilst the durable and versatile Source Engine rune pretty smoothly on the onboard X1250, most other modern games struggle and you have to drop down to 800 x 600 to get any sort of smooth gaming experience. Having said that this is still industry-leading at this time so AMD/ATI have to be praised for that.

High-definition viewing is a smooth and pleasant experience on the board and I would fully recommend this experience to anyone looking for an HTPC.
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Most Recent Comments

16-04-2007, 12:48:20

FarFarAway
"Onboard Graphics" used to be dirty words in the world of the enthusiast, but with nVidia stepping up the heat with their onboard GPU's, it's not quite so bad.

AMD/ATI decided it's about time they hit back with something special...let's see what we've got

Click here

16-04-2007, 13:04:44

Doddsy
I think the most impressive part is the letter from Wendell!

Tbh I've quite liked the look of this one since I first saw it, imo it'd be fantastic for a HTPC.

16-04-2007, 13:04:55

nunzio
sweet looking.. and with the c2d price drops should soon be in my htpc budget

16-04-2007, 13:13:00

Doddsy
One thing I just thought of actually, why did they decide to brand it as a fatality product? Surely they should be for 'hardcore' gamers?

16-04-2007, 13:21:39

FarFarAway
Well ye I thought that a bit strange, but I suppose they are trying to market it as a gaming product

16-04-2007, 14:27:21

Doddsy
I'm sure they'd probably make more money marketing it as a HTPC product. Without the fatality branding it'd probably be cheaper and the 690G with HDMI just seems like the perfect HTPC board. Ah well, I'm sure there are some very well paid people in the workd making these kind of desisions.

16-04-2007, 16:31:20

shiftlocked
HI Guys

Can i request something in the review. What screen res does it go up to. Reason being is that I have an older abit board here that i cant remember and I cant get the full 1440 * 900 even with latest drivers, think its purely a spec issue

16-04-2007, 17:03:50

FarFarAway
Well I had it running at 1680 x 1050 no problems and it easily ran movies at 720p - 1368 x 768

16-04-2007, 19:37:24

ai_01
i love the bright red bios screen

16-04-2007, 20:33:39

duktayp
what are PCI-e x1 slots used for? thanks

edit: something else that was on my mind... is tekheads part of OC3D? i wasn't sure because i couldnt see an area to buy parts on OC3D and tekheads seems to have the same logo, also the tech support forums

16-04-2007, 20:36:33

Ham
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='duktayp'
what are PCI-e x1 slots used for? thanks
Not much atm, theres some network cards iirc and theres some sound cards on the horrizon

16-04-2007, 20:36:36

limqareb
nothing actually atm

in future NICs and sound cards will be pci e x1 in fact there is an XF-i that is x1 pci e

16-04-2007, 21:24:57

BUFF
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Doddsy'
One thing I just thought of actually, why did they decide to brand it as a fatality product? Surely they should be for 'hardcore' gamers?
& yet the latest Fatal1ty gfx card from XFX is a 7600GT & the other latest Fatal1ty mobo from abit is an 80 650i SLI .

I wonder if Wendel has realised that the volume (& hence the higher licence income) isn't at the the top end ...

17-04-2007, 00:48:05

PV5150
Great review Kemp and not too bad a performer either considering the onboard graphics...very respectable. But why oh why do abit insist on always putting their floppy connector at the bottom of the board? It drives me nuts! Admittedly, it is a smaller board but it just seems far too easy to place it there.

17-04-2007, 03:13:07

FarFarAway
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='PV5150'
Great review Kemp and not too bad a performer either considering the onboard graphics...very respectable. But why oh why do abit insist on always putting their floppy connector at the bottom of the board? It drives me nuts! Admittedly, it is a smaller board but it just seems far too easy to place it there.
Well at least it's at the edge of the board

Get with the times Peevs, no-one uses floppy's any more I never thought I'd say this but I haven't plugged in a floppy for about a year

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='"duktayp"'
something else that was on my mind... is tekheads part of OC3D? i wasn't sure because i couldnt see an area to buy parts on OC3D and tekheads seems to have the same logo, also the tech support forums
No we are not Tekheads at all, but we do host their support forums here.

@BUFF quite agreed - I think he puts his name to anything that looks like it will be profitable

17-04-2007, 03:24:31

PV5150

Well at least it's at the edge of the board

Get with the times Peevs, no-one uses floppy's any more

Granted it is at the edge of the board, and I haven't used a floppy either for probably longer. Virtual floppy and Nlite ftw for RAID drivers! Imo it's time to retire the floppy connector period, but great review anyway mate.

17-04-2007, 03:50:12

FarFarAway
Aye well good that Vista recognises a flash drive as a boot device properley

ty mate

17-04-2007, 04:44:29

nunzio
I still use floppies... well, have a floppy drive in my new computer. But it also have the cardread built onto it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Ham'
Not much atm, theres some network cards iirc and theres some sound cards on the horrizon
There is also a few TV/DVB/PVR cards out.

17-04-2007, 04:45:38

nunzio
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Ham'
Not much atm, theres some network cards iirc and theres some sound cards on the horrizon
There is also a few TV/DVB/PVR cards out.

18-04-2007, 08:39:08

Rastalovich
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='limqareb'
nothing actually atm

in future NICs and sound cards will be pci e x1 in fact there is an XF-i that is x1 pci e
I feel there maybe a new slot out b4 these slots get that popular.

Excellent review again Kemp, would liked to have seen the I/O section with it`s backplate on, wondering also if they`d stuck with a regular plain silver effect or they`d added some HTPC lettering/symbols above the ports and perhaps `fancied` it up a bit.

Have u tried the HDMI->DVI lead in anything else ? I`m thinking u can get a HDMI lead for an XBox 360 possibly ?

18-04-2007, 09:05:23

FarFarAway
Nope tis just a boring backplate IO same as usual.

Not tried the lead in anything else due to the fact I don't have an HDMI device, but as it is a standard converter I would imagine it would work fine.

18-04-2007, 09:59:23

BUFF
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='limqareb'
nothing actually atm

in future NICs and sound cards will be pci e x1 in fact there is an XF-i that is x1 pci e
abit do a PCI-E x1 WiFi card as do Linksys(?) iirc.

18-04-2007, 12:39:31

Nagaru
Good review, it seems like an interesting little board. I think on the Command and Conquer part it should be RTS not RPG.

18-04-2007, 12:41:08

FarFarAway
Ye I realised that today, god knows what I was thinking

ty for reminding me - changed

11-05-2007, 04:15:51

M. Skif
Thanks for review.

Only one point is missed. If HDMI is the main feature - it should be more tests aroud it.

Does it support 1080i?

Does it support 1080p?

720p is too little in our days...

11-05-2007, 05:09:43

Toxcity
Nice reveiw there dudes..

But I kinda think it is a little fugly.

11-05-2007, 16:07:14

FarFarAway
I tested it at 1920 x 1080 out to the DVI port of the Dell 2405 FPW and it worked fine. I don't have a high-def TV with 1080p at this time and indeed the board doesn't support 1080p. I don't see why 720p is "so little in our days" as most HDTV's are 720p. In fact if you're a high-def aficionado you will know that 1080i looks almost exactly the same picture quality as 720p

Remember first and formost it IS a motherboard and as such we have to do tests based around that.

However I appreciate the feedback and will look to see what tests we can carry out aside from the movie playback etc that we have done in this review.

14-05-2007, 05:16:29

M. Skif
No, it is not about "true HD addiction".

My concern is much more simple... Why I should buy HD TV and monitor (and pay twice for the same products) when I can have big, nice, stylish monitor aka TV with really good resolution - 1920*1080?

TV's with 1920*1080 are very common now. 1356*768 looks absolutely horrible on them. And it looks like HDMI is going to be only one way to connect HD TV to PC and have hi res.

14-05-2007, 05:19:09

M. Skif
Anyway - many thanks for additional comment.

14-05-2007, 05:29:38

FarFarAway
Aye your right and this board does support 1080i so you should be good to go.

720p doesn't look that bad on a 1080p TV, but if you have a 1080p TV then you want to make the most of it.

So anyway, the F-I90HD does 1080i (1920 x 1200 actually I had it on on my Dell) and plays movies at 1080i

Hope that helps?

26-05-2007, 21:05:58

ITW
Witch Core 2 Duo cpu would you think I need to play 1080p movies smooth with this one?

Im thinking of buying this motherboard fore my HPPC seence my TV only suports 1080i and the motherboard have pci-ex I my buy an other grafik card later so I can play 1080p if i change my TV.

But a lot of movies Hd DVD and Blu-ray are 1080p and I need an fast hardware to play that, so witch core 2 duo cpu would you guys think I need to play 1080p with this motherboard?

Anyone have somthing bad to say about it as an HTPC motherboard?

Sincerely ITW

27-05-2007, 09:14:49

FarFarAway
First of all this chipset WILL NOT play 1080p movies, only 1080i or 720p

Secondly I think you'd be safe with most C2D CPU's as they're all pretty powerful

If you want to play 1080p with no hassles I would suggest either an 8800 or a 2900XT graphics card

Or just get a PS3 - easier and cheaprr

27-05-2007, 11:08:17

ITW
Ok but that answers my question, I was wondering witch Core 2 Duo that was needed.

I know the motherboard doesnt suport 1080p, but I still need the hardware to play 1080p HD DVD and Blu-ray movies, but the motherboard will only send out 1080i.

And that's ok seence my TV only suport 1080i.

Thank you a lot fore the answer, now I can start put to gether an upgrade to my HTPC.

Do you have any Core 2 Duo to recomend?

That have an good price to performance?

Sincerely ITW

27-05-2007, 11:13:29

FarFarAway
Well for great price>performance the e4300 is a great little CPU, although it's not a fully fledged C2D. Other than that an e6600?

27-05-2007, 11:24:45

ITW
Ok thx fore an quick answer.

I was thinking of an E6320 than with in my price range.

The E6600 is a little more expensive than I wanted to use on my HTPC.

Id there any point in an E6320 than an E6300?

The only thing that points me to the E6320 is that it's in the shop Im planing to buy the Fatal1ty F-I90HD, so I save some on shipping.

But is it overkill to get an E6300 fore an HTPC that im only using fore Divx and HD movies?

One more thing, how much memory can you set the Graphic to use?

27-05-2007, 12:26:25

FarFarAway
I would say the 6320 would be fine to run your media centre

And the specs of the GPU are here

Looks like it's an 128 bit interface but it's not too clear on what you set the memory for

27-05-2007, 12:39:13

ITW
Superb!

Thank you so much fore the help!

Now I know what to pick out fore the upgrade

Sincerely Isak
Reply
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