Soyo DRAGON 2 V1.0 Black Label - Page 8

..:: P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0 Review Conclusion ::..

Well, we’ve seen all that the P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0 has to offer, and as usual it is now time to round it all up into a nice summary and call it a day. Let’s start off with the usual topic of overall system stability. The overall stability of the system was quite good with only one crash throughout stress testing and our use with the board. As is the norm for our stress tests, we have been running multiple distributed computing programs in the background while gaming and taking part in other processor intensive applications for several days non-stop. The P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0 performed stably and gave us few problems, only when we started to overclock beyond the proper boundaries did we start to see the board get flaky.

The items that are packaged along with the DRAGON 2 V1.0 are quite nice. Soyo is one of the few manufacturers out there that seem to still supply all of the needed cabling for their motherboards, no matter whether it is for Serial ATA, or regular IDE. Soyo also has a nice featurette in the Sigma Box, an item that many have come to enjoy due to the impressive amount of portable / flash media support that it provides. The quality and detail seen in the user manual on is also excellent. Soyo has made a solid effort to supply the end user with an easily readable, well organized, and detailed product guide with the DRAGON 2 V1.0’s manual. We feel that small items, like a sticker outlining the connections, or possibly a fold-out style install guide would also be nice inclusions, although Soyo has chosen not to adopt this strategy, but to go with a solid user manual instead.

The layout of the Soyo P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0 is very well done, and practically identical to that of the elder “Platinum Edition” model. Quite honestly, I can’t really find much that I dislike about the overall design of the motherboard, a rarity indeed. If there’s one thing that I would like to see changed, it is that I would prefer to see Soyo implement a form of active cooling on the Northbridge, rather than a normal Aluminum heatsink. Granted, this heatsink will do the job nicely, but it is always pleasurable to have a fan helping to cool off the heatsink, especially in overclocking situations.

Our overclocking results were much in line with what we saw in the past. With our “Platinum Edition” motherboard, we were able to stabilize the system around the 1.1GHz mark, whereas this time around we only made it to roughly 1050MHz, not too much of a difference. Our general benchmark for a solid overclocking motherboard falls around the 1.0GHz FSB mark, which the DRAGON 2 V1.0 passes. We were hoping to see improved overclocking capabilities over the older “Platinum Edition” although given that we were running a 3.2GHz “Prescott” processor, quite a bit more current draw was heading towards the processor adding to the heat and lessening overclocking capabilities for the core.

Overall, the Soyo P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0 is a solid motherboard. It is clear that an immense amount of thought went into the overall design of the motherboard, much why Soyo has stuck with this design through multiple chipset revisions, and now a regulation revision for support of the “Prescott” core Pentium 4’s. The design of the P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0, exactly the same as the “Platinum Edition” minus one or two aspects, is one of the best that has ever entered our presence, and I am more than confident in expressing that viewpoint. Modding fans will enjoy the added color of the P4I875P DRAGON 2 V1.0, especially those who are fans of the black PCB color, one of the most popular colors available according to MBReview readers. The performance of the board was on par with the competition it was placed up against, but only near the end in the real world gaming and CAD benchmarks did it begin to show the true performance that lies within. I’m confident in saying that the DRAGON 2 V1.0 would be a solid solution for anyone upgrading to a “Northwood” or “Prescott” processor, although when placed against the incredibly cheap Chaintech A865PE, it will be tough to suggest the DRAGON 2 V1.0 which is a bit more expensive. The DRAGON 2 V1.0 comes along with the Sigma Box, and a plethora of cabling and software, which adds to the value, but for those looking for performance and overclocking on a budget, the DRAGON 2 V1.0 isn’t the best choice we have seen. If you need the features and extras offered by the DRAGON 2 V1.0, then by all means make sure to give this board a good look when it comes time to check out. Thanks to all of you for reading! We hope to see you dropping by our website and forums in the future!