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BoardRunner 6VA694XC

BoardRunner 6VA694XC


BoardRunner is a new comer to the mainboard industry. They were established back in 1997. While not coupled with the same experience and budget as some other mainboard corporations, BoardRunner at this moment seems to be closely working with Shuttle Corporation to produce their products. Their 6VA694XC uses the normal VT82C596B south-bridge, so no special features are present as in the Azza 694TX motherboard that features the richer VT82C686A chip featuring onboard PC-97 audio and a four port USB HUB.

The 6VA694XC features 3DIMM slots, supporting up to 256Mbytes each. The Front side bus speeds can be controled via Jumpers or directly via the BIOS setup, this one too offers similar bus functions as the AZZA 694TX.

As you may already saw, the positioning of the HDD connector ports is very comfortable, as they are out of the way of all components. This board features two 40-pin IDE connectors marked as IDE1 and IDE2. Each connector supports two IDE devices. This is not quite the case with the FDD connector as it is located above the ATX power connector, which is situated below the CPU socket. Pretty tight space there.

Its expansion is good, offering five PCI slots and two ISA slots (one shared). I personally would want to see this board with six PCI slots. Implanting the second ISA slot was not really a strategic move as I am sure that the majority of users don't have more than one ISA device. I couldnít think of anything else than a ISA modem. I'm sure most users have moved away from ISA sound cards long ago.

The 6VA694XC ended up being an interesting board. Its great benchmark results have put it in the superior 133A category. In most scenes, the board was leading the Tyan Trinity 400 at an average of 1Ė2%. In the Sandra 2000 memory tests, it performed quite well as it ended in second place after the Tyan Trinity 400. No stability issues were noticed and the board managed to perform well under 133MHz FSB.

BoardRunner includes two data cables, one ATA/66 ribbon cable and a Floppy ribbon cable. A well-detailed userís guide is packed with the board. It covers some installation processes, jumper settings and an overview of the BIOS setup. BoardRunner also included a CD including a PDF. Userís guide, the VIA 4 IN 1 Drivers (4.22) and the Award flashing utility.

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