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Albatron's KX400+ Pro motherboard

Gigabyte is for the birds

ModelKX400+ Pro
Price (street)US$99

ALBATRON? Sounds like the name of a character from Beast Wars that transforms into an Albatross, not a new entrant on the motherboard scene. But the fact the Albatron name is new doesn't mean the company behind the name doesn't have any lineage. Previously known as Monivision, Albatron has a history of producing multimedia displays, and they've only this year decided to get into PC products like mobos and graphics cards.

Albatron isn't entering the PC market blind, though. Jack Ko, formerly a founder of Gigabyte, is now their CEO. He brings with him a wealth of experience and a solid reputation.

Today we're looking at Albatron's KX400+ Pro, a KT333-based motherboard that claims to be the first to support DDR400 memory. There's a lot more to the KX400+ Pro than claimed DDR400 support, so let's dive in and see just what Albatron is offering.

The specs
We'll set the stage by looking at the board's feature set.

CPU supportSocket 462-based AMD Athlon/Duron processors
Form factorATX
ChipsetVIA KT333
North bridgeVIA VT8367
South bridgeVIA VT8235
InterconnectV-Link  (266MB/s)
PCI slots6 32-bit/33MHz
AGP slots1, 2X/4X AGP 2.0
AMR/CNR slots1 CNR (shared with PCI)
Memory3 184-pin DIMM sockets
Maximum of 3GB of PC1600/PC2100/PC2700 DDR SDRAM
Storage I/OFloppy disk
2 channels ATA/1
Legacy ports1 PS/2 keyboard, 1 PS/2 mouse,
2 serial, 1 parallel

Game port and audio jacks
USB2 USB 2.0/1.1 ports
4 additional USB 2.0/1.1 port via PCI backplane connector
AudioALC650 6-channel audio
BIOSPhoenix-Award with Dual BIOS and Voice Genie
Bus speeds133-233MHz in 1MHz increments
VoltagesCPU:  1.10-1.85 in 0.025V increments
DRAM:  2.5-2.8V in 0.1V increments
MonitoringVoltage, fan status, and temperature monitoring

A couple of things jump out right away: first, the board has six PCI slots, and second, there's no integrated Ethernet or RAID. Let's go over some of the highlights in more detail, because there's a little more to this board than you might get from just looking at its spec sheet.