Iwill KK266 Review

Aron Schatz
August 9, 2001
The Iwill KK266 has been an overclocker's gem. I tested it and I love it.
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Page 1: KK266 Review

<p><center><img src="../images/kk266/sideview2.jpg"></center></P><p>The Iwill KK266 has long been a favorite of the overclocking crowd due to its
number of options that range from adjustable clock multiplyer to the adjustable
core voltage. I have been using this motherboard since April of this year, 2001,
and I'm very happy to say that this motherboard lives up to its expectations.
It is based on the Via KT133a chipset.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/kt133a.jpg"></center>
<p>Since this is my first article, I'm giving a brief history of my AMD experiences.</p>
<p>I went to a computer show for a project that I had for school. I chose to build
a computer, a very easy thing for me todo. I never had a good AMD cpu, I'm not
saying that I had bad chips, just that the performance was sub-par compared
to the Intel offerings. I wanted to try the new socketed Athlon core that I
was reading about everywhere, not only due to the overclockability, but the
performance. Finally, I would have a good computer again. I came across the
KK266 at one booth, I shrugged it off though. I wasn't looking for a great board
at all. I was looking for very cheap. Well, after searching, for $25 more I
got the KK266 than a cheap board. I bought a 750mhz Duron to use in the KK266.</p>
<p>I have never had a hiccup with this motherboard, I had that 750 AKCA Duron
up to 980 at 1.85volts stable. It was great. Then I wanted more, I tried to
use a peltier, but only ended up in crushing my new cpu, and this was before
I presented my project! I told AMD what happened, not the full truth, but they
said they'd have a look at it. Well, it was a start at least. After 2 weeks
of nothing, I went to one of my favorite websites, Ebay, to find a new CPU Someone
had put a buy it now for $25 on a 800Mhz Duron, retail. I bought that. Then,
AMD sent me another CPU to replace the broken 750. I had 2 cpus, so I bought
another board. I'll be reviewing the other one soon.</p>
<p><big>First impressions:</big></p>
<p>The KK266 came in a nice package with the usual cables and such, the manual
is very helpful. Well thoughtout in my opinion. But, the board is basically
plug and play. I'm also glad that sound came with the board. It is the version
1.2 motherboard.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/kk266and686B.jpg"></center>
<p>This was my first Socket A board. I didn't know what to expect. I liked the
green PCB (I was used to brown) and the northbridge had a heatsink that reminded
me of the BX heatsink on my BP6. The board was all around neat, as in the layout.
There are 6 PCI slots, an AGP slot and an ISA slot. The KK266 and the KK266-R
have the same PCB if you didn't know so you are buying the same board basically
with 2 more IDE channels if you have the RAID board.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/pcislots.jpg"></center>
<p>The area around the CPU socket is clear of any objects, unlike some other boards
I've had. I'm using the AMD standard cooler now, but I was using a Taisol (Original
version). </p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/socketarea.jpg"></center><p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/socketarea2.jpg"></center>
<p>The ATX power connector is right at the top of the board. It is in a perfect
place too, my power connector didn't interfere with anything else on the board.</p>
<p>The three DIMM sockets (PC133) are clear of most things. There is one problem,
if you have a lengthy AGP graphics card, you'll have a tough time removing the
RAM from the board as the release clips will be snug on the video card. And
if you video card has heatsinks on the ram, forget it, you'll have a really
hard time if the heatsink is at the end of the board and protrudes into the
DIMM sockets. Other than that, the DIMM placement is fine.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/frontview.jpg"><p>
Wow, my video card almost touched them.<br>
<img src="../images/kk266/closecallmem.jpg"></center><p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/closecallmem2.jpg"></center><p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/closecallmem3.jpg"></center>
<p>The 2 ATA100 connectors and the Floppy connector are at the top right of the
board. This is normally where they are located and don't pose a problem at all.
If you have the KK266-R there will be 4 IDE connectors, a mess of wires may
occur if you need all the connectors. Just a heads up for you overclockers that
with all those wires, airflow may be cut drastically.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/memarea.jpg"></center>
<p>A Heatsink of the Northbridge (KT133a) was a fine addition, but most boards
do this now anyway. A fan would be nice, but you can just add your own if needed.
The 686B southbridge is bare. But I haven't seen a board that has a southbridge
heatsink anyway.</p>
<p>There are 3 fan headers on the board. 2 Case fans and 1 CPU fan. This should
be fine for most people except the overclocker crowd. But with the types of
fans they use, a 4 pin connector would be better suited anyway.</p>
<p>One last thing, the few jumpers that need to be set are a breeze due to Iwill's
long jumper caps. Iwill has paid attention to detail.</p>
<center><img src="../images/kk266/cooljumper.jpg"></center>

<p>The sound is provided by an on board CMI8738 Cmedia 4.1 channel sound. The
sound is quite good for an integrated piece of hardware and OEMs will love it.
You can easily use another sound card of your choosing by disabling the sound
by a simple jumper.</p>
<p><img src="../images/kk266/audio.jpg"></p></center>


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