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First Intel 815E mobo hits the streets

Easton's a modern girl, apparently

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Today's the day for the new Intel 815 and 815E chipsets as we predicted here. What we didn't predict (well, we have to leave 'em something to announce) was the arrival of Chipzilla's first mobo using the 815E.

The Easton, or D815EEA to its friends, is an ATX board based supporting FC-PGA Pentium III processors with 133 and 100MHz FSB and Celerons at 66MHz. The Easton supports PC133 or PC100 SDRAM and ATA-100 hard drives.

Other goodies include Rapid BIOS Boot for faster system startup and a digital video output header for TV and DVI, as well as four USB ports. In addition, users can choose between on-board, integrated graphics or high-speed AGP 4X graphics cards. Options include on-board Creative Labs SoundBlaster PCI audio, Intel PRO/100 V 10/100 LAN), and a Communication and Network Riser (CNR) card.

If you're not using a separate AGP graphics card, you can use a clever little gizmo called a Graphics Performance Accelerator (GPA), which plugs into the AGP slot on the board to provide an extra 4MB of graphics memory (the 815 normally uses system memory for graphics). Kingston, Samsung and Micron are lined up to produce GPAs which Intel claims can boost graphics performance by up to 30 per cent.

Eastons are shipping this week for between $150 and $170, depending on options. In 1000-unit quantities, the 815 Chipset is priced at $41 and the 815E at $46. ®

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