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EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Motherboard Review
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EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI Motherboard

The EPoX EP-9U1697 GLI is certainly an interesting motherboard. Utilizing ULi's M1697 chipset, this motherboard packs all the necessary features for enthusiasts who are looking for performance at a good price.

Performance-wise, it's almost as good as the ASUS A8R-MVP motherboard. In fact, the performance difference was generally negligible. Only in F.E.A.R. did we see some noticeable difference.

As the "GLI" in the motherboard's name indicates, this motherboard can support NVIDIA's SLI. It seems like a really good deal as it will no doubt be a great deal cheaper than an NVIDIA nForce4 SLI-based alternative.

However, the ULi M1697 chipset doesn't officially support SLI and currently, SLI support is limited to NVIDIA cards, up to the GeForce 7800 series. Blame it on NVIDIA for disabling SLI for non-NVIDIA chipsets in their ForceWare drivers.

If you intend to run SLI, we certainly would not recommend this motherboard to anyone, due to its limited SLI support. If you really need SLI, then NVIDIA nForce4 SLI-based motherboards would still be your best bet. We can only recommend this motherboard to those who don't intend to run SLI.

What this motherboard does really well is overclocking. It's stable at up to 340MHz HTT and can even POST with a HTT clock speed of 355MHz. Motherboards based on the NVIDIA nForce4 SLI or ATI Xpress200 Crossfire chipsets would normally fail to POST at over 320MHz HTT. Of course, this is our finding based on a single EP-9U1697 motherboard.

But as impressive as that may be, such a high HTT clock speed isn't very useful. Unless you are limited by low multiplier and unable to reach high CPU speed, such a high HTT clock speed won't be of any use.

As for the SATA hard drive issue we mentioned earlier, it can easily be solved by disabling RAID in the BIOS. You won't be able to enable the PATA Emulated option in the BIOS until you disable RAID. That's why the Windows XP setup could not detect our Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 hard drive. We apologise for any confusion caused.

We have no idea why EPoX's BIOS team disable the PATA emulation when RAID is enabled. What if we want to install Windows XP when we are actually running RAID? Wouldn't it be impossible to install Windows?

We e-mailed EPoX regarding this and were told that we will still be able to install Windows if we are actually running RAID. But, if you are not using RAID, always remember to disable RAID in the BIOS.

For more details, read our Comprehensive Review!


• NA

Lowest PriceGrabber Price


Comprehensive Review

CPU Support

• AMD Socket 939 Processors
  - AMD Athlon 64
  - AMD Athlon 64 X2
  - AMD Athlon 64 FX
  - AMD Sempron


• ULi M1697


• Four 184-pin DDR SDRAM DIMM sockets
• Supports single-sided or double-sided 2.5V DDR-333/400 DIMMs with dual channel architecture.
• Supports Asynchronous clocking mode between FSB and DIMM
• Supports up to 4 GB system memory

Expansion Slots

• Three PCI connectors compliant with PCI v2.3
• One PCI-Express (x1) connectors compliant with PCI Express 1.0a
• Two PCI Express (x16) connector compliant with PCI Express 1.0a


• Two IDE interface (up to 2 IDE devices)
  - Support for UDMA-33, ATA-100/133


• Eight USB connectors
  - compliant with USB2.0
  - 4 connectors at rear panel


• Four S-ATA II ports
  - up to 300MB/s from chipset with RAID levels 0, 1, 0+1, 5


• One 10/100 Ethernet from Realtek RTL8201CL


• Selectable 2 or 6-CH audio Realtek ALC655 AC'97 compliant CODEC
• Support Aux-In, CD-In
• Coaxial S/PDIF-out for option


• Legacy peripheral interface for PS/2 keyboard & mouse, FDD, Parallel, One Serial and IrDA (v1.0 compliant)

Special Features

• Support Keyboard Power ON function
• Support Wake-On-LAN by PME
• Onboard Post-Port LED display
• Onboard EZ-Button
• Support Thermal Stick , Cable for optional
• Support Asynchronous clocking mode between HT frequency and PCI/PCI-E

Form Factor

• 305 mm x 245 mm x 40 mm


• Thunder Probe for system hardware monitoring
• Magic Flash for BIOS update without requiring DOS flash utility and bootable diskette
• Magic Screen for personal bootup screen design


• User's manual
• 1 IDE cable & 1 FDD cables;
• 2 S-ATA data and power cables;
• CD for drivers, utilities and bundle software
• IO shield

Supported Operating System

• Microsoft Windows 2000
• Microsoft Windows XP (32-bit/64-bit)
• Microsoft Windows Server 2003 (32-bit/64-bit)


* Our New Review System

ARP is committed to developing new ways to improve your experience with us. As part of our continuous efforts to improve the value of our reviews to you, we are implementing a new review system.

This new review system is designed to allow you to quickly receive information on the latest hardware. This new system also allows you to quickly get the gist of the review without reading through it. This can be very useful, especially in situations where you need to make a quick purchase decision.

In this new system, we start with a Product Overview whenever a company sends us a press release about their latest product. We shift through extraneous PR-talk to create a straightforward summary of the product's features as well as its specifications. This allows you to quickly find out all the pertinent details about the product, without reading through official press releases.

When we receive the product for review, we will quickly take photos of it and create a Pictorial Review. The purpose of a pictorial review is to allow you, the reader, to quickly examine the product visually. It may help you make better purchase decisions, especially if you cannot wait for the full review.

After thorough testing, we will post a Comprehensive Review of the product. This adds on to the pictorial review with comprehensive test results and our final conclusion on the product.

But no matter whether you are reading a Pictorial Review or a Comprehensive Review, you can always read the summary of the review as well as examine the product's specifications right on the first page. In all our new reviews, we will maintain the first page as a Product Overview page. If the product is listed in PriceGrabber, you can also check out the lowest price online.

We hope this new review system will make your experience a lot more enjoyable and informative!


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