Biostar TForce 6100 Motherboard
Author: Zahn Funk
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 06-13-2006

Most computer enthusiasts, gamers and overclockers would turn up their nose at a micro-ATX motherboard with integrated graphics. In addition to being physically smaller than a standard motherboard (usually less room = less features) the majority of these mainboards have few (if any) options for overclocking and the onboard GPU is typically insufficient to play any modern games. Where you will commonly find these types of boards used is on low-end, entry-level PC's made for non-demanding business applications or general home use.

One likely candidate for just such a computer is my 7-year-old daughter. Having a computer that doesn't take up a lot of space is ideal since she has a small student desk in her room. And the educational software and kiddie games she plays are not nearly as demanding on hardware. She got one or two games for her birthday this year though that would not play on her system, a VIA KM400 chipset board with a 2500+ Barton and 512mb of PC2700. The onboard Savage8 GPU (which used up to 64mb of shared system memory) just couldn't cut it. I recently had to cannibalize her PC for an emergency rebuild however, so when the time came to replace her hardware I started looking into what was currently available on the market. The ATI Radeon Express 200 has been out for over a year, but I'm more of an nVidia fanboy, and my previous bad experience with ATI chipsets (ie. Radeon IGP320) made me hesitant to go that route. When I learned that nVidia has had their 6100 chipset out for several months now I knew I had found what I was after. My only choice now came down to picking a manufacturer.

Enter the Biostar TForce 6100. Although not normally a make I would consider when choosing a motherboard, the features this board offered really caught my attention, and the advertised overclock-friendly TForce (as opposed to the more standard 6100-M7) reeled me in. Biostar offers this board in Socket 754, 939 and AM2 flavors, and in order to keep costs down I chose to go with a Sempron 64 2500+ in 754 format. Since I just upgraded my main box to a gig of memory, I had 512mb of Geil PC4400 available which should allow quite a bit of headroom for overclocking. When the board arrived I was very anxious (as was my daughter) to get it installed and see what it could do.

Join me as I take a closer look at the Biostar TForce 6100.

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