AMD 880G Mobo Roundup - New Mainstream Integrated Graphics


AMD's True Mainstream Chipset

AMD's True Mainstream Chipset

This year, AMD set out to refresh its motherboard chipsets and the past two months, we have seen its new 8-series chipsets make their market debuts. First was the AMD 890GX chipset, followed by the enthusiast class AMD 890FX and to end off, the mainstream and entry level 880G and 870 chipsets. We have already seen and reviewed boards from the major brands for the 890GX, 890FX chipsets and today, we'll be checking out the AMD 880G.

Like the other 8-series chipsets, the changes in the AMD 880G over its closest predecessor, the AMD 785G, are not exactly groundbreaking. A new Southbridge, SB850 that adds native SATA 6Gbit/s functionality is the main difference that nevertheless gives AMD's chipsets an edge over its rivals. The other change is a slight upgrade of the integrated Radeon HD graphics core at its heart, a move that is also suggested by the revised name, (from the 785G's Radeon HD 4200 to the 880G's Radeon HD 4250).

The graphics core on both the 785G and the 880G remain the same RV620 that comes with 40 shaders and supports DirectX 10.1 and OpenGL 2.0. This integrated graphics gets ATI's Universal Video Decoder 2 (UVD2), which also happens to be the most current version, to relieve the CPU for HD content playback. Finally, the option to include SidePort memory (up to 128MB) to boost graphics performance is present on both the older Radeon HD 4200 and the newer 4250.

What's different is in the core clock speed, which has been increased from 500MHz to 560MHz. You'll find later that this core clock is not set in stone, and motherboard vendors are free to adjust this to suit their requirements, and even users can access the BIOS settings to tweak this frequency in many cases. Before we introduce the three AMD 880G boards in our roundup today, here's a GPU-Z screenshot of the integrated graphics core. 

Our contenders came in two different form factors: the ASUS is a standard ATX board, while the Biostar and Gigabyte are in the smaller, microATX dimensions. Given the mainstream nature of this chipset, expect microATX form factors to be plenty popular among vendors and users alike. We have previously covered the ASUS and Gigabyte in our previews here and here, so some of the content may seem familiar to you as they were reused. 

Our AMD 880G Contenders
  ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 Biostar TA880G HD Gigabyte GA-880GMA-UD2H
CPU Support AMD Socket AM3 Processors (Phenom II / Athlon II / Sempron)
Chipset AMD 880G and SB850
Video
  • Radeon HD 4250
  • IGP Core Clock: 700MHz
  • 128MB SidePort memory (DDR3-1333)
  • Radeon HD 4250
  • IGP Core Clock: 600MHz
  • 128MB SidePort memory (DDR3-1333)
  • Radeon HD 4250
  • IGP Core Clock: 560MHz
Memory
  • Supports 4 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-2000 (O.C)/1333/1066 SDRAM
  • Supports up to 16GB memory size
  • Supports 4 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-1600 (O.C)/1333/1066 SDRAM
  • Supports up to 16GB memory size
  • Supports 4 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-1800 (O.C) 1333/1066 SDRAM
  • Supports up to 16GB memory size
Storage
  • Southbridge
    • 5 x SATA 6Gbit/s ports
    • 1 x eSATA 6Gbit/s port (rear)
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10 configurations
  • VT6330 controller
    • 1 x Ultra DMA 133/100 for up to 2 PATA devices
  • Southbridge
    • 6 x SATA 6Gbit/s ports
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10 and JBOD configurations
  • Southbridge
    • 5 x SATA 6Gbit/s ports
    • 1 x eSATA 6Gbit/s port (rear)
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10 and JBOD configurations
  • JMB368 controller
    • 1 x Ultra DMA 133/100 for up to 2 PATA devices
  • iTE IT8720 controller
    • 1 x floppy drive connector
Audio
  • Realtek ALC892 HD CODEC
  • Realtek ALC892 HD CODEC
  • Realtek ALC892 HD CODEC
Networking
  • Realtek 8111E Gigabit Ethernet controller
  • Realtek 8111E Gigabit Ethernet controller
  • 2 x Realtek 8111D Gigabit Ethernet controllers
IEEE 1394 (FireWire)
  • VIA VT6330 chip
  • Up to 2 IEEE 1394a ports (1 rear, 1 header)
  • N.A
  • T.I TSB43AB23 chip
  • Up to 2 IEEE 1394a ports (1 rear, 1 header)
I/O Interface
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
  • 1 x DVI port
  • 1 x analog VGA port
  • 1 x HDMI port
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports (blue)
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN port
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x Optical S/PDIF output
  • 1 x eSATA port
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a port
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard port
  • 1 x PS/2 mouse port
  • 1 x DVI port
  • 1 x analog VGA port
  • 1 x HDMI port
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN port
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
  • 1 x DVI port
  • 1 x analog VGA port
  • 1 x HDMI port
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports (blue)
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN ports
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x Optical S/PDIF output
  • 1 x eSATA port
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a port
Expansion Slots
  • 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slots supporting ATI CrossFireX (Blue @x16, gray @x4)
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x1 slot
  • 3 x PCI slots
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slot
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x1 slot
  • 2 x PCI slots
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slot
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x4 slot
  • 1 x PCIe 2.0 x1 slot
  • 1 x PCI slot
Special Features
  • MemOK!
  • Turbo Key II
  • Core Unlocker
  • ASUS EZ Flash 2
  • ASUS TurboV EVO
  • GPU Boost
  • Overclocking Navigator Engine
  • BIO-Flasher
  • Self Recovery System
  • TOverclocker
  • Q-Flash
  • Xpress Recovery 2
  • Easy Tune
  • Easy Energy Saver
  • Auto Green
  • Smart Recovery
PCB ATX form factor, 30.5 x 24.5cm microATX form factor, 24.4 x 24.4cm