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AOpen XC Cube EZ65 (A new look and perspective.)
XC Cube Yuppie and XC Cube Sporty

Manufacturer: AOpen 
Supplied by:  AOpen
Street Price: $320

by Dean Barker (4/07/2004)

Introduction

Several months ago we posted our review of the AOpen XC Cube EZ65 barebones system.  Built for the P4 on an i865 chipset, the EZ65 offers pretty much everything but the kitchen sink.  Dual Channel DDR up to DDR400, 5.1 sound, Gigabit NIC, SATA, an AGP and a PCI slot as well as it weighs in at 5.5 kg with components installed just to name a few.  In addition to having muscle, a wide variety of colors are available, White, Blue, Red, Grey and Black.  AOpen has since added two more very aesthetically pleasing options; the first is "Yuppie Silver" and the second is "Sporty Black."  Today I want to take an opportunity to show you what these two new EZ65 case designs look like in addition to exploring what we were unable to do in our original review. 

Back in November, when we first looked at the EZ65, our P4 chip didn't have much reach to appropriately explore the overclocking limits of the board.  Since then, we have added some items to our parts bucket that will make this possible.  I feel this really needs to be revisited because we recently discovered that the original EZ65 we tested could bang right at 275MHz (though not stable.)  With this in mind, the AOpen looks like it may have more potential than we originally realized.  Not many boards are capable of running a bus this high, much less one from a barebones mini system.  Without any further ado, let's get to it.

For the sake of brevity, I'm not going to go over every detail of the XC Cube again.  As a reminder though, here are the specs. 

Specifications

  • Application: Pentium 4 Socket 478 (400/533/800MHz FSB)

  • Motherboard: AOpen UX4SG-1394 (i865G Chipset)

  • Memory: Dual Channel DDR (266/333/400MHz)

  • VGA: On board Intel Extreme Graphics AGP8x

  • Sound: On board AC97 5.1

  • NIC: On board Gigabit 10/100/1000

  • IDE: ATA100 x 2

  • SATA: SATA150 x 2

  • PCI slots: One

  • AGP slots: One

  • Construction: Aluminum

  • Colors: Available in White, Blue, Red, Grey, Black, "Yuppie Silver" and "Sporty Black."

  • Dimension: 300mm (D) x 200mm (W) x 185mm (H)

  • Weight: 5.5kg (with all drives, CPU and memory installed)

  • Drive Bays: (1) 5.25" External bays
    (1) 3.5" External bays
    (1) 3.5" Internal bays

  • USB: Two ports front, two ports rear

  • IEEE1394: One port rear, two ports front (6/4 pins)

  • PSU: 220W

  • Front Panel: SPDIF, Speaker, Mic, USB 2.0 x 2, IEEE1394 6-pin x 1, IEEE1394 4-pin x 1



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