The Top 5 Worst Motherboards of All Time

Dan_D

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What no ASUS striker extreme ?
I've hated 2 or 3 of the motherboards on that list , but man , the striker extreme was THE worst POS ever.

I owned one of those and we tested two of them back in the day. It was bad, but it outlasted all of my EVGA 680i SLI motherboards. The Striker Extreme wouldn't clock RAM for shit which is why I didn't use it longer. Again, it was bad but not as bad as the other boards on my list in my opinion.

Ah capacitor-gate...can you believe a machine designer used these in a whole line of $100k equipment? Yeah, mobo's would die right in the middle of production, only to be swapped with the same board. THEN, when it got to be the third or so, they did a recall. Guess what the recall was? Oohhh, we have this new "upgrade" for ONLY 25k (it's a deal, usually 50k!) that will let you migrate to Win 7, we have to replace the computer though - WINK WINK. Oh, yeah, if you want your 100k machine to run, like ever again, it's mandatory. grumble grumble.

The capacitor issues in the industry were over by the time of the 680i SLI motherboards. I saw some occasional capacitor issues with Apple machines at the time and a few isolated cases here and there, but by in large they were resolved by this point.

I would say the ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe & Premium could give the DFI LanParty a run for it's money. At work we used these in most of our 939 builds and I had a Stack taller than me of bad boards in my office by the time Conroe came around.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131517
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131540

While those motherboards weren't the best, they weren't as bad as anything on the list. I owned an A8N-SLI Deluxe and built tons of systems with them for others.
 

Dan_D

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I can't imagine how there isn't a single Asrock board on this list. Those boards only accidentally work right sometimes.

While I've had some bad ASRock experiences, they weren't issues that persisted with multiple copies of a single model. That said, the ASRock Z68 Pro3 is a strong contender for this list.
 

harmattan

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The 8800GTX was the premier graphics card during the time of the 680i SLI motherboards. I had two of them and later three of them in 3-Way SLI. Those got moved to my D5400XS / Skulltrail afterwards.

Getting forgetful... Quite right, it was the 8800GTX. Had two of those to play Oblivion -- think they were actually up and running only for a month in total due to the issues. $1200 in GPUs for a month of usage. Ironic that dual 8800GTXs provided what was probably the biggest performance jump from previous gens, but the only mobo that could run them was unadulterated garbage.
 

AaronP

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While those motherboards weren't the best, they weren't as bad as anything on the list. I owned an A8N-SLI Deluxe and built tons of systems with them for others.
We had northbridges on A8Ns going out like 1970 Christmas Lightbulbs. :)
 

Dan_D

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Getting forgetful... Quite right, it was the 8800GTX. Had two of those to play Oblivion -- think they were actually up and running only for a month in total due to the issues. $1200 in GPUs for a month of usage. Ironic that dual 8800GTXs provided what was probably the biggest performance jump from previous gens, but the only mobo that could run them was unadulterated .

That's why I rejoiced when the Intel D5400XS came out. The 680i SLI was a huge piece of shit and the motherboard that put me off to custom water cooling on my own systems. When you have to swap out a water cooled motherboard in a system nearly a dozen times in one year, you get tired of it.
 

maxius

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my worst board goes to the finicky bastard that is the Asrock 939Dual-SATA2... Runner up all Nforce4 boards
 

Nebulous

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I had tons of shit boards, but the worse one for me was the ECS P4M800-pro Socket 775 that was able to take DDR1 or DDR2. I can tell you it killed more ram sticks than I can buy. That cursed piece of shit made a cemetery of my ram pile. I took a hammer to all of them and beat them all into little bite sized pieces it made me so angry.

I remember my very first Abit NF7-S. Lasted 3 days before i heard a bang and smelled burnt electronics. After inspection saw the bios chip and it's socket was blown away off the board. Where the bios chip and socket were supposed to be was nothing but a hole the size of a nickel. I had to fight mWave.com for a fucking replacement.
 
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Zefram0911

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I'll agree with #1 on the list.. I ran through 6 EVGA 680i SLI boards and just gave up.
 

THRESHIN

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I would say the ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe & Premium could give the DFI LanParty a run for it's money. At work we used these in most of our 939 builds and I had a Stack taller than me of bad boards in my office by the time Conroe came around.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131517
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131540


I remember reading that the a8n-sli was a bit of a piece of crap. I opted for the a8n32-sli back then. Turns out that it was quite good. Go figure.
 

gunbust3r

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Oh man I had that FIC VA 503+! What a junker, put a bad taste in my mouth for AMD for a good long... well it still exists. This folks is how you get a bad name in retail. Don't give out the shit board in your retail partner promo deals...
 

AceGoober

Live! Laug[H]! Overclock!
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eVGA 680i and eVGA 780i were close to being the worst motherboards I've ever had to deal with. Overheating, instability, RAM incompatibility, etc. All around crap.

The worst was a PCChips 486. Who in their right mind cobbles together a BIOS that doesn't support the chipset properly? Top it off, fake cache chips on it. Seriously. Was wondering why the cache wasn't showing up. Sacrificed one to curiosity, broke open a cache ship and found it was an empty piece of plastic. :grumpy:
 

geok1ng

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man, i am glad i escaped all of mobos on the article ! :LOL:
how about a follow up with the best MOBOs ?
 

jardows

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I was out of the game for the most part of the Athlon2/Pentium D days, so I missed most of these experiences. In the 1990's, we used mainly Epox boards - they were good, didn't have any complaints. The company I started working for in 2000 gave me an introduction to ASUS, and I've been a loyalist since. Dipped my toes with a couple of MSI and Gigabyte builds, and none of them gave me any problems. I have avoided low-end boards like the plague, and the few times I cheaped out, I have regretted it. I do remember seeing a few FIC disasters.

From personal experience, I'd have to say the worst I've encountered was anything installed in a Packard Bell, followed by anything installed in a Gateway.
 

Chebsy

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ooohhhh I remember building a lot of systems based on SOYO boards !!! Glad things have moved on since those days, they were carp !!
 

Sulphademus

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Did anyone besides me ever own a Chaintech mobo? Never had much of an issue with it but I remember driver support being crap.
 

elites2012

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for me was the
FIC VA 503+ cause you could not flash the bios without bricking it. next was the GA-MA785GMT-UD2H. the sound chip went out and then the lan chip went out. after 6 months after that. the entire board went out. last was a few of msi am3 boards. when i turned the unit on for the first time. the boards sparked near some chips and never post.
 

Burticus

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My nightmares are mostly filled with Shuttle VIA socket 7 motherboards. But I've had some Soyo's too. Pretty much all the VIA chipset boards sucked to one degree or another. And remember the 4 in 1 driver packs? Terrible driver support.

The PC Chips motherboards.... yeah they were crap but EVERYONE knew they were crap and they were priced as such. I had a K6 system with one of those and it did work but liked to reboot at random. I seem to recall it was one of the first boards I used that had integrated sound (1997 ish) but it was filled with staticy screams and driver crashes.
 

dgingeri

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What I would contribute to the list would be the Gigabyte GA-x79-UP4. I had it for almost a year before it died, and had compatibility issues constantly. I went through 4 bios updates with it, and 2 of those rendered it unbootable. I got it with the F1 bios, which had horrible USB issues with multiple keyboards, and would need a full power off and back on to reboot. It wanted to use my Nostromo as the main keyboard whenever it booted, so I had to unplug it every time I booted up, plus a soft reboot would always fail, and required switching off the power supply and back on to get a boot. F2 rendered it totally unbootable, and I had to fight with it to get it to revert. F3 was even worse than F2, and harder to revert. F4 just brought it back to the level with F1, but added some firmware updates for the SATA controller and support for the IB-E procs. F5 supposedly fixed some things, but I never noticed a difference. After 10 months, I started getting USB power issues with the top ports. Then the power to the onboard audio went out. After 11 months, the power went out to all the PCIe x1 slots, so even my addon audio card didn't work. While I was troubleshooting that, the power gave out on all USB ports. I could still work with things through self powered hubs, though. Just before the 1 year point, the power gave out to the video card slots. The system would boot with my cards plugged into the PCIe power, but would give off alarms that they weren't receiving power from the slot, and wouldn't boot the OS.

After that debacle, I swore off ever buying another Gigabyte board. I had issues with the other 2 Gigabyte boards I had, compatibility issues, but not power and reliability issues, but this one sent it over the edge.
 

ckmondavi

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Would you happen to have a picture of the EVGA 680i SLI you putt a magnum round threw the heat sink? A shot like that should have documentation!!!
 

TrailRunner

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No mention of the MSI 890FXA? The enthusiast overclocking board that would catch fire if you installed a quad core or 6-core processor?
https://hardforum.com/threads/msi-motherboard-caught-fire-what-really-happen.1559489/

MSI eventually ended up putting a half-assed warning on its website about that one…
https://us.msi.com/Motherboard/890FXAGD70.html#hero-overview
icon_20111208113417.gif
 

magnetik

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Amptron. I dont remember the part # but do remember how big a POS that motherboard was. Never buy electronics that rhyme with Voltron.
 

anthrex

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Thanks for the trip down memory lane! I miss all the research I used to spend in learning about all these MOBO manufacturers.
 

tenjuna

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I had the 680i and it indeed was a spawn of Satan...I ended up with a free upgrade to the 780i and I have been running a home theater system on that for 10 years now. Didn't trust it for anything other than that, but it still works!
 

DisparateX

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I like your list and understand your pain here with this one, but it doesn't belong here. It was finicky and I fried two of them with LN2... but the third and fourth .. OMG I busted so many world records on that thing... and Oscar from DFI pounded out BIOS like a champ for whatever the hell we needed at that time and Ryder was all over the place with RAM data and swapping RAM sets...

That was a magical time and this was a magical board. You can swap this fifth place finish out for anything at all from Sapphire from their first motherboard launches.

I have my 2006 DFI LanParty nForce 4 SLI DR Expert still running with an X2 4800+. I must be me but it OC's like shit and had stability issues from the start. The Corsair memory often won't activate. The drivers were never matured. And forget about a beefy newer gfx card, it will freeze.
It was fast on standard settings tho, i cannot deny that. And has an nVidia chipset for an AMD cpu which is funny.
 
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Got to give some love to AsRock here from my personal experiences. I've had two of their boards that were not perfect but worked well overall.

One was the 775Dual-VSTA board that allowed you to use either AGP or PCI-E GPUs and either DDR or DDR2 memory. That got me through those transitions and allowed a decent OC on a little Core2 processor on top of that.

Then I took that same processor and slapped it into a Penryn1600SLI-110dB until I was ready to snag a quad-core Yorkfield for it later.

Good value on long upgrade cycles, I know I still have the Penryn, may have the Dual-VSTA too. :)
 

jfreund

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I guess I'm a lucky guy. My DFI Lanparty was solid enough for me to pass it down to my mom and she had no troubles.

I had 1 RMA on my 680i and got a good board for the replacement. That one got sold to a friend and did well for him.

Somebody mentioned the Asrock X58 Extreme 3. Mine is currently running my HTPC .
 

ZLoth

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It would really help if you attached the release year with the boards. :(
 

Jeremy C

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If you ever make a top 10 you can include the ASRock X58 Extreme 3. I spent 2 years fucking that POS before I threw up my hands and picked up an MSI X58A-GD65 which still runs to this day as I type this.

You know, I don't think semen helps with stability on today's electronics.
 

magoo

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Oct 21, 2004
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I will never own another EVGA mainboard, or anything else they make for that matter.

680 SLi was a turd.
780 likewise.
Had 2 X58 boards...one a Classified that was > 200 dollars which at the time was crazy money.
I got rails of shit trying to RMA that bastard. Got a warped replacement.....

Those guys shouldn't brand mainboards.

The mention of EVGA gives me rage even today.
 

WhoBeDaPlaya

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Negative. I might actually have another one around here. If I find it I'll shoot it and take pics and or video of that.
Too bad you don't have enough to do a "How Many eVGA 680i Mobos Does It Take to Stop a 50cal" video :)
 

JohnnyGatt

GamingFace
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#2 FIC VA 503+

This was an easy call to make. The FIC VA 503+ was based on a VIA MVP3 chipset. This piece of shit had a number of shortcomings, one of which was that it didn't fully support all the K6 processors that were out at the time. Not only that, but the user manual was printed with inaccuracies for the jumper setup. The silk screening on the motherboard was full of errors too. Even the addendum in the user manual was wrong. You had to use a painful trial and error process to make it work. This motherboard also had a dismal DOA rate and a high percentage of failures. I worked for a computer retailer back in those days and we saw countless DIY systems come into the tech shop for service. Worse yet, AMD had their own clone of Intel's Retail Edge program and this motherboard was paired with a processor that the board didn't officially support. Virtually everyone who bought this deal at our store had me setup their systems because no one else could get them to work.

This piece of shit was so bad it had three hardware revisions and never was built correctly. I have no doubts that this motherboard's awful reputation is one of the many nails in the coffin for FIC's motherboard business. The company exists today, but exited the PC motherboard market years ago.

Well for me this board gave me a lot of work at the time Kyle was one of the only ones who posted shit about my board you see I was working for FIC at the time. I remember emailing this jack ass guy who had no idea how amazing this board was was posting shit about it on some small site called HardOCP and what was an OCP anyway!!! I wish I still had the email I do know I gave Kyle what for and i remember getting a reply back from him "ripping me a new one" my boss freaked out when he found out I had the balls to say what I did to Kyle.. We made up later on when I moved to VIA. This board was a hit and miss the "Samples" where cherry picked but Kyle didn't get a sample he might have even had an OEM board that we sent out in bulk. I caught FIC sending warranty boards back without testing and was told by my then boss that if they get the board back 3 times then they look at it they had a sticker system if you has a red dot on the back of your board it had been sent back and the funny thing was they swapped them so you thought you was getting a new board but you was getting someone warranty board! I know how good this board could be but anyone who built lots of systems got caught up in the warranty loop and FIC was convinced it was the right thing to do right up to my last day on the job with them when I told my boss he was a Fucking fool who had no clue, When he jumped ship 9 months later he joined Apple..... Keep in mind that this was the motherboard division only the OEM part was and still is a sweet operation with HP contracts (Back then I don't know about now) you see long after the VA503+ and even after the SD11 SLOT A Athlon board FIC pumped out thousands of HP systems and laptops that all work just fine as long as you don't try and swap anything out! God forbid you upgrade your GPU in a HP! :p Anyway I love the board and had some amazing overclocks and sold 15k VA503+'s in Australia a month for about 6 months but I feel sorry for anyone who got caught in the warranty loop, My last customer reported a 45% failure rate but it was only 3% he was getting the same boards over and over again I remember checking his stock and finding stickers on 80% of the boards he had in a NEW OEM box of 100 I quit 30 min later.

the VA 503+ introduced me Kyle Bennett one of my best mates in the world! :)
 

ecktt

Limp Gawd
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Oct 22, 2004
Messages
415
Where is the ABit BP6?
Did it OC - Yes
Was it stable - Hell no! had to soldier bigger capacitors on to it for it to be remotely stable. And the extra PATA control was crap.
 

Prod1702

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Jan 13, 2005
Messages
159
I owned a EVGA 680i SLI. I used it with my 8800 GTX SLI setup until it set its self on fire by the CPU socket and EVGA replaced it with a 780i. I still have the 780i in my closet. I didn't really have problems with both of them. I was able to run my Core 2 Q6600 at 3.5ghz with both of them.
 

d50man

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Jan 22, 2002
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I had a EVGA 750i SLI and it was also a giant piece of shit.

We need a top 5 motherboards now, #1 Abit BH6 obviously.
Bx133>bh6 I nominate Asus x58 p6t rock solid workhorse from day one 4.2ghz 1.4v 920 C0
 

Met-AL

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my worst board goes to the finicky bastard that is the Asrock 939Dual-SATA2... Runner up all Nforce4 boards

I have one of those boards. It had both a native 8x AGP and a PCIe 16x port. It's one of my favorites, started running it on Win XP with a AMD X2 4200+ and a AGP 8x ATI X800 AIW. Later upgraded to a Geforce 8800GTS PCIe card.

What screwed it up is when nVidia bought ULi and killed driver support right after ULi released Vista beta drivers. We never saw actual Vista drivers for it out of nVidia. I remember being very annoyed with nVidia, it was similar to exactly what nVidia did after buying up 3dfx.
 
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