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Apart from the aforementioned brackets Biostar also supplies two SATA cables, an SATA power splitter for two devices, an IDE cable and a floppy cable. Add to this a copy of Norton Internet Security 2004 – which consists of Norton AntiVirus, Norton Personal Firewall, Norton Privacy Control, Norton Intrusion Detection and Norton Parental Control – as well as a copy of Norton Ghost 2003 and you’ve got a decent amount of kit for a low cost board.
However, the manual could do with some improvement, as it lacks some of the detail seen in other documentation. I can accept that certain corners have to be cut when it comes to a low cost motherboard, but the manual is a fairly important part, especially for anyone that’s new to building computers.
The test results might not be awe inspiring, but considering the modest hardware we used to test the board, there is no reason for complaint. Still a SYSmark 2004 score of 146 means that all your standard Windows applications should move along at a pretty decent speed. Now, if you have an old Socket-754 Athlon 64 processor handy, the K8NHA Grand would produce much better numbers than the ones here, but of course getting hold of these older chips will be difficult.
The PCMark 2004 scores are as expected although the hard drive numbers are quite impressive. Obviously the 3DMark scores depend more on your graphics card than any other factor of the setup and the FX5900 XT card used to test the board was never the fastest card around.
This leads us on to the final aspect, the price. I would expect to pay in the region of £50 to £60 for a basic motherboard but the K8HNA Grand will set you back a mere £42.24 which is a real steal. Considering that you get a decent set of features for a very low price this board looks like a very attractive option for anyone looking to build a basic Sempron or Athlon 64 PC. Sure, you can get better motherboards if you’re willing to spend another £20 or £30, but unless you specifically need the extra features that one of those boards offers, then the K8NHA Grand will serve you, well, grand.
The Biostar K8NHA Grand is a great budget buy for anyone looking for a basic motherboard with a solid feature set. It’s not cutting edge, but it will do the job and save you some cash along the way.
Trusted Reviews is part of the Time Inc. (UK) Ltd Technology Network