DFI’s popularity has risen steadily ever since it launched its Lanparty range of motherboards a couple of years ago. Since then the Lanparty family has grown with the introduction of a ‘lite’ version in the shape of the Lanparty UT.
DFI hasn’t stripped out all of the features of the Lanparty boards to create the Lanparty UT range with only minor changes to the hardware. The only thing you really lose out on is the extra accessories such as the Front-X and the case carrying straps.
The first board we’ve looked at in this new series of products from DFI is the Lanparty UT nF4 SLI-D, which is a rather unusual SLI motherboard in several ways. The most obvious difference between the Lanparty UT nF4 SLI-D and the other SLI boards is the layout, as the CPU socket has been placed below the memory modules. There could potentially be problems with this layout with certain cases such as the SilverStone TJ06 and Enermax CS-718-S, which have a special cooling setup. This is only an issue with a few cases on the market, but it’s worth highlighting.
From this it’s clear that DFI didn’t follow the nVidia reference design and further proof of this is that the little piece of PCB that most SLI boards use to change between SLI and none SLI mode is missing. Instead DFI is using six blocks of jumpers that have to be moved to change to SLI mode. The problem with this is that the jumper blocks are quite hard to remove, even with the included tool. As the tool hasn’t been specifically designed for removing jumpers – it is a BIOS chip removal tool – it takes time and patience to remove the jumper blocks. However, re-fitting them is easy enough and it’s not a task that you’ll perform more than once or twice in the lifetime of the board anyhow – unless you review graphics cards for a living.