Epox 4G4A+ weak audio output & slow File System Benchmark?


Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
Hi, I am new here (mostly lurking for the past week or two) and I decided to buy this Epox 4G4A+ board based
on all of the reviews and features. I am using it with a Pentium 4 2.26Ghz CPU and 512MB Mushkin DDR333 cl2.5 RAM.
Running WinXP PRo. Just got it all installed and it runs rock stable with default settings out of the box.
I am using onboard video and audio as I have no video card yet. I have a eVGA GeForce4 TI4200, 128MB card
on order and hope to get it by this Friday from Newegg.com.

Anyway, that's my setup and I notice that when I play things through this Avance AC97 audio setup, I don't seem
to get much volume level out of it. I am using cheapo speakers that I used on my other old PC systems and they
play quite loud when you turn up the volume. However, ever since I moved to this 4G4A+ board, even with the
audio volume level turned up to max and all the line, wave, synth, etc. levels in the mixer panel turned up to max,
the level that plays out of the speakers is not that loud or cannot go that loud. I am used to PC volume controls that
will blast out loud and even clip the amplifiers of the audio amps. This board however (at least the one I have) seems
to be outputting line level voltages instead of a power amplifer level to drive speakers. I am only using the two channel
setup. Have not tried 4 or 6 channel setup at all because I have nothing to use them with.

So anyone else experiencing or notice this with their Epox 4G4A+ MB? Low audio output.
Yes, I have the AC97n audio drivers and all the other Intel drivers installed in WinXP (from the supplied Epox drivers CD).
I am using the original April 2002 BIOS that came with the board and did not upgrade to the latest June 2002 BIOS.
The audio plays at a normal enough level for me to listen to music or play my AverMedia TVStudio card, but I just cannot
blast the sound to loud levels. Nor can I get the normal Windows wave sound effects to play loud. They just play at a
low level. I hope that I don't have a defective audio amp section on my board, since everything else seems to work
just great on this board. (Also I have not tried any overclocking with it yet, don't know that I really want to since it
seems to run fast enough for day to day activities).

One other thing, I tried SiSandra Benchmark runs and I am getting some pretty low "File System Benchmark" readings
compared to other processors shown on the SiSandra results screens. I am using a Western Digital 120GB, 8MB Cache
WD1200JB hard drive as Master on the Primary main IDE channel. I am not using any RAID stuff yet.
Anyone notice that this board gives slow file system benchmark performance or is it my board setup only?:confused:


Senior member
May 19, 2001
The onboard video uses system memory. Perhaps that's messing with your file system benchies. Post you current and new ones when you get the new vid card installed, that will be interesting.


Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
I use the onboard audio with a set of Labtec powered speakers (2 channel). I haven't experienced any trouble with the audio levels.
Are your speakers powered by their own power cord?


Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
Oh, I forgot that important tidbit of info, my speakers are not powered. They are just plain
small cheapo polk speakers that came with an HP Pavilion 7935 PC. I know that if I used powered
speakers, then I would probably be able to get louder levels. However, since I cannot attain loud
levels from these plain unpowered speakers, I was wondering if my power amplifier section of the
4G4A+ MB might be defective or weak. Or is it just designed to output line level audio signals intended
to feed only amplified powered speakers?
I get enough level out of them to loud enough but the audio drive seems to be weaker than anything
I have ever experienced and I have experienced many systems.
So my only concern is that my MB is not defective. I bought it from Newegg.com and need to figure
out if this weak audio drive is normal or not. Also whether or not it might be an audio driver problem
I am experiencing or not. Maybe something in the audio driver is keeping the sound amplification levels
low? I remember on some of my old PC's with SoundBlaster cards and drivers that you could go in and
set the level sensitivities to choices of like 1x, 2x and 4x. I am wondering if there is something like that
going on with my setup. However, the default drivers I have don't have any such settings in the mixer
or record panels.


Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
I already do have powered speaker systems on my other PC systems and I ultimately
will get a set of powered speakers for this new PC, but I still am concerned whether
this low audio output level is normal or abnormal for the Epox 4G4A+ board(s). To me
it seems rather weak and I was hoping that other 4g4a+ users might confirm or not confirm
whether their audio drive seems lower than other boards or PC's.

I searched on Intel's site for AC97 chipset audio drivers, but they said that they don't
provide audio drivers and that one should check with the MB manufacture for such.
I looked at Epox's site and they don't have anything in the way of audio drivers for
the 4g4a+ boards either. They only have that one BIOS update which I have downloaded
but have not applied (because I am not having any problems with the old BIOS at this time).

Anyway, the board seems to be running very stable without any problems. That is unless
I do determine that the audio drive on my particular board is weak or not. I'd hate to have to
hassle with an exchange RMA. But I am trying to find out if I got a defective MB or not.

Also the only other concern is the weak Sisandra scores I am getting for the "File System Benchmark"
and also the "CPU Arithmetic Benchmark" tests. My setup seems to score way lower than the
Sisandra equivilent listed reference systems shown at the end of each test run. I don't have
the benchmark numbers with me just now (I am not at home on my 4G4A+ system now) so I will
have to post them at a later time for you all to evaluate. For some reason, this board is running
kind of slower than I expected with a Pentium4 2.26Ghz 533Mhz CPU chip and Mushkin (Samsung)
512MB PC2700 CL2.5 memory module installed in DIMM slot 2. No overclocking, just straight out of
the box default CMOS settings being used at this time.

Again, I am only using the onboard video, so maybe it is slowing things down. But I cannot see how
that should effect CPU Arithmetic speed and File System speed when the video does not seem to be
used much at all during the Sisandra benchmarking tests.

Oh well, any light on this would be appreciated.

Another idea I am having is that the Western Digital 120GB WD1200JB (with 8MB cache) that I bought
OEM style from eBay, is somehow not up to spec and is slow as hell. Disk access with this hard drive
always seems to be sluggish and slow... even when used on my okl Athlon 1.3Ghz system. I bought this
OEM packaged drive for alot cheaper than they are selling for at big chain stores like CompUSA, and see alot of
them going for $150 to $179 range... might these be out of spec factory defects and that is why Western
Digital has leaked them out to all these mom and pop dealers at very low prices? The disk is slow to be sure.
I bought this drive (actually two of them!) because I read a review stating that it was the fastest EIDE drive
available today (I think it was at Toms Hardware site review). I am also suspecting that Tom's Hardware site
reviews are not at all accurate (not anymore anyways) and his recommendations have been off the mark
many times now. Has that site fallen prey to the "under the table, grease the palm" methods of reviewing now?

Anyway, I don't want to diverge from this thread. Just let me (us) know if anyone is getting good strong
audio output from this Epox 4g4a+ board and whether they are getting up to par benchmark results
(non-overclocked measurements) if you all can.

No matter, this board definitely is a nice solid and stable board for me full of all the features I wanted (only missing
firewire but I already had an extra firewire card). I have yet to delve into the world of Overclocking with it.



Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
I have just ran a set of Sisoft Sandra benchmarks with the stock settings (no overclocking) to post
here. I then went in and overclocked my FSB to 150Mhz and set 4:5 ratio which effectively
set the CPU to 2.55Ghz and the memory to DDR600? Anyway, I ran it this way too and re-ran
the Sissoft benchies... here are some of the numbers.
First the Stock system benchmarks:

Stock EPOX 4G$A+ with Pentium 4 2.26Ghz 533 Mhz CPU, 512MB DDR333 Samsung CL2.5 RAM. 07/25/2002
SiSoft Sandra Benchmark test results:

CPU Arithmetic Benchmark
Dhystone ALU 4438 MIPS
Whetstone FPU/iSSE2 1191/2786 MFLOPS

File System Benchmark
Drive Index 24059kB/s

Memory Bandwidth
RAM Int Buffered iSSE2 Bandwidth 2304 MB/s
RAM Float Buffered iSSE2 Bandwidth 2314 MB/s

CPU Multi-Media
Integer iSSE2 8967 it/s
Flosting-Point iSSE2 11219 it/s

Now the Overclocked system benchmarks:
FSB= 150MHZ 4:5 DDR400

CPU Arithmetic Benchmark
Dhystone ALU 4983 MIPS
Whetstone FPU/iSSE2 1332/3111 MFLOPS

File System Benchmark
Drive Index 24426kB/s (VirusScan was running.)
Drive Index 24290kB/s (after stopping McAfee VirusScan.)

Memory Bandwidth
RAM Int Buffered iSSE2 Bandwidth 2623 MB/s
RAM Float Buffered iSSE2 Bandwidth 2629 MB/s

CPU Multi-Media
Integer iSSE2 10043 it/s
Floating-Point iSSE2 10945 it/s

I am typing this note up on the overclocked system now...!
Believe it or not, my CPU and case temperatures are remaining the same
as when it was not overclocked! What gives with that? I'm not complaining
about that, I am rather happy that it is. I think this Pentium4 2.26Ghz 533Mhz
CPU unit can go alot higher than the 2.55Ghz frequency it is overclocked at
right now.

This is my very first attempt at playing with overclocking BTW! I like it!
If this holds up well for me, then the Epox 4G4A+ board is everything all the
positive reviews have said it is. I will keep upping the clock speeds bit by bit
until I reach the limit of losing stability and then back off. I don't have any
fancy cooling heat sinks nor fans. Just the stock Intel CPU HSF and a little
80mm Case fan installed in a cheap case I won off of eBay for about $35.
It came with a 400Watt peak rated power supply... and I am was worried
that it may be a fake cheaply made overrated spec on the supply. But it
seems to be holding up so far. I don't know what will happen if I start
pushing the limits though (with vCore voltages increases etc.).

Anyway, this is my data. I am overclocking successfully at this time
to 2.55Ghz with my normal P4 2.26Ghz, 533Mhz rated CPU. with a 4:5 ratio
whatever that means. Memory is a Mushkin 512 PC2700 CL2.5 rated bought
from Newegg.com. In the sisoft queries it says that the memory is Samsung!

Okay later. comments/suggestions Welcome.



Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
Update: My PC WinXP crashed an hour afterward with BSOD! using FSB=150, 4:5 ratio DDR=375 setting.
So scratch that setting for this MB and CPU combination.
I tried FSB=149 auto DDR setting next and that ultimately crashed during Sisandra burn-in testing for 10 cycles.
I now have it stable at FSB=145, auto DDR setting and it has run through the 10 cycles of burn-in tests and still
stable. I will run like this until I am convinced it will not crash.
I expect my GeForce4 TI4200, 128MB card to be arriving tomorrow, and hopefully my benchmark scores will
go up after installing it.

Is there no one out there with a Epox 4G4A+ that can test their audio function with un-powered speakers to see
if they can get it to play at good loud levels?
Jul 1, 2000
Does anyone out there have headphones? That would do the same thing.

The AC97 codec that you have on your board is a Realtek 6 Channel AC97 chip.


Golden Member
Oct 20, 1999
JingHola: r u bumping up the CPU & RAM voltages at all? I have my CPU at +0.1v and my RAM at +0.2v, which enables my P4-1.6a and
DDR333 RAM to hit 2.4GHz (150FSB) and DDR375 (4:5 ratio) with perfect stability.


Junior Member
Jul 24, 2002
Crapito, no I have not changed any of the vcore, vmem voltages yet. I ran all tests with
default voltages. Since I do not have fancy cooling, I did not want to generate extra heat.
I may give it a try for a short period to see how it holds up.

BTW, I should mention that I am using some cheapo no-brand name full tower case that came
with a supposedly 400W rated power supply. I notice that my +3.3V rail only reads +2.5V according
to SisSandra's motherboard interrogation. I am wondering if that low rail voltage will really effect
the OC ability of my setup. If so, I might need to go invest in a better power supply with more
tightly regulated voltage outputs and current capabilities.

BTW, I am running a Pentium4 2.26Ghz, 533MHZ CPU chip and not a P4 1.6Ghz CPU chip.
I am currently and have been running this MB/CPU combo now at FSB=145 auto DDR, default voltages
giving me 2.26@2.47Ghz CPU speed since last night and it seems to be rock stable at this FSB speed.
I am using a single module of 512MB Mushkin PC2700, CL2.5 rated memory RAM.

I have alot more to learn and find out about OC'ing my system... so the journey begins.

I still would like to hear from other 4G4A+ owners about whether or not the audio drive output from their
boards seems weak or not. I mean my audio plays a t fairly normal listening levels when all volume controls
are turned up to max. I cannot get anything louder out of the audio settings... in other words, I cannot
get it to blast loudly (like most other motherboards or soundcards do).