Abit IP35 brings several extra features compared to other motherboards based on Intel P35 chipset, such as passive cooling solution, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, two FireWire ports, six SATA-300 ports, two eSATA ports, two x16 PCI Express slots supporting CrossFire (even though the second one works at x4), diagnostics display, clear CMOS switch on the rear panel, a myriad of overclocking options, good on-board audio, ìGuru monitoring chip and good manufacturing quality using only solid aluminum capacitors.
Its on-board audio quality is probably its best feature, because it not only uses a codec that provides a fair quality for the average user – 97 dB signal-to-noise ratio for its output and 90 dB signal-to-noise ratio for its input – but it brings on-board optical SPDIF output and input. Usually motherboards with on-board optical SPDIF out don’t have the optical SPDIF in, which isn’t the case of IP35 Pro. So you will not only be able to easily connect your PC to a home theater receiver but also to connect digital audio sources such as DAT and Mini Disc players to your PC with the best connection available.
This board also brings full analog speaker support, so if you prefer to use a set of analog speakers you won’t kill your mic in and line in inputs.
Even though this motherboard has a myriad of overclocking options – plus the handy clear CMOS switch outside the case – we could achieve a better overclocking with other motherboards. We, however, didn’t play with the extra overclocking options brought by this motherboard, so you may be able to achieve better overclocking than we did.
The main problem with this motherboard is pricing. It can be found today around USD 200, on average, with the cheapest place selling it by USD 175, which we think its too much for the average user.
Frankly there are better options for the average user, like Gigabyte GA-P35C-DS3R (which also brings a better audio quality and costs on average USD 150, with the cheaper place selling it for USD 130) – if you are not interested on the two FireWire ports, on the second x16 PCI Express slot and having a second Gigabit Ethernet port.
Of course if you don’t mind paying more to get its extra features Abit IP35 Pro is surely a good option if you are building an updated Intel-based system.
As a final note once again we’d like to make it clear that this motherboard comes factory-overclocked and because of this you may find higher results for this motherboard on other reviewing websites, as we manually set the CPU external clock rate to its correct value, since we don’t think comparing an overclocked motherboard with non-overclocked motherboards to be fair.