The Biostar Tpower i45 is a board that not only offers good value for money but also matches up to the performance of other high end boards. The board supports a maximum of 8 GB of DDR2 memory running at 1066 MHz. Built around Intel's P45 chipset the board offers Crossfire support in a rather old-fashioned way. In other words, the board has jumpers (nine in total), eight red and a small black jumper placed just above the second PCle slot, which need to be configured to enable crossfire. Even though the change is only required when installing a second graphics card, switching all nine to enable crossfire can be quite annoying. Apart from the annoying little jumpers the overall board layout is near perfect with neatly labeled and well spaced components. The area around the CPU is almost devoid of components, giving you the freedom to install larger heatsinks. To make cooling a little more effective, a separate heatsink has been provided with the package which is meant to be placed on top of the voltage regulator heatsink.
The port 80 diagnostic tool or display, as we would like to call it, is a good addition to the board. It basically displays error codes when the board refuses to boot into windows. The error codes can be looked up by referring to the manual that has a list of all the codes that the board can display. It also doubles up as CPU temperature display after a proper BIOS boot. To make sure that your graphics card gets enough juice an extra four pin auxiliary power connector has been provided exclusively for the card. You will need at least a 500W power supply to run this board. Apart from the six USB ports at the rear, two eSATA ports are provided, so you can connect an external drive without compromising on data transfer speed.