Biostar TP45 HP review

Price when reviewed

Taiwan’s Biostar is perhaps a less well-known name than its rivals this month. That’s because the company doesn’t make mainstream boards: as the TP45 HP clearly demonstrates, its priorities lay elsewhere.

Biostar TP45 HP review

For a start, it’s the only Socket 775 board to offer CrossFireX. Since the P45 chipset shares 16 PCI Express 2 lanes between the two PCI Express x16 slots, you won’t get the full bandwidth from both cards, but it still reaches out to those who demand top performance.

It’s also the only board in its class to come with onboard controls, plus LEDs to help troubleshoot hardware problems by alerting you to errors in the memory controller, video system or chipset.

Not surprisingly, the BIOS has plenty of tweaking options too, although oddly you can turn voltages up but not down – evidently, Biostar customers aren’t interested in underclocking their PCs to make them run more quietly.

Beyond that, the expected features are all present and correct. Four DIMM sockets will take up to 16GB of DDR2, at speeds up to 1,200MHz. You get six SATA ports and one IDE controller, although there’s no RAID. And the six USB ports on the backplate are ample, if not quite as liberal as the eight offered by Asus and Gigabyte. Our only gripe is that, once again, eSATA is nowhere to be seen.

The TP45 HP’s idle power draw of 87W is an average figure, which neither recommends nor damns the board. Ultimately, the question is what you want from a motherboard: the Biostar will surely appeal to techies, but others may prefer a more mainstream option such as our recommended Gigabyte.


Motherboard form factorATX
Motherboard integrated graphicsno


Processor/platform brand (manufacturer)Intel
Processor socketLGA 775
Motherboard form factorATX
Memory typeDDR2
Multi-GPU supportyes


Motherboard chipsetIntel P45
South bridgeIntel ICH10
Number of Ethernet adapters1
Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
Graphics chipsetN/A
Audio chipsetRealtek ALC1200

Onboard Connectors

CPU power connector type8-pin
Main power connectorATX 24-pin
Memory sockets total4
Internal SATA connectors6
Internal PATA connectors1
Internal floppy connectors1
Conventional PCI slots total2
PCI-E x16 slots total2
PCI-E x8 slots total0
PCI-E x4 slots total0
PCI-E x1 slots total2

Rear ports

PS/2 connectors2
USB ports (downstream)6
FireWire ports0
eSATA ports0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0
3.5mm audio jacks6
Parallel ports0
9-pin serial ports0
Extra port backplane bracket ports0

Diagnostics and tweaking

Motherboard onboard power switch?yes
Motherboard onboard reset switch?yes
Software overclocking?yes


SATA cables supplied4
Molex to SATA adaters supplied0
IDE cables supplied1
Floppy cables supplied0

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