Originally Posted by triadone
it depends really. i would guess that Dell, having such a tight relationship w/ intel simply uses the chipsets that intel gives them. then again, knowing dell it wouldn't surprise me if they used 3rd party mobo makers to build their systems and cut costs if they were cheaper than intel's offerings. for instance, i don't know if many dells offer the usual Centrino platform. many times their standard builds offer Dell's wireless cards as opposed to intel's which means they can't sell it as a Centrino platform. so it could follow that they could also use 3rd part boards from VIA, ULI, etc, for their low end products. if this were the case, then it would follow that drive performance might vary if for instance the given intel chipset is better at disk I/O then the 3rd party chipsets. typically however there isn't a huge difference between chipsets from most reviews i have read recently. greater variations tend to occur in external devices, like transfer rates for firewire and USB2 drives.