Originally Posted by Kuivamaa
Speaking of m5a97 evo, I have a R2.0 one , which actually does have physical differences from the older model (NB heatsinks have a more central position for example). I have an Athlon II X4 640 placeholder, planning to get an 8320 or 8350 soon - curious of o/c numbers I'll get.
Yeah the NB heatsink on the R2 appears much larger (better surface area) and moved quite a bit, the sata ports are moved slightly and facing up instead of 4 to the side, and the MemOK button, switches, and leds seem to be moved. It's almost a different board. I specifically bought an R1 because the rumors I read before purchase was that the R2's across the line had "Core Unlock" disabled which probably wasn't true but I was dying to try it on a couple Semprons just because I had never seen it before. Mine did unlock a couple Semprons to Athlon X2's and overclocked them extremely well. But of course that's a world apart from the 8xxx or 9xxx chips.
If I was shopping again right now with my current chip or an 8xxx, I would take the advice here and go for the M5A99x Pro or a Saber.