PC Perspective Live Review Recap: Z77 Motherboard Roundup

Subject: Motherboards, Processors, Chipsets | April 13, 2012 - 08:37 PM |
Tagged: Z77, video, msi, live review, Intel, gigabyte, ECS, asus

A PC Perspective Live Review Recap is a recorded version of a previously live streamed event from http://pcper.com/live.  If you couldn't make the original air time, or simply want to re-watch, the on-demand version is provided below!

Z77 chipset based motherboards are already available and on the market and while we can't share performance or details on the Ivy Bridge processor yet, we can show off and discuss the Z77 chipset and motherboards.  In our Live Review we did a quick unboxing and preview of several models including:

  • MSI Z77A-GD65 - $169
  • Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H - $189
  • Intel DZ77GA-70K - $239
  • ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe - $274
  • ECS Z77H2-AX (Non Golden Model - $164)

GIGABYTE Launches Dual UEFI 7 Series Motherboards For Ivy Bridge Processors

Subject: Motherboards | April 10, 2012 - 01:28 PM |
Tagged: Z77, Ivy Bridge, gigabyte

City of Industry, California, April 9th 2011– GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, today launched their long awaited 7 series motherboards designed to deliver the ultimate performance for 3rd generation Intel Core processors. Combining the world’s first Dual UEFI BIOS, a new and unique All Digital power design, and the latest GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 4 technologies, GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards offer an extremely compelling case for a system upgrade.

“The new GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards are designed to offer a seamless upgrade for enthusiast PC DIYers by providing specifications and features that will be compatible with future CPUs, VGA cards, memory, SSDs, and wireless protocols for years to come,” commented Henry Kao, Vice President of GIGABYTE Motherboard Business Unit. “It makes sense then for us to aggressively transition to GIGABYTE Z77 and H77 motherboards so that enthusiasts can purchase them in anticipation for the release of Intel’s highly sought after 3rd Gen Core processors.”

“Intel is excited to partner with GIGABYTE on their Intel 7 Series Chipset-based motherboard launch, “ said Zane Ball, GM Intel Desktop Platforms. “We are pleased that these new boards support Intel’s responsiveness technologies, including Intel Rapid Start, Intel Smart Connect and Intel Smart Response. Users will enjoy snappier performance and quicker access to their most important applications.”

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Dual UEFI with Exclusive 3D BIOS
GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards also feature our revolutionary 3D BIOS that is based on the exclusive GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS technology. With an updated look and feel, this new 3D BIOS offers two distinct modes of interaction in a BIOS environment, 3D Mode and Advanced Mode, that re-draw the traditional BIOS user experience with a far more intuitive and graphical interface. 

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Exclusive All Digital Engine
Our new All Digital power design for GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards allows users to have greater control over the power delivered to their 3rd generation Intel Core processors on the LGA 1155 socket. Using entirely digital controllers for the CPU, processor graphics, VTT and system memory, users can enjoy more precise power delivery to the PC’s energy sensitive components than previously possible.

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GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 4 – Insist on an Ultra Durable Motherboard
GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards feature the latest GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 4 technology, embracing a range of exclusive technologies that guarantee DIY PC builders the absolute best protection for their PC. Specific features prevent common malfunction threats including humidity and moisture, electro-static discharge, sudden power loss and high operating temperatures.

Lucid Virtu MVP
GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards feature the latest Lucid Virtu GPU virtualization technology, Lucid Universal MVP, which improves the visual and graphical performance of your PC. Offering switchable graphics allows the PC to automatically switch between onboard Intel processor graphics and a discrete GPU depending on the application being used, Lucid Virtu MVP also features HyperFormance technology which eliminates redundant rendering tasks to improve frame rates and eliminate screen tearing.

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Set Your Desktop Free: GIGABYTE Bluetooth 4.0/Dual Band 300Mbps Wi-Fi PCIe Card
GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards include an exclusive PCIe expansion
card that offers support for the latest Bluetooth 4.0 (Smart Ready) and dual band 300Mbps Wi-Fi connectivity*. With the growing availability of affordable or free remote mobile to PC software, such as Splashtop and Dropbox, GIGABYTE believes that now is the time to explore and enjoy the home cloud: a personal cloud within the secure environment of a home network where the performance and functionality of desktop PCs can be utilized and controlled by portable cloud devices.

GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards feature an exclusive EZ Setup utility that allows users to more easily implement the latest Intel responsiveness technologies. Within a simple user interface, you can install and configure Intel Smart Response, Intel Rapid Start, and Intel Smart Connect. GIGABYTE EZ Setup will automate the install procedure for each of these technologies, reducing the procedure to a few simple clicks of your mouse.

Onboard mSATA Support
All ATX form factor GIGABYTE 7 series motherboards feature an onboard mSATA connector* that, together with GIGABYTE’s EZ Smart Response technology, allows users to simply and cost effectively enjoy better responsiveness from their PCs. mSATA solid state drives have been made popular by the rapid growth of tablet PCs, and provide a cheaper solution for smart caching because they are available in smaller capacities than traditional SSDs.

 

GIGABYTE 7 Series Motherboard Models

G1.Sniper 3

GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB WIFI

GA-Z77X-UD5H

 

GA-Z77X-UD3H

GA-Z77X-D3H

GA-Z77-D3H

GA-Z77-DS3H

G1.Sniper M3

GA-Z77MX-D3H

GA-Z77M-D3H

 

GA-H77M-D3H

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Gigabyte

ZOTAC Debuts Intel 7-Series Mini-ITX Mainboard

Subject: Motherboards | April 10, 2012 - 12:30 PM |
Tagged: zotac, Z77-ITX WiFi, mini ITX, H77-ITX WiFi

For you mini-ITX fans, Zotac has released a pair of motherboards, one H77 and one Z77 which will let you build a tiny machine powered by an Ivy Bridge processor ... whenever Intel gets around to releasing them.  Both boards are similar, with a single PCIe 3.0 slot and two DIMM slots, the differences lay in the features.  The biggest difference is the overclockability of the Z77 model, for those looking to build a small gaming machine.  On the other hand the H77 model is more flexible in its video outputs with a DVI-I connector replacing the second HDMI port the Z77 sports.  You can see the rest of the differences below.  

HONG KONG – Apr. 10, 2012 – ZOTAC International, a global innovator and manufacturer of graphics cards, mainboards and mini-PCs, today debuts the ZOTAC Intel® 7-series powered mainboards for the latest 3rd Generation Intel® Core™ family processors. The new ZOTAC Z77-ITX WiFi and H77-ITX WiFi mainboards pack support for Intel® LGA1155 processors into a mini-ITX form factor without sacrificing expansion capabilities.

“ZOTAC is the global innovator when it comes to mini-ITX mainboards. We continue to push the performance envelope with mini-ITX to rival much larger systems,” says Carsten Berger, marketing director, ZOTAC International. “The latest Intel® Ivy Bridge processors paired with our ZOTAC Intel® 7-series mini-ITX mainboards make an unbeatable performance combination without sacrificing energy-efficiency.”

Expansion capabilities are plentiful with the ZOTAC Intel 7-series mini-ITX platforms and include PCI Express x16, capable of PCI Express 3.0 speeds with 3rd Generation Intel® Core™ family processors, dedicated mSATA slot for lightning-fast SSDs, USB 3.0, USB 2.0, SATA 6.0 Gb/s and SATA 3.0 Gb/s. Dual Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 3.0 network connectivity are integrated for maximum networking performance when connected to wired or wireless home networks and Bluetooth accessories with the ZOTAC Intel® 7-series mainboards.

It’s time to play with the ZOTAC Z77-ITX WiFi and H77-ITX WiFi A series mainboards.

  • New ZOTAC Intel® 7-series mini-ITX mainboards
  • 3rd Generation Intel® Core™ family ready
  • LGA1155 socket (2nd Generation Intel® Core™ family compatible)
  • 1 PCI Express x16 (PCIe 3.0 capable with 3rd Generation Intel® Core™ family CPU) expansion, 1 mSATA slot
  • Onboard 802.11n WiFi & Bluetooth 3.0
  • Mini-ITX form factor

Z77ITX-A-E(A229)_image1.jpg

ZOTAC Z77-ITX WiFi

  • Intel® Z77 Express
  • 2 x DDR3-1600 DIMM slots (2133 MHz OC) (up to 16GB)
  • 2 x HDMI & 1 x mini-DisplayPort outputs
  • 2 x SATA 6.0 Gb/s, 2 x SATA 3.0 Gb/s & RAID 0, 1, 0+1 & 5 support
  • 4 x USB 3.0 (2 on back panel, 2 via pin header)
  • 8 x USB 2.0 (4 on back panel, 4 via pin header)
  • Dual Gigabit Ethernet
  • Overclocking capable

H77ITX-A-E (A209)_image1.jpg

ZOTAC H77-ITX WiFi A series

  • Intel® H77 Express
  • 2 x DDR3-1600 DIMM slots (up to 16GB)
  • 1 x DVI-I, 1 x DisplayPort & 1 x HDMI
  • 2x SATA 6.0 Gb/s, 3 x SATA 3.0 Gb/s, RAID 0, 1, 0+1 & 5 support & 1 x eSATA
  • 4 x USB 3.0 (2 on back panel, 2 via pin header)
  • 8 x USB 2.0 (4 on back panel, 4 via pin header)
  • Gigabit Ethernet
Source: Zotac

For those who prefer their boards with a bit of experience, MSI's Big Bang XPower II X79

Subject: Motherboards | April 10, 2012 - 09:38 AM |
Tagged: msi, Big Bang XPower II, x79, lga2011

If you are looking for Z77 previews then the long list below should keep you occupied, but since Ivy Bridge processors are not yet available these tests with Sandy Bridge processors are more of a performance preview even if almost every model of Z77 board can already be had.  If you are more interested in [H]ard numbers then why not check out [H]'s review of the MSI Big Bang XPower II, a fully evolved X79 motherboard.  This chipset has matured and expanded its capabilities, a Core i-7 3960K was perfectly stable at 4.7GHz after a bit of work.  The board came off of the review with flying colours even if the BIOS was renamed to the MSI DoubleClick BIOS thanks to some issues with the UEFI's interface.

H_MSI_X_2.jpg

"MSI pulls out all the stops to create the Big Bang XPower II. A true enthusiast class motherboard designed for over the top enthusiast rigs. The XPower II is able to satisfy the overclocker and fits the needs of the multi-GPU user looking for a bigger bang. And yes, you even get fake bullets and guns on your heatsinks."

Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:

Motherboards

 

Source: [H]ard|OCP

ASUS launches new ROG Maximus V GENE Motherboard

Subject: Motherboards | April 10, 2012 - 09:11 AM |
Tagged: Z77, ROG, PCI-E 3.0, maximus v gene, mATX, lga1155, asus

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Now in its fifth generation, ASUS ROG (Republic of Gamers) has launched its Maximus V Series motherboards with the Maximus V GENE. This micro-ATX powerhouse is built using the latest Intel Z77 chipset, which supports Intel’s latest LGA1155 processors. Featuring full PCI-Express Gen-3 capabilities with Intel’s 3rd Generation processor the Republic of Gamers team equips the Maximus V GENE with exclusive features such as the Extreme Engine DIGI+ II power control design, SupremeFX III gaming audio, Intel Ethernet with ROG GameFirst software and the newly added mPCIe Combo card.

mpcie.jpg

ROG Exclusive mPCIe Combo Card offer users the best expansion options
The mPCIe Combo card is a new innovation by the ROG team, combining the twin functions of mPCIe with mSATA into a single, extensible add-in card that still allows full use of the PCI-Express slots for multi-GPU graphics. Use an mSATA SSD with Intel’s Smart Response Technology to greatly improve hard-drive performance or as an ultra-fast OS drive to free up standard SATA ports for other uses. The combination of a standard mPCIe socket on the other side allows unique upgrades such as WiFi, Bluetooth, 3G/4G, GPS and other connectivity options.

Premium Hardware, Optimized Design, Best Overclocking
The Maximus V GENE is true to the Republic of Gamers core, as a motherboard built for overclocking. Do not accept imitations or compromise with first generation digital designs. The upgraded Extreme Engine DIGI+ II includes a 8+4+2 (CPU, iGPU, DRAM) phase design offers the best in precise digital power control from two DIGI+ controllers. Combined with class leading ROG UEFI BIOS functions, such as the new pre-configured memory IC profiles, specially sourced electrical components and industry first trace designs the Maximus V Gene yields an unmatched overclocking experience for enthusiasts.

SupremeFX III Sound – Premium Gaming Audio
Designed to bring gamers the best possible integrated audio, the SupremeFX III sound is a wholly separate audio PCB, identified by its ‘redline’ adjoining the main GENE V motherboard. SupremeFX Shielding technology maximizes the audio quality by further isolating the audio processing from EMI, encasing the chipset under a custom aluminum cap. Combined with a large 1500uF buffer capacitor to provide sufficient energy for even the loudest sounds, SupremeFX III attains a lossless audio of up to 110dB SNR. The addition of X-Fi Xtreme Fidelity, EAX Advanced HD 5.0, Creative Alchemy and THX TruStudio PRO complete the lineup of audio technologies that offer an incredibly immersive gaming experience.

Intel Ethernet, ROG GameFirst and LucidLogix Virtu MVP
Intel Ethernet and ROG GameFirst software combines up to 35% saving in CPU usage with network traffic prioritizing, while LucidLogix Virtu MVP support enables a new hybrid graphics mode that boosts overall GPU performance by up to 60%.

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Source: ASUS

PC Perspective Live: Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H Motherboard Sneak Peek

Subject: Motherboards | April 6, 2012 - 03:14 PM |
Tagged: z77x-ud5h, Z77, video, live review, live, gigabyte

Just a quick post for those of you that might have missed our short sneak peek of the Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H motherboard from today's episode of PC Perspective Live.  Enjoy!

We know far more about the Z77 chipset than the chips that will go in it

Subject: Motherboards | April 2, 2012 - 10:38 AM |
Tagged: Ivy Bridge, Z77, Gigabyte Z77X-D3H

The Guru of 3D examines the GA-Z77X-D3H, a mainstream Z77 board which is not quite as feature rich or expensive as models like the Sniper, but still offers more than a budget board.  It sports three PCIe 16x slots capable of 2-way SLI or Crossfire, a half dozen USB 3.0 ports, an mSATA connection, support for Lucid Virtu MVP and Quicksync and of course Gigabyte's UEFI implementation, 3D BIOS.  Of course we can't see benchmarks of these boards with an Ivy Bridge processor in them, but it is interesting to note that this is the 10th Ivy Bridge board from Gigabyte.

G3D_z778.jpg

"We preview the Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H which is intended for Intels 22nm processors that will be coming out later this year based on Socket LGA1155 however the motherboard also supports Sandy bridge processors like the Core i7 2600K.

While we are not allowed to publish any testing results whatsoever related to Ivy Bridge on this GA-Z77X-D3H, we are able to give you a closer look at the motherboard itself. Have a peek at what is about to launch soon."

Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:

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Source: Guru3D

ECS trims the fat off and presents two new mini-ITX boards

Subject: Motherboards, Systems | March 29, 2012 - 08:59 AM |
Tagged: ECS, elitegroup, mini ITX, CDC-TI Thin, H61H2-TI Thin, SFF

The CDC-TI Thin Mini-ITX may not interest many readers as it is designed for an Atom processor which have never been terribly popular here at PC Perspective, even for HTPC builds.  The CDC-TI Thin Mini-ITX is a totally different story as it can handle LGA1155 chips and has an HDMI out, making it a beautiful choice for an HTPC or even a SFF portable gaming machine although you might be disappointed by the orientation of the full and half length PCIe slots.  Consider it a challenge and see if you can get a decent half height GPU in there!

Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), the world’s leading motherboard, graphics card, barebone system, notebook and mobile device manufacturer announces a variety of options of Thin Mini-ITX for users to meet their different demands with AIO (All-In-One) and motherboards. To target different segments, ECS Thin Mini-ITX motherboards are not only compatible with AIO but also with small form factor PCs, offering a wide range of solutions including H61H2-TI, H61H2-G11 and CDC-TI. With the growth in popularity of AIO, acceptance of the Thin Mini-ITX platform proves to be leading standard of this new trend, allowing for future-proof upgradeability.

CDC-TI(A)02.jpg

The brand new CDC-TI Thin Mini-ITX motherboard supports Intel® Atom™ D2700/D2550/D2500 Dual-core processors. The CPU and Memory are supported 100% by Solid Capacitors in order to provide better conductivity and longevity. CDC-TI features 2 x DDR3 SO-DIMM socket supporting up to 4GB, 2 x SATA 3Gb/s, 2 x USB 2.0, 2 Mini-PCIe (1 Full/ 1 Half), VGA, HDMI and LVDS support. It is distinguished by its fan-less design because of the lowest CPU power consumption of <10W TDP. ECS CDC-TI not only works well for Thin Mini-ITX AIOs but also for other form factors that can take advantage of a low-profile board.

H61H2-TI(A)02.jpg

The other H61H2-TI Thin Mini-ITX motherboard can support socket LGA1155 Intel® 2nd and 3rd Generation Core processors. It features Intel® H61 Express chipset with SATA 3Gb/s, 2 x DDR3 SO-DIMM socket up to 16GB, 2 x USB 3.0, 2 Mini-PCIe (1 Full/ 1 Half), 1 x mSATA, and HDMI input/output that deliver you an excellent performance and amazing experience. ECS H61H2-TI provides you a multi-functional solution within a limited space. Small but versatile.

Fatal1ty's Asrock X79 Professional Motherboard

Subject: Motherboards | March 26, 2012 - 12:57 PM |
Tagged: fatal1ty, Asrock X79 Professional, lga 2011, x79

As the ASRock X79 Professional carries the Fatal1ty logo, you can be sure that it is designed for gamers.  That shows in the 4 PCI Express 3.0 x16 slots which can handle 16x, 8x, 16x or x16, x8, x8, x8 depending on if you want a three or four card setup.  Six SATA 6Gbps ports will ensure your SSDs have enough bandwidth to keep them happy, with another four SATA2 ports if you decide to go whole hog on storage.  Funky Kit's overclocking experiments were very impressive with this board especially since they kept the voltage to a relatively safe 1.45V.  If you are going with an X79 based system, this $280 board is worth a look.

FK_fatal.jpg

"If you are looking for a great overclocking board but do not want to spend a ton of money, this is your board. The X79 Professional easily exceeded my expectations for a board at this price. It easily gives boards that cost twice as much some real tough competition."

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Source: Funky Kit

An Assassin, just like his father, Gigabyte's new X79 motherboard

Subject: Motherboards | March 16, 2012 - 10:28 AM |
Tagged: gigabyte, assassin 2, x79, lga2011

The Gigabyte Assassin 2 carries on with Gigabyte's militaristic theme with a heatsink shaped like a handgun but there are some new features over and above the bright green expansion slots.  The board uses the E-ATX form factor and sports not only Bigfoot's KillerNIC onboard but also a WiFi card with two antenna, giving your next LGA2011 build a lot of networking power.  LanOC's testing revealed that the storage controller on this board lagged behind some similar models and they had some audio issues as well, though it is possible a BIOS update could change that.  They were also disappointed to be limited to 4 DIMMs maximum, as other high end X79 boards sport an extra pair of slots for a truly large memory pool.

LOC_assassin2.jpg

"It seems almost like it was yesterday when I took a close look at Gigabytes Assassin, flagship motherboard on the X58 chipset. Here we are less than a year later with a new chipset and socket available. That means it’s time once again to take a look at Gigabyte’s flagship gaming motherboard, the Assassin 2 X79. With a lower price point, smaller form factor, and all of the features of the original we loved the Assassin 2 should be a great board. Of course we won’t know that for sure until we dig in a little farther, so let’s jump in!"

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Source: LanOC

ASUS gives you previews but MSI gives you full Ivy Bridge reviews

Subject: Motherboards | March 6, 2012 - 02:30 PM |
Tagged: msi, Ivy Bridge, Z77, z77a-gd65, lga1155

Legit Reviews have posted a full review of the Ivy Bridge based MSI Z77A-GD65, with an i7-2600K, 8GB DDR3-1600, a Corsair Force GT 240GB SSD and a Radeon HD6950.  This new platform brings native USB 3.0 to Intel chipsets, but since they don't yet have an Ivy Bridge CPU to test we don't get a chance to see PCIe 3.0 in action, the new SATA 6Gbps controller fared well though.  There is a new UEFI ClickBIOS implementation which some might find a compelling reason to upgrade but if you are currently running a Sandy Bridge machine you are better off to wait until you can get your hands on one of the soon to be released Ivy Bridge processors.

LR_msi-z77a-gd65-layout-2.jpg

"It's going to be an interesting ride for the Intel Z77 chipset. It is looking like the only difference is the addition of the SuperSpeed USB 3.0. The problem with the Intel Z77 chipset is that it doesn't feature anything really worth upgrading for over the Intel Z68 system. If your looking to build a new system with either a Sandy Bridge or Ivy Bridge processor, the Intel Z77 would be the way to go. If you're on an existing 'Sandy Bridge' system, there really isn't a good reason to make the switch..."

Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:

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Just Delivered: MSI Z77A-GD65 Motherboard Preview

Subject: Motherboards, Processors, Chipsets | February 29, 2012 - 09:03 AM |
Tagged: just delivered, z77a-gd65, Z77, sandy bridge, msi, Ivy Bridge, Intel

In preparation for Intel's 3rd generation of Intel Core microprocessor architecture (can you see we are dancing around things already), MSI has started showing a new line of motherboards.  While at CES in January we saw the Z77A-GD65 option that will be available soon and offers some interesting new specs and features. 

IMG_6094.JPG

The Z77A-GD65 sports Military Class III components as well as support for a host of new items including PCI Express 3.0 and USB 3.0.  While we can't share much more than that in terms of details I thought it might be worth showing off a few shots of the upcoming motherboard from our friends at MSI.

IMG_6096.JPG

IMG_6097.JPG

IMG_6099.JPG

See more photos of the MSI Z77A-GD65!!

Apart from the aesthetics, MSI's X79A-GD65 (8D) is a solid choice for LGA2011 processors

Subject: Motherboards | February 28, 2012 - 11:55 AM |
Tagged: MSI X79A-GD65 (8D), msi, lga2011

The MSI Z79A-GD65 (8D) provoked an immediately negative reaction from [H]ard|OCP as two of the first things they noticed were the inconvenient placing of the CMOS battery and the auxiliary power plug for the PCIe slots.  If you are planning on a triple GPU system you are not going to like this board.  However if you plan on only a single or dual GPU system then these points of contention may not apply to you and other features, such as the impressive overclocking potential, make this board a solid choice.  It seems that it could use a BIOS update though, not only because of strange voltage readings but also because of the clunky implementation of the UEFI aka Click-BIOS.

H_MSI X79A-GD65_2.jpg

"MSI is known for high quality motherboards, many of which are targeted toward the enthusiast and gamer. It is one of these products we are looking at today in the form of the MSI X79A-GD65 (8D). A mid-range offering in the LGA2011 motherboard market. Sandy Bridge E processor and 8 DIMM slots for your exploitation!"

Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Foxconn's Quantum Force gains in reputation

Subject: Motherboards | February 15, 2012 - 03:31 PM |
Tagged: x79, sandy bridge-e, quantumian-1, foxconn

Eagle-eyed readers will recognize this board from the "From the Forums" post that we presented to you last week.  It seems that our stalwart Forum member is not the only one to locate Foxconn's uniquely named X79 board, the Quantumian-1 from their Quantum Force lineup.  NinjaLane has a quick look at the board here and cover some of the features immediately observable on the motherboard.  If you are looking for hard numbers though, Windwithme's Forum post is still the way to go.

NL_quantumian_glam.jpg

"In this preview we will be looking at one of the latest motherboards in the Quantum Force lineup the Quantumian-1 X79. The Quantumian-1n is an enthusiast level motherboard designed for high-end gaming and overclocking using the full set of features common to Quantum Force motherboards."

Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:

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Source: Ninjalane

Rawr, ASUS unleashed the X79 Sabertooth

Subject: Motherboards | February 1, 2012 - 02:16 PM |
Tagged: asus, Sabertooth, Patsburg, x79, lga 2011

ASUS Sabretooth TUF series has been growing, from the P67 version on the Intel side to the 990FX version for AMD users and now has an X79 model.  These boards all feature TUF Thermal Armor which not only gives a unique look but is also intended to provide enhanced cooling.  This is a high end family, which features ASUS' customized back panel and a five year warranty to help justify the price.  It sports three PCIe 3.0 slots, two at 16x and one at 8x as well as a pair of PCIe 2.0 1x slots and a legacy PCI slot.  For storage you four SATA 6Gbps ports and two 6Gbps eSATA ports split between three controllers as well as four 3Gbps ports.  You also enjoy a half dozen USB 3.0 ports and even Firewire.  Take a look at one of ASUS best offerings for LGA2011 processors at Hardware Canucks.

HWC_Intro.jpg

"In mid November we saw the launch of the enthusiast-based Sandy Bridge Extreme platform along with the X79 (code name Patsburg) chipsets and since then we have brought you reviews of the i7-3960X CPU and the Rampage IV Extreme motherboard. Today we continue our walk down the LGA2011 road and bring you another highly anticipated board from ASUS: the Sabertooth X79."

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Five X79 boards to choose from

Subject: Motherboards | January 23, 2012 - 02:22 PM |
Tagged: x79, asus, asrock, Intel, msi, ECS, lga2011, p9x79 deluxe, X79 Extreme9, X79R-AX, DX79SI, X79A-GD65(8D)

There are five usual suspects when discussing the X79 chipset, Asus's P9X79 Deluxe, the Asrock X79 Extreme9, ECS's X79R-AX, Intel's DX79SI and last but not least, MSI's X79A-GD65(8D).  While very similar overall, each board has distinct features that the companies have introduced as standard over the years, from ASUS' Q-LED to MSI's OC Genie.  TechSpot had their work cut out for them, the boards range in price by $100 and the board that they picked as the winner might just surprise you.

TS_Intel_10S.jpg

"Those wanting to build the ultimate performance system will naturally turn to Intel’s new LGA2011 platform which recently made its debut with the Sandy Bridge-E processors. This highly refined architecture takes the original Sandy Bridge design and pumps it full of steroids, while adding a few new things. Moreover, the platform is expected to support enthusiast-level Ivy Bridge processors that are slated for release by the end of 2012, adding to the platform's longevity.

So if you're already spending $600+ on a processor alone, you'll want to make sure your motherboard is equally impressive. Today we are checking out five high-end X79 motherboards from Asus, Asrock, ECS, Intel and MSI."

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Source: TechSpot

Of ASRock's consistency and an Extreme X79 motherboard

Subject: Motherboards | January 13, 2012 - 12:21 PM |
Tagged: asrock, x79, X79 Extreme4, lga2011, sandy bridge-e

[H]ard|OCP starts out their review of the ASRock X79 Extreme4 with a tale of two motherboards and the quality issues that they discovered.   In part it is a warning and in part it offers contrast to the decent quality of the review model that they received.  The board did display a few minor problems during testing, which prompted [H] to caution anyone picking this or any other ASRock board that they may need to deal with the RMA process.  Assuming you get a working board the Extreme4 offers a great experience for you.  The two PCIe 16x slots and single 8x slot are all PCIe 2.0 which may disappoint some who plan on upgrading their CPU or installing a PCIe SSD card.  Apart from those two main issues, [H] were quite happy with this board.

H_extreme4.jpg

"After the last couple of ASRock boards, I wasn’t sure if I ever wanted to see another one. The ASRock X79 Extreme4 not only surpassed my admittedly low expectations, but proved to be the exact opposite of the last two motherboards. Grab a sandwich and read on. You don’t want to miss this one."

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

ASUS Rampage IV Formula and Gene plus dual LGA2011 MB showcased

Subject: Motherboards, Shows and Expos | January 10, 2012 - 05:38 PM |
Tagged: rampage iv gene, rampage iv formula, lga2011, gene, CES, asus

While we have already detailed the ASUS tablet and notebook products shown here at CES, the company didn't leave the enthusiasts and PC builders out in the cold.  In this video we chat with J.J. Guerrero about the upcoming Rampage IV Formula and Gene motherboards that bring some interesting new audio features to the X79 platform.  Oh, and just for fun, a quick look at the upcoming dual-socket LGA2011 Xeon motherboard for those that think 32-thread systems are the way to go.

PC Perspective's CES 2012 coverage is sponsored by MSI Computer.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

CES 2012: EVGA parties like it's socket 2011 in Viva Las Vegas. Dual-socket SR-X mobo, UV Plus+ 39 video out for USB3, PSUs

Subject: General Tech, Motherboards, Cases and Cooling, Shows and Expos | January 10, 2012 - 04:22 PM |
Tagged: evga, CES 2012, CES

There are most commonly three types of booths in CES: a display of one or more new and innovative products to hope to blaze their very own trail, a display of one or more intriguing iterations on existing product lines, or a display of some sort of pasta or alcoholic beverage. This year EVGA appears to fit mostly into the middle category; I hear they make good chips, however. The three major iterations this year quite possibly could not be more diverse: a new dual-socket Xeon motherboard, new power supplies, and an update to their UV Plus+ USB video adapter.

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There’s something ironic about HDMI and DVI products by EVGA.

Dual-Socket 2011 SR-X Xeon motherboard

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Not to be outdone by their old pizza box-sized components, EVGA announced their new SR-X motherboard to bring a product like the SR-2 to socket 2011. This time around they retain their 12 DIMM slots update their PCI-E slots to the third generation with 4-way SLI possible. You can also expect 8 SAS/SATA ports to connect a large number of hard drives at 6Gbps to your computer. It is clear that EVGA has aimed this PC motherboard at enthusiasts who want what they want and have the credit to get it.

1500W, 1000W, 750W power supplies

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EVGA has made a few power supplies in the past so why not add a few more products to their portfolio? Partially pictured above is the 1000W unit that can provide 82A over the 12V rail -- which should be useful to pair with a Quad-SLI SR-X rig; and if not, there’s the 1500W one with a stated “customizable number of 12V rails” whatever that actually means.

UV Plus+ 39 video out by USB 3.0

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The general masses regularly ask for methods to connect their computers to their HDTV through their USB ports and are routinely shocked to find that it is not a simple cable solution. Ponder that, USB cannot do everything… or can it? EVGA updated their UV Plus+ 19 with their UV Plus+ 39 to add support for dual-monitor output and USB3.0 for higher bandwidth, though USB 2.0 is still supported. There is no word on whether the maximum resolution would be reduced in dual-monitor mode. If you are worried about graphics acceleration over a USB device, the driver created links to your real video card thus you still have access to your GPU for processing.

Now we just need to find out about their video cards.

PC Perspective's CES 2012 coverage is sponsored by MSI Computer.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

Source: PCPer

Take a closer look at MSI's new Z77 motherboards

Subject: Motherboards, Shows and Expos | January 10, 2012 - 03:19 PM |
Tagged: Z77, msi, lga1155, Ivy Bridge, CES

You probably saw Scott's coverage of the unveiling of the new Z77 chipset based motherboards from Gigabyte which will support Intel's soon to be released Ivy Bridge family of processors.  This spells a return to LGA 1155, though don't expect your old Sandy Bridge processor to be able to take advantage of all the features of this new high end chipset.

MSI has two brand new boards they are showing off at CES 2012, the Z77A-GD80 and the Z77A-GD65.   The first will be their new flagship motherboard and will feature new versions of ClickBIOS, their UEFI implementation and Multi-BIOS overclocking helper which will allow you to save profiles and recover from BIOS corruption.  The board will continue their tradition of PCIe 3.0 compliance with three 16x slots and it will have four dual dual channel DIMM slots that can accept up to DDR3-2667.  They've also included four USB 3.0 and four SATA 6Gbps ports for your storage needs.

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 The Z77A-G65 below sports the same overall features as the GD80 with some changes to the PCB.  Looking to the top of the board you can see the GD65 lacks a heatsink at the very top edge but you can still see that MSI has used Military Class III components on the motherboard and the always on USB charging port.

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*update*  The missing link has been found that seperates the GD80 from the GD65 and that difference is none other than Thunderbolt.  The Z77A-GA80 has Thunderbolt support, the new interface which allows an external peice of hardware direct access to the PCIe bus and will allow transfer speeds of up to 10Gbps. That speed allows the use of devices like MSI's GUS II, an external video card enclosure that comes with an expensive and sometimes hard to find Thunderbolt cable.  That interface is not limited to GPUs, it will be interesting to see what use enthusiasts who purchase the Z77A-GD80 will put Thunderbolt to.

PC Perspective's CES 2012 coverage is sponsored by MSI Computer.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

Source: MSI