P55s are getting cheaper already
We are getting REALLY close to the launch of the new Intel Lynnfield processors (for really this time) and along with them will come a BARRAGE of new motherboards based on the P55 chipset. We have already spent some time with several of them but wanted to get at least a couple more of our pictorial/video previews online for you all to see to keep the juices flowing for launch.
This time we are taking a look at the MSI P55-GD65 motherboard; a mid-range board that will offer you a solid feature set, stable power and overclocking functionality for a modest price of $160 or so. I have included a brief video preview here followed by some photos and descriptions. Enjoy!
As with nearly all the P55 motherboards we have seen thus far, the P55-GD65 has support for both ATI CrossFire and NVIDIA SLI technologies (two-way only though).
The layout is clean and basic as this lower-cost board will be missing some of the frills found on higher end motherboards. You still get enough space for most any kind of CPU cooling, two x16 PCIe graphics card slots, a pair of x1 PCIe slots, 1 x4 PCIe slot and two legacy PCI slots.
MSI's motherboards are using DrMOS-based MOSFETs that will provide the power switching capabilities comparable to four standard MOSFETs. The GD65 model uses a 6+1 design so you should effectively see a 24-phase design here.
There are four DIMM slots for the dual-channel DDR3 memory that Intel's Lynnfield CPUs support as well as a unique voltage monitoring connection seen here as the odd blue connections. Here you can use a multimeter to gauge the voltages of the CPU, memory, chipset and more without having to find specific traces. This is really an extreme overclocker's feature only.
Above you can see the heatpipe MSI uses (called the SuperPipe) to share heatsink duties between the two areas of power components as well as the 8-pin ATX power connection.
As I mentioned above, the expansion configuration is pretty robust and offers support for up to two graphics cards in SLI or CrossFire. You can see the OC Genie and power buttons at the bottom of the image as well - full descriptions and uses are in the video above.
Though nearly standard by today's levels, MSI does provide enough SATA for most anyone on the P55-GD65 including 6 channels courtesy of the P55 chipset and a pair of channels (one internal, one eSATA) via JMicron chip.
The external connections show a good range of options from the legacy PS2 ports to the USB-powered eSATA and more.
Thanks for checking out this quick preview of the MSI P55-GD65 motherboard - we will have full reviews and benchmarks of the new motherboard options and CPUs later this week!