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Gigabyte GA-X79-UD3 vs MSI X79A-GD45 vs ASRock X79 Extreme3

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June 24, 2013 12:08:21 AM

Hi, I've been looking at these motherboards. As you know, these are all the entry-level motherboards for the x79 chipset.
they seem pretty decent and solid (duh, you get what you pay for). though, the ASRock is a 5 power phase design, whereas the other 2 are 8 power phase design (not sure about the msi).
the Asrock has the first legacy pci slot one slot away from the upper pcie slot, which makes it usable (i have a pci wireless card).
the gigabyte *looks* the best among the 3.

what do you think? you know, as of quality, utilities, 5 vs 8 power phase design....

EDIT: one more question. is there any chance any of these are ivy brigde-e ready?
a b V Motherboard
June 24, 2013 3:42:41 AM

Are you targeting Overclocking your cpu? Power phase design is critical to OC potential. Although any 4+2 phase and above phase design can overclock a system, higher number of phases offer more control(better voltage and current control) and smoother power delivery to the components.

From the few reviews I could quickly locate on these boards, and a good Tom's round up on x79 boards, it seems the MSI is the best bet of the three especially as it is better than the other two for both memory and cpu overclocks and would do well with a locked 2011 cpu.

Anandtech's review of the Gigabyte gives a 4.5 Ghz Oc potential to the board. Tom's achieved close to 4.7 Ghz with the MSI and I could not locate the exact figures for the Extreme 3 but in the link below, the MSI is compared against an extreme 4 which it beat.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/x79-extreme4-dx79to...

The MSI is well featured but more importantly is apparently cooler and more power efficient. It is the one which has my vote.

good luck
-Satyam
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June 24, 2013 5:42:21 AM

satyamdubey said:
Are you targeting Overclocking your cpu? Power phase design is critical to OC potential. Although any 4+2 phase and above phase design can overclock a system, higher number of phases offer more control(better voltage and current control) and smoother power delivery to the components.

From the few reviews I could quickly locate on these boards, and a good Tom's round up on x79 boards, it seems the MSI is the best bet of the three especially as it is better than the other two for both memory and cpu overclocks and would do well with a locked 2011 cpu.

Anandtech's review of the Gigabyte gives a 4.5 Ghz Oc potential to the board. Tom's achieved close to 4.7 Ghz with the MSI and I could not locate the exact figures for the Extreme 3 but in the link below, the MSI is compared against an extreme 4 which it beat.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/x79-extreme4-dx79to...

The MSI is well featured but more importantly is apparently cooler and more power efficient. It is the one which has my vote.

good luck
-Satyam


thanks for your reply... I've done some further research and it seems that I can get both the extreme3 and the extreme4 for the exact same price.

you mentioned a locked 2011 cpu... I would actually like to buy a 4930k, which will require some money saving.. and as I've come to know, current x79 mobos are IB-e ready...

wouldn't it do well with an unlocked (six-core) cpu?
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a b V Motherboard
June 24, 2013 7:01:42 AM

yes an unlocked cpu would always be a better choice but a locked one can also be OC'ed using one of these boards, figures vary but you can get 34% performance increase over your maximum turbo speed with say a 3820.

It's good to know that current boards are IB-E ready. I did not know of this and frankly have not caught up on IB-E as a whole either.

As for extreme 4, it is a good board albeit with the issue of running hotter than others in the same league. If you go for it, ensure you install a proper air flow system in your chassis.

All the best
-Satyam
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June 24, 2013 11:58:21 AM

satyamdubey said:
yes an unlocked cpu would always be a better choice but a locked one can also be OC'ed using one of these boards, figures vary but you can get 34% performance increase over your maximum turbo speed with say a 3820.

It's good to know that current boards are IB-E ready. I did not know of this and frankly have not caught up on IB-E as a whole either.

As for extreme 4, it is a good board albeit with the issue of running hotter than others in the same league. If you go for it, ensure you install a proper air flow system in your chassis.

All the best
-Satyam


yeah, i heard the asrock boards get hotter than others. but, as you suggested, i guess my choice will be for the msi...

yeah well, i read some articles about current x79 motherboards compatibility with IB-e..

thankfully, the 4820k is going to be unlocked, but i dont know whether it is going to be worth it or not, since that it just has 2mb more of l3 cache and is 200 mhz faster than the 4770k which i think is faster/newer.. the 4820k would be a choice if one wants to go for 3 way and 4 way multigpu setups.. plus oc'ing the 3820 with the bus frequency increase i guess makes things warmer in there..

thanks for your help and suggestions..
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