Here are my requirements for a socket 1366 X58 mobo:
12Gb DDR3 Ram @ 2000
SATA 2 ports - 6 are probably a given on most boards
RAID 0,1 onboard support
2 PCI-E 16X 2.0 slots with 2-way SLI or xfire support
1 or 2 extra PCI slots for sound, etc.
Onboard 5.1 Audio
So my questions are:
Are there any particular S1366 boards outside Asus (from Gigabyte, evga, intel, supermicro etc.) that will fulfill these requirements and have a competitive price, that you would recommend?
The P6T and the P6T deluxe from Asus seem to be the most popular out there. The P6T deluxe costs ~$100 more, what advantages does it have over the P6T?
The high end S1366 boards, the Rampage II (& III?) Extreme and the Supercomputer, have the distinctive feature of 3-way SLI and multiple PCI ports. Aside from this, what reason would someone have to buy them over the likes of the P6T's?
Well... all X58 boards support 12GB, most 24GB. Most come with six SATA II ports, the ICH10R chipset which comes with LGA 1366 boards supports RAID 0, 1, 5 and 1+0. Most boards have two PCI-e lanes at 16x, and one or two extra PCI slots, although, you'd be better off with PCI-e 1x.
I base my choices on specs, price, and brand name. I've stuck with Gigabyte over the last few years, but have purchased ASUS, Intel and MSI, all great companies. A board costing $100 less and doing what I want it to do would always be my choice...