Lga1366 motherboard question

Hi, I have relatively low levels of in-depth computer knowledge so please bear with me, I am a keen learner :D .

I intend to upgrade to a motherboard with the lga1366 socket to go along with a i7 950. I have done my research and have been pretty impressed with reviews regarding the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R, in addition the price fits in well with my budget.

However I have noticed this motherboard and several others have a large number of PCI-E x16 slots (this particular mobo has 4). My question is what can all these slots be used for? The obvious answer is for a multiple graphics card configuration, however as far as I am aware this gigabyte mobo only supports up to 2 graphics cards in SLI, besides any more and they probably wouldn't fit in any case. This leaves 2 slots unanswered for?

Thanks in advance.
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  1. First, I appreciate the stellar reviews but in practice the GA-X58A-UD3R is a very unstable and problematic under powered MOBO, and a frequent visitor. Instead, I would strongly encourage you to consider the ASUS P6X58D-E.

    Actually, both the GA-X58A-UD3R and P6X58D-E are 1/2/3-WAY CF/SLI GPU MOBOs, as for the remainder - RAID Cards, Dedicated Sound Card(s), USB / Firewire expansion, specialty cards, etc.

    Most mid-tower cases will accommodate a "full rack" of cards including 3-WAY GTX nVidia or ATI HD Radeon GPUs, etc.
  2. Thanks for the advice and recommendation, really cleared everything up, I'll be sure to check out the ASUS mobo ;)
  3. Google {X58A-UD3R + SSD + BSOD}
  4. I also have often recommended the P6X58D-E an have done many builds with it. However, if not springing for the R3E, I am now recommending the Sabertooth ($200) over the older P6X58D-E ($240). Differences aredetailed here:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007627%2050001315%20600007887&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&CompareItemList=280|13-131-641^13-131-641-TS%2C13-131-665^13-131-665-TS
  5. The important 'details' are missing. The P6X58D-E has 16+2 phase and 3-WAY SLI/CF vs 8+2+2 and 2-WAY; the power alone is worth the difference for the 'old' guy.
  6. I am keen to keep the price as low as possible so long as performance doesn't suffer in key areas and I have all the slots/ inputs I need.

    I will never need to use more than 2 way SLI. As for phase power design, this is a relatively new term to me, I believe it is something to do with the voltages used by the CPU and can have an impact on overclocking, is the difference in 16+2 and 8+2+2 really that important when considering a new motherboard?
  7. If you 'ever' plan to OC the CPU then the number of Phases spells {Stability + Required Power}. If you NEVER plan to OC then it won't matter much. Considering how easy it is to OC the X58 90% of people will OC at some point. If the cost difference was $100 then it won't make too much sense for 'most' people.

    After I had 10/10 UD3R's go 'poof' I researched hours and the P6X58D-E came out the best for the $ AND Stability. None of the P6X58D-E has given me even a though or worry; does it's job extremely well.

    It's your rig and your way -- to 'me' I have peace telling you my experiences.
  8. Your 'experiences' have been enough to make me totally discard the UD3R!
    I will most certainly be OCing, I plan to get an i7 950, I believe the overclocking potential is pretty impressive so I would be stupid not to.
    I will be assessing the options available to me pretty soon when I decide to purchase my motherboard, so far the best option is most certainly the P6X58D-E!
    Thanks again for your input
  9. jaquith said:
    If you 'ever' plan to OC the CPU then the number of Phases spells {Stability + Required Power}. If you NEVER plan to OC then it won't matter much. Considering how easy it is to OC the X58 90% of people will OC at some point. If the cost difference was $100 then it won't make too much sense for 'most' people.

    After I had 10/10 UD3R's go 'poof' I researched hours and the P6X58D-E came out the best for the $ AND Stability. None of the P6X58D-E has given me even a though or worry; does it's job extremely well.

    It's your rig and your way -- to 'me' I have peace telling you my experiences.



    Thanks for your recommendations: I also had my eye caught by the UD3R (Im getting a 950), and this thread came up while searching for reviews/comments on it. Thanks for your recommendation!
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