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X79 vs Z68 vs P67

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March 29, 2012 2:28:42 PM

Can someone please explain the difference between these three X79 vs Z68 vs P67 mobos? which is the newest, best, and why?

thanks

More about : x79 z68 p67

a c 716 V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:18:46 PM

Both the P67 and Z68 are LGA 1155 chipsets, the Z68 adds in contrast to the P67 and in most cases (iGPU): iGPU support, Quick Sync, and SSD Caching (SSD cache for a HDD); see -> http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/chipsets/mainstr... All of the chipsets listed allow for OC of both the CPU and RAM.

The LGA 1155 (P67 and Z68) are Dual Channel, by default PCIe 2.0 unless an added PCIe 3.0 switch is added i.e. 'GEN3', and support up to a 4-core/8-thread Sandy Bridge CPU; some CPUs offer less cores and no Hyper-Threading. The Sandy Bridge (32nm) in this family are all PCIe 2.0, and the forthcoming Ivy Bridge (28nm) adds PCIe 3.0 support with a more efficient lithography design. The IB is past due and is expected to be released end of April~June depending on who's rumor mill you follow.

The LGA 2011 (X79) is the newest offering from Intel, and in the SB-E (Sandy Bridge Extreme) which offers: Quad Channel memory, up to 6-core/12-threads, PCIe 3.0, but lacks the Z68 features listed above (no iGPU, no Quick Sync). Some MOBO companies like ASUS added SSD Caching using non-Intel SATA chipsets. Sometime probably next year the IB-E will be released.

Intel Chipsets - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_chipsets#5.2...

Intel Sandy Bridge CPUs - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandy_Bridge#List_of_Sandy...

Intel Ivy Bridge CPUs - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_Bridge_(microarchitecture)
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a c 121 V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:24:37 PM

Google is your friend :) 

And... that is quite the large question, but I will try to write up a simple explanation.



First off is P67 / Z68.

Both chipsets are very similar, and made for the same generation of CPU's. Designed for the Sandy Bridge (2nd gen i series from intel) CPU's are the most common chipset in use. Also compatible with the Ivy Bridge CPU's via a BIOS update.

The P67 came first, and is an all around great board. Supporting up to 4-way SLI and xFire.

The Z68 updates the P67 in a few ways.
1. Onboard Graphics - you can use the graphics processor built into the CPU instead of a dedicated GPU
2. SSD Caching. It allows the SSD to cache commonly used programs natively from the BIOS.

Here is a great review showing the differences
http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-r...

X79 moves away from the LGA1155 SB CPU's to the massively powerful SB-E LGA-2011 Chips. An enthusiast based expensive solution with up to 6 cores and extreme power. A base model will cost about double of a P67/Z68 setup, but the performance increase is often worth it if you can afford it. The X79 is most similar to P67 for the bigger chips. X79 also adds Quad Channel memory as opposed to the Dual channel of the other 2 chipsets
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a b V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:28:46 PM

You want Z68 and a s1155 cpu. Period.

X79 and s2011 is for enthusiest workstations.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:42:17 PM

itzdanielp said:
The P67 came first, and is an all around great board. Supporting up to 4-way SLI and xFire (up to 4-WAY CF and 3-WAY SLI with the aide of a NF200 chipset for 3-WAY SLI Support.

SLI is a licensed (BIOS Key) from nVidia, and the overwhelming vast majority of LGA 1155 that offer SLI are 2-WAY. Cross-Fire (CF) on the other hand is only limited to the number of available PCIe slots that you can 'fit' the AMD/ATI GPUs into, and then in most cases it's x8/x8 or x8/x8 + x4. Further, the limit is 4 GPU cores so SLI/CF 2-WAY (2*2 core) with GPU's that offer 2-cores (e.g. GTX 590 and HD 6990). Also, even with the 'x4' the 'GEN3' switches don't affect those PCIe slots.

And don't even want to try to explain (short of a book) the 4-WAY SLI/CF on the NEWEST LGA 1155 (Z77's), in short a different chipset that splits the PCIe 3.0 (requiring an Ivy Bridge CPU) into x4/x4/x4/x4 PCIe 3.0 -> into -> x8/x8/x8/x8 PCIe 2.0.
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March 29, 2012 4:49:12 PM

wow... thanks to all three of you!

i knew to get a z68 and consider myself informed in most areas of a computer, but the mobo was always a grey area for me....
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a c 121 V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:53:19 PM

jaquith said:
SLI is a licensed (BIOS Key) from nVidia, and the overwhelming vast majority of LGA 1155 that offer SLI are 2-WAY. Cross-Fire (CF) on the other hand is only limited to the number of available PCIe slots that you can 'fit' the AMD/ATI GPUs into, and then in most cases it's x8/x8 or x8/x8 + x4. Further, the limit is 4 GPU cores so SLI/CF 2-WAY (2*2 core) with GPU's that offer 2-cores (e.g. GTX 590 and HD 6990). Also, even with the 'x4' the 'GEN3' switches don't affect those PCIe slots.

And don't even want to try to explain (short of a book) the 4-WAY SLI/CF on the NEWEST LGA 1155 (Z77's), in short a different chipset that splits the PCIe 3.0 (requiring an Ivy Bridge CPU) into x4/x4/x4/x4 PCIe 3.0 -> into -> x8/x8/x8/x8 PCIe 2.0.



My mistake, thanks for the info Jaquith!
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a c 716 V Motherboard
March 29, 2012 4:57:24 PM

Technically, you can 4-WAY'ish 2-WAY GTX 590's. Depends on your definition of 4-WAY ;) 
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March 11, 2013 3:52:13 PM

x79 is more future proof all ready it could hold 64gb whit quad channel of ddr3 ram the z68 or z77 stop at 32gb dual channel , but if its just for gaming go whit i7 3570k z77 cheaper & will go just great
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