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X58 On A Budget: Seven Sub-$200 Core i7 Boards

Features Comparison

Sub-$200 X58 Motherboard Features
 ASRock X58 ExtremeAsus P6T SEECS X58B-A
PCB Revision1.011.01G1.0
NorthbridgeIntel X58 ExpressIntel X58 ExpressIntel X58 Express
SouthbridgeIntel ICH10RIntel ICH10RIntel ICH10R
Voltage RegulatorEight PhasesEight PhasesSix Phases
BIOS1.0 (06/11/2009)0403 (05/19/2009)080015 (03/23/2009)
133.3MHz Bclk133.9 MHz (+0.425%)133.6 MHz (+0.20%)133.3 MHz (+0.00%)
Clock GeneratorICS 9LPRS918JKLFICS 9LPRS918JKLFIDT CV193CPAG
Internal Interfaces
PCIe 2.0 x163 (x16/x16/x4)3 (x16/x16/x4)2 (x16/x16)
PCIe x1/x42/01/02/1
PCI221
USB 2.02 (4-ports)3 (6-ports)3 (6-ports)
IEEE-1394111
Serial Port1None1
Parallel Port0NoneNone
Floppy1NoneNone
Ultra ATA-1331 (2-drives)1 (2-drives)None
SATA 3 Gb/s666
4-pin Fan212
3-pin Fan332
FP-AudioYesYesYes
CD AudioYesYesYes
S/PDIF I/OOutput OnlyOutput OnlyOutput Only
Power ButtonYesYesYes
Reset ButtonYesNoYes
CLR_CMOS ButtonJumper OnlyJumper OnlyJumper Only
Diagnostics Panel2-CharacterNone2-Character
I/O Panel Connectors
PS/2222
USB 2.0766
IEEE-1394111
NetworkingSingleSingleSingle
eSATA112
CLR_CMOS ButtonYesNoYes
Digital Audio OutOptical + CoaxialOptical + CoaxialOptical
Digital Audio InNoneNoneNone
Analog Aufio665
Mass Storage Controllers
Chipset SATA6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s
Chipset RAID Modes0, 1, 5, 100, 1, 5, 100, 1, 5, 10
Add-in SATAJMB380 PCIe 1x eSATA 3.0 Gb/sJMB363 PCIe 1x eSATA 3.0 Gb/sJMB362 PCIe 2x eSATA 3.0 Gb/s
Add-in Ultra ATAVT6330 PCIeJMB363 PCIeNone
IEEE-1394VT6330 PCIe 2x 400 mb/sVT6315N PCIe 2x 400 mb/sVT6308P PCI 2x 400 mb/s
Gigabit Ethernet
Primary LANRTL8111DL PCIeRTL8111C PCIeRTL8111C PCIe
Secondary LANNoneNoneRTL8111C PCIe
Audio
HD Audio CodecALC890BALC1200ALC888S
Sub-$200 X58 Motherboard Features
 Foxconn FlamingBladeGigabyte EX58-UD3RJetway BI-600MSI X58 Pro-E
PCB Revision1.01.61.03.1
NorthbridgeIntel X58 ExpressIntel X58 ExpressIntel X58 ExpressIntel X58 Express
SouthbridgeIntel ICH10RIntel ICH10RIntel ICH10RIntel ICH10R
Voltage RegulatorSix PhasesSix PhasesSix PhasesFive Phases
BIOSP05 (04/13/2009)FB (05/04/2009)A03 (05/15/2009)8.2 (04/20/2009)
133.3 MHz Bclk133.7 MHz (+0.28%)133.0 MHz (-0.25%)133.0 MHz (-0.25%)133.8 MHz (+0.35%)
Clock GeneratorICS 9LPRS139AKLFICS 9LPRS914EKLFICS 9LPRS139AKLFICS 9LPRS133BKLF
Internal Interfaces
PCIe 2.0 x162 (x16/x16)2 (x16/x16)4 (2x x16 or 4x x8)3 (x16/x16/x4)
PCIe x1/x41/12/10/12/0
PCI2212
USB 2.02 (4-ports)2 (4-ports)2 (4-ports)3 (6-ports)
IEEE-1394None1None1
Serial PortNone111
Parallel PortNoneNoneNoneNone
Floppy111None
Ultra ATA-1331 (2-drives)1 (2-drives)1 (2-drives)1 (2-drives)
SATA 3 Gb/s6867
4-pin Fan1211
3-pin Fan2423
FP-AudioYesYesYesYes
CD AudioYesYesYesYes
S/PDIF I/OOutput OnlyInput + OutputOutput OnlyOutput Only
Power ButtonYesNoYesYes
Reset ButtonYesNoYesYes
CLR_CMOS ButtonYesJumper OnlyYesYes
Diagnostics Panel2-characterNone2-CharacterNone
I/O Panel Connectors
PS/21222
USB 2.06886
IEEE-1394None1None1
NetworkingDualDualDualSingle
eSATA2None21
CLR_CMOS ButtonYesNoYesNo
Digital Audio OutOpticalOptical + CoaxialCoaxialOptical
Digital Audio InNoneNoneNoneNone
Analog Audio6666
Mass Storage Controllers
Chipset SATA6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s6x SATA 3.0 Gb/s
Chipset RAID Modes0, 1, 5, 100, 1, 5, 100, 1, 5, 100, 1, 5, 10
Add-in SATAJMB363 PCIe 2x eSATA 3.0 Gb/sJMB363 PCIe 1x eSATA 3.0 Gb/sJMB363 PCIe 2x eSATA 3.0 Gb/sJMB363 PCIe 1x SATA 3.0 Gb/s 1x eSATA 3.0 Gb/s
Add-in Ultra ATAJMB363 PCIeJMB363 PCIeJMB363 PCIeJMB363 PCIe
IEEE-1394NoneTSB43AB23 PCI 3x 400 mb/sNoneJMB381 PCIe 2x 400 mb/s
Gigabit Ethernet
Primary LANRTL8111C PCIeRTL8111C PCIeRTL8111C PCIeRTL8111C PCIe
Secondary LANRTL8111C PCIeNoneRTL8111C PCIeNone
Audio
HD Audio CodecALC888ALC888ALC888ALC889
  • midnightgun
    If I am not mistaken, the reason the Asus P6T SE is so cheap is because it does not support SLI, only supports Crossfire. Is that not correct?
    Reply
  • Crashman
    9477978 said:
    If I am not mistaken, the reason the Asus P6T SE is so cheap is because it does not support SLI, only supports Crossfire. Is that not correct?

    At the time the review was written, the P6T SE web page read that it supported SLI. Perhaps Asus changed the web page following a complaint?

    The big difference between the P6T SE and the P6T is the missing Jmicron SATA multiplier. By removing it, Asus killed the pathway that went to it, leaving the JMB363 controller with a "dead port".
    Reply
  • midnightgun
    Perhaps. I have had my eye on this board since I started planning my eventual upgrade to i7/i5 architecture (MSI and Gigabyte as well). I know on ncix's forums (canada's equivalent to newegg in the states) the P6T SE had been listed as only crossfire since at least mid May.
    Reply
  • midnightgun
    Anywho, thanks for the review. Interesting read.
    Reply
  • Crashman
    midnightgunPerhaps. I have had my eye on this board since I started planning my eventual upgrade to i7/i5 architecture (MSI and Gigabyte as well). I know on ncix's forums (canada's equivalent to newegg in the states) the P6T SE had been listed as only crossfire since at least mid May.
    I never trust a seller as a source: Asus listed the P6T SE as having SLI support as little as four weeks ago, and now has a completely different page for it. They weren't the only company that advertised SLI capability and leave out the bridge, but it now appears the former P6T SE web page must have been an error, probably from the company copying its P6T page and editing it for the P6T SE, but missing one detail.
    Reply
  • anamaniac
    Personally I will (atleast attempting to now) head straight for the Foxconn Bloodrage with a i7 920 and 3 ddr3 1333 sticks (and give them good timings, ignoring bandwidth and attempting a lower voltage) and a 4870 1gb (due to them being quite cheap now). =D
    Though first on my priority list is a better monitor (and rent).

    Neat article regardless.
    Reply
  • ceteras
    What an inspiring name for the Foxconn mainboard... looks like it's a corporate culture thing.

    I've skipped the Foxconn page, wouldn't buy from them anyway.
    Reply
  • Onus
    Interesting read. If I were going to build an i7 rig for myself, that ASRock would probably be my choice. I'm not thrilled about the VRM heating up so much, but I only do low-moderate overclocks so it ought to be ok. The feature set of that board looks suitable.
    Reply
  • gxpbecker
    I am kinda surprised that the ECS board held its own against these "sronger" boards. From my past experieces ECS has been the walmart brand of mobos. :)
    Reply
  • Ryun
    Question: Is the Asrock board able to go into S3 state/Standby mode? The one board I got from Asrock would not and after emailing their tech support they responded by saying that their boards do not support S3 state.
    Reply