Power, Heat, And Efficiency
The top two overclocking motherboards are also the least efficient, even at stock speed with the full set of CPU power controls enabled in BIOS.
The most power-efficient motherboard, Intel’s DP55KG, still has the second-highest VRM temperatures. This isn’t too surprising, since its competitors use elaborate heat pipe assemblies to distribute thermal load.
Dividing average performance by average power consumption puts Intel in the lead over MSI, with top-overclockers Asus and EVGA falling to the bottom, even at stock speeds.
Also for just $50 more one could get a reasonable X58 board and the core i7 920 would be a great buy. The only motherboard here that would be a "smart" buy with "long term" in mind would be the Gigabyte UD6 since it at least sports USB3.0 AND Sata 6.0. One would not need to purchase any expansion card for this feature as it will be used in the years to come. Also knowing that X58 will be used for 6core chips way ahead is comforting as these boards then will still be around and mainstream by the time those processors will even be relevant for avid/regular PC users.
I just have a few questions you may be able to answer, do you guys also choose motherboards from other countries? I have seen Foxconn and Emaxx in some reviews but I also know that they may not be the best quality boards but it would be great to compare those boards as well. Its also good that you placed a reference Intel P55 so people would know the standard in which to compare with. Also how come we still dont have a P55 or X58 XFX board? Has XFX stopped making mb's and only started to focus on GPU's?
In the article first page:" Can any LGA 1156 system truly be considered high-end? After all, there’s no practical way to supply two graphics cards with a full 16 lanes of bandwidth. However, only the most expensive graphics cards need more than eight PCIe 2.0 lanes, and not every high-end buyer wants a gaming system."
The reason for this is the GPU - CPU bridge on core i5 systems, which in previously intel boards was part of the southbridge chipset, is now integrated onto the CPU. Therefore it isn't the boards that limit GPU lanes to a maximum of x16 lanes total, but it is the p55 core i5 & i7 CPUs that do this.
Check this link for more on the CPU-motherboard layout:
Also see this artice on VR-Zone which explains the pitfalls of Gigabytes USB3/SATA3 implementation: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gigabyte-p55a-boards-usb3-sata3-issues-analysis/8158.html
Good point, perhaps the features comparison chart could be expanded a little.
who would buy a Phenom II rig to get 16 16? not comparing AMD but you would see better performance from a high model i5 with 8 8 lol good one
You can't enable USB 3.0 and SATA 6.0 Gb/s at the same time.
I'd rather have the ASUS or MSI (GD85) solution who use an additional PLX chip. The question was about being future proof and the Gigabyte solution is not as future proof as it seems.
Unfortunately Intel seems to be steering away from the X58 platform. There are more and more P55 motherboards coming out which have high end features. The top end Lynnfield CPUs have no problem outrunning the lower end Bloomfield CPUs. So saying a 1156 is midrange... that's giving it less credit than it deserves.
Btw, there are P55 mainboards from ASUS, MSI and EVGA with an NF200 chipset which do offer fullspeed dual CrossFire/SLI at 16/16. And those definitely don't have midrange prices. :o