Power, Heat, and Efficiency
Intel provided a fairly simple motherboard composed of a few high-quality components, allowing the firm to show off the power-savings nature of its new platform. The board with the greatest number of features, ECS’ P67H2-A2 falls to the bottom.
ECS also had the highest voltage regulator temperature, so a few extra watts were probably wasted in conversion.
We averaged the performance difference of all motherboards across all non-synthetic benchmarks to determine “work,” since efficiency is a comparison of work to energy. The best-performing motherboard sets the frame of reference at 100%.
It’s no surprise to us that eight of the boards finished in a dead heat, yet the tiny scale of Jetway’s loss is a little surprising, since its pre-realease firmware had no Intel Turbo Boost functionality.
Cutting features and using only a few high-efficiency CPU regulator components allowed Intel to finish nearly 9% over average, while ECS digs a much deeper hole at the bottom.
I'm just missing benchmarks like SATA/USB speeds etc. Please Tom's get those numbers for us!
1. SLI "support". Do not understand why end-user has to pay for mythical SLI "sertification" (all latest Intel chips support SLI by definition) and a SLI bridge coming with the board (at least 75% of end users would never need one). The bridge should come with NVIDIA cards (same as with AMD ones). Also, in x8/x8 PCIe configuration nearly all NVIDIA cards (exept for low-end ones) will loose at least 12% productivity - with top cards that is about $100 spent for nothing (AMD cards would not see that difference). So, If those cards are coming as SLI-"sertified" they have to be, in the worst case, equipped by NVIDIA NF200 chip (though, I would not recommend to by cards with this PCIe v.1.1 bridge). As even NVIDIA GF110 cards really need less than 1GB/s bandwidth (all other NVIDIA and AMD - less than 0.8GB/s)and secondary cards in SLI/CrossFire use no more than 1/4 of that, a normal PCIe v.2.0 switch (costing less than thrown away with x8/x8 SLI money) will nicely support three "Graphics only" x16 slots, fully-functional x8 slot and will provide bandwidth enough to support one PCIe v.2.0 x4 (or 4 x x1) slot(s)/device(s).
2. Do not understand the author euphoria of mass use of Marvell "SATA 6G" chips. The PCIe x1 chip might not be "SATA 6G" by definision, as it woud newer be able to provide more than 470GB/s (which is far from the standard 600GB/s) - so, I'd recommend to denote tham as 3G+ or 6G-. As it is shown in the upper section, there is enough bandwidth for real 6G solution (PCIe x8 LSISAS 2008 or x4 LSISAS 2004). Yes, will be a bit more expensive, but do not see the reason to have a palliative solutions on $200+ mobos.