Page 1:LGA 2011 Motherboards, Just A Little Cheaper
Page 2:ASRock X79 Extreme6/GB
Page 3:X79 Extreme6/GB UEFI
Page 4:Asus P9X79 Pro
Page 5:P9X79 Pro UEFI
Page 6:ECS X79R-AX
Page 7:X79R-AX UEFI
Page 8:Foxconn Quantumian-1
Page 9:Quantumian-1 UEFI
Page 10:Gigabyte GA-X79-UD3
Page 11:GA-X79-UD3 UEFI
Page 12:Intel DX79SI
Page 13:DX79SI UEFI
Page 14:MSI X79A-GD65 (8D)
Page 15:X79A-GD65 (8D) UEFI
Page 16:Test Settings And Benchmarks
Page 17:Benchmark Results: DiRT 3
Page 18:Benchmark Results: Metro 2033
Page 19:Benchmark Results: StarCraft II
Page 20:Benchmark Results: Audio And Video Encoding
Page 21:Benchmark Results: Productivity
Page 22:Power, Heat, And Efficiency
Page 24:Which X79-Based Motherboard Is Right For You?
We've seen a lot of excitement surrounding Gigabyte’s $260 X79-UD3, from early overclocking failures to recent spectacular successes. But before we consider the firmware that bridges this transition, a quick look at the hardware could demonstrate why this continues to be such a newsworthy product.
The least-expensive of today’s contenders, the X79-UD3 still includes a standard set of mid-market enthusiast features, such as front- and rear-panel USB 3.0, eSATA, and two additional SATA 6Gb/s ports via a third-party controller. Gigabyte goes one step further, though, by endowing this product with four-way SLI support, rather than the three-way capability we'd expect to find on a more affordable platform, besting its own X79-UD5.
Gigabyte does remove a few things to facilitate the X79-UD3’s lower price, such as the UD5-version’s Bluetooth/Wi-Fi card and eight-DIMM support. But only a minority of enthusiasts will miss those particular features (surely not the gamers who prefer to play over wired network connections).
The X79-UD3’s only major layout weakness comes from the placement of two SATA ports along the bottom edge, where attached cables would typically block the installation of a fourth graphics card. While most users in the -UD3's target market don’t actually want or need ninth and tenth internal drives, they're equally justified in not wanting to pay for a feature they can’t use.
A minor issue that affects installation into some cases is the bottom-rear-corner audio connector, which is roughly half of an inch beyond the reach of many front-panel audio cables. A larger problem could be USB 2.0 and front-panel LED/power header placement, since those cables must typically be smashed flat to fit beneath a performance graphics card’s oversized fan cover. There are no perfect solutions to that problem, though the base of the plastic shell that surrounds each header also forces it to be roughly 1 mm taller.
Though only four SATA cables are included, the X79-UD3 adds an impressive collection of bridges to enable multi-card graphics arrays. CrossFire and SLI are presented alongside three- and four-way SLI, and users who need more-elaborate CrossFireX configurations will usually find an extra bridge with each of their cards.
- LGA 2011 Motherboards, Just A Little Cheaper
- ASRock X79 Extreme6/GB
- X79 Extreme6/GB UEFI
- Asus P9X79 Pro
- P9X79 Pro UEFI
- ECS X79R-AX
- X79R-AX UEFI
- Foxconn Quantumian-1
- Quantumian-1 UEFI
- Gigabyte GA-X79-UD3
- GA-X79-UD3 UEFI
- Intel DX79SI
- DX79SI UEFI
- MSI X79A-GD65 (8D)
- X79A-GD65 (8D) UEFI
- Test Settings And Benchmarks
- Benchmark Results: DiRT 3
- Benchmark Results: Metro 2033
- Benchmark Results: StarCraft II
- Benchmark Results: Audio And Video Encoding
- Benchmark Results: Productivity
- Power, Heat, And Efficiency
- Which X79-Based Motherboard Is Right For You?