Feature Articles

The X58 Motherboards You Can Afford

The X58 Motherboards You Can Afford



The X58 Boards You Can Afford

The X58 Boards You Can Afford

Our past two articles on Intel X58 motherboards had been written more for the high-end enthusiasts. As it should be, since the Intel X58 chipset remains the platform for those who wish to have the top Intel processor, like the Core i7-980X. Today, we look at the more affordable X58 motherboards out there, though 'affordable' is a very subjective term here when it comes to these motherboards. 

At least you'll know that the boards reviewed here will not cost up to S$800 like the ones we have seen. However, you will still have to fork out anywhere from S$300 to more than S$400 for them. All of these boards are updated, refreshed models that support the Core i7-980X out of the box, without requiring a BIOS update. They also come with the latest SATA 6Gbps and USB 3.0 features. While not as extreme as some X58 models, multi-GPU technologies like SLI and CrossFireX are supported on these boards, along with a wide range of features and proprietary technologies from their respective vendors.

Here then are the three boards from ASUS, Gigabyte and MSI and their specifications:

ASUS, Gigabyte and MSI X58 Boards Compared
  ASUS P6X58D-E Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R MSI X58A-GD65
CPU Support Support for Socket LGA1366 Core i7 processors
Chipset Intel X58 and ICH10R
Graphics Support for 3-way NVIDIA SLI and ATI CrossFireX Support for 2/3-way NVIDIA SLI and ATI CrossFireX Support for 3-way NVIDIA SLI and ATI CrossFireX  
Memory
  • Supports 6 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-2000 (O.C)/1333/1066MHz SDRAM
  • Triple-channel memory architecture
  • Supports up to 24GB memory size
  • Supports 6 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-2200/ 1333/1066/800MHz SDRAM
  • Triple-channel memory architecture
  • Supports up to 24GB memory size
  • Supports 6 unbuffered DIMM of DDR3-2133/1800/1600/1333/1066/800MHz SDRAM
  • Triple-channel memory architecture
  • Supports up to 24GB memory size
Storage
  • Southbridge
    • 6 x SATA 3.0Gbps
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 configurations
  • Marvell 9128 controller
    • 2 x SATA 6Gbps ports
    • Supports EZ Backup and SuperSpeed functions
  • Southbridge
    • 6 x SATA 3.0Gbps
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 configurations
  • Marvell 9128 SATA 6Gbps controller
    • 2 x SATA 6Gbps ports
    • Support for SATA RAID 0 and 1
  • Gigabyte SATA2 controller
    • 1 x IDE connector supporting up to 2 devices
    • 2 x SATA 3.0Gbps that support SATA RAID 0, 1 and JBOD
  • JMicron JMB362 controller
    • 2 x eSATA 3.0Gbps connectors at the rear
    • Support for SATA RAID 0, 1 and JBOD
  • iTE IT8729 controller
    • 1 x floppy drive connector
  • Southbridge
    • 6 x SATA 3.0Gbps ports
    • Support AHCI controller with SATA RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 configurations
  • Marvell 9128 controller
    • 2 x SATA 6Gbps ports
    • Support for SATA RAID 0 and 1
  • JMicron JMB362 chip
    • 2 x eSATA 3.0Gbps ports (rear panel)
    • Support for SATA RAID 0, 1 and JBOD
Audio  Realtek ALC889 HD CODEC Realtek ALC889 HD CODEC Realtek ALC892 HD CODEC
Networking Marvell 88E8056 PCIe Gigabit LAN controller Realtek RTL8111E Gigabit LAN controller Realtek RTL8111DL Gigabit LAN controller
IEEE 1394 (FireWire)
  • VIA VT6308 controller
  • Up to 2 x IEEE 1394a ports (1 rear, 1 header)
  • T.I TSB43AB23 controller
  • Up to 3 x IEEE 1394a ports (2 rear, 1 header)
  • VIA VT6308 controller
  • Up to 2 x IEEE 1394a ports (1 rear, 1 header)
Rear I/O Interface
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN port
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x optical S/PDIF output
  • 1 x coaxial S/PDIF output
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a port
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard port
  • 1 x PS/2 mouse port
  • 1 x Clear CMOS button
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports
  • 2 x eSATA/USB combo ports
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN port
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x optical S/PDIF output
  • 1 x coaxial S/PDIF output
  • 2 x IEEE 1394a ports
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard port
  • 1 x PS/2 mouse port
  • 1 x Clear CMOS button
  • 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 2 x USB 3.0 ports
  • 2 x eSATA ports
  • 1 x RJ-45 port
  • 6 x audio jacks
  • 1 x optical S/PDIF output
  • 1 x coaxial S/PDIF output
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a port
  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard port
  • 1 x PS/2 mouse port
  • 1 x Clear CMOS button
Internal Connectors
  • 2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
  • 2 x SATA 6Gbps connectors (gray)
  • 6 x SATA 3Gbps connectors (blue)
  • 5 fan connectors
  • 1 x S/PDIF output header
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a header
  • 24-pin ATX power connector
  • 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
  • MemOK! button
  • Power button
  • 3 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
  • 8 x SATA 3Gbps connectors
  • 2 x SATA 6Gbps connectors
  • 1 x IDE connector
  • 1 x floppy drive connector
  • 6 fan connectors
  • 1 x S/PDIF output header
  • 1 x S/PDIF input header
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a header
  • 24-pin ATX power connector
  • 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
  • 3 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
  • 6 x SATA 3Gbps connectors
  • 2 x SATA 6Gbps connectors
  • 4 fan connectors
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a header
  • 1 x S/PDIF output header
  • 1 x TPM module connector
  • 1 x 24-pin ATX power connector
  • 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
  • Power and reset buttons
  • 1 x Clear CMOS jumper
  • 1 x Over-voltage switch
Expansion Slots
  • 3 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slots (x16/x8/x8 or x16/16/x1)
  • 1 x PCIe x1 slot
  • 2 x PCI slots
  • 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slots @ x16
  • 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slots @x8
  • 2 x PCIe x1 slots
  • 1 x PCI slot
  • 3 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slots
  • 2 x PCIe x1 slots
  • 2 x PCI slots
Special Features
  • ASUS Xtreme Phase
  • MemOK!
  • ASUS EPU
  • Express Gate
  • ASUS EZ Flash 2
  • ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
  • ASUS Q-Shield
  • ASUS TurboV
  • @BIOS
  • Q-Flash
  • Xpress BIOS Rescue
  • Download Center
  • Xpress Install
  • Xpress Recovery2
  • EasyTune 6
  • Dynamic Energy Saver 2
  • Smart 6
  • Auto Green
  • eXtreme Hard Drive
  • ON/OFF Charge
  • Q-Share
  • OV-Alert LED
  • Cloud OC
  • Hotkey OC
  • M-Flash
  • Easy OC Switch
  • Active Phase Switching
  • DrMOS
  • LiveUpdate 4
PCB ATX Form Factor: 30.5 x 24.4cm