Motherboard Guide

Gigabyte P55-UD6 review

Preview: Gigabyte P55-UD6 (Intel P55)

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The Storage Master

The Storage Master

So we've shown you what ASUS and MSI's flagship motherboards would look like from our previous two preview articles here and here . Now it's time for Gigabyte. In fact, we would have had this preview earlier had the package arrived at the right address, but thankfully, this mouthwatering board made it intact to our labs.

To set your expectations of this board in one line, take Gigabyte's top X58 motherboard, trim it a little on the over-the-top features and give it a few enhancements suitable for a newer board and you'll get the Gigabyte GA-P55-UD6 motherboard. Smart and Efficient is the overall theme going for Gigabyte's new lineup of motherboards as you'll soon hear more from us on their new core features that bring out these aspects.

However, not everything has been trimmed from the Gigabyte X58-Extreme brother. Like it, the P55-UD6 sports an extensive storage subsystem and will probably be unparalleled to any other in the market supporting up to 10 SATA 3Gbps ports thanks to three different storage controllers.

Another feature that might seem over the top but will in fact be a norm for all new high-end Gigabyte motherboards is the 24-phase VRM power design. Further discussion with the product managers in Taiwan revealed that it's more of a marketing lingo as it's really still a 12-phase power circuitry design, but Gigabyte doubled the number of chokes (there's normally one choke to each power phase). Therefore, the extra chokes better spread the power loading, thus reducing temperature and improving efficiency. Along with this, the board also comes with the usual Ultra Durable 3 features (2oz copper PCB, ferrite core chokes, solid capacitors and lower RDS MOSFETS).

We received the motherboard with an Intel Core i5-860 (2.8GHz) Lynnfield processor so we wasted no time to get it booted and going with the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus cooler and the usual other components.