P45-based Gigabyte enthusiast mobo pictured

As Intel prepares to unleash its next-generation P45 Express chipset, motherboard manufacturers are putting the final touches on motherboard designs that will accommodate it. One of those manufacturers is Gigabyte, and people at the XFastest Forum have posted several photos of an unannounced P45-based motherboard from the Taiwanese company. The shots show a product bearing the EP45 DS3P name and with Gigabyte's signature blue circuit board and brightly colored expansion slots.

Judging by its features and connectivity, this particular model will be geared toward enthusiasts: we can spot three PCI Express x16 slots, three PCIe x1 slots, heat-pipe based north bridge and power circuitry cooling, all-solid-state capacitors, and onboard buttons for power, reset, and CMOS clearing functions. The rear I/O port hub plays host to dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, two FireWire ports, eight USB ports, and analog/digital audio ports. Meanwhile, markings on the PCB flaunt less obvious features, such as support for 1600MHz front-side bus speeds and dual channels of "DDR2 1200" memory.

If a report posted late last month by DigiTimes is accurate, P45 motherboards should start to pop up some time in mid-June. Gigabyte could introduce the EP45 DS3P in that time frame.

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