MSI unveils two Socket AM3 motherboards

Socket AM3 Phenom IIs with DDR3 memory support must be getting close. MSI has announced a pair of new motherboards designed to accommodate the future chips exclusively, and it hasn't skimped on the features.

MSI's flagship Socket AM3 offering looks to be the 790FX-GD70, which includes a 790FX chipset, four PCI Express x16 slots, four DDR3-1333 memory slots, nine 300MB/s Serial ATA ports (one of which is external), dual Gigabit Ethernet, and FireWire. The less upscale 790GX-G65 is based on the 790GX chipset and sports Radeon HD 3300 integrated graphics, dual PCIe x16 slots, six SATA ports, Gigabit LAN, and "optional" FireWire.

As one might expect for enthusiast-focused offerings, MSI touts a number of fancy features for tweakers and overclockers. There's even an "OC dial" function that allows users to rotate a knob to "check the FSB clock state immediately under BIOS or operation [sic] system."

Interestingly, the press release also says the 790GX-G65 has a five-phase power design that "can support the high-performance 140W quad-core processors." The absence of DDR2 memory slots in these boards means they'll require Socket AM3 CPUs, so AMD evidently has some higher-clocked, higher-power chips up its sleeve. (The 3.1GHz model we heard about on Monday will supposedly have a 125W thermal envelope.)

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