Gigabyte X58 mobo gets 6Gbps SATA, USB 3.0

Motherboards with next-gen I/O are multiplying like rabbits lately. After this morning's three AMD contenders, Gigabyte has unleashed a new specimen aimed at high-end Intel rigs: the GA-X58A-UD7.

Like those AMD boards and the new Intel P55 lineup that preceded them, the GA-X58A-UD7 bears Gigabyte's "333" label. That means it features 6Gbps Serial ATA, USB 3.0, and tripled USB port power for demanding external devices.

Unlike those previous offerings, though, this product has an Intel X58 chipset and room for one of the latest and fastest Core i7-900 processors. (Future six-core Gulftown processors will fit in the same LGA1366 socket, so the GA-X58A-UD7 might even work with those, too.) Gigabyte has endowed the board with six DDR3 memory slots, four physical PCI Express x16 slots, 10 internal Serial ATA ports, a pair of eSATA ports, dual Gigabit Ethernet, and FireWire.

Oddly, three of the four PCIe x16 slots sit right next to one another, which doesn't bode well for quad-GPU CrossFire configs. There should still be room for a trio of GeForces, though, and this mobo does support three-way SLI setups. Other perks include beefy heat-pipe-based cooling, a "24+2+2" power phase design, and a "clear CMOS" button in the I/O area, which should help overclockers probing the farthest reaches of their components' capabilities.

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