Articles: Mainboards

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All people can be divided in optimists and pessimists. But even the latter ones still hope for the best deep down inside, although they are certain that things will get only worse. New processor and graphics card models (unless these are old chips with new marking on them) are usually better than their predecessors. They are faster, smaller, cheaper, cooler and more functional and sometimes have all of the above. Chipsets are the very base of any computer system, however, the situation with them is not so clear, although there is a number of very nice examples here, too. Without looking too far back, let’s recall a relatively recent launch of Intel P35 Express. It didn’t boast any significant advantages over the predecessor, Intel P965 Express chipset, and we in fact didn’t expect much. But then it turned out that the new chipset eliminated FSB Strap and we quickly forgot about the old one.

The situation was a bit different before the Intel P45 Express launch. Its differences from the predecessor were evident – take for instance PCI Express 2.0 support and the new South Bridge. However, they were of no immediate benefit to the users. Finer manufacturing process suggested that it would have better overclocking potential, but the reality turned out pretty disappointing. None of the new mainboards we have tested so far could offer problem-free operation. In fact, it was not surprising: early mainboard models and raw BIS version soften do not reveal the potential of the chipset they use. However, in terms of overclocking the new solutions were not any better than the predecessors. Moreover, they even yielded to the previous-generation boards.

Little by little we got the feeling that somewhere at the development stage they lost that special feature that ensures fast and easy CPU overclocking. Luckily, the suspicion that the chipset was the one to blame for poor overclocking potential of the new mainboards turned out wrong. Gigabyte GA-EP45-DQ6 mainboard is one of the top models in a very extensive Gigabyte lineup on Intel P45 Express. However, despite numerous onboard controllers and evident complexity of the electronic layout, it demonstrated remarkable overclocking potential.

Today we are going to talk about the advantages of this solution, will certainly point out a few drawbacks (as always), discuss the peculiarities of overclocking procedure and talk about the bundled software tools and new technologies.

Please, meet Gigabyte GA-EP45-DQ6!

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