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Gigabyte must have read our minds when we were thinking of our dream motherboard because the X48T-DQ6 has a feature we’ve been longing for: eight frigging USB ports! That’s just one of the things Gigabyte does right with this motherboard. Based on Intel’s DDR3, 1,600MHz FSB chipset, the X48T-DQ6 is a far better example of what a performance X48-based board should be than, well, Intel’s own implementation.
In addition, the SATA ports are conveniently arranged and the BIOS is far friendlier than Intel’s board when it comes to tweaking and overclocking. We successfully took the X48T-DQ6 and our 2.5GHz CPU into the 3.5GHz range. Gigabyte also includes an interesting tool for reducing power consumption. The applet tells you how much power the CPU is consuming and lets you run a mode that adjusts power on the fly—we’re a tad skeptical, however, because it seems to underreport the CPU’s power consumption.
The board performed quite well in our benchmark tests. The X48T-DQ6 gave EVGA’s nForce board a good run in the gaming tests, and its memory performance was respectable, although not quite as good as the nForce contenders.
The X48T-DQ6 is certainly a better pick than Intel’s Bonetrail board; it’s more tweak friendly, but it still offers the warm, fuzzy reliability of the Intel name. If you’re looking for an all-out gamer board and performance is paramount, the nForce chipset is the better bet.
8 USB ports; DDR3; great implementation of x48 chipset; reliable.
Can't match 790i boards for performance.