Gigabyte wrapped up the design of its upcoming G1.Assassin 2 motherboard based in Intel's X79 chipset for Sandy Bridge-E and tossed a bunch of teaser pics on its blog and Facebook page. It's the first G1-Killer series board to support Intel's socket 2011 Core processors, and rather than bring a gun to a knife fight, the G1. Assassin 2 carries a pistol, just in case things get out of hand at your LAN party (don't worry moms and dads, it's just a heatsink).
If you've never pounded your keyboard in frustration or frantically mashed the keys during an intense battle, then you probably don't spend a lot of time playing games. Gamers have a tendency to be rough with their gear, and if Gigabyte's new Force K3 keyboard lives up to its billing, it could end up attracting a lot of game players who need a plank that can withstand their abuse.
Maybe you're aware that DDR3 memory is nearly as cheap as tap water these days. That means you can totally justify stocking up on gobs of RAM, but at what point do you stop? Long before 288GB, which is more than your motherboard or any consumer board supports, but is exactly the amount you can stick in Gigabyte's GA-7TESM motherboard.
By itself, Intel's 20GB 311 Series "Larsen Creek" solid state drive commands around $115 street. But when bundled with select Gigabyte motherboards, that price drops below $100. It's part of an extended promotion that now applies to two Gigabyte motherboards instead of just one, in which 11 participating retailers offer a $20 discount when purchased together. But is it worth it?
Through a series of BIOS updates, Gigabyte last month announced it added native support for PCI Express Gen. 3 technology on over 40 of its existing motherboards, and along with support for Intel's 22nm Ivy Bridge processors, it was a solid announcement for system builders looking to future proof. At least it should have been, only MSI is taking Gigabyte to task over its PCI-E Gen. 3 claims.
Puget Systems announced last week the creation of Puget Labs with grand plans to test and benchmark products, publish the results for all the world to see, and offer up explanations as to why a particular brand of RAM or hard drive or videocard or whatever didn't make the cut for one of the boutique builder's systems. Puget's goal is complete transparency between the system builder and its customers, and by taking this approach, we felt it was only a matter of time before the fireworks start to fly. It took just two days.
It's impossible to outrun technology, though updated drivers, software, and firmware can keep your gear current for as long as possible. That typically means you have to rely on hardware manufacturers to play ball, and Gigabyte 6 Series motherboard owners will be happy to know Gigabyte is keeping them in the game with significant BIOS updates for its entire 6 Series mobo line.
Gigabyte is finally showing socket 1155 system builders some weapon themed love with the launch of the G1.Sniper2 motherboard, the 1155 version of the socket 1366 G1.Sniper and little brother to the G1.Assassin we reviewed in the June 2011 issue of Maximum PC (and by "little," we mean it doesn't require a honking XL-ATX chassis, a standard ATX case will do just fine).
Gigabyte still hasn't officially launched its G1.Sniper 2 motherboard that was showcased back at the Computex tradeshow in Taiwan, nor has the company announced pricing information or even put up a product page. But what Gigabyte did so is post several sexy snapshots of one of the hottest looking boards we've ever seen on the company's Facebook page for its motherboard division.