At least two top-tier motherboard makers are no longer expecting to hit their board shipment targets for 2011. This is to be somewhat expected, given the frequent delays that plagued AMD's Bulldozer launch and with Intel's Sandy Bridge-E platform still sitting around the corner. The DIY crowd appears to be willing to wait for next-generation technology rather than building or upgrading to current gen parts.
Sometimes, Maximum PCs can be minimum PCs. Bigger isn’t always better. Gigabyte is giving love to the little guys with their new mini-ITX HTPC motherboard, gracefully named the A75N-USB3. As you may have guessed from the name, it’s based around AMD’s A75 Fusion chipset and packs in four speedy USB 3.0 ports, but that’s not all.
Many of you are waiting with bated breath for Intel to release its upcoming Sandy Bridge-E processors and can't wait to build an LGA 2011 system. If you choose not to, however, it won't be for lack of motherboard options, especially if you're a fan of Gigabyte. After posting spy shots of its G1.Assassin 2 motherboard, Gigabyte just sent us an email loaded with images of each and every X79 motherboard it currently has on tap. Photo gallery after the break.
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.