Gigabyte X58-USB3


Jumping into one of Intel’s six-core Core i7s can be an expensive proposition, but with the X58-USB3, Gigabyte scales down the X58 features (no 6Gbps SATA or eSATA ports) to offer an affordable motherboard that can still handle the Core i7-970 or 980X. The X58-USB3’s layout is fairly well thought-out, but we didn’t like the placement of the front-panel audio connector, which was located above the expansion slots. On the plus side, Gigabyte built in three PCI-E x16 slots, and the first two are capable of running at full x16 speed. The bottom PCI-E x16 slot runs at x4 speed. Compared to Gigabyte’s X58A-UD9
and X58A-UD7, the X58-USB3 doesn’t offer as large of heatsinks, or as much power regulation. That being said, we were still able to push the Intel Core i7- 980X in our test system to 4.4GHz.

Our overclock included slight voltage increases to both the CPU and memory. Gigabyte also includes a slew of recovery, hard drive, and overclocking utilities. If you’re looking for a motherboard that’s a good value—and are OK with one that doesn’t have all the high-end features the X58-USB3 is for you. We also like that it offers enough overclocking tools to let you push the high-end Core i7 processors it was designed to work with.


by Nathan Lake


Post a Comment