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Written by Olin Coles   
Saturday, 13 December 2008
Table of Contents: Page Index
Gigabyte GA-EX58-EXTREME Core i7 Motherboard
Intel Core i7: Platform Information
Intel X58-Express Platform
Gigabyte X58 Features
Dynamic Energy Saver Advanced
GA-EX58-EXTREME Specifications
First Look: Gigabyte X58
Closer Look: Gigabyte X58
GA-EX58-EXTREME Detailed Features
Motherboard Testing Methodology
GA-EX58-EXTREME F4e BIOS
3DMark06 Benchmarks
PCMark Vantage Benchmarks
Crysis Benchmark Results
Devil May Cry 4 Benchmark
World in Conflict Tests
Intel X58-Express Final Thoughts
GA-EX58-EXTREME Conclusion

Intel X58-Express Platform

The Gigabyte GA-EX58-EXTREME motherboard platform consists of the Intel Core i7 processor (CPU), Intel X58 Express Chipset (IOH) and the ICH. The CPU now incorporates the system memory controller and accesses DDR3 memory through three independent memory channels. The IOH provides support for the two PCIe graphics slots and connects to the CPU via the Quick Path Interconnect (QPI) bus. The ICH provides the support for the SATA, USB and other system interfaces and is connected to the IOH via the DMI bus.

Intel Core i7 CPU Socket 1366 Processor and Intel DX58SO Smackover Extreme Edition X58 Motherboard Platform Performance Benchmark Test Comparison Review

All motherboard busses and components are driven from a single 133.33 MHz base clock. The resulting component speed values are generated by applying a multiplier value to this base clock. There are four multipliers on the motherboard which are used to set the system speed:

  1. CPU Speed: When multiplied by the system base clock speed (default 133.33 MHz) gives the CPU frequency. Four multipliers are used to define different speeds based on the number of active CPU cores.
  2. Memory Speed: When multiplied by the system base clock speed gives the memory frequency. For example a memory multiplier of 10 times the base clock of 133.33 MHz results in a memory frequency of 1333 MHz.
  3. Quick Path Interconnect (QPI) Speed: Selectable transfer rate of data transferred between the CPU and the IOH.
  4. Uncore Speed: This multiplier applies to the non-CPU related items in the processor. The limit on this multiplier is set by the memory multiplier.

The Intel X58 Express ChipsetIntel_X58-Express_Badge.jpg

The Intel X58 Express Chipset continues to push innovation with capabilities designed to deliver quality, performance and headroom The Intel X58 Express Chipset achieves this performance by supporting the latest Intel Core i7 family of processors at 6.4 GT/s and 4.8 GT/s speeds via the Quick Path Interconnect (QPI), and enabling increased system bandwidth by supporting industry leading technologies, such as PCI Express 2.0 graphics, Intel Turbo Memory and support for Intel High-Performance Solid State drives.

PCI Express 2.0

Intel's high-end desktop chipset continues support for PCI Express 2.0 and adds flexibility with support of dual x16 and up to quad x8 graphics card configurations and combinations in between. The greatly improved 32GB/s of graphics bandwidth capability enables much higher levels of performance on graphics intensive applications such as high end gaming and video rendering for digital content creation.

Faster System Performance

With the growing imbalance between processor and memory performance, it is critical to optimize the memory controller design to obtain the maximum possible performance from the memory subsystem. The transition of the integrated memory controller (iMC) into the processor significantly increases overall system performance through the optimization of available bandwidth along with reduction of memory access latency. The Intel Core i7 family of processors brings triple channel DDR3 memory technology support. The DDR3 SDRAM devices operating at 1066 MHz, offer peak data transfer rates of up to 25.6 GB/s (when operated in triplel-channel interleaved mode), enabling the platform to take advantage of the higher bandwidth, faster system performance, and higher performance per watt at 1066MHz2.

Intel I/O Controller Hub 10 (Intel ICH10 and Intel ICH10R)

The Intel ICH10 I/O controller hub of the Intel X58 Express Chipset integrates several capabilities to provide flexibility for connecting I/O devices.

  • Intel Matrix Storage Technology1: Native support of external SATA ports (eSATA), combined with Intel Matrix Storage Technology (Intel MST), provides the flexibility to add an external drive for increased data storage with up to 6 times faster performance than USB* 2.0 or IEEE 1394 4002. Support for eSATA enables the full SATA interface speed of up to 3 Gb/s outside the chassis. The Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) provides easier expandability with support for eSATA devices and native hot plug, while boosting boot and multi-tasking performance with Native Command Queuing (NCQ). In addition, support for Command Based Port Multipliers, and RAID levels 0, 1, 5 and 10 enable greater reliability for personal data, or maximum storage performance for intensive applications.
  • Intel Rapid Recover Technology (when configured with ICH10R I/O controller): With the ability to instantly boot off of a clone hard drive, Intel Rapid Recover Technology provides a fast, easy to use method for the end user to recover their data and return their system to an operational status.
  • Intel Turbo Memory: The Intel X58 Express Chipset with the Intel ICH10R also supports Intel Turbo Memory, an innovative flash memory-based overall system performance and boot time accelerator. This feature is easily implemented using a PCI
    Express x1 module and can be used with any SATA Hard Drive to improve system responsiveness. Intel Turbo memory enables faster application loading and concurrent performance enhancements when used in conjunction with Intel Matrix Storage
    Technology. Intel Turbo Memory, paired with the Intel X58 Express Chipset, also allows the user to easily control the applications or data in the cache using the new Intel Turbo Memory Dashboard interface, boosting performance further.
  • Intel Solid State Drives support: The Intel X58 Express Chipset, when paired with Intel X25-E Extreme and X25-M Mainstream SATA Solid State Drives (SSDs), provides a high performance solution that can enable faster overall system response, boot and resume times. With no moving parts, SSDs run cooler and quieter and are a more reliable option than hard drives. In addition, SSDs remove input/output (I/O) performance bottlenecks associated with hard disk drives that help maximize the efficiency of Intel processors, such as the new Intel Core i7 processor family.



 

Comments 

 
# RE: Gigabyte GA-EX58-EXTREME Core i7 Motherboardfaroos 2010-04-15 08:08
Thanks
Very usefull information
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# Is the watercooling optional?Joseph 2010-04-25 21:35
Hi!
I really enjoy your articles.
Concerning the hybrid silent pipe ,once you have installed it. Can you just run the motherboard on air cooling or is watercooling mandatory?
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# Either or bothOlin Coles 2010-04-26 08:05
The motherboard's Northbridge is air cooled by default, and you can ADD water cooling into the mix at any time to enhance thermal performance. The waterblock acts as a heatsink, with or without water in it.
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# Without the hybrid silent pipe?Alphonsus 2010-07-22 01:43
I need to install the grass valley HDSpark video editing card & it gets in the way of the pci-e slot unless I dismantle the hybrid silent pipe. Will this damage the motherboard without the hybrid silent pipe?
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# RE: Without the hybrid silent pipe?Olin Coles 2010-07-22 06:53
The Hybrid Silent Pipe is an optional component, and it won't harm the motherboard is you choose not to use it.
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# RE: Gigabyte GA-EX58-EXTREME Core i7 MotherboardSuvasis 2010-07-28 05:22
What is water cooling, if clarify will be great.
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