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Written by Servando Silva   
Sunday, 11 July 2010
Table of Contents: Page Index
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Mini-ITX Motherboard
Intel H55 Express Chipset
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Features
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Specifications
Closer Look: Gigabyte H55N-USB3
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Detailed Features
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 BIOS
H55N-USB3 Overclocking
Motherboard Testing Methodology
EVEREST Benchmark Results
PCMark Vantage Test Results
CINEBENCH R11.5 Benchmark
Passmark Performance Test Benchmark
Street Fighter IV Results
Full HD playback Results
H55N-USB3 Power Consumption
Final Thoughts
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Conclusion

Motherboard Testing Methodology

While this is a very powerful configuration, we can't forget that we're talking about a Mini-ITX product here. This means that the product won't be compared to a Core i7 920 or a Phenom II X6 processor, but against similar systems in performance and size. This time, I've chose the recently reviewed ASRock Core 100HT HTPC and an ION 330 based HTPC for comparison. I'll be using the ECS H55H-I with the same settings as the GIGABYTE H55N-USB3 and add them to the graphics for comparison. Let's have a look at the tests systems:

ASRock Nettop ION 330 HTPC System

  • Motherboard: ASRock AMCP7A-ION (Nvidia ION)
  • System Memory: 4GB OCZ Gold 800MHz DDR2Gigabyte_H55N_USB3_CPUZ_OC.png
  • Processor: Intel Atom N330 1.6GHz Dual-Core
  • Video: Integrated Nvidia Geforce 9400 GPU (ION)

ASRock Core 100HT HTPC System

  • Motherboard: ASRock HM55-HT mini-ITX (H55M-Express)
  • System Memory: 4GB 1333MHz DDR3
  • Processor: 2.13GHz Intel Core i3-330M Dual-Core
  • Video: Core i3/Intel GMA HD (DirectX 11)
  • System Drive: OCZ Vertex 120GB SATA SSD OCZSSD2-1VTX120G

Mini-ITX H55 Core i3 System

  • Motherboard: ECS H55H-I / GIGABYTE H55N-USB3
  • System Memory: 4GB G.Skill ECO 1333MHz DDR3
  • Processor: 2.9GHz Intel Core i3 530 / Overclocked results at 3.8GHz
  • Video: Core i3/Intel GMA HD (DirectX 11)
  • System Drive: OCZ Agility MLC SSD OCZSSD2-1AGT120G

Test Software

  • Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate Edition 64-Bit
  • Lavalys EVEREST Ultimate Edition v5.50.2160
  • Futuremark PCMark Vantage 1.0.2.0 64-Bit
  • Maxon CINEBENCH R11.5 64-Bit
  • Passmark Performance Test v7.0 (1014) 64 Bit
  • Capcom Street Fighter IV Benchmark
  • Power DVD 10 Full HD 1080p H.264 playback

The 3rd test system actually consists on 3 different results. The first two are the ECS H55H-I and the GIGABYTE H55N-USB3 at stock speeds with the RAM running at 1333MHz with HT enabled on the Core i3 530. The third result consists on the same PC components but this time with the CPU at 3.8GHz with stock voltages. Therefore, RAM speed was increased to 1528MHz with an 8x multiplier. Don't be fooled by the reference to QPI in the CPU-Z display, it's actually the DMI interface that's being reported.

Gigabyte_H55N_USB3_Installed.jpg



 

Comments 

 
# RE: Gigabyte H55N-USB3 Mini-ITX MotherboardSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2010-07-11 12:21
Wow so small yet so powerful. Big thumbs up here for Gigabyte and Intel for that i3 CPU and to you Servando for a great review.

PS

This would make a great car PC too :D
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# ThanksServando Silva 2010-07-11 21:30
Thanks Steven. It really surprised me with this kind of performance. I just tried the Core i7 860 and it's 4GHz stable. That's a lot more than the TDP stated by GIGABYTE!
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# UGH...Hsew 2010-07-15 14:56
You know what... this board would be PERFECT...if there was a P55 version of it without the stupid video outputs. I mean, knowing Gigabyte boards, they can and will cram a LOT of ports on the back if given the chance, but they cant if a big chunk of space is taken by those awkward video ports. Don't get me wrong, this is great for an ultra-low power build, but Small form factor gaming PCs are growing in popularity, as we realized from the Mini ITX P55 DFI LanParty board (which was unfortunately plagued with severe component issues). How do you expect me to stick a high end GPU on this thing and have those Onboard video ports staring at me? Ridiculous. Also, the CPU socket seems kinda choked (Duh?).
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# RE: UGH...Servando Silva 2010-07-15 17:27
This board is targeted for HTPCs. I don't know how many users would love to have a board like this and install a dedicated GPU. Unluckily for you... since P55 chipset is older than H55, I don't think we'll see the P55 version.
Which other ports would you like to see? More USB ports? A second ethernet? or maybe a firewire?
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# Power ?rodrigo 2011-02-09 17:37
Hola, tengo un viejo gabinete con fuente 160w , del modelo hp s3320la, se podrĂ­a usar para esta placa madre , junto a un i3-540 y 4 ddr3 1333.
Desde ya muchas gracias, excelente!!!

=====translate=====

Hi, I have an old cabinet with 160w power, s3320la hp model could be used for this motherboard, along with an i3-540 and 4 ddr3 1333.
From already thank you very much, excellent!
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# old cpurodrigo 2011-02-09 17:44
Este es el enlace de mi viejo cpu.
================================
This is a link to my old cpu.

#h10025.#.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c01333454&tmp_task=prodinfoCategory&lc=en&dlc=en&cc=us&site=null&key=null&product=3663506&sw_lang=34
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