|MSI Z68A-GD80 Intel Motherboard|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Motherboards|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Wednesday, 01 June 2011|
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Motherboard Testing Methodology
To test this board, I compared it against a P67-based ASUS P8P67 and a Z68-based ASUS P8Z68-V Pro. The Intel Core i7 2600K processor, DDR3 1333 memory, video card, and other components were the same in all tests...only the motherboards changed.
P67 Test System
Z68 Test Systems
The biggest selling point of the Z68 chipset is that you can now fully utilize the Sandy Bridge integrated GPU. Like the ASUS P8Z68-V Pro motherboard, the MSI Z68A-GD80 includes Lucid's "Virtu" software to enable automatic switching between a discrete graphics card and the integrated GPU (or "iGPU"). Benchmark Reviews examined Lucid Virtu Graphics Virtualization Technology in detail in this article. For this review I'll run the benchmarks on the MSI Z68A-GD80 in four different configurations:
Virtu's i-Mode should allow the graphics processing power of the Radeon HD6850 video card to kick in when it's needed, while saving power by idling the card and using the 2600K's integrated GPU when it's not.