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Thread: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

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    Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    hello,

    I'm planning a new upgrade to core i7 for my system. However, I'm having problems being able to pick out the ideal X58 motherboard.

    Currently, I'm looking at buying the Gigabyte EX58 UD5 board. I was considering the EXTREME version, however, it seems the only difference is the UD5 doesn't come with the ridiculously oversized chipset cooler or the water block. As I will be overclocking the 920 (D0) however, I would go for the extreme over the UD5 if it turns out it actually has better overclocking capabilities.

    From reviews I've seen on the net though, it does seem the UD5 is one of the best overclockers. According to Hardware Canucks, it seems to be practically on par with the Asus R2E. How far I can overclock the board/CPU is the most important aspect to me.

    Another source of confusion I came across is the mention of alternative chipsets. I've heard of "X58A" and "iX58" aswell. Could anybody clarify on these?

    Finally, is the choice of socket. I originally thought that LGA1366 would be the higher end choice, but looking around I can see some LGA1156 parts are outperforming some of the current i7 chips, and are more expensive. This wouldn't matter, but I need to be sure I can upgrade to one of the high-end core i9 chips in the future. Would the upcoming 'enthusiast' parts be LGA1366? If this is the case, would LGA1366 be the most futureproof choice?

    I know I've waffled (again), but I'd really appreciate any help.

    Thanks!
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Okay. I will try and put some light on your issues.

    First, the UD5 is a great board, but remember to turn on LLC when overclocking. Without it you will need to have the voltage up by about 0.5 volt, and thus your chip will run hotter than it needs to.

    You don't need any waterblocks on the chipsets with the X58 boards unless you want to go really insane and try for 5GHz.

    I am not sure on the different chipset names. I think they might be just different naming systems for the same chipset, for example iX58 would mean Intel X58 chipset.

    Yes, the Bloomfield chips are the ones to go through, even through the boards with the correct socket and chipset are more expensive, because the i9s will be using the same technology. The i9s will be using the LGA1366 socket because they will be using QPI. Lynefield chips that use the LGA1156 sockets use a different bus technology, which has slightly less bandwidth capacity, and thus can become a bottleneck on overclocked chips.

    I hope this helps with your choices, and remember to read my OC guide below!
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    i7 (Bloomfield) Overclocking Guide

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    X58 is X58 is X58... All will run i7 so no worries really, I'm not aware of any variations on x58 anyway, probably the same chipset.
    Asus P6T series is good of course, the standard is great value for money and the deluxe v2 is all you could want for £200 really. But gigabyte are pretty nice too.

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    hello,

    Thanks for your help.

    I did a little searching for where I found mention of the X58A. It seems there are Biostar boards already out that have "X58A" chipsets, and there are a couple of Gigabyte boards in the works featuring X58A.

    http://www.dvhardware.net/article35795.html

    At first I thought the "A" would be just a branding/marketing type thing, but considering there will be additional technologies on the board not present in todays X58 boards (SATA 3 etc), surely that means it's a completely new chipset? Unless the extra features are brought by some 'external' controllers?

    Something else I've come across is the ability to (on some boards) to force the 21x multiplier on the Core i7 920. I am familiar with how Intel's Turbo Boost tech works, and how you can (temporarily) have a 21x multiplier with that, but I've never heard before of a board being able to set the 21x multiplier on a 920. How is this done? Is it 'permanent'? Ie, will it stick no matter how much load is on the CPU (assuming EIST etc is disabled)?

    Thanks!
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by nightkhaos View Post
    Lynefield chips that use the LGA1156 sockets use a different bus technology, which has slightly less bandwidth capacity, and thus can become a bottleneck on overclocked chips.
    Bottleneck to what out of interest?

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    TBH, unless your doing professional work on the system that needs extreme memory bandwidth, I would wait a bit and get one of the newer LGA1156 boards and CPUs.

    They are a few weeks away but will be considerably cheaper, hardly any difference in performance and future upgrades will be cheaper as well having more options.
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    TBH, unless your doing professional work on the system that needs extreme memory bandwidth, I would wait a bit and get one of the newer LGA1156 boards and CPUs.

    They are a few weeks away but will be considerably cheaper, hardly any difference in performance and future upgrades will be cheaper as well having more options.
    Also the socket 1156 processors will have lower power consumption and have much higher Turbo Boost frequencies too.


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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    Bottleneck to what out of interest?
    Quick Path Interconnect vs Direct Media Interface.
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    i7 (Bloomfield) Overclocking Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Spock
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by nightkhaos View Post
    Quick Path Interconnect vs Direct Media Interface.
    Yes but what's it connecting to to form a bottleneck? In the case of Lynnfield you're only talking peripherals like sound card, hard disk, LAN etc., which are hardly things you overclock in the first place. So having a potentially slower connection to them isn't going to limit you in the slightest.

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    Yes but what's it connecting to to form a bottleneck? In the case of Lynnfield you're only talking peripherals like sound card, hard disk, LAN etc., which are hardly things you overclock in the first place. So having a potentially slower connection to them isn't going to limit you in the slightest.
    I don't see where you're coming from there - don't they connect the CPU and RAM together as the front side bus did?

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    Yes but what's it connecting to to form a bottleneck? In the case of Lynnfield you're only talking peripherals like sound card, hard disk, LAN etc., which are hardly things you overclock in the first place. So having a potentially slower connection to them isn't going to limit you in the slightest.
    You're probably right. Graphics cards might be affected by the bottleneck however. Still, there is Gulftown to consider as well, which will be using the LGA1366 socket.
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    i7 (Bloomfield) Overclocking Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Spock
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  12. #12
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by snootyjim View Post
    I don't see where you're coming from there - don't they connect the CPU and RAM together as the front side bus did?
    Nope. Just looked at the arch diagrams. The memory is not controled via the QPI/DMI interface.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spock
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    What's gulftown??

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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    whoops, double post
    Last edited by nightkhaos; 18-08-2009 at 09:32 AM.
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    i7 (Bloomfield) Overclocking Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Spock
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by nibbler View Post
    What's gulftown??
    Codename for the next generation LGA1366 processors. A trail version, that HEXUS recently reported on, has 6 cores with HT (12 threads).
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    i7 (Bloomfield) Overclocking Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Spock
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    Re: Which X58 board for new i7 build?

    Quote Originally Posted by nightkhaos View Post
    You're probably right. Graphics cards might be affected by the bottleneck however.
    Graphics don't go over DMI either - they plug straight into the CPU with lynnfield like RAM does.

    The lack of QPI is inconsequential for lynnfield - if anything it's a bonus because you no longer have to go through the northbridge for graphics cards. What you miss out on is one channel of memory controller (only dual channel) - which might or might not be significant depending on memory speeds and future processor power - Intel are keeping the high end chips for the socket 1366 platform only. It's a very clear distinction between high end (and pay for it) and mainstream. Core for core lynnfield might end up actually being quicker if your memory is clocked fast enough.

    QPI's really about multi socket servers, something AMD were beating Intel in until QPI.
    Last edited by kalniel; 17-08-2009 at 07:00 PM.

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