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Thread: Gigabyte X58A-UD7 running review

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    Gigabyte X58A-UD7 running review

    Gigabyte X58A-UD7

    As of recent I have been working with Gigabytes newest USB 3.0 and Sata 3.0 capable board. Much like my recent review of the P55A-UD6, except this time It is the X58 chipset, and as most know that is a very popular chipset with excellent overclocking potential.

    You will see a few phases of this review, This is the first, the Overlook as you will. Testing and more input will come later as testing is completed.



    Here is the front of the box and the first thing you see with it on the shelf. Gigabyte has went out of their way to ensure you not only see the box on the shelf, but it literally jumps off the shelf into your arms, as it is the best looking packaging I have seen. Not only many sparkles and a lot of flash and color to it, but it also puts all of the information in plain sight.



    Heres what you see when you open it. You get a very good look at the board, so you dont have to unbox it to see what you are getting.



    Here is what you get on the inside of the open flap. A lot more information at your disposal that gives you all of the key marketing and selling points for the board. Here you will see everything that makes this board different than the rest out there. And there is a lot!



    Here is the rear of the package. Yet again even more information about the board and the many technologies implemented within it. All the way from 3 3 3 to the Smart6 technology to the 24 phase CPU pwm.



    Unboxing you come across the small white box containing the accessories. In here you see what has become the normal fare for the gigabyte lineup. It includes the SLI bridge, SLI hold down Bracket, a couple pairs of sata cables, and the small mix of manuals included.



    And here is a nice look at the board as a whole. Here you will see the general layout of the slots, cooler configuration and where everything fits.



    Here you get a good look at the lower section of the board specifically, here is where you have the usb headers, 1394 header, floppy and pata headers. Not to mention also your front panel control headers.



    Here you see the rear IO panel connections.
    Here you have:


    • Both PS2 mouse and keyboard connections.
    • Clear Cmos button
    • SPDIF coaxial and optical audio
    • 8 USB ports, 2 of which are USB 3.0 capable
    • Two 1394 firewire ports one standard, one mini
    • 2 Lan ports which support Smart Dual lan (will be explained later)
    • Full standard audio connections




    Here you see the visual difference between the standard USB 2.0 and the USB 3.0 capable (blue) ports You will see the extra 5 pads that allow the extra bandwidth over the standard USB 2.0 transfer rate.



    Here are the actual physical difference with the extra 5 connections per USB port which like stated before are what allow the significantly higher transfer rate. You will see the green which is the same between both, then the red which is the extra connections.



    Here is a good look at the slot layout. As you will see, the two X16 slots are far enough apart to fit full dual slot cards together in SLI or crossfire configurations. This board does also have as you see two physical X8 slots which can be used for a 4 card X8 setup, but I will have to say that with the slot spacing you would need cards with single slot coolers to fit 4 of them.



    Here you will see the add on silent pipe cooler fitted in place, not quite mounted, but put in place for representation purposes at this time. You see that the cooler has a large surface area, and adds to the cooling capacity of the already very stout looking cooler. It will utilize standard case airflow to help via heatpipe to expel extra heat from the cooling system.



    Heres a good look of the CPU socket area along with the silentpipe cooler in place on the northbridge section of the cooler. Here you will see the 24 chokes that makes up the cpu 24 phase PWM.



    Here is a very good view of the rear with the additional cooler attached.



    One of the many great features of this motherboard. A debug post LED, It assists with posting issues if any, along with telling you the present state of post you are in. Or can assist you with figuring out why it is not posting.



    Here is the sata port layout, all are laying down or forward facing ports. Very good for clearing full length Graphics cards, just be sure you are looking at the drive cages as they can sometimes have issues with connectivity if the drive in the bay is too close or interfering.



    Here is one of my favorites and It has been on a few boards, The monstrous southbridge cooler. You will see that the southbridge does not get very warm but any heat it does put out should be quickly removed by this large chunk of cooler.



    And yet I do not know if this is my favirite feature but its close. Integrated waterblocks into the northbridge I have always liked the idea of. The only issue is you are stuck with one size of tubing. If there was one flaw with the layout or knit I could pick it would be that in future boards I would like to see a threaded waterblock with interchangeable nozzles so if you (like many) run 1/2” ID tubing in your water loop you will not be required to run reducers in order to use the block.



    More review and testing to come
    Last edited by punx223; 12-06-2009 at 06:14 PM.
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    Reserved for testing
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    reserved for testing
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  4. #4
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    from initial thoughts, would it be worth upgrading from the ud5?
    i7 920 on Gigabyte UD5 X58
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by freaksavior View Post
    from initial thoughts, would it be worth upgrading from the ud5?
    The addition of sata 3 and USB3 alone makes it worth it to me... let alone the better chipset cooling. i also have a UD5 and the chipset cooling is excellent, but also this board is very solid, has more cpu power phases which should help with stability under heavy overclock.


    Initial impressions this is a much cooler looking and looks to be a excellent board. but i never go for first impressions, and upon looking at voltage options and bios will help my decision.


    as I said though the usb and sata 3.0 spec ports sell me to begin with. as these devices are just starting to trickle in and i believe especially the USB thumb drives will be truely awesome.
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    ^^^ as of that it is having the same functionality as of ud5 , pcie ports are also not arranged properly(its a waste) , more phases doesn't help OCing , usb3.0 & sata3 are shared with pcie x16.
    & last of it UD5 is the best of X58 .......

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    Quote Originally Posted by pr@$r1g View Post
    ^^^ as of that it is having the same functionality as of ud5 , pcie ports are also not arranged properly(its a waste) , more phases doesn't help OCing , usb3.0 & sata3 are shared with pcie x16.
    & last of it UD5 is the best of X58 .......
    The board layout is very similar to the UD5. The slot layout unless you have single slot cooled cards, will not be able to run 4 cards. then again there are not many boards that can run 4 cards so that kinda negates the dispute.

    as for the more power phases not helping overclocking.... I have both boards so I can easily test this one.... I have a UD5 and the UD7, so i guess I can give a lil more insight then speculation on this one.

    I will even test the same chip in both boards, and same ram.

    i can understand you defending the board (ud5) as it is the one you currently have, and is a great board. But anything can be improved, and if there is something better with this board, I will show it
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  8. #8
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    Very nice shannon! I look forward to seeing some overclocking results. I might get one of these boards as well and maybe we can compare notes! :P
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    Quote Originally Posted by Russian View Post
    Very nice shannon! I look forward to seeing some overclocking results. I might get one of these boards as well and maybe we can compare notes! :P


    i look forward to that..... you need to come down for a benching session we can burn thru some dice
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    Quote Originally Posted by punx223 View Post
    i look forward to that..... you need to come down for a benching session we can burn thru some dice
    Most def. Lets try to get something done during my winter break.
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    Im looking forward to see to of the boards compared head to head

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    Is it Rev 0.1 or 1.0 ? The box looks retail, but the start button look like the rev 0.1 P55-UD6? (just want to know if they changed the start button)
    Last edited by TheGreenFoX; 12-07-2009 at 12:32 AM.

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    there's already a thread discussing this board, but it's always worth to read the review, waiting for results here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by punx223 View Post
    The addition of sata 3 and USB3 alone makes it worth it to me... let alone the better chipset cooling. i also have a UD5 and the chipset cooling is excellent, but also this board is very solid, has more cpu power phases which should help with stability under heavy overclock.


    Initial impressions this is a much cooler looking and looks to be a excellent board. but i never go for first impressions, and upon looking at voltage options and bios will help my decision.


    as I said though the usb and sata 3.0 spec ports sell me to begin with. as these devices are just starting to trickle in and i believe especially the USB thumb drives will be truely awesome.
    USB3 does entice me to want to purchase this board.
    i7 920 on Gigabyte UD5 X58
    Mugen 2
    Seagate 500gb. 7200.12 + Seagate 750Gb 7200.11
    Samsung LN40A650 - GTX260
    Samsung sh-203n
    Cruial D9JNM 2 x 3gb 2100mhz
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    All housed in custom painted Coolermaster stacker 832 powered by Silverstone's DA 800

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    Is the NB waterblock copper? Any info on this?
    Intel i7 3770K (4.8Ghz@1.36v) ~ Asus Maximus V Gene ~ 8Gb G.Skill Ripjaws X 2133 C9 (@2400 C10) ~ Asus GTX 670 DCUII (1230/7000) ~ Samsung 840 Pro 128Gb ~ WD Black 1Tb ~ Corsair AX 850W ~ X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty ~ Epoz Aktimate Mini ~ Ducky Shine Blue Led /w MX Red ~ Logitech G700 ~ Samsung S27A850D 27" (2440x1600) ~ SilverStone TJ07B-W


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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosAD View Post
    Is the NB waterblock copper? Any info on this?
    From what i have been told by shanoob himself, yes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Russian View Post
    From what i have been told by shanoob himself, yes.
    Thank you so much russian....



    not sure if i can get a good pic down the small opening but i see copper. so I would say yes, I will ask them to be sure but from what i see it is copper
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  18. #18
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    the NB WB contacts THROUGH the fins so it's probably useless.

    I've got good results from the cpu regulator on an early version of this board .

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  19. #19
    I've got this board yesterday. Just managed to put the system together and install Windows. Now I'm stuck at work and all I can think about is testing the new setup. Arghhh, my head is gonna explode. Just two more hours though...

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    Is it possible to install the silent pipe cooler together with Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler you think?

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    Thumbs up

    Thank you for the very detailed review. Awesome!

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    I have one question - Do need ud7 hardmod for overclocking more than 222 bclk and 103 PCI-E as EX58Extreme(UD5, etc)?

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    From what the guys in the UD7 thread in the Intel section have said, the hardmod isn't needed on these boards.

    That's the only thing that I dont like about the UD5, I'm hopeless with a soldering iron, so I wouldn't dare attempt the mod myself!!
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    GA-X58A-UD7 & Megahalems?

    Wonder does the Megahalems Air Cooler fit on the UD7 in the Horizontal position, fan facing upwards?

    Or does NB waterblock's hose barb interfere with heat sink & fan making it not possible.

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