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Intel has announced two new motherboards hoping to spur some growth in the area of small form factor computing.
First up is the D945GSEJT boarth that comes fully integrated with an Atom N270 processor and the Mobile Intel 945GSE Express chipset. Intel seems to think this low-power nettop platform is great for building all-in-one or thin client PC's.
The D945GSEJT is based on the mini-ITX form factor, has a total board height of only 20mm, and is passively cooled. It features VGA and DVI, SATA, USB 2.0, Gigabit LAN, and high definition audio.
Intel is also offering the DG41MJ Classic Series desktop board, another mini-ITX form factor board. It is based on the Intel G41 Express chipset and has a slew of features to cater to most digital home entertainment and daily computing needs.
With support for Core2Duo and Core2Quad processors up to 65W TPD and 1333 FSB, the DG41MJ can provide fast and efficient computing performance. The board Has integrated VGA and DVI, high def audio, Gigabit Lan, and more.
Intel's full press release is available here.
INTEL SOLUTIONS SUMMIT, Gold Coast, April 29, 2009 - At Intel's largest annual channel customer event today, the company launched two new motherboards designed to fuel the growth of nettops and small form factor computing. The Intel® Desktop Board D945GSEJT with the Intel® Atom Processor is designed for building into stylish and affordable nettops that push the traditional imagination of what an all-in-one or an enhanced thin client should be. Another new small form factor motherboard, the Intel® Desktop Board DG41MJ supporting low power (65W) Intel® Core2 Quad processors and Intel® Core2 Duo processors, offers users a space saving desktop solution that meets their everyday multimedia needs.
"Proliferation of small form factor desktops can spur significant growth in the overall desktop PC category. Key to tapping this growth of small form factor desktops is smaller motherboards, which enable greater design flexibility and new opportunities for desktop innovation," said John Deatherage, director for Intel's Business Clients Group. "Intel® Desktop Board D945GSEJT and Intel® Desktop Board DG41MJ will allow us to offer our customers access to truly innovative solutions that lower system size and power consumption, while boosting aesthetics and performance."
Looks like Zotac is really going to jump on the ION bandwagon after all. EXpreview brings us news that Zotac is hard at work on their new Mini-ITX Ion based mainboard.
The new board looks like it will have everything needed for the small ION Based Nettops that could be cluttering the shelves soon. Wireless, the nVidia 9400M G, Three SATA ports, Two RAM slots and HDMI/DVI/VGA ports.
The interesting thing is no expansion slots, not even a single PCI-e 1x port. Makes for a very closed system. Many have asked if this is really a feasible platform as you can get a full C2D E6350 on a Mini-ITX board with a lower (and half-height) GPU with more power and for less than these initial ION systems will cost.
Either way the introduction of ION into the Netbook/Top waters will be interesting to watch.
Read more here.
Zotac IONITX-A-U and IONITX-B-E will be available first in Japan at Yen29980 (US$303) and Yen19980 (US$202) respectively.
The ASRock X58 SuperComputer motherboard has driven the Core i7 to new heights, setting a new overclocking record for the Core i7 950 processor.
According to the Overclocking World Record Database, George Hsu has managed to overclock the Core i7 to 4431.75 MHz. The 44.5% overclock was acheived on air cooling using 2GB of G.Skill DDR3-2000 and an ASUS 9800GT video card.
VIA has stated that it plans on showing off the first Em-ITX form factor motherboard at ESC Silicon Valley 2009 next week. Until then they've been kind enough to give some pictures and information on the upcomming motherboard.
The EITX-3000 will be available with either a 1.0/1.3 GHz Nano or a 500MHz Eden ULV processor. It will be paired with a DDR2 SO-DIMM up to 2GB in size.
VIA has integrated Chrome9 graphics, Vinyl VT1708 HD audio, two SATA 3.0 ports, dual gigabit eithernet, one D-SUB and two LVDS outputs, and two USB connectors into the tiny EITX-3000 motherboard. Although there is no price or availability on the board yet, more information should be available next week.
"VIA has repeatedly pushed the thermal design envelope with innovative form factor specifications that allow ever more compact, slim and versatile device designs," said Daniel Wu, Vice President, VIA Embedded. "The VIA EITX-3000 adds the performance-per-watt advantages of the VIA Nano processor to create a truly compelling embedded board for high-end digital media systems."
Now that Intel and NVIDIA are butting heads in a legal battle, NVIDIA is focusing a little more on their offerings for AMD fans.
TechPowerUp found out that NVIDIA somewhat silently made the nForce 980a reference board official by adding the board to their product page. The 980a doesn't seem to be anything groundbreaking from NVIDIA, but it does bring AM3 and DDR3 support
What it does bring is yet another choice for AMD processors. Intel has the Core i7 locked down. If you want a Core i7 chip in your PC, you have but one choice, and thats an X58 motherboard.
The nForce 980a SLI motherboard has everything you've come to expect from NVIDIA. Dual gigabit LAN, 3-Way SLI support, lots of USB, and onboard video via the built in GeForce 8300 IGP.
The board pictured is just that of the refernce design. Once NVIDIA's partners get their hands on it, you can bet that their own cooling solutions will make it into the mix.
NVIDIA nForce® 980a SLI® media and communications processors (MCPs) power the most feature rich, high performance motherboards for AMD AM3 CPUs. As a premier enthusiast platform, nForce 980a features SLI technology for maximum graphics performance and are specifically designed to harness the power of GeForce® GPUs for gaming and beyond.
Foxconn has announced another Intel X58 based motherboard, the Renaissance II.
As far as specifications are concerned, the Renaissance II is identical to that of the first iteration of the board. It still has 4 PCIe X16 slots with support for CrossFireX and 3-Way SLI, still has room for 24GB of triple channel DDR3, and still has the same black and orange layout.
The few changes that Foxconn has made are simply those that are irrelevant to all but the most avid enthusiasts. The cooling solution has been changed and the heapipe has been removed. Also removed are the onboard power, reset, and clear CMOS buttons, the two SAS ports, and the debug LED, all of which should have absolutely no effect on performance.
ECS announced the G43T-M3 motherboard which they are touting "delivers the best HD experience."
The new mATX motherboard features the Intel G43 Express chipset and Intel GMA X4500 graphics, which includes built-in support for HD video decoding without the need for any add-on graphics cards.
Should more graphics power be required, the board has a PCIe 2.0 slot. The G43T-M3 has support for up to 12 USB 2.0 ports, 6 SATA ports, and sports DVI and VGA onboard. Unfortunately there is no HDMI or optical/coaxial SPDIF on the back I/O panel, which would make the board welcomed by many HTPC users.
There was no mention of price or availability in the full press release, which is available here.
We discovered an article in Taiwanese magazine PC Home Advance that is sure to get NVIDIA's knickers in somewhat of a knot.
The article explains how to enable SLI support on a motherboard without official NVIDIA SLI certification.
If you recall back a little, NVIDIA made a policy that if motherboard makers wanted to add SLI support to their Intel X58 chipset based motherboards, they would need to pay for certification to enable support in NVIDIA's ForceWare drivers.
PC Home Advance in Taiwan managed to work out if you flash GIGABYTE's EX58-UD4 motherboard with the latest F6 GIGABYTE UD4P BIOS (this board has official SLI support) from the GIGABYTE website, it will enable SLI support on the cheaper UD4 model.
Since you are flashing your board with a different model BIOS, you cannot just use the BIOS QFlash utility or the Windows based @BIOS. Instead, you need to flash your UD4 board with a DOS BIOS flashing program called SPIFLASH - a quick Google reveals it is readily available online. Once you've downloaded the utility, you need to enter DOS mode with a boot disk and simply type in the command "SPIFLASH EX58UD4P.F6", then the BIOS flash update will proceed. Once you've rebooted and gone back into Windows, you'll have SLI support.
Remember that flashing your board with a different BIOS will more than likely void your warranty and do take care if you wish to try it out. Leave your results and comments over at our GIGABYTE tech support forum.
ASUS sent HardOCP some information on the ASUS Rampage II GENE motherboard.
Besides supporting SLI and CrossFireX on the microATX board, it also has five fan connectors, six DIMM slots, seven SATA ports, and onboard X-FI audio.
ASUS says that the Rampage II GENE will hit the shelves with a $259 price tag.
ASUS sent along a handful of pictures of the ASUS Rampage II GENE X58 socket 1366 Core i7 motherboard that supports SLI and CFX in a microATX form factor for your viewing pleasure. We also have a complete list of specs and features to go with the pictures for those of you interested in what ASUS has packed onto this board. MRSP on the Rampage II GENE will be $259.
EVGA launched the X58 Classified Edition motherboard, raising the bar on enthusiast level motherboards.
The new board features never before seen features such as 3-way SLI + PhysX + 1x PCIe device on a single board, 2 8pin +12V connectors capable of delivering 600 watts of power, and 10 phase Digital PWM with a switching frequency of up to 1333KHz.
The board has ten SATA 300 connections, four PCIe X16 slots with support for 3-way SLI and CrossFire, and six DDR3 slots for up to 12GB of triple channel memory, as well as many more enthusiast grade features. Expect to drop US$449.99 on the board once it becomes available.
Many Manufacturers are stuffing the CPU Core Power Circuitry with endless phases without looking at the big picture. We take a very first to very last approach instead." said Peter "Shamino" Tan, Overclocking Evangelist for EVGA. "First the +12v comes into the board through the 8 pin CPU Power Connector. We remove the bottleneck here by doubling the current input capability with dual +12v. Next, the +12v is processed through a beefy 10 phase Digital PWM with a switching frequency of up to 1,333KHz, twice the speed of typical Digital PWMs and three times the speed of typical Analogue! Furthermore, you can adjust the switching frequency through the BIOS from 800KHz to 1,333KHz, deciding between power efficiency and heavy overclocking or benching.
Next, a super-low ESR and ESL film capacitor placed right behind the CPU socket ensures the cleanest power goes into your CPU. This finally passes on to a high quality CPU socket with three times the normal amount of gold content for the lowest impedance and highest current transfer, and of course, the socket is anodized a slick shiny black!