TweakTown NewsRefine News by Category:
ASRock has just unveiled its new Ultra M.2 PCIe Gen3 x4 connection interface that is said to double its transfer speed bandwidth, and blow SATA 3 6GB/s out of the water. The new Ulra M.2 interface is much faster due to a direct connection to the CPU, whereas older M.2 interfaces passed through the chipset before being routed to the CPU. This means that the latency is much lower and faster transfer speeds are the result.
"The theoretical speed of Ultra M.2 is 32Gb/s, which is 6X faster than PCIe x1 M.2, and 3X faster than PCIe x2 M.2. As for Ultra M.2 vs. normal M.2 comparison, we tested the read speed of Samsung XP941 PCIe x4 M.2 SSD on Ultra M.2 socket and reached 1.16GB/s, 46% faster than PCIe x2 M.2 socket. We also tested a PCIe x2 M.2 SSD on Ultra M.2 socket. Benefited from the direct linkage between Ultra M.2 interface and CPU, the PCIe x2 M.2 SSD read speed on Ultra M.2 socket is 8.8% faster than on normal M.2 socket. As shown in Chart 3, the lower latency of Ultra M.2 design does matter," ASRock said in a release.
During the last week we've seen a variety of motherboards launched using Intel's new Z97 chipset, all before Computex kicks off for another year in June. MSI broke out of the gate with some delicious motherboards, launching its new OC Series of motherboards.
MSI has snapped its Z97 Express-based motherboards into two lines of boards, the Gaming Series and OC Series. The new Gaming Series is priced between $100-$220, offering features that are aimed at gamers with decent overclocks. The OC Series however, is priced at $200-$400 and is geared toward professional and competitive overclockers.
MSI's new OC Series includes the Z97 MPower, Z97 MPower MAX AC, and the Z97 XPower AC. Starting with MSI's flagship motherboard, the Z97 XPower AC, which is made for seriously high-end builds. It features strong CPU and RAM overclocking capabilities, as well as 3- and 4-way GPU setups. We have the PEX8747 bridge chip from the folks at PLX, allowing you to drive four PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots, an an overriding single PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot. When this slot is used, it wires the add-on card directly to the CPU's root complex, bypassing the PLX chip.
The MSI Z97 XPower AC sports 10 x SATA 6Gbps ports, an M.2 slot, 12 x USB 3.0 ports, AudioBoost audio with a built-in headphone amp, 802.11 ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, Gigabit Ethernet - something that is powered by an Intel-made controller. On top of this, we also have a slew of OC features, something that includes a coolant channel for watercooling the CPU VRM, voltage measurement points, on-board OC/voltage fine-tuning buttons, and a redundant BIOS.
ASRock has quickly grown to be one of the foremost motherboard manufacturers in the custom PC world and with Intel's pending release of its new 5th Generation Haswell Processors for 2014, the company has prepared an entire line of Z97-based motherboards for 2014. While we are sure that ASRock will be showing them all of at Computex 2014, TweakTown has been given a special look into the line in the form of 19 photos.
No information was given on each specific motherboard except that they are Z97 based, and will accept Intel's 5th Generation Haswell Processors. Some of the boards will feature the new M.2 SSD connector and will allow the use of M.2 SSD drives with the boards. "M.2, formerly called "Next Generation Form Factor" (NGFF), is the latest I/O solution of replacing Mini-SATA (abbreviated as mSATA) and breaking through the speed limit of the current SATA3 6Gb/s. Leading by Intel Inc., M.2 technology is based on the PCI Express interface and also compatible with the SATA interface," ASRock said in a release.
Information about ASUS motherboard with upcoming Intel Z97 Chipset was leaked in a China based website. According to the information, ASUS is preparing to release six new motherboards with LGA 1150 socket.
The motherboard models are Maximus VII Hero, Maximus VII Gene, Z97 Sabertooth Mark 1, Z97 Deluxe, Z97-WS and Maximus VII Ranger.
The information also provides the specifications and features that ASUS have implemented on the respected models of the motherboards. As one would expect, the enthusiast class motherboards will be with an array of overclocking features.
ASRock is already teasing the next generation of Intel CPUs and motherboards, inviting press to its 9 Series Motherboard launch during Computex 2014. ASRock is holding the session on June 4, just as the event kicks off.
The company will be launching its new 9-series of motherboards, as well as its "latest product features" and exclusive product information to ASRock's closest friends in the media. You can be sure we'll be covering the event itself, and all of the new 9-series products that will be launched at Computex 2014.
If you are the sort of geek that is into projects that require a CPU and board among other things, check this out. A new developer board has landed called the MinnowBoard Max and it is an update to the original MinnowBoard. That original product used an Intel Atom E640 CPU and sold for $199.
The new product offers better hardware and a cheaper price tag. The MinnowBoard Max comes in two versions with the base model selling for $99. For the money, you get a small developer board with a 1.46GHz Intel Atom E3815 CPU and 1GB of RAM.
If you need more performance, you can get an upgraded version with a 1.33GHz dual-core Atom E3825 with 2GB of RAM. That hopped up version sells for $129. The MinnowBoard max supports Android 4.4, Debian Linux, and other operating systems.
GIGABYTE has just taken the wraps off of its new high performance server motherboard, the GA-6PXSVT, the company's first single Socket 2011-based workstation motherboard that features 10GbE.
The GA-6PXSVT supports the Intel Xeon E5-1600 V2 and E5-2600 V2 processors, up to 256GB of ECC memory, and all of the usual features you would find on a high-end workstation motherboard. First we have the single SFP+ 10GbE port that is coupled with two additional GbE ports, making the GA-6PXSVT quite the networking performance powerhouse.
The GA-6PXSVT features Intel's third generation 82599EN 10GbE controller with a low latency SFP+ interface, which means that users benefit from an on-board package which delivers higher bandwidth, lower thermals and footprint, and cost performance compared to the traditional method of adding 10GbE capacity through a PCI-Express expansion card.
Intel is expected to unveil its next-generation Haswell processors in Q2 2014, as well as the new 9-series chipset. The new Haswell refresh will be concentrated on the desktop side of things, with over 20 different SKUs being made available.
The new CPUs will have higher clock speeds, with the new high-end Core i7-4790 being clocked at 3.6GHz. MSI has stepped up to the plate early, announcing that all of its current 8-series motherboards will support the new Haswell processors. With over 20 motherboards on the market, this gives MSI an interesting position in the market, as it will release new 9-series motherboards, but support the new processors on its current motherboards, too.
ASUS and GIGABYTE Technology made plans to ship over five millon DIY motherboards by first quarter of this year. Both companies have been competing head-to-head in China's DIY PC market for entry-level, mid-end and even high-end models.
Though ASUS' 2014 shipments haven't changed, GIGABYTE has noticed a significant increase, mainly due to increase of demand in towns and cities. ASUS shipped about twenty million seven hundred thousand motherboards during 2013 witnessing a 6.8% decrease compared to the previous year, whereas GIGABYTE shipped twenty million motherboards, a 5.3% bump.
During the fiscal year of 2013, ASUS managed to sell more motherboards than its closest rival, GIGABYTE, but 2014 is shaping up for both companies to go head-to-head in a battle so see who can sell the most boards. In 2013, ASUS managed to sell more than 22 million motherboards, while GIGABYTE came in a very close second at just over 21 million units sold. Newly reported numbers show that GIGABYTE may have taken an early lead for 2014 though.
A new report from DigiTimes says that GIGABYTE is on track to sell more than 5 million motherboards in the first quarter of 2014 alone, with those figures being driven by a strong market in China. China is one of GIGABYTE's biggest markets for 2014, with more than 40-percent of its sales coming from the country. With the 2014 fiscal year just beginning, there is still a lot of time for ASUS to catch up, but with numbers like these being posted, and solid high-end boards being released by GIGABYTE, ASUS has its work cut out if it hopes to surpass the current leader.