DFI's X58 LANParty motherboard shows the same style that all of the previous LANParty boards have used in the past. The PCB that the board is built on is a 6 layer full ATX PCB measuring 30x24cm which seems to be the norm today as companies are trying to stick as many bells and whistles onto their boards as possible and in most cases all of this room is needed.
Layout wise, DFI has followed a lot of good examples out there. The 24-pin power connector along with the green FDD connector resides behind the six DDR3 memory slots. Looking closer at the memory slots, there are three yellow and three green. The 8-pin Aux power connector is located between the heatpipe and PS/2 port tower. DFI has gone with an extremely extensive heatpipe/heatsink assembly to cool the power regulators, X58 IOH and ICH10R.
DFI has placed its SATA ports on the lower right hand edge of the board, stacked atop each other on a 90 degree angle. There are six green SATA ports which are routed from the six available SATA channels on the ICH10R and support the standard RAID and AHCI features. The two yellow ports are routed from a JMB368 controller chip that also supplies the single IDE channel, since all ICH's from the eighth generation onward no longer have any IDE support.
DFI has not gone for the traditional Mosfet and choke setup for its voltage regulation system. We have seen in the past that DFI has used this same Digital Voltage system to provide the CPU with stable power and it allows for a much more sensitive range of voltage options compared to traditional setups.
DFI has limited its rear I/O ports because of the Flame Freeze cooler exiting out the rear of the case. However, there are more than enough USB ports along with the PS/2 ports, LAN and FireWire ports for your convenience. As mentioned earlier, the audio ports have been moved to a separate daughter board which allowed DFI to make room for the Flame Freeze cooling setup.
DFI always provides a good selection of expansion slots and the X58 LANParty is no exception. First off, being powered by the X58 IOH, the board is capable of SLI and Crossfire operations. To that end there are three PCI Express x16 slots; two green and one yellow. The two green slots are x16 compliant off the IOH for standard SLI or Crossfire operation. When a third graphics card is installed in the yellow x16 slot, eight lanes from the lower green slot are taken to make the yellow x16 slot work, giving the standard 16/8/8 setup.
DFI also includes a x4 PCIe slot; however, if you use a large graphics card in the first PCIe x16 slot it is cut off from being used. There are two PCI slots located below; one nestles between the lower green x16 slot and the yellow x16 slot and one is right down the bottom of the board. Personally, I would have liked to have seen the x4 slot placed where the first PCI slot is.
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