It's been a while since we've looked at a motherboard and since that one it was a while before then we looked at one as well. Like how we went on this massive run of X79 motherboards towards the end of last year, this year has been dominated by video cards.
While the motherboard side of things has been a bit quieter recently, a couple of good looking ones have arrived that we need to get stuck into. While it looks like the video card market isn't going to slow down any time soon, the motherboard market on the other hand is about to go into overdrive as we see the launch of the Intel Z77 Express Ivy Bridge platform soon.
The most recent board we're looking at today comes from MSI and is the latest to be part of the Big Bang series. The Intel X79 Express based Big Bang XPower II looks the part, but how does it go when we get past its looks?
Well, that's exactly what we're going to find out today, but there's a few things we need to do with the first being checking out the massive package that MSI have put together. Once we've done that we'll take a closer look at the board to see what's going on with it before moving into the BIOS.
From there we'll take a quick look at the overclocking side of things before we get into the performance side to see just how the MSI Big Bang XPower II performs. As we just said, though, the first thing we need to do is check out the package that MSI has put together.
In typical high-end motherboard fashion from MSI we've got a pretty big package going on and you can see we get a lot of detail in regards to some of the main features including a flap that opens up and gives us a closer look at the board itself.
On the paperwork side of things we've got an absolute heap including manuals and guides alongside the Certificate of Quality & Stability in regards to the Military Class III feature. Along with all that we've also got the standard driver CD.
On the connector side of things we've got voltage cables that let us check the voltage of certain areas via the V Check points along with M Connectors. On the SATA cable front we've got a total of eight as well as one eSATA cable, external power for a hard drive and I/O back plate.
Alongside all that we've got a bunch of SLI connectors in the bundle and two add-ons which include two USB 3.0 ports along with another add-on including a pair of eSATA ports.