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GIGABYTE MW50-SV0 (Intel C612) Workstation Motherboard Review

By: William Harmon | Motherboards in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Dec 19, 2014 7:14 pm
TweakTown Rating: 96%Manufacturer: GIGABYTE

Specifications

 

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The specifications for the MW50-SV0 are typical for an ATX workstation motherboard, and include 3x PCIe slots, GbE LAN ports, and ample SATA ports for storage.

 

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Here we see a detailed block diagram showing how all the input/output ports connect to different chips on the motherboard. We noticed that this says the Intel Chipset C610 is used, but it should say Intel C612.

 

 

Layout

 

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Here we get our first look at the MW50-SV0 Workstation Motherboard.

 

The CPU socket and RAM slots clearly dominate the motherboard, taking up about half of the available space. The next thing we noticed is the mSATA connector is tucked away between the SATA ports and RAM slots, without much room for cooling. Some of the mSATA drives that we have tested run rather warm, so be sure to have good air flow across this area if you use an mSATA drive.

 

This is just an observation on our part, but the chipset heat sink should be rotated so that the GIGABYTE logo reads the correct orientation when installed in a case; on our sample, it would be upside down. Here is the full list of connections and headers found on the MW50-SV0:

 

  • 1x 24-pin ATX main power connector
  • 1x eight-pin ATX 12V power connector
  • 1x CPU fan header
  • 4x System fan headers
  • 1x USB 3.0 vertical Type A
  • 1x USB 3.0 header
  • 1x USB 2.0 header
  • 1x Front audio header
  • 1x S/PDIF-In header
  • 1x PMBus connector
  • 2x SATA SGPIO headers
  • 1x Clear CMOS jumper
  • 13x SATA III 6Gb/s ports
  • 1x SATA DOM jumper
  • 1x Chassis intrusion header
  • 1x Front panel header
  • 1x HDD back plane board header
  • 1x Serial header
  • 1x TPM header
  • 1x JPI header
  • 1x BIOS recovery jumper
  • 2x PCIe switch jumpers
  • 1x PMBus selection jumper

 

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Here we see the PCIe slots, which are:

 

  • 2x PCIe x16 (Gen3 x16 bus) slots
  • 1x PCIe x16 (Gen3 x8 bus) slot

(These support 2-way / 3-way NVIDIA SLI / AMD CrossFireX)

  • 1x PCIe x4 mezzanine card slot, which is just about the RAM slots
  • 1x PCI slot, which is the white PCI slot on the far left

 

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Now we are looking at the lower left side of the motherboard.

 

Intel C612 chipset:

 

8x SATA 3.0 6Gb/s ports (white) along the bottom

 

Marvell 88SE9230 controller:

 

4x SATA 3.0 6Gb/s (white) along the left edge

1x SATA 3.0 6Gb/s port supporting SATA DOM (red)

 

And between the white SATA ports and the RAM slots, we find an mSATA 6Gb/s slot.

 

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Here we are looking at the upper right section of the motherboard. This is where the main I/O connectors on the back panel are located, and one of the eight-pin power connectors is just left of the VRM heat sink. We also see the mezzanine card slot just above the RAM slots at the left side.

 

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The lower right side of the motherboard has the main 24-pin power connector at the bottom edge of the motherboard.

 

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Now we are looking at the back I/O ports. At the left, we see a PS/2 mouse/keyboard port with two USB 2.0 ports below. The next stack has a Gigabit LAN port with two USB 2.0 ports below. The following two stacks have Gigabit LAN ports, and two USB 3.0 ports below. The final stack has audio output connections with a COM port as the last connection.

 

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The MW50-SV0 uses Socket 2011-3 for the CPU. This socket is slightly different from the normal Socket 2011, so v2 CPUs will not fit the MW50-SV0. However, the heat sink mounts are the same, so older heat sinks for Socket 2011 will work fine.

 

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As an optional accessory, the MW50-SV0 can mount a 2x 10GbE SFP+ LAN card connected to the mezzanine card slot. This slot uses 4x PCIe lanes, and requires a custom mounting socket. We like this LAN expansion card, as it frees up PCIe slots that can be used for GPUs.

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