Steven's Motherboard Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: GIGABYTE X170-Extreme ECC
- CPU: Intel Xeon E3-1275 v3
- Cooler: Corsair H110i GT - Buy from Amazon
- Memory: Kingston 4x8GB KVR21E15D8/8HA
- Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Storage - Boot Drive: Samsung 850 Pro 512GB - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Storage - SATA6G Drive: Corsair Force LS 240GB - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Storage - M.2 Drive: Kingston HyperX Predator 240GB PCIe x4 - Buy from Amazon
- Storage - USB Drive: Corsair Voyager GS 64GB - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Case: Corsair Obsidian 900D - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Power Supply: Corsair AX1200i - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- OS: Microsoft Windows 8.1 Enterprise - Buy from Amazon
- BIOS: F1
- Drivers: Intel INF: 10.1.1.9, Intel ME: 126.96.36.1992, Intel USB 3.0 Adaptation Driver: 10.0.0.42, NVIDIA Graphics: 353.82, Audio: RC1, Intel LAN: 20.2.4001, Killer LAN: 188.8.131.523
The X170-Extreme ECC looks very sleek, and the RGBs are yellow by default and it creates a very nice gold effect.
The new test bench is designed to test every aspect of the motherboard and IO. I have designed it so that the motherboard sits in a case and is cooled by fans always-on at a constant rate to keep the conditions similar during all tests. I have cut out part of the case behind the motherboard so I can get thermal images of the back of the PCB where the VRM heat spreads. System and CPU power measurements are now digitally logged.
I am also using a Netgear Nighthawk X4 AC2350 for our network (including wireless AC) tests. The latest M.2, SSD, and USB technologies are also being utilized to test the maximum potential of the motherboards that are tested.
I decided to use ECC memory modules with the X170-Extreme ECC, and in this case, Kingston provided 32GB made up of four KVR21E15D8/8HA modules.
ECC memory is designed to help the system avoid errors in memory. These errors are almost unpreventable; background ration causes random bit flips within memory. At the extreme side of things, there can be five single bit errors in 8GB of RAM per hour. ECC memory uses extra memory to provide extra bits for an error-correcting mode that is executed by the chipset. For ECC memory to work you must use a processor compatible with ECC, in this case, we are using an Intel Xeon E3-1275 v3.
PRICING: You can find the GIGABYTE X170-Extreme ECC (Intel C236) Motherboard for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:
United States: The GIGABYTE X170-Extreme ECC (Intel C236) Motherboard retails for $316 at Amazon.
United Kingdom: The GIGABYTE X170-Extreme ECC (Intel C236) Motherboard retails for £203 at Amazon UK.
Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.
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