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GIGABYTE MD70-HB0 (Intel C612) Server Motherboard Review

By: William Harmon | Motherboards in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Feb 19, 2015 3:12 pm
TweakTown Rating: 96%Manufacturer: GIGABYTE





The specifications for the MD70-HB0 include three PCIe x16 slots and three PCIe x8 slots that can provide good additional adapter slots for network connectivity, or additional storage controllers. Management is delivered through a dedicated LAN port that can provide iKVM features with no additional accessories, which we like. Memory capacity is typical for general-purpose servers with up to 1TB for maximum load out using 64GB DDR4 DIMMs.




Here we see a detailed block diagram showing how all the input/output ports connect to different chips on the motherboard.







Here we get our first look at the MD70-HB0 server motherboard.


For a general-purpose server motherboard, the layout is typical with the CPUs in line on the right side. All of the power connections are in good locations, but are spread out over the length of the motherboard. There is plenty of clearance around the power connectors, which allows easy plug-in and removal of connections.


The SATA connections on the left side are also in a good location; accessory cards installed in the PCIe slots do not cover them, and allow the use of standard SATA connections.


Here is the full list of connections and headers found on the MD70-HB0:


  • 1x 24-pin ATX Main Power Connector
  • 2x 8-pin ATX 12V Power Connectors
  • 2x Mini-SAS HD Connectors
  • 10x SATA3 6Gb/s Connectors
  • 1x PMBus Header
  • 2x CPU Fan Headers
  • 5x System Fan Headers
  • 1x Front Panel Header
  • 1x HDD Backplane Board Header
  • 1x USB 3.0 Header
  • 1x TPM Module Connector
  • 1x Serial Port Connector
  • 2x SATA SPGIO Headers
  • 1x IPMB Connector
  • 1x Software RAID Key Connector
  • 1x LSI RAID Key Connector
  • 2x LAN LED Connectors




Here we see the PCIe slots, which are: 3x PCIe x16 and 3x PCIe x8 slots. To provide extra cooling, GIGABYTE uses a copper heat sink for the Intel X540 network chipset.




Now we are looking at the upper-right side of the motherboard. On the top edge, we see two 10GbE BASE-T LAN ports (Intel X540) and one 10/100/1000 management LAN that supply the board's network connectivity.




Here we are looking at the lower-left section of the motherboard. Along the left-hand edge of the motherboard we find eight SATA 3 6Gb/s connectors. Just to the right of these, we have two SATA 3 6Gb/s connectors that support SATA DOM function. On the bottom edge, we have two Mini-SAS HD connectors (for eight SAS 12Gb/s) connected to the LSI SAS 3008 controller.




The right side of the motherboard has the main 24-pin power connector and one 8-pin power connector.




Now we are looking at the rear I/O ports. We have a serial port at the left, and the video port next to that. Next, we have two RJ-45 LAN ports (10 gigabit Ethernet LAN ports). The final stack has a KVM server management 10/100/1000 LAN port (dedicated LAN port) with two USB 3.0 ports below.




The MD70-HB0 uses two Mini-SAS HD connectors (for eight SAS 12Gb/s), which are connected to the LSI SAS 3008 controller chip.

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