As you must all be aware by now the latest line of Intel motherboards is slowly dripping out from manufacturers and into the hands of the press.
This is the follow up to the P55 LGA1156 series and will be the P67 (and H67) LGA1155 motherboard line.
Obviously as this is about a month or so away from public consumption we're under the very watchful eye of Intels lawyers to make sure we don't say anything we shouldn't. In fact the list of things we aren't allowed to tell you is so long that there isn't much left we can confess to.
Luckily Gigabyte have furnished us with a board of such beauty that words wouldn't do it justice anyway. So with the Sword of Damocles hanging above us, let's see if we can get out of this without a writ.
Without further ado, or perhaps a little ado, here is the most gorgeous motherboard I've ever laid eyes on.
The box only hints at the loveliness to follow, being a black and gold number that isn't too easy to photograph and do justice to, but it looks stunning "in real-life".
The clear panel in the top of the box allows a tantalising glimpse at the lush hardware beneath. It's curiously disappointing to see such generic cables and manual included. Whether this is the retail accessories or a temporary kit we don't know. If it's retail then Gigabyte would do well to provide gold SATA cables and a black and gold CD to complete the "look". Otherwise it seems a bit "off the shelf" for high-end UD7.
And here it is. Wow. Just. I hope you had a change of underwear handy, because this thing is stunning. Spectacular.
Looking a Little Deeper
One of the few elements we can tell you is the two NEC USB 3.0 controllers. A fully USB 3.0 board. Very nice. From the rear IO we can also see the standard stuff we expect as well as two LAN connections.
A few older SATA2 ports sit nicely alongside a bunch of SATA3 6Gbp/s ones. Considering the backwards compatibility it's a strange thing to still see SATA2, but everything happens for a reason.
Below those we have the usual quality Gigabyte front-panel interface along with plenty of USB headers and a diagnostic 7-segment display.
Can I interest you in the sexiest heatsinks ever seen? Thought so. Look at the MOSFETs and chokes around the CPU socket. Should prove an overclocking monster if the LGA1155 chips are up to it, and we've no reason to think they aren't.
Finally we'll leave you with a couple of shots of the Gigabytes northbridge and southbridge heatsinks. Makes a heavenly change from the blue don't you think?
We can't wait to get our hands on this in a benchable situation and see what the latest chipset has to offer.
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