Gigabyte G1 Assassin Review
There is no denying that todays review was slightly different than the norm. With so many modern systems being within a gnats chuff of each other we really wanted to give a range of results, rather than try and find the nth of a percentage difference between two identical performers.
Hopefully it's been as fun for you as it has been for us. Before we get to the meat of the conclusion we wanted to say how well the XSPC water-cooling kit performed. Between the tests and building, and various things that we do in the course of a review, the CPU block was on and off like a honeymooners underthings. Not once did we encounter any issues at all and it was a joy to work with.
It was also great to get a chance to build a full system rather than the more open-plan nature of our bench setup, and whilst the incredible green of the CoolerMaster case might not be to everyones taste, there is argument about how great the internals look. Especially when powered up.
As for the Gigabyte G1.Assassin itself there is very little we can add to the clear results from the previous pages.
Packaging is absolutely superb. Gigabyte have taken the Military theme and really run with it. From the ammo box look of the outside, to the MARPAT style box it really builds up anticipation for the board itself. Even the accessories package is fantastic and whilst we personally wouldn't put fake bullet holes on our cases, we understand many can't wait to do so.
Of course it would all be for nought of the board itself was a plain affair, but the design of the heatsinks is spectacular. We can't recall such a holistic design carried even to the heatsinks. Normally companies stick with a colour-scheme at most, but Gigabyte have gone all out and get the deserved plaudits.
We could almost stop there because we know there are many who buy things purely for the aesthetics, but the G1.Assassin isn't all show and no go. No siree Bob.
At stock it's pretty much what we'd expect. There or thereabouts with the rest of the X58 boards. Hence us wanting to try something different. Overclocking was a joy and we managed to obtain the highest overclock we've seen out of our Core i7-980X CPU. The i7-950 managed to overclock to the same high level as we've seen from other premium boards, and the Gigabyte handled them all with aplomb.
However if you're looking to buy this to solely run a single card you're somewhat missing the point and might be better served by the Sniper. This is all about multiple GPUs and although we only tested in SLI here, there is not a single doubt that the Gigabyte Assassin is THE go to choice if you want the very best.
We saw as close to 100% scaling as you're ever likely to see in our gaming tests, and if that doesn't cock your pistol we can't imagine what will. That's without mentioning the KillerNIC, the Creative chip, the multiple SATA3 and USB3.0 ports, 16 phase power circuitry. Really the list of features is near endless.
Of course a premium product comes with a premium price-tag and the Assassin is no different weighing in at a hefty £420. With the X58 replacement on the horizon it could be argued that it's not a wise investment for those who want endless upgradeability. But that isn't what this is about. This is about owning the absolute best, no compromises, right now.
Despite the price-tag it's a clear and easy winner of the OC3D Gold Award. We only wish more companies would put the same amount of effort into giving us a product which not only looks good but performs well. And most importantly, isn't blue or red.