Gigabyte EX58-UD5 X58 Motherboard

Introduction

IntroductionUD3

Intel's latest chipset is fast becoming very popular despite its cost and in our latest review we get to sample Gigabyte's mid range entry in the form of the EX58-UD5.

The UD5 is a little confusing as the PCB is actually part of the UD3 range having the same 2oz of copper integrated into the circuit board, just like its P45 counterpart. This, along with solid capacitors and Ferrite core chokes make up the 3rd incarnation of Gigabytes 'Ultra Durable' range. The double layered copper PCB claims to lower impedance as well as having the added benefit of dissipating heat which in turn, along with the lower impedance, could increase stability when overclocking.

Where the 5 bit comes in I am not sure but looking at the board's specification it becomes clear that the UD'5' is a higher specified board than both the UD3 and DS4 stable mates. In fact, it appears to be very much akin to the range topping Extreme model save for the extravagant cooling on the chipset, yet costs some £30 less than Gigabytes flagship model. This may well appeal to those who want the best possible performance yet don't wish to have excessive trimmings, least of all pay for them. That said though, as this is an i7compatible motherboard, it has a price tag to match, weighing in at a little under £220, it isn't the exactly the bargain basement we had hoped for but it is the cheapest of the trio we have on test today.
 

Specification

CPU
1. Support for an Intel® Core™ i7 series processor in the LGA 1366 package
(Go to CPU Support List for the latest CPU support )
2. L3 cache varies with CPU

QPI
1. 4.8GT/s / 6.4GT/s

Chipset
1. North Bridge: Intel® X58 Express Chipset
2. South Bridge: Intel® ICH10R

Memory
1. 6 x 1.5V DDR3 DIMM sockets supporting up to 24 GB of system memory (Note 1)
2. Dual/3 channel memory architecture
3. Support for DDR3 2100+/1333/1066/800 MHz memory modules

Audio
1. Realtek ALC889A codec
2. High Definition Audio
3. 2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
4. Support for Dolby® Home Theater (Note 2)
5. Support for S/PDIF In/Out
6. Support for CD In

LAN
1. 2 x Realtek 8111D chips (10/100/1000 Mbit)
2. Support for Teaming

Expansion Slots
1. 2 x PCI Express x16 slots, running at x16 (PCIEX16_1/PCIEX16_2) (Note 3)
2. 1 x PCI Express x8 slot, running at x8 (PCIEX8_1) (Note 4)
(The PCIEX16_1, PCIE16_2 and PCIEX8_1 slots support 2-Way/3-Way NVIDIA SLI/ATI CrossFireXTM technology and conform to PCI Express 2.0 standard.)
3. 1 x PCI Express x4 slot
4. 1 x PCI Express x1 slot
5. 2 x PCI slots

Storage Interface South Bridge:
1. 6 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors (SATA2_0, SATA2_1, SATA2_2, SATA2_3, SATA2_4, SATA2_5) supporting up to 6 SATA 3Gb/s devices
2. Support for SATA RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, and RAID 10

GIGABYTE SATA2 chip:
1. 1 x IDE connector supporting ATA-133/100/66/33 and up to 2 IDE devices
2. 2 x JMB322 chips (Smart Backup):
* 4 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors (GSATA2_0, GSATA2_1, GSATA2_2, GSATA2_3) supporting up to 4 SATA 3Gb/s devices (Note 5)
* Support for SATA RAID 0, RAID 1 and JBOD

iTE IT8720 chip:
1. 1 x floppy disk drive connector supporting up to 1 floppy disk drive

IEEE 1394
1. T.I. TSB43AB23 chip
2. Up to 3 IEEE 1394a ports (1 on the back panel, 2 via the IEEE 1394a brackets connected to the internal IEEE 1394a headers)

USB
1. Integrated in the South Bridge
2. Up to 12 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (8 on the back panel, 4 via the USB brackets connected to the internal USB headers)

Internal I/O Connectors

1. 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
2. 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
3. 1 x floppy disk drive connector
4. 1 x IDE connector
5. 10 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors
6. 1 x CPU fan header
7. 3 x system fan headers
8. 1 x power fan header
9. 1 x North Bridge fan header
10. 1 x front panel header
11. 1 x front panel audio header
12. 1 x CD In connector
13. 1 x S/PDIF In header
14. 1 x S/PDIF Out header
15. 2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
16. 2 x IEEE 1394a headers
17. 1 x power LED header
18. 1 x chassis intrusion header
19. 1 x power switch
20. 1 x reset switch

Back Panel Connectors
1. 1 x PS/2 keyboard port
2. 1 x PS/2 mouse port
3. 1 x coaxial S/PDIF Out connector
4. 1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
5. 1 x IEEE 1394a port
6. 1 x clearing CMOS switch
7. 8 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
8. 2 x RJ-45 ports
9. 6 x audio jacks (Center/Subwoofer Speaker Out/Rear Speaker Out/Side Speaker Out/Line In/Line Out/Microphone)

I/O Controller

1. iTE IT8720 chip

Form Factor
1. ATX Form Factor; 30.5cm x 24.4cm

Quite a specification which, on paper at least, has both the Asus P6T deluxe and the MSI Platinum beat. Sporting 40 PCIe lanes as well as supporting SLI and Crossfire this board is certainly touting itself as the gamers board but the 10, thats right TEN SATA ports, should satisfy even the most ardent storage freak. Up to 12 USB ports and 3 Firewire ports make up the excellent connectivity available on the EX-58 UD5. On board switches should please the enthusiast. Support for up to 24GB of DDR3 and Dual LAN teaming round of a very complete and feature packed specification.

Let's take a look at the package...

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Most Recent Comments

05-01-2009, 09:55:16

monkey7
Best in class, w00t w00t! That's my board

Personally the only bug I've found is the CPU multiplier in the F3 bios: I couldn't lower the CPU multiplier.

Oh and one question: how did you save the bios? I'm too lazy to actually read the manualQuote

05-01-2009, 10:06:04

Rastalovich
We got performance figures of these vS 775 setups ? I can'`t remember.

Either way, £218 is still taking the pish imo. These are the emerging mobos that will see revisions l8r in the year, and to charge over even £200 for them is beyond.

They figuring they can price match Foxconn or summit ?

Tis a shame, cos it does appear a great mobo from the review, but I have to be honest, being as i7 doesn`t do leaps and bounds over a 775, I for one aint gonna pay over the odds to get them.Quote

05-01-2009, 10:21:16

PV5150
Nice review webbo. I'm really liking the look of this board and the price/colour scheme may now see me acquire one in the future.Quote

05-01-2009, 10:23:16

TheMadDutchDude
Rasta, I totally agree with you and I refuse to pay that kind of money for a motherboard. Anyhoo, don't know how many of you know but there are some P55 motherboards coming out some time this year which hopefully will be around normal prices. I expect they will be similar like the P35 and the X38 for pricing strategies?Quote

05-01-2009, 10:59:47

Pyr0
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='monkey7'

Oh and one question: how did you save the bios? I'm too lazy to actually read the manual
F11 (save) and F12 (load) while in the main screen of the biosQuote
Reply
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