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Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Intel P35 Motherboard Review

Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Intel P35 Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The new mainstream Intel P35 Express Northbridge looks quite a lot like Intel's old P965 series chipset, but with two very major inclusions; support for 1333 MHz Front Side Bus and official support for DDR3 RAM.
 86% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Gigabyte May 29 2007   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6

Breakdown on the Intel P35 Express

A dedicated 2GB/s I/O bus connects the Intel P35 Express Express Northbridge and ICH9R Southbridge together, which might be a little tight if you have many high bandwidth devices installed but should be just fine for the average user. You will recall this figure has not increased since the P965 Express chipset.

The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 motherboard comes installed with the ICH9R Southbridge which includes a ton of goodies.

There are six 3GB/s Serial ATA II channels (which support RAID modes 0, 1, 5 and 10) as well a 7.1 channel Intel Azalia high definition audio, twelve U480MB/s SB 2.0 ports in total (split between headers and the I/O slot), six PCI Express x1 lanes at 500MB/s bandwidth each, and an integrated Intel Gigabit MAC that runs through the PCI Express bus specific to this chipset.

Noticeably lacking from the chipset itself is parallel IDE support. In this case, Gigabyte resorts to a stand alone IDE controller to provide IDE support on the GA-P35-DQ6 motherboard. A block chart of the Intel P35 Express Express chipset's major features is illustrated below.

Intel has integrated its Quiet System Technology or QST into the ICH9 Southbridge. Essentially it allows the chipset to throttle fans that are connected to the motherboard down to quiet the computer. When QST detects that the system is getting too hot, fan speeds will increase accordingly.

Intel’s Matrix Storage technology encompasses RAID and eSATA support. The ICH9R Southbridge supports five levels of RAID: 0, 1, 0+1, 5 and 10. Also supported is eSATA, and we are finding most manufacturers placing at least one and sometimes two eSATA ports on the rear I/O.

Intel Turbo Memory is the only truly new feature of the ICH9 Southbridge. Essentially it allows you to connect a special Flash cache memory card to the PCI Express bus. It is supposed to improve application and data loading of the computer by off-loading recurring HDD tasks to the Flash memory card. At the moment Intel’s Turbo Memory technology is aimed at the mobile market where hard drives tend to be slower.

Intel G35 Express Chipset in Brief

Even though the Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 motherboard is equipped with the Intel P35 Express, we're going to talk briefly about Intel's new onboard graphics core logic solution - called the Intel G35 Express chipset. The G35 contains integrated video in the form of Intel's upcoming X3500 Graphics Media Accelerator. The X3500 GMA is DirectX 10 compliant, so it supports goodies like Shader Model 4.0 and is Windows Vista Aeroglass compliant. Of course considering how radical the DirectX 10 standard is, you'll be happy to hear that the X3500 GMA is also backwards compatible with DirectX 9.0C.

The Intel X3500 GMA also supports Blu-Ray and HD-DVD playback, as well as MPEG2 and VC1 acceleration. The chipset integrates HDCP and supports HDMI, DVI and analog video outputs. It is up to the manufacturers' discretion to implement the video output jacks. The Intel G35 is scheduled to be released sometime in the Q3 of 2007 and is designed to compete directly against AMD's 690G and nVIDIA's GeForce 7000 series integrated platforms.

Now let's take a quick look at the highlights of Gigabyte's GA-P35DQ6 motherboard.

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Contents of Article: Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6
 Pg 1.  Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Intel P35 Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  — Breakdown on the Intel P35 Express
 Pg 3.  Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Motherboard Highlights
 Pg 4.  High end components, Ultra Durable 2
 Pg 5.  Motherboard Thermal Solutions Get Complex
 Pg 6.  Overclocking on Intel's P35 Chipset
 Pg 7.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Sysmark 2004
 Pg 8.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PC Worldbench (Graphics)
 Pg 9.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PC Worldbench (Office / Data)
 Pg 10.  Motherboard Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra, Super Pi, PCMark05
 Pg 11.  Motherboard Benchmarks: 3DMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 12.  Motherboard Benchmarks: FarCry, Doom 3
 Pg 13.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Quake 4 / Conclusions

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