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Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R Intel P35 Express Motherboard Review

Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R Intel P35 Express Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R supports socket 775 Intel Core 2 Duo/Quad/Extreme, Celeron D, and Pentium 4/D/XE processors operating on a 800/1066/1333 MHz FSB.
 80% Rating:   
Filed under: Motherboards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: gigabyte Nov 08 2007   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R

Intel P35 Express and ICH9R Chipsets

The P35 Express handles all LGA775 processors running on 800/1066/1333 MHz Front Side bus (theoretical 10.6GB/s bandwidth). The ICH9R southbridge supports RAID via Intel's Matrix storage technology.

Intel P35 'Bearlake' chipset.
With Intel projecting quad core processors to be the mainstream choice, the boys in blue have increased CPU Front Side Bus speeds from 1066MHz to 1333 MHz recently. An increased FSB speeds up data communication between the processor and system bus.

Intel also modified the memory controller in the P35, boosting DDR2 memory support to 1066 MHz and consequently increasing maximum theoretical bandwidth to 17GB/s (in a dual channel DDR3 configuration).

These changes are all incremental, the most significant improvement in the P35 Express chipset has been the inclusion of DDR3 RAM support. Now it is important to make the distinction that Intel P35 Express motherboards can support either DDR3 or DDR2. The Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R is a DDR2 RAM platform. It is not compatible with DDR3 memory.

By default the Intel P35 Express chipset handles a single 8GB/s PCI Express x16 videocards with 16 PCI Express lanes devoted to it.

Build Quality: Ultra Durable 2

Gigabyte have recently changed how mainstream and enthusiast grade motherboards are built, basically by selecting better quality electronic components. The three electrical components covered by Gigabyte's "Ultra Durable 2" marketing slogan are ferrite core choke coils, Low RDS MOSFET's and All-Solid aluminum Polymer capacitors. The combination of all these parts, according to Gigabyte, reduces component temperature, improves power efficiency to the CPU and enhances PC stability under load.

You may or may not recall the problem of burst capacitors that turned into an industry wide epidemic a few years ago. These changes are born from that epidemic. Consequently, the benefits of higher quality Japanese-made electrolytic capacitors, and in some cases conductive polymer solid-state aluminum capacitors has been stressed on virtually every motherboard worth its salt since. Solid state capacitors improve overall stability, and last significantly longer than the electrolytic variety. Given that the average desktop motherboard lifecycle is anywhere from 6 months to 3 years, it's not unreasonable to expect it to operate reliably for that period of time.

If you've never looked twice at motherboard and know nothing about what all the little black and grey spots actually are, let alone do, you're in for a treat. In the above slide are the three components of Gigabyte's Ultra Durable 2 approach. Shown here are the Ferrite Core choke coil (this helps filter out EMI/RF interference), the LOW RDS(on) MOSFET (power circuitry), and the 'All-Solid' aluminum Polymer capacitors.

Better quality components improving reliability and longevity? It's a big claim, and difficult to prove. PCSTATS is pleased that motherboard companies are moving away from the cheap electrolytic capacitors, and instead using Japanese made electrolytic capacitors or all-solid aluminum polymer capacitors like the type pictured at left.

Compared to standard Electrolytic capacitors which use a fluid electrolyte, the 'all-solid' style aluminum polymer capacitor is beneficial because it has a longer lifespan for the same given elevated temperature that is common to the inside of a computer. As temperatures increase, the lifespan of electrolytic capacitors begins to decline. The same general rule of thumb holds true for MOSFETs as well.

After the jump, PCSTATS takes a closer look over the terrain of the Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R, and then it's onto overclocking.

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Contents of Article: gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R
 Pg 1.  Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R Intel P35 Express Motherboard Review
 Pg 2.  — Intel P35 Express and ICH9R Chipsets
 Pg 3.  Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R Motherboard Highlights
 Pg 4.  Overclocking the Gigabyte motherboard
 Pg 5.  Motherboard Benchmarks: Sysmark 2004
 Pg 6.  Motherboard Benchmarks: SYSMark 2004 Continued
 Pg 7.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PC Worldbench (Graphics)
 Pg 8.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PC Worldbench (Office)
 Pg 9.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PC Worldbench (Data Crunching)
 Pg 10.  Motherboard Benchmarks: SiSoft Sandra, Super Pi
 Pg 11.  Motherboard Benchmarks: PCMark05
 Pg 12.  Motherboard Benchmarks: 3DMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 13.  Motherboard Benchmarks: FarCry, Doom 3., Quake 4
 Pg 14.  PCSTATS Maximum Motherboard Overclocking Chart & Conclusions

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