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Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Intel P35 Motherboard Review
Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 Intel P35 Motherboard Review - PCSTATS
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   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Motherboards > Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6

Motherboard Benchmarks: Quake 4 / Conclusions

ID Software Quake 4 1.3

Source: id Software

Quake 4 is the latest shooter from ID and is based on the Doom 3 engine. Tweaked to for more eye candy, Quake 4 promises to be tougher on videocards and systems than its predecessor was. Quake 4 also does not have a 60 fps limiter like Doom 3, with the Ultra setting, graphic textures can surpass the 500MB mark! Each test is run three times and with the third run being recorded.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportID Software Quake 4 1.3
LQ 640x480: Points Ranking
ASRock AM2V890-VSTA (K8T890 200/800 A64 5000+) 154.4
Albatron KM51PV-AM2 (GF6150 200/800 A64 5000+) 152.9
MSI K9N SLI Platinum (NF 570 SLI 200/800 A64 5000+) 150.5
Asus M2-CROSSHAIR (NF 590 SLI 200/800 A64 5000+) 146.4
ECS PN2 SLI2+ (NF 680i SLI 266/800 Core 2 Duo GeForce 7800GTX Single) 203.7
ECS PN2 SLI2+ (NF 680i SLI 266/800 Core 2 Duo GeForce 7800GTX SLI) 200.6
Asus P5N32-SLI Premium (NF 590 SLI 266/800 Core 2 Duo GeForce 7800GTX Single) 203.5
Asus P5N32-SLI Premium (NF 590 SLI 266/800 Core 2 Duo GeForce 7800GTX SLI) 198.7
Foxconn 975X7AB-8EKRS2H (975X 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.5
MSI 975X Platinum (975X 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.8
Biostar TForce P965 Deluxe (P965 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.8
Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 (P965 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.6
Foxconn P9657AA-8KS2H (P965 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.4
MSI P965 Platinum (P965 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 202.1
Gigabyte 965P-DQ6 (P965 266/800 Core 2 Duo) 201.2
Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 (P35 266/1066 Core 2 Duo) 205.8

Quake 4 results are much closer, although the Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 still leads the pack. If you're into gaming the new Intel P35 platform is certainly quick and it looks good to be a mainstream gamer.

Intel's new P35 Mainstream Chipset

Parallel processing is the way of the future. Current technology simply cannot keep up with the bandwidth demands of quad core processors. At the moment Intel's chipset lineup is sufficient for dual core processors, but you'll quickly run into a bandwidth issue when there are four processing cores under the hood.

With Intel projecting quad core processors taking the market by storm, it has announced a new mainstream chipset, the P35 Express.

The Intel P35 Express brings a few new things to the table, namely support for Intel's upcoming Penryn 45nm processor, 1333 MHz FSB and DDR3 memory. The first two will no doubt get hardware users excited, DDR3 on the other hand is not expected to cause much of a stir for a year or two.

The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 will be one of the first Intel P35 Express motherboards to hit the market and Gigabyte includes everything but the kitchen sink. With a retail price of $303 CDN ($279 USD, £140GBP), the GA-P35-DQ6 is definitely pricey, but heck when you have things like a Gigabit network card, 7.1 channel High Definition Azalia audio, eight Serial ATA II ports, twelve USB 2.0 ports, three IEEE 1394a channels, CrossFire compatibility and Gigabyte's SilentPipe chipset/MOSFET cooler.... you really don't need much else do you?

The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 motherboard was a pleasure to work with and if you're an enthusiast you'll love how Gigabyte places mostly everything in easy to reach locations. The large SilentPipe heatsink works very well and keeps the Intel P35 Express Northbridge, ICH9R Southbridge and MOSFETs nice and cool.

Room For Improvement?

The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 is a luxury motherboard by all appearances, considering it is built with a mainstream chipset. While the Intel ICH9R Southbridge supports twelve USB channels, only four are available on the rear I/O. It would have been nice if Gigabyte did away with the dinosaur COM and Parallel ports and added a few more USB ports on the rear I/O.

Another potential issue with the Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 board layout is the location of the first PCI Express x1 slot. It's in very close proximity to the large SilentPipe heatsink and a three pin fan connector. Whatever goes into that slot better be small. Let's hope that the card doesn't wiggle either, or there is the very real potential of an electrical short from a copper fin coming in contact with the rear of the PCI Express x1 card.

Moving along, Gigabyte has included pretty much all the accessories you'll need to take advantage of the onboard headers. We found just two USB brackets, but to make up for that are a couple of Serial ATA brackets for external hard drives or internal drives placed outside the case.

P35 Performance Verdict: Similar to P965, but just a bit faster

In terms of performance The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 and the Intel P35 Express chipset are slightly faster than the previous generation P965, but the differences between the platforms won't truly be appreciated till quad core processors are readily available. Quad core CPUs will benefit from the added bandwidth the P35 Express delivers. As it is now, if you're a gamer you will notice a slight performance boost when moving to the P35 platform over a vanilla Intel P965 Express. There's little to no difference though for basic workstation tasks.

The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 showed the awesome overclocking potential of the Intel P35 Express chipset, hitting a very nice speed of 482 MHz FSB! We're positive the motherboard had more in it, but the E6600 processor was most likely holding things back. Those of you with water or phase change cooling systems will definitely like what Gigabyte has to offer here. When it comes to overclocking, you'll love the awesome voltage options!

The Intel P35 Express has a bright future and probably is the best way to go if you plan on upgrading to a Core 2 Quad processor. The Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6 is a little quicker than comparable P965 motherboards, full of features and fast, but it comes with a steep price tag.

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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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