In the world of motherboards and manufacturer competition, the idea is to beat your competitor. To develop the product, with more features, more fancy gadgets, and perform better than your competitor at every price point. Today, we pit arguably the two most popular motherboard vendors at a price point that will see a significant number of sales from consumers and enthusiasts alike – the ASUS P8P67 Pro and the Gigabyte P67A-UD4, which were both released during the Sandy Bridge week for $190. Forget all the marketing fluff; this is a showdown!

When a new platform is released, a myriad of motherboards hit the shelves at the same time. Each vendor will usually come out with a few products, targeting their prospective markets. Big motherboard players, like ASUS and Gigabyte, will release motherboards ranging from the cheap low end, to that high-end halo product. They will bombard you with data, ideas, concepts, and reasons why their high-end products are better than their low end – in terms of numbers, features, or what is in the box. Whether you can really trust what each manufacturer says on the box depends on the interpretations of the benchmarks and analyses by review sites like AnandTech.

At the time of writing, Newegg has 56 Sandy Bridge motherboards available – 22 for H67 and 34 for P67. Of those in the P67 range, you can pick up an Intel motherboard for as little as $115, or an ASUS as expensive as $320. So what makes that expensive motherboard worth almost three times as much as the low-end board? What makes a $200 board better than a $150 board? Features? Warranty? Overclockability? Price? All of these points, while valid, carry different weight with every different consumer.

I reviewed the ASRock P67 Extreme4 at the Sandy Bridge release, and they offered a great product that is available online for $153. Today, we have two boards released at $190 by two of the biggest motherboard manufacturers – the ASUS P8P67 Pro, and the Gigabyte P67A-UD4. Firstly, the question is: if you had $190, which one would you buy? Then secondly, we have to ask: are these boards worth the ~$40 difference to the P67 Extreme4? Luckily, at least in my opinion, after using all three of the boards, the answers to both of these questions were self-evident.

Firstly, let us tackle the ASUS P8P67 Pro.

ASUS P8P67 Pro: Visual Inspection
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  • 7Enigma - Tuesday, January 25, 2011 - link

    And in my experience I'm on the exact opposite. Built a gaming computer for my dad last summer. Started to randomly refuse to turn on after 2 months of use normal. After ruling out peripherals I pulled the HSF off and popped the CPU out to see a DISCONNECTED PIN on the mobo! Just sitting there on the ground like it had decided to fall off. Contacted Gigabyte through Newegg and received NO response. TONS of people were having similar issues both on their forums and on Newegg. I never received a response from them and ended up shelving the $130 mobo in my basement and buying a $140 Asus which has been rock-solid since installation last fall.

    Prior to this lack of customer support I was a huge fan of Gigabyte. My last 2 mobo's and video card were from them and I had nothing but praise when asked for a recommendation by friends/family. After the mobo fiasco and clearly being ignored (both myself and other enthusiasts) I've sworn off the company.
    Reply
  • Makaveli - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    was that 920 D0 at stock speeds for the gaming test or overclocked? Reply
  • MeanBruce - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    Really feel it's worth waiting for the SandyBridge E LGA-2011 Asus Rampage IV Extreme X68 with Quad memory. That mobo will last through Ivy Bridge 22nm and maybe even into Haskins! In the meantime think I'll drive over to motor city and pick up some new rocks. Reply
  • vol7ron - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    Mmmm quad mem. Reply
  • Gothmoth - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    honest the H67 and P67 boards, as good as they are, are only to suck the money from the dumb enthusiasts who will not wait for the REAL DEAL.

    im not buying this stuff from, intel im waiting for Z68.

    this overclocking/quick sync sillyness with the current chipsets really sux.

    don´t know what intel is thinking but im not buying this crap thats for sure.
    Reply
  • vol7ron - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    Second. It's actually a good marketing move to get rid of old parts Reply
  • MeanBruce - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    Mmmm Z68... Reply
  • strikeback03 - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    Well, for some users the current offerings do make sense. If you are building a pure gaming system P67 shouldn't limit you any, as QuickSync isn't likely to be that important to you. Or our work computers, for example, will never be overclocked, so H67 boards would be fine for that use.

    That said, any mild enthusiast building some form of general-purpose system should probably wait for Z68. Dunno how Intel screwed that up, but it was dumb.
    Reply
  • 7Enigma - Tuesday, January 25, 2011 - link

    Here here. I'll read the reviews for Anandtech but wouldn't touch this junk with a 10 foot pole. All the mobo manufacturers should be ticked at Intel for pulling this stunt as it doesn't affect them, just us as the end users and the mobo companies. Reply
  • GoodBytes - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    I agree with Beenthere.
    Since 2003-04 I notice ASUS cut on quality like no tomorrow. And their RMA service (well at least in Canada) is non-existant. Staff are rude, don't want to work, takes a month to process a replacement (this is NOT one of those once in a life time experience, this happened to me twice, and friends), and you get at the end someone else RMA'ed board with a different problem and packed with dust. When I got that as a second time, now they draw the line. I switch to Gigabyte. The boards feel quality over ASUS high-end boards, and unlike ASUS boards, they don't break soon after the warranty.

    So yes, Gigabyte boards are more expensive for what you get in term of features, but in terms of life span and quality, Gigabyte wins by far. And I used to be a ASUS-fan, hence why I closed my eyes on my first bad experience, and the ones of my friends. Idiot I was.

    When Gigabyte said that ASUS boards where crap.. they were not kidding... When that was said I was like most people "Pfff what are they talking about"... and now I see how crappy the boards are.

    I really don't get what's so special about ASUS, and I am tiered of reviews who ignore quality and long term usability. Did the reviewer tested the computer to go into sleep, and hibernate several time in a row, and long period of sleep for a week, to see if the board wake up, and that EVERYTHING is fully function (every USB, Ethernet port(s) and eSATA (if any))? Does the review test the board under stress for really long time. How about leaving the computer turned on for a week, no reboot, how many time if failed (if any). How about heat dispersion, to ensure that the board can last longer over 3 years in a state of being overclocked. All this is ignored by all review sites... They all cover the same things... performance, warranty by years (and not actually SEEING how the server is, and the time it takes for a replacement), how it overclocks, and features numbers.

    These are the moment where I wish that if I had more time, I would collect resources and start my own review site. But the problem is I am already anti-ASUS... so I can't even be legitimate.
    Reply

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