Upcoming Intel Based Motherboards from GIGABYTE, ASUS, MSI and ASRockby Ian Cutress on April 28, 2014 3:30 AM EST
MSI’s New Products
The news from MSI’s range comes by virtue of some initial leaked images that were retracted. In response to the knowledge reaching the zeitgeist of the cutting edge technology followers, MSI offered these images direct from source but with the Intel-specific details missing. We saw a small amount of these upcoming products by virtue of MSI’s presence at CeBIT, where MSI was asking media for their thoughts.
The images provided by MSI cover a large user base from SFF to extreme high end. They all bare the Gaming moniker so far, although MSI does have three distinct ranges including its OC range (MPower, XPower) and channel range which we should see more of at a later date.
First one on the list is a mini-ITX motherboard, the I-Gaming:
For a start the rear IO looks almost backwards. The audio jacks are at the top of the board, and the Clear_CMOS switch is at the bottom. It looks like MSI have moved towards a WiFi card on the rear as well, a change much welcomed. The socket area sits low giving some space for coolers, and at the top is the 24-pin ATX power connector alongside four SATA ports. There is a USB 3.0 header, and we can see an EM shield for the audio codec at the top. The CPU power connector is an odd place near the rear IO, meaning cables will have to reach over the motherboard to get to it.
At the top of the line, MSI has on show the Gaming 9 AC:
The rear IO and audio sections of the PCB are covered in what looks like a shield, either for aesthetics or technical reasons perhaps. The sticking out bit on the rear IO looks like a WiFi module, similar to that on the mini-ITX model. There are some overclocking features, such as OC Genie and voltage read points, but for SATA ports we have at least 8 on the motherboard as well as an M.2 between the PCIe slots. The PCIe slots are separated for close-proximity three-way GPU configurations, whereas normally we see the final PCIe slot another section down the motherboard.
We also get the Gaming 7:
The Gaming 5:
And at the low end, the Gaming 3:
The Gaming 3 looks like a stripped down version of the Gaming 9, with less phases in the power delivery, no shield, fewer SATA ports and PCI slots. Audio Boost is still present, as well as the heatsink design.
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Flunk - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkYour product images all have the chip set name, unobfuscated. Not that we didn't all know what it was anyway.
crazysurfanz - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkSee the article:
"Technically the launch date of these products is under NDA. The NDA is such that we can't even mention the chipset by name, even if it is visible on some of the images we are sharing today."
Railgun - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkJust call it Z97 already. The Asus WS board CLEARLY shows Z9...
jmbnbn - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - linkAs well as that, one of the Gigabyte images doesn't have it blurred out at all: GA-Z97X-UD3H
meacupla - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkSo... which board to pair with an unlocked pentium...
Antronman - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkAsus.
Every single time (unless your chip just sucks) RoG boards will help you squeeze more juice out.
Maximus VII Extreme + unlocked pentium = sweet, juicy OCs.
meacupla - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkOkay, which 'sensibly priced' mobo for an unlocked pentium then
If I was going to spend $200+ for a mobo, I'd make sure my CPU costs at least the same.
Unlocked pentium, random guess, has got to be around $60~100, so there's no way I'd want to spend double that for the mobo.
Antronman - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkMaximus VII Impact.
meacupla - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkHow do you report trolling on anandtech?
Antronman - Monday, April 28, 2014 - linkJust grab one of the standard Asus mobos then.