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Old 05-29-2011, 10:37 PM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default Intel P67 Roundup: ASUS, GIGABYTE, Intel & MSI

We've been a little short on motherboard content lately, so to kick things back into action we're taking a look at four P67-based motherboards at once - all benchmarked using our newly revised test suite. The boards we're looking at are the ASUS P8P67 Deluxe, GIGABYTE P67A-UD4, Intel DP67BG and MSI P67A-GD65.

You can read through our roundup and then discuss it here!
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Old 05-30-2011, 04:44 AM   #2
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I dont mean to be rude, but you dont have a clue! The MSI P67A-GD65 is not MSI top offering as you state numerous times in the review, The P67A-GD80 and the Big Bang Marshall are. Also the P67A-GD65 does have SLI support, and you are stating in the review it doesnt. I know, i have the board!!!
Seriously, if you dont know what you are doing, dont review motheroards at all!!!
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Old 05-30-2011, 05:57 AM   #3
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Default Good job

Rob,

Good work on reviewing those motherboards! I realize you've been revamping your motherboard suite and all. The thing is: All the info on those Motherboards is already out for months.

I own the P8P67 Deluxe and I agree it's a nice board.
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Old 05-30-2011, 10:15 AM   #4
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I dont mean to be rude, but you dont have a clue! The MSI P67A-GD65 is not MSI top offering as you state numerous times in the review, The P67A-GD80 and the Big Bang Marshall are.
As I was reading the article, I never interpreted "highest-end P67A offering" as meaning this is the top board MSI has to offer. But since you are seem so adamant, let's make something clear...

These differences between the P67A-GD65, P67A-GD80 and the Big Bang Marshal are all based around the number and disposition of PCI slots. There's no other significant difference, with in fact one point down for the GD80 is that it only sports 2 SATAIII ports, instead of the 4 from the other two boards. In today's machines, I'd say that a big disadvantage for the GD80.

All three boards are top of the line for the P67 (B3) rev. 1.0 chipset. They are basically equal, being that they just offer different PCI and PCI Express configurations. The GD80 is in fact an inferior board for many of us because of it's SATAIII limitation, whereas the GD65 and the Marshal will be chosen exclusively on what we want to plug into them. They are otherwise absolutely equal (the Marshal has one more ethernet port, so yeah).

Quote:
Also the P67A-GD65 does have SLI support, and you are stating in the review it doesnt. I know, i have the board!!!
You didn't need to use 3 exclamation marks so that I could believe in you. Indeed it does. But since SLI is entirely a software thingy and the BIOS string is just a trick, I don't see how this is important. To tell you frankly, I never care about a board supporting SLI or not. I just look at the slots and the distance between at least 2 of them. That's the extent of a mother board SLI support for you. Don't believe me?

The closest a motherboard was ever to actually have a say in supporting SLI or not, was back in the early days when they had to come with paddle cards because there was just one PCIe slot.
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Old 05-30-2011, 10:59 AM   #5
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Thats not the point. I am well aware of the SLI certification being only software. The thing is that when a reviewer states it does not support SLI, the general reader will think "holly crap, i better buy the asus instead", its misleading. Also you cant compare motherboards that dont cost the same, the deluxe from asus is way more expensive than the GD65 from MSI, so they are not in the same class, the P8P67 Pro is.

Oh and you are wrong, the difference between GD80 and GD65 is not just the number of pci-ex slots, but also the higher amount of CPU VRM phases, LAN ports, etc.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:06 AM   #6
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And the Big Bang Marshall also has a Lucid Hydra chip on top of that, so you can mix AMD and Nvidia cards for dual-GPU procesing
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:08 PM   #7
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Oh and you are wrong,
Uh-oh...

Quote:
the difference between GD80 and GD65 is not just the number of pci-ex slots, but also the higher amount of CPU VRM phases, LAN ports, etc.
1 more lan port yes. Had to confirm that. Thought that only the Marshal came with 2. As for CPU VRM phases, I'm sorry but I don't adhere to the typical blurb and hype. CPU VRM Phases is just another tag line on a product specification that everybody picks up but really is just another layer of silliness on an already over-the-top market. The reality is that it takes thousands of watts for power phases to make any difference. Literally. Sure more is better... but just not when dealing with this type of voltages. On modern CPUIs, after a certain threshold, adding more phases is just going to please the minds of those that thing more = better.

Quote:
And the Big Bang Marshall also has a Lucid Hydra chip on top of that
Now you are just fishing. The Marshal uses the Lucid Hydra so it can handle the extra slots. It wasn't put there as an improvement, but out of necessity.

Look, the differences between these boards are almost entirely a form factor. I'd say the Marshal is not better than the G65 for anyone not interested on so many ports. The G65 is not better than the Marshal for anyone wanting more slots, the G80 is possibly the worst of the two, but with 2 LAN ports might as well be better than the G65 if I don't care about SATAIII ports, etc etc etc.

All three boards reflect their differences on their form factor, not on specific technologies or making improvements on the current technologies. All three boards are MSI's top of the line on the P67 (B) class. If you refuse to see this, we will just have to agree to disagree. Just please don't accuse the authors of this article as incompetent. Moderate your tone.
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I dont mean to be rude, but you dont have a clue! The MSI P67A-GD65 is not MSI top offering as you state numerous times in the review, The P67A-GD80 and the Big Bang Marshall are. Also the P67A-GD65 does have SLI support, and you are stating in the review it doesnt. I know, i have the board!!!
Seriously, if you dont know what you are doing, dont review motheroards at all!!!
Despite the article being well-written, thorough, and having created the best testing suite on the planet, I don't have a clue because of a couple factual errors? Your standards are high; I like it.

That said, I did mess up here. Big Bang et al are not boards that are flashed in my face too often, so as I was writing the article, none of them came to mind. I'd never state such a fact without having been backed up, and because MSI's own website didn't acknowledge higher-tiered options, I went with it.

http://us.msi.com/index.php?func=pro...70&cat3_no=744

If MSI itself can't keep track of its own line-up, I'm not sure why it's such a surprise that I couldn't. As for the SLI error, that one embarrasses me When I looked at the official product page, the SLI logo was nowhere near the CrossFireX logo, and well, it's just that simple :-/

Both errors have been edited into the article; thanks a lot for pointing them out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Rob,

Good work on reviewing those motherboards! I realize you've been revamping your motherboard suite and all. The thing is: All the info on those Motherboards is already out for months.

I own the P8P67 Deluxe and I agree it's a nice board.
I'm glad you enjoyed the article :-) And yes, trust me, I hated to post this article so late in the game, as it should have been published months ago, but I felt I owed it to the vendors to get something up. We didn't just receive one board from most of them, but multiple. We're going to be more "regular" from here-on-out, I promise!

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Originally Posted by marfig View Post
You didn't need to use 3 exclamation marks so that I could believe in you. Indeed it does. But since SLI is entirely a software thingy and the BIOS string is just a trick, I don't see how this is important. To tell you frankly, I never care about a board supporting SLI or not. I just look at the slots and the distance between at least 2 of them. That's the extent of a mother board SLI support for you. Don't believe me?
I just have to comment on this, because NVIDIA's forced-licensing of SLI has driven me nuts. It's clear that there must be more money to be made on the licenses for SLI than on the extra graphics cards that people might purchase, else NVIDIA would freely open up SLI support across the board (no pun) like AMD. If that's true, then just imagine how many people are paying minor fees for SLI support but never use it?

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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
And the Big Bang Marshall also has a Lucid Hydra chip on top of that, so you can mix AMD and Nvidia cards for dual-GPU procesing
I'm led to believe that Hydra at this point in time (or at least, in this sort of configuration) isn't even worth a mention. There have been numerous times when we've contacted both Lucid and MSI alike regards Hydra-enabled products, and have never received one. It seems to me that it's a feature they want to keep talking about, but don't want anyone to thoroughly test.

Has any site out there taken a recent look at Hydra that I'm unaware of? The earlier reviews on it that I recall didn't put it in the best light.

Quote:
Originally Posted by marfig View Post
On modern CPUIs, after a certain threshold, adding more phases is just going to please the minds of those that thing more = better.
This, and just because there are more phases, it doesn't mean they were going to be properly used. I'm not skillful enough to test or even surmise what's the best solution out there, but the phases are just one part of the equation, and I've been told by vendors before that in some cases, too many phases can also be a detriment, if there doesn't exist a good enough power design in general.
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:07 PM   #9
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Uh-oh...



1 more lan port yes. Had to confirm that. Thought that only the Marshal came with 2. As for CPU VRM phases, I'm sorry but I don't adhere to the typical blurb and hype. CPU VRM Phases is just another tag line on a product specification that everybody picks up but really is just another layer of silliness on an already over-the-top market. The reality is that it takes thousands of watts for power phases to make any difference. Literally. Sure more is better... but just not when dealing with this type of voltages. On modern CPUIs, after a certain threshold, adding more phases is just going to please the minds of those that thing more = better.



Now you are just fishing. The Marshal uses the Lucid Hydra so it can handle the extra slots. It wasn't put there as an improvement, but out of necessity.

Look, the differences between these boards are almost entirely a form factor. I'd say the Marshal is not better than the G65 for anyone not interested on so many ports. The G65 is not better than the Marshal for anyone wanting more slots, the G80 is possibly the worst of the two, but with 2 LAN ports might as well be better than the G65 if I don't care about SATAIII ports, etc etc etc.

All three boards reflect their differences on their form factor, not on specific technologies or making improvements on the current technologies. All three boards are MSI's top of the line on the P67 (B) class. If you refuse to see this, we will just have to agree to disagree. Just please don't accuse the authors of this article as incompetent. Moderate your tone.
Again, thats not the point. It doesnt matter if the added phases are better or not. Fact is there are more components on the board and that adds to the overall cost. And fact is you cant compare products from different price ranges. Why dont you compare a Porsche to a Ford?
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:22 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Rob Williams View Post
Despite the article being well-written, thorough, and having created the best testing suite on the planet, I don't have a clue because of a couple factual errors? Your standards are high; I like it.

That said, I did mess up here. Big Bang et al are not boards that are flashed in my face too often, so as I was writing the article, none of them came to mind. I'd never state such a fact without having been backed up, and because MSI's own website didn't acknowledge higher-tiered options, I went with it.

http://us.msi.com/index.php?func=pro...70&cat3_no=744

If MSI itself can't keep track of its own line-up, I'm not sure why it's such a surprise that I couldn't. As for the SLI error, that one embarrasses me When I looked at the official product page, the SLI logo was nowhere near the CrossFireX logo, and well, it's just that simple :-/

Both errors have been edited into the article; thanks a lot for pointing them out.



I'm glad you enjoyed the article :-) And yes, trust me, I hated to post this article so late in the game, as it should have been published months ago, but I felt I owed it to the vendors to get something up. We didn't just receive one board from most of them, but multiple. We're going to be more "regular" from here-on-out, I promise!



I just have to comment on this, because NVIDIA's forced-licensing of SLI has driven me nuts. It's clear that there must be more money to be made on the licenses for SLI than on the extra graphics cards that people might purchase, else NVIDIA would freely open up SLI support across the board (no pun) like AMD. If that's true, then just imagine how many people are paying minor fees for SLI support but never use it?



I'm led to believe that Hydra at this point in time (or at least, in this sort of configuration) isn't even worth a mention. There have been numerous times when we've contacted both Lucid and MSI alike regards Hydra-enabled products, and have never received one. It seems to me that it's a feature they want to keep talking about, but don't want anyone to thoroughly test.

Has any site out there taken a recent look at Hydra that I'm unaware of? The earlier reviews on it that I recall didn't put it in the best light.



This, and just because there are more phases, it doesn't mean they were going to be properly used. I'm not skillful enough to test or even surmise what's the best solution out there, but the phases are just one part of the equation, and I've been told by vendors before that in some cases, too many phases can also be a detriment, if there doesn't exist a good enough power design in general.
Actually:

http://msi.com/product/mb/#/?sk=Sock...tel%20i3/i5/i7)

On the global MSI site, both boards are stated. Maybe MSI usa is to blame for this.

Sorry for beiing rude above in the comments. But if you really were as thorough as you say you are, you would have known, that you have to disable spread spectrum to get the BCLK to 100 on MSI boards. And yes 0.2 makes a difference in benchmarks. And that there is a 50$ difference between the Asus deluxe and the MSI GD65. The P8P67 Pro is about the same price.

Oh and i have to say, i have had almost all boards from this review, except for the Intel one(the ASUS was the P8P67 Pro). The MSI was the best of the bunch.
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Old 05-30-2011, 04:54 PM   #11
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Oh and i have to say, i have had almost all boards from this review, except for the Intel one(the ASUS was the P8P67 Pro). The MSI was the best of the bunch.
Somehow, I figured this had something to do with that...

Anyways, I confess I didn't like your tone. At all. When the reviewer was saying the GD65 was top if the line, they were being factually correct (I, at least, didn't see any problem with that statement) even if there are other two boards who also serve this segment, but offering what's essentially different input/output setups.

Now, when someone accuses others of "not having a clue" and tells them to "stop reviewing motherboards", that's enough to get my attention. You sure did. But when they then follow through their ad hominem by offering what's essentially marketing blurb from these companies, I get mad. And mad at you I got. Because, funny enough, that's exactly the type of people I wouldn't want reviewing motherboards. Ever.

In the end, what this all felt like was someone with an agenda. And not someone that could have pointed out some valid remarks ("hey, it supports SLI and hey, there's these two other boards") that could have lead to a more interesting debate. In case you haven't noticed before, reviewers... they make mistakes. Shock!
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Old 05-30-2011, 05:15 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
http://msi.com/product/mb/#/?sk=Socket%201155%20(Intel%20i3/i5/i7)

On the global MSI site, both boards are stated. Maybe MSI usa is to blame for this.
Yes, that's the fault of MSI USA... and a big one as far as I'm concerned. That global URL shows a staggering sixteen boards while the URL I linked shows six... that's not a small difference. The problem is, I wasn't even aware that there was a global site, because each time I went to msi.com, I got auto-directed to us.msi.com and didn't notice. There's no way that I'm the only one who's tried to go to MSI's website and have been left unaware of the rest of the line-up.

I'll e-mail MSI and raise this as an issue, because if the USA team can't be bothered to keep its website up-to-date, then there's no reason the site should exist at all. Instead, it should just default to the global site which doesn't just have the complete line-up, but looks a lot better, too.

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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
But if you really were as thorough as you say you are, you would have known, that you have to disable spread spectrum to get the BCLK to 100 on MSI boards.
This is a non-issue, and it's not my job to tweak the BIOS in such a way that most people will not. I benchmark all of the motherboards at their near-default settings (with the exception of adjusting the RAM), as would be the same for most consumers and enthusiasts. Not everyone is going to go and disable the spread spectrum, nor would even 1% of the population know what that even is. I expect companies like MSI and others to give us the best BIOS possible out of the box, and not require me or its other users to have to tweak things that even hardcore overclockers don't tend to care much about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
And yes 0.2 makes a difference in benchmarks. And that there is a 50$ difference between the Asus deluxe and the MSI GD65. The P8P67 Pro is about the same price.
Just to be clear, you do realize that I awarded MSI's board an Editor's Choice, right? You seem to be bringing up points as though I unloaded tons of hate on the board, when I in fact praised it for being an excellent offering.

Quote:
Originally Posted by marfig View Post
In the end, what this all felt like was someone with an agenda. And not someone that could have pointed out some valid remarks ("hey, it supports SLI and hey, there's these two other boards") that could have lead to a more interesting debate. In case you haven't noticed before, reviewers... they make mistakes. Shock!
The truth is, neither of these mistakes should have existed, but it's easy to have them slip in like this from time to time. I am appreciative of the fact that some people bring the issues to my attention, but at the same time do agree it should be done in a more constructive manner.
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