DFI Rumored to Cease its Consumer Motherboard Production

Discussion in 'Motherboards' started by Rob Williams, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

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    Well, this is dissapointing. According to rumors, DFI, long praised for its innovation and quality, may be shuttering its enthusiast part production in January, and instead will focus solely on the industrial PC business. This might be just a rumor for now, but given various circumstances hovering around DFI over the past couple of years, it wouldn't come as a major surprise to me if this happened.

    [​IMG]

    You can read the rest of our news post here.
     
  2. b1lk1

    b1lk1 Tech Monkey

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    This has been a persistent rumor for some time. If you ask me, they never recovered from all their failures after their mind boggling success with NF3/NF4 boards. Even then, they were a nightmare to deal with, but nothing could outclock them. They are dying due to the lack of any decent Nforce chipsets, although that new board you just tested may spell the end of that drought.
     
  3. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

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    As an update to this, our friends at Ninjalane have discovered that DFI isn't likely to haul out of the consumer market entirely, but it will instead focus on niche products, not the same kind of products that everyone else is producing. DFI has long been great at this, so we may still see its name floating around from time to time, after all. Well, as long as the products leave Asia...

    http://ninjalane.com/blogs/blogpost8.aspx
     
  4. b1lk1

    b1lk1 Tech Monkey

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    Good to see them not out of it entirely, competition is an absolute must at this level so that the other players do not stagnate. If they can come out with another run-away success like the original LANParty boards (NF3/NF4) then they would regain alot of share. Sadly, most current mid-range boards will clock nearly as well as most high end boards. I'm not saying they will match each other, but the market is just fully saturated and Intel really took the fun out of overclocking.
     
  5. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

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    I have no choice but to sigh when I think back to DFI's NF3/NF4 boards... they were stellar. After that, things went downhill fast, which is unfortunate. They still offer a great number of enthusiast boards, but their reach just doesn't seem to be that good. I think for the most part, DFI caters more to the hardcore overclockers, and in the grand scheme of things, the market is not full of those.
     
  6. Kougar

    Kougar Techgage Staff Staff Member

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    The Tech Report reported on an email they got back from DFI which refutes the rumor... frankly I would be surprised if they did vanish. They have far more product in the channel and better support than Abit did during their demise, and the signs were there that Abit wasn't going to be around for much longer... their BIOS support became horrible and end users had all sorts of problems resulting from it.

    I will say that ever since EVGA entered the motherboard market they unseated DFI and appear to have absconded with most of DFI's market base... but if DFI is careful I'm sure they can stick around as what they've specialized in, niche enthusiast boards.
     
  7. b1lk1

    b1lk1 Tech Monkey

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    If you ask me, there is just no real market for these niche boards beyond the 1-2% of people still left actually trying to do extreme overclocks. Intel really killed overclocking. The funny part is that they did it by making their CPU's incredibly easy to overclock. Most people are quite content with a 30-50% overclock and let's face it, most Intel CPU's will do that with little to no effort on any mainstream board.

    I'm not denying that EVGA's high end boards (Intel based) are great boards. Also, DFI has released a few decent models as well. DFI died alittle when the NF5 chips and AM2 processors were released. They had all their eggs in the AMD basket and when AM2 "flopped" they went down with the ship. It took them forever to release a decent S775 board and by then it was too late, ASUS stole the show.

    Currently, nearly all the manufacturers make killer mid range boards that will nearly equal high end boards. Until this fact changes, there is just no need/market for them until overclocking actually takes any level of skill to do.
     
  8. Kougar

    Kougar Techgage Staff Staff Member

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    Hmm, I would have to respectfully disagree on a few points. Overclocking is more commonplace than ever, today even budget models tout their overclocking abilities. I agree the extreme overclocking enthusiasts likely remains within that 1-2% but I don't believe it has decreased at all.

    Forums such as XtremeSystems are going strong, niche overclocking groups such as HWbot are growing steadily (http://hwbot.org/members.statistics.do), and most of all overclocking competitions hosted by manufacturers are more numerous than ever before in the industry.

    Overclocking does take knowledge, and when you are specifically referring to extreme overclocking it definitely requires skill and close knowledge of the hardware. If you would browse XtremeSystems there is a consensus EVGA still makes the best board for overclocking, because it offers slightly higher Bclock ranges than Gigabyte or ASUS boards. The same was true with LGA1366, EVGA's board offered around 10Mhz higher Bclocks before the ceiling was hit, but DFI was a close contender after a slower start.

    Extreme overclockers don't want "nearly equal", they want the best. That means EVGA, DFI, or whomever's hardware can take the CPU the highest. It's always been a niche, but it has also always been the most profitable segment of the market as well....
     
  9. b1lk1

    b1lk1 Tech Monkey

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    You misunderstand me. I realize that extreme overclocking is still a popular "sport" I am not trying to take away from that. To get the highest possible clocks does take skill. I never meant to infer otherwise.

    What I DO mean to infer is that the average Joe can now EASILY get a 25% overclock with pretty much any Intel CPU and pretty much and Intel based mid level or better motherboard. This group will never spend $300+ on a motherboard to get a 5% better overclock.

    I will not comment on another forum because I have a differing opinion on the state of said places but it is inappropriate to comment on them without said forum having any representation to rebuff anything I may say. Let's just say I believe there are better websites out there besides XS that are not motivated by things I do not agree with that also contribute highly to the OC world as well.

    All that aside, extreme overcloclers make up less than 1% of the people that will buy hardware. Hardware companies routinely give these people their hardware for free for the advertising value. I would dare say that 80%+ of the known people haven't paid for hardware in years. I can link to post after post of these guys stating how easy it is to get free stuff. The people that actually pay $300 for a motherboard are extremely unlikely to go and punish it harshly just for a better benchmark score.

    DFI was the king back in the AMD days. Nvidia's lack of skill in making a decent chipset since the NF4 was one of the biggest nails in DFI's coffin. Thankfully for all of us, Intel came out with Core 2 and overclocking was made simple.

    Extreme overclocking is certainly not dead, but it is nowhere near as exciting as it was when you had to struggle for even a 10% overclock.
     
  10. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

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    To be honest, Bill was rather clear that he wasn't referring to extreme overclockers, but rather those regular consumers who can achieve a completely stable, yet high, overclock on a mid-range motherboard. Extreme overclockers are an aside to this... I don't think a motherboard vendor who focuses on that niche would ever survive. DFI is close to that, but fortunately they have a broad enough product line-up to make up for it.

    The fact is, on a $150 ASUS motherboard, you can hit 4.0GHz rather easily, and with some tweaking, it could be stable. The vast majority of consumers are going to be content with an overclock less than this. DFI and others cater to those interested in milking every ounce of performance from their chip, but again, that's the minority.
     
  11. Kougar

    Kougar Techgage Staff Staff Member

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    Hm, well I apologize if I misunderstood anything. But I do have to chime in to counterpoint on a few things, because I think the topic does pertain to people other than the average Joe.

    And as before I agree on all counts with ya here. Which is why we got into a discussion about extreme OCers, because the average Joe is almost always going to buy a cheap midrange board from Gigabyte, ASUS, MSI, or someone's budget board.

    As I said above I agree, it's around that 1-5% area. But I do tend to browse the XS forums even when not active there myself, and I had seen plenty of that <5% that have actually bought multiple $250+ motherboards, it's almost impossible to not see someone that hasn't when browsing the extreme overclocking subforums. Not even including the separate subforums for dry ice, chilled watercooling, and LN2. I have seen enough sponsored OC events and buidls to know the more famous guys can generally get stuff for free, but I am not referring to them nor the random enthusiast that is able to get a special project / build sponsored.

    Usually if the person is of the type to consider a $300 motherboard to be irreplaceable they are not going to be doing any extreme overclocking with it because they can't afford to replace it. Some of the people that populate these forums in the XS community have the means, and would just go out any buy a second $300 board if they broke the first one, and I've seen that as well. Some users even had lists of all the boards they'd played with with the results from each, with quite a few KIA's from random subzero accidents on them.

    True enough. What is amusing to me is many have been saying overclocking was no longer simple because of Nehalem. :D

    Perhaps, but everyone has their own opinions on that. There are plenty of enthusiasts that do share your view and agree with it.

    But that said, personally I just know that I derive plenty of excitement over overclocking measured in GHz and being able to actually use it for something. Having a 100% overclock on an E6300 using a $140 GA-965P-DS3 motherboard was a blast for me, figuring out what to tune in order to run the cheapest C2D 1.86Ghz processor at 3.72GHz on air, without dangerous voltages, was fun.

    While not as impressive an overclock I would say it is even more exciting to take a much more powerful CPU like the Core i7 up an extra ~1,500MHz because of the real world benefits. It might not be exceptional, but it's a useful overclock that I see results from in general everyday use, and especially see gains from with intensive programs such as [email protected] Being able to take a large overclock and actually use it 24/7 is what I can't get enough of. Which is partly how I've resist the urge to find a subzero cooler, such as OCZ's Cryo-Z... it's still tempting though. :p
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2009
  12. killem2

    killem2 Coastermaker

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    I've only owned one DFI board and it was good. Sad to see this decent company go down in production options.
     

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