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Old Feb 16, 2011, 03:48 PM   #1
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Intel Sapphire Pure Black X58 Motherboard and Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme Review @ Rage3D.com

Sapphire makes a comeback to the enthusiast mainboard market with their Pure Black X58 Motherboard, a tri-CrossfireX capable Intel socket 1366 mainboard with SATA 3, USB 3 and Bluetooth. We test out the Pure Black X58's features and check out overclocking prowess using Tuniq's Tower 120 Extreme.

Sapphire Pure Black X58 Motherboard and Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme Review @ Rage3D.com
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 05:41 PM   #2
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Aside, for a mobo that calls itself "Pure Black" there sure is a lot of different blues on it...

And how come x58 boards are still commanding high prices?
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:12 PM   #3
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Frst nice looking board, I know that is not a big deal but with everyone sticking this luxury baords in cases with windows it is a definite consideration.

I am kind of disappointed hwoever to see the new designs still holding on the legacy connections. Please for the love of god lets kill of PS2 ports and PCI slots. Also kill of ATA connections. Also dear lord lets kill Firewire, it is practically dead anyway so kill it from new boards.

I like the double spacing of the PCIE slots.

Overall looks solid.
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crisler View Post
Frst nice looking board, I know that is not a big deal but with everyone sticking this luxury baords in cases with windows it is a definite consideration.

I am kind of disappointed hwoever to see the new designs still holding on the legacy connections. Please for the love of god lets kill of PS2 ports and PCI slots. Also kill of ATA connections. Also dear lord lets kill Firewire, it is practically dead anyway so kill it from new boards.

I like the double spacing of the PCIE slots.

Overall looks solid.
I'm with you on the ATA connections and, to a lesser extent, PCI - but, as the article mentions, PS/2 ports remain the preference of competitive gamers & extreme overclockers. Also, I doubt I'm the only one dependent on firewire for vidcam connectivity. Granted, mine is a couple years old now, and perhaps most are using HDMI now for transferring data to the user's computer.
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crisler View Post
Frst nice looking board, I know that is not a big deal but with everyone sticking this luxury baords in cases with windows it is a definite consideration.

I am kind of disappointed hwoever to see the new designs still holding on the legacy connections. Please for the love of god lets kill of PS2 ports and PCI slots. Also kill of ATA connections. Also dear lord lets kill Firewire, it is practically dead anyway so kill it from new boards.

I like the double spacing of the PCIE slots.

Overall looks solid.
As I stated in the review, PS/2 is a concession to overclockers and purist gamers. The 'championship' overclocker set use PS/2 keyboards so they can disable USB. Interrupt driven input (vs. polled USB) is more responsive with a high quality PS/2 keyboard, something competitive gamers desire.

I'm glad the board had an IDE connection otherwise I couldn't use my optical drive - DVD drives are quite long lasting, so I would prefer not to throw out a perfectly good drive with all the features I want, even if it is only $20 to replace it.

Firewire is useful for digital video cameras, but becoming less so. I think USB 3 will replace it, or Firewire 800/1200 will become more prevalent.

edit - ha! lupsniped!
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:24 PM   #6
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And how come x58 boards are still commanding high prices?
The basic fundamentals are expensive - dual triple channel memory traces, plus 36 PCI-E 2.0 lanes and 6 PCI-E v1 lanes is a lot of layers; plus all the cpu and memory power phases and VRM's.

X58 boards are intrinsically expensive because of the basic platform requirements, plus it's expected to perform well so it has high stability and regulation requirements compared to say P55.
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:26 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
I think USB 3 will replace it, or Firewire 800/1200 will become more prevalent.

edit - ha! lupsniped!


USB3 is the probable replacement, but I'd suppose that it will be at least a couple years before we see widespread implementation at the device level - which limits it as a current option for killing off legacy connectivity options.
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
The basic fundamentals are expensive - dual triple channel memory traces, plus 36 PCI-E 2.0 lanes and 6 PCI-E v1 lanes is a lot of layers; plus all the cpu and memory power phases and VRM's.

X58 boards are intrinsically expensive because of the basic platform requirements, plus it's expected to perform well so it has high stability and regulation requirements compared to say P55.
It's a dead-end though, with everyone going Sandy-Bridge and all...
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 06:42 PM   #9
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It's a dead-end though, with everyone going Sandy-Bridge and all...
I think Intel are moving the mainstream / enthusiast cutover point, in terms of price/features. People who were happy with X58/i7 900 series and are now happy with P67/Core 2000's will stick with the <~$300 price point for CPU or a mobo. Those not happy will go for X68 and the new socket, but will have to buy the $300+ mobo's with $400 and up CPU's.

Intel look to be adjusting how much the P-series covers in terms of price spread, giving it some more pricing headroom for CPU's and boards.

X58 isn't quite dead, there are still some advantages (PCI-E lanes, memory bandwidth, six working SATA ports) but it's on it's way out. Sapphire Pure Black X58 is a technical exercise, get into as many markets, get the brand profile increased.
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Old Feb 17, 2011, 09:39 PM   #10
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Sapphire now have the manual and CPU support list online for download. Supported CPU's are:

Intel® Core™ i7-920 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-930 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-970 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-980X Processor Extreme Edition
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor L5530
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor X5680
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Old Feb 20, 2011, 11:20 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
Sapphire now have the manual and CPU support list online for download. Supported CPU's are:

Intel® Core™ i7-920 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-930 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-970 Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-980X Processor Extreme Edition
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor L5530
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor E5620
Intel® Xeon® Processor X5680
Looks like they skipped a few. Where's the 940, 950, and 960? Pretty sure they'd have to work too if the others are listed. Wonder why they were left out?
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Old Feb 21, 2011, 07:57 AM   #12
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Probably the only ones they have tested and validated so far, but those should cover the bloomfield and westmere variants for basic compatibility.
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