Rectron, sole local Gigabyte distributor, has unveiled the latest in the Gigabyte range of AMD motherboards based on the AMD 890FX, 880G and 870 chipsets, featuring what the company says is “future proof” next-generation technology.
The latest models in the Gigabyte 800 AMD range are the GA-890FXA-UD7, GA-880GMA-UD2H and GA 870A-UD3, all of which support the AMD Phenom II X6 six-core processors, native SATA 6Gb/s – via the SB850 chipset — and ATI CrossFireX/Hybrid CrossFireX multi-GPU technologies.
The new units’ next-generation Gigabyte technologies include Auto Unlock, which enables hidden CPU cores, On/Off Charge for enhanced iPhone/ iPad/iPod Touch charging, USB 3.0 and 3x USB power.
“Power users will be able to experiment with Gigabyte's proprietary CPU Core Auto Unlock feature to attempt to unlock any AMD processor that has a disabled fourth core – such as an Athlon or Phenom X3 – for a 'free' performance boost,” says Frans Smit, Gigabyte Product Manager at Rectron.
“It does not work on all processors, as some are too underdeveloped or are not designed to perform to a higher specification. But when it works, it provides the performance benefits of an additional core, or even two cores, without additional expense.”
Smit points out, however, that Gigabyte has designed its CPU Core Auto Unlock technology to be fail safe and prevent any damage to the motherboard in the event of it not working as desired.
As reported last week, unlike most other motherboards, the new Gigabyte 800 AMD range is capable of charging the new Apple iPad, whether it is being used — or not.
The AMD 800 Series boards feature Gigabyte’s “3x USB power technology”, which boosts the power output of USB 2.0 and 3.0 three times, allowing the iPad to charge through USB while plugged into any PC that makes use of any of these Gigabyte boards, while the Apple device is in use.
Most USB ports can only charge the iPad if it is not being used, is shut down or in standby or sleep mode. Using Gigabyte On/Off Charge, Gigabyte’s pioneering USB power design delivers extra power for devices that require more than the 500mA delivered from a traditional USB port.
Besides this functionality, the new Gigabyte motherboards are designed to be future-proof by featuring such next-generation technologies as SuperSpeed USB 3.0 and SATA 6 Gbps support.
USB 3.0 is supported via an onboard NEC uPD720200 host controller, which provides superfast transfer rates of up to 5 Gbps – an almost 10x improvement over USB 2.0. Additionally, backwards compatibility with USB 2.0 assures users of continued use of their legacy USB 2.0 devices.
The onboard NEC SuperSpeed USB technology also provides new power management features that include increased maximum bus power and device current draw to better accommodate power-hungry devices.
Gigabyte AMD 800 series motherboards feature six ports of high-speed native SATA Revision 3.0 with 6 Gbps link speeds for twice the data transfer rates of SATA Revision 2.0 (3 Gbps).
Moreover, they support multiple RAID configurations that include RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 that provide users with a range of choices for high performance or high reliability data storage.
As the flagship model for the series, the Gigabyte GA-890FXA-UD7, which is available at a suggested retail price of R2499, is designed to appeal to extreme overclockers, gamers and tech enthusiasts who demand only the latest, most advanced equipment.
It features the AMD 890FX + SB850 chipset combination with support for 4-way ATI CrossFireX on an XL-ATX form factor and the highest quality 8+2 CPU VRM power phase design, designed to handle 140W CPU power requirements.
In addition, the GA-890FXA-UD7 comes with the unique Hybrid Silent Pipe that allows for highly efficient system cooling without generating fan noise. Other noteworthy features include Gigabyte 333 Onboard Acceleration technologies, onboard debug LEDs, and support for DDR3 1866.
For media centre enthusiasts, the Gigabyte GA-880GMA-UD2H, available at a suggested retail price of R1299, features ATI Radeon HD 4250 integrated graphics, which offers the highest levels of power efficiency and versatile high-definition graphics configurations for the living room. ATI Radeon HD 4250 graphics includes support for Microsoft DirectX 10.1, for next-generation features and performance that make this solution a leader in its class.
The GA-880GMA-UD2H can also accommodate discrete VGA cards with ATI Hybrid CrossFireX for those enthusiasts who want to play demanding games on their media centres.