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Part 2 of our battle of the beasts. We have two X79 boards down in the lab, both targeting the entry-level segment. Its GIGABYTE vs. MSI.


The X79 chipset may be too lacking for today’s standards especially its vanilla feature set. Regardless, one cannot deny the fact that it is the home for the consumer variant of Intel’s LGA2011 HEDT processors and anyone seeking the pure performance benefit and have little to no intention of making bad-ass rig for the sake of being a bad-ass should obviously want these vanilla models. Let’s break down the scores:

Performance. The Intel Core i7-4960X is largely just a forced hand for Intel to churn out an HEDT product before it steps into a smaller fabrication. GIGABYTE goes neck-to-neck with the other board but doesn’t really do anything to make itself stand-out. Even in overclocking, the board lacks the chops to bring our poor-clocking chip to above stock levels.

Build Quality. Whilst performance is average, GIGABYTE’s build quality is just superb. The board feels solid and sturdy and overall operation is smooth and easy.

Functionality. GIGABYTE’s X79-UP4 extends the simple X79 chipset and provides more connectivities. Perfect for power users and pros who demand a lot of internal storage.

Bundle. Basic bundle. Nothing really special worth mentioning.

Price. At ₱12,600, this board is a tad bit pricey for what you get. Still, GIGABYTE banks on the prime quality of its motherboards and the support for quad GPUs on an entry board is a tempting offer.

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As we have mentioned some time before, the 4th-gen HEDTs from Intel are but a small upgrade from its predecessor and those who already have the SB-E chips shouldn’t go out rushing to get the new ones. Those who do NEED it for professional or a new build will find it more practical to stick with these budget boards rather than dumping the money.

The GIGABYTE X79-UP4 is great motherboard if you really want to max-out the 3rd- and/or 4th-gen HEDT processors from Intel but don’t want to go all-out for the board instead focusing on possible multi-GPU configurations. The GIGABYTE X79-UP4 is a full-featured X79 motherboard that fits the bill for anyone looking to build a solid X79 system and have little wiggle-room in their budget.

GIGABYTE backs the GA-X79-UP4 Plus with a 3-year warranty. We give the GIGABYTE X79-UP4 our B2G Recommended seal.


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