z68x ud7 Gigabyte first with Z68 board in retail

Although the actual launch date is said to be the 8th of May, it seems like the first Z68 board has already hit retail, at least in Taiwan. The board in question is the Gigabyte Z68X-UD7-B3 which at least for the time being will be Gigabyte's flagship Z68 board. However, for those of you wanting a Z68 board with display connectivity, this is not the board you've been waiting for.

Although the actual launch date is said to be the 8th of May, it seems like the first Z68 board has already hit retail, at least in Taiwan. The board in question is the Gigabyte Z68X-UD7-B3 which at least for the time being will be Gigabyte's flagship Z68 board. However, for those of you wanting a Z68 board with display connectivity, this is not the board you've been waiting for.

The Z68X-UD7 appears to be more or less identical to Gigabyte's P67A-UD7, with some minor modifications. The pictures that have turned up online is of the motherboard box and doesn't actually give us a good look at the board itself, but even so, it's clear a couple of things have changed. Gigabyte has most likely changed the Marvell 88SE9128 SATA 6Gbps controller to the 88SE9182 which features support for two PCI Express lanes instead of one which means more bandwidth available for faster SSDs. This controller is already used on some of Gigabyte's other SKUs and we'd expect it to be a feature of the Z68X-UD7 as well.

z68x ud7 Gigabyte first with Z68 board in retail

Of course, one of the major advantages here is support for Intel's Smart Response SSD caching. It's important to note that at least from what we've heard that Intel only guarantees a 20GB cache, so getting a large SSD for this would be somewhat pointless, at least for the time being. According to the box Smart Response is meant to deliver up to four times the drive performance compared to just using a hard drive.

It also looks like we'll finally be getting UEFI support from Gigabyte, although the company is calling it Touch BIOS and is referring to it as a Hybrid EFI technology, so we'll just have to wait and see what it is. Current pricing in Taiwan is about NT$12,000 (S$513) which is about on par with what the P67A-UD7 sold for at launch. It's not a cheap board, but considering it's Gigabyte's top-of-the-range LGA-1155 model, we wouldn't expect anything less.

Source: Xfastest