|by MAC | February 28, 2011|
Venue & G1-Killer Motherboards
Venue & G1-Killer Motherboards
This rare Canadian event was held in one of the large ballrooms at the Crystal Fountain Banquet Hall in Markham, Ontario, which is part of the Greater Toronto metropolitan area.
Since we arrived at the location about one hour before the official opening time, we managed to catch the CanadaComputers.com crew in action, setting up the 10 high-end gaming systems that that they assembled the previous day. These systems were based on the flagship GIGABYTE G1.Assassin motherboard, featured an Intel Core i7-950 CPU, Corsair Vengeance 6GB DDR3-1600 memory kit, GIGABYTE GeForce GTX-570 (GV-N570D5-13I-B) graphics card, Intel X25-M G2 80GB SSD, Corsair Hydro H70 CPU cooler, Antec EarthWatts 750W power supply, LG Blu-ray drive, and Windows 7 Professional. The cases were a mix of eight Thermaltake Element V NVIDIA Edition, one Antec DF-85, and one Antec Twelve Hundred.
The imposing mountain of G1.Assassin boxes definitely outclassed the molehill of case boxes.
At the 2:30PM opening time, some members of the public had started to show up, they were easy to identify since they were holding red GIGABYTE gift bags.
Here is one of the fully-assembled high-end gaming systems. Although it’s not really apparent from these photographs, the G1.Assassin motherboard and Element V NVIDIA Edition case are definitely two products that were made for each other. They share a perfectly matching black and lime green colour scheme.
Rounding up the hardware package was a Philips 244E 24-inch 1080P LCD monitor, GIGABYTE Avia K8100 keyboard, GIGABYTE Ghost M8000Xtreme mouse, and GIGABYTE GP-MP8000 mouse pad.
Once of the features that we had not seen at CES was the Control Panel that comes with the G1.Assassin model. This is a 5.25” drive bay unit that features 2 USB 3.0 ports, one Power eSATA ports, and a Quick Boost button that allows for an automatic one-button system overclock.
As mentioned previously, all of the sponsors of this event where represented in one form of another, but our focus was obviously the GIGABYTE table that was displaying the three new G1-Killer motherboards.
The G1.Guerilla is at the lower-end of the G1-Killer scale, but that means that it is still packing more than most Intel X58-based LGA1366 motherboards. It features an 8 phase power design, three PCI-E x16 slots with support for 3-way CrossFireX and 3-way SLI, and a wide range of SATA 6Gb/s and USB 3.0 ports. Naturally, like all the G1.Killer models, the Guerilla is based on GIGABYTE's Ultra Durable 3 design principles, which means that it features the usual assortment of Japanese lower ESR solid capacitors, lower RDS(on) MOSFETs, and ferrite core chokes, and 2 oz copper PCB layers.
What makes this particular model unique to the G1.Killer line is that it doesn’t feature the high-end Sound Blaster onboard audio, instead relying on a quite common Realtek ALC889 audio codec. Having said that, it still uses the very high quality Nichicon MUSE audio capacitors, and also the maintains the built-in high-capacity headphone amplifier.
The G1.Sniper is effectively identical to the G1.Guerrilla, except that it features the onboard Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi CA20K2 digital audio processor. Expect to pay about a $100 premium for this model, which is actually quite reasonable when you consider that the CA20K2-based Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium HD sound card retails for about $150.
The G1.Assassin is the flagship model. This is immediately evident when you compare the models in person, since the Assassin is based on the larger XL-ATX form factor. This model comes with a more robust 16 phase power design, and also comes packaged with the aforementioned Front Access Control Panel 5.25” drive bay unit that features 2 USB 3.0 ports, one Power eSATA ports, and a Quick Boost button that allows for an automatic one-button system overclock. Another distinguishing feature is the four PCI-E x16 slots with support for 4-way CrossFireX and 3-way SLI support. The reason for the lack of 4-way SLI support is that this model does not feature an NVIDIA NF200 PCI-E bridge chip, which is a requirement to get 4-way certification from NVIDIA. Much like the G1.Sniper, this model comes with both the Bigfoot Killer E2100 Dedicated NPU and Sound Blaster X-Fi CA20K2 digital audio processor.
On the next page we are going to fast forward about one hour, which is when the actual LAN gaming session got under way.
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