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Feature Articles

AMD's 890FX and 880G - A Preview from Gigabyte

By Vincent Chang - 29 Mar 2010

Preview - Gigabyte GA-880GMA-UD2H

The Budget Segment - Gigabyte GA-880GMA-UD2H

Meanwhile, the 880G chipset is the likely successor to AMD's 780G chipset. While the 780G already had a slight refresh to the 785G last year, the 880G should bring all the benefits of the new SB850 (aka SATA 6Gbps) to the mainstream segment, especially for those planning a simple desktop or even media center PC. You should find plenty of AMD 880G boards available in the microATX form factor, like the Gigabyte GA-880GMA-UD2H here, and all capable of supporting the upcoming 6-core AMD processor.

Like the 890GX, we don't expect the integrated graphics to be significantly different. It will be similar to what's found on the existing 890GX, but with lower clocks. As you can see from the Gigabyte board (note the silkscreen text on the PCB), it's only DX10.1 compatible, ruling out the presence of any integrated graphics based on ATI's latest DX11 Radeon graphics processors. 

This Gigabyte 880G board is a microATX version that comes with a single PCIe 2.0 x16 slot and supports Hybrid Graphics.

Despite its shrunken form factor, Gigabyte has managed to squeeze in USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, S/PDIF outputs, LAN and FireWire ports among others. Don't forget the three different integrated graphics outputs.

The five SATA ports here are all SATA 6Gbps versions, though we would have preferred them to be angled at the edge of the board and not facing upwards.

Again, Gigabyte has managed to keep support for floppy and IDE despite the limited PCB space.

There's only one PCIe 2.0 x16 slot for your discrete graphics needs, but then again you weren't thinking of running a proper CrossFireX configuration on such a small motherboard, were you?

This board runs cool enough that Gigabyte has opted not to add any heatsinks here as is generally the case.

A relatively clean area around the CPU socket.

It's another fairly typical GIgabyte board design, though we haven't seen Turbo 3D advertised as a feature before like this. A check showed that this feature was added via a BIOS update to Gigabyte's 785G model and we're guessing it's related to overclocking of the integrated graphics chip. The board itself appears to run cool enough not to require a heatsink where power components are clustered and it looks like another clean, sensible microATX design and layout.

We'll be running these and other 890FX/880G boards as they arrive (the retail-ready versions of course) and will release the proper review/performance results when the time comes. Stay tuned!

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