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The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards

The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards


Asus Sabertooth X58

The best X58 motherboard ever? Probably. Despite Intel's LGA1366 socket rolling onto two years old, it's remained the choice for high end enthusiasts throughout that time, and the Sabertooth now sits atop the pile of high-end X58 boards. Ceramic coated heatsinks, great PCB layout and awesome overclocking are all on show to produce a superb motherboard in every respect.


*The Best Hardware of 2010 The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards
Click to enlarge

EVGA SR-2 Motherboard

Intel's Nehalem EP 6-core Xeon 5600-series is the CPU of choice for super servers and workstations (and enthusiasts with way too much cash) and the EVGA SR-2 unlocked it for some serious overclocking. No less than seven 16x PCI-E slots, 12 DDR3 DIMM slots and five separate power plugs mark this out as the most mad-as-a-badger motherboard we've seen for quite some time. As James said in his review, 'The SR-2’s unrivalled ability to set new performance records via the ability to overclock a pair of Xeons plus a small army of graphics cards means it’s the ultimate motherboard.'
*The Best Hardware of 2010 The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards
Click to enlarge - The EVGA SR-2 Motherboard is so big, only a few cases can house it

Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R

Gigabyte's X58a UD3R was, for a good chunk of the year, the X58 motherboard to get. Great performance, that even the newer Sabertooth has trouble overhauling, sensible board design, a competitive price tag and a plethora of high end features including USB 3 and SATA 6Gbps made it a great choice. The 2nd revision of the board was just as good, matching the original's excellent overclocking performance.
*The Best Hardware of 2010 The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards
Click to enlarge

Gigabyte GA-P55M-UD2

While we love high-end products, cheaper mid-range boards are important too, and the Gigabyte GA-P55M-UD2 was the daddy of bargain LGA1156 motherboards for quite some time. Delivering huge overclocks for its reasonable price, it was the ideal partner for a Core i5-760 or Pentium G6950 CPU, but crammed all that performance into a micro-ATX board. Sadly it's now been discontinued and with Sandy Bridge set to replace LGA1156 early next year, we doubt an equally adept replacement will be forthcoming soon, but for those who grabbed one, the UD2 is a great board.

*The Best Hardware of 2010 The Best Hardware of 2010 - Motherboards
Click to enlarge