Until now, we'd never even caught a glimpse of MSI's latest Big Bang board; the Marshal. In fact, we weren't even expecting it to show up until late January, so it was a welcome surprise to spot it at an event in Taipei recently.
As you may have already guessed, it's another Intel P67-based LGA1155 board, although it also features a Lucid Hydra 200 chip for combining the power of different graphics cards. On to top of this, there's also a veritable boat-load of plugs, sockets and switches.
The new design looks spangly, but do you really care for all this 'Military Class' stuff? Let us know.
Meanwhile, the motherboard's sharp and angular heatsinks look attractively stylish. Okay, so they look more than a little bit like those on the Rampage III Extreme, but that isn't a bad design decision.
24+3+3 phases, and a whole lotta LEDs to show it all off.
MSI also informs us that there are 24 power phases on the Marshal; 12 DrMOS VRMs on the front, and a further 12 on the back. Not only that, but there are also an extra three for the System Agent (memory controller/PCI-E) and another three for the VTT and VIO voltages. The front also uses low-profile chokes and Hi-C caps, meaning that chunky coolers can still potentially be installed, not that you're likely to need them for Sandy Bridge systems.
Ignore the big blobs of solder; this board is a pre-production model.
Following the theme threes, the memory slots also get three DrMOS phases (Renesas IC), along with MSI's SFC-branded chokes and even more Hi-C caps.