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MSI debuts the world's first PCI Express 3.0 motherboard


July 8, 2011

Taiwanese manufacturer MSI has announced a new motherboard Z68A-GD80 (G3) utilizing  two P...

Taiwanese manufacturer MSI has announced a new motherboard Z68A-GD80 (G3) utilizing two PCIe 3.0 slots (1x16, 1x8).

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Taiwanese manufacturer MSI has announced a new motherboard Z68A-GD80 (G3), which according to the company will be the world's first motherboard to utilize the PCI Express Gen 3 (3.0) bus standard. Featuring a BIOS with a graphical user interface, the motherboard boasts two PCIe 3.0 slots (1x16, 1x8), which provide a 2x faster transfer rate than the 2.0 standard with a maximum bandwidth of 32GB/s, and support for 3TB drives. It is also equipped with an Intel Z68 (B3) chipset and supports the LGA1155 socket to work with Intel Sandy Bridge CPUs.

The motherboard comes with Click BIOS II technology, "which utilizes a unified graphical interface in both Windows and in the UEFI BIOS" and offers touchscreen support, as well as the OC Genie II which MSI says is capable of increasing CPU, memory, iGPU and HDD performance by pressing a single button. The mainboard is equipped with Military Class II components, which is designed to ensure stability and long lifespan.

The MSI Z68A-GD80 (G3) features two USB 3.0 external ports, HDMI v1.4 and DVI outputs, four DDR3 memory slots with dual channel support (up to 32 GB), FireWire and SATA 6 Gb/s connectivity. MSI Z68A-GD80 (G3) supports AMD Crossfire, NVIDIA SLI multi-GPU solutions tailored for hardcore gamers, as well as Virtu Switchable Graphics, which allows the power of a discrete GPU and integrated GPU to be combined.

MSI also says that that PCE Express 2.0 SSDs perform 13 per cent faster when connected to the new motherboard, compared with its closest competitors.

While the MSI Z68A-GD80 (G3) appears to be available now, there's still no word on price.


Newegg has it for $240. Pretty much inline with a high end gaming board. Looks like it would make a good quality gamer or mid-range workstation.

Jamie Estep
8th July, 2011 @ 07:28 am PDT

Graphical, GUI BIOS, again? Remember those from the mid 1990's on some 80486 motherboards? Ick, they were awful. A few text screens and keyboard navigation = much quicker to use than a GUI for a system like BIOS configuration.

BIOS configuration doesn't need a GUI because its not a general purpose environment like Windows or Macintosh.

Gregg Eshelman
8th July, 2011 @ 01:47 pm PDT
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