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The best boards for 'Lynnfield' Core i5s and i7s

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Despite the limited space on a Micro-ATX board it feels as though Gigabyte has managed to pack in all the features of a full sized motherboard although this isn’t exactly true. If you install two graphics cards in CrossFireX mode, the Firewire and USB headers at the foot of the board are likely to be blocked.

Gigabyte P55M-UD4

The Micro-ATX form-factor makes accomodating big graphics cards tricky

If you install two really big cards such as Radeon HD 5850s or 5870s, you can kiss goodbye to the front panel headers.

We strongly advise that you think of the second PCIe slot as something to be used for a sound card or TV tuner and forget about CrossFireX.

The MIT (Motherboard Intelligent Tweaker) section of the Bios is arranged differently from previous Gigabytes and is especially easy to navigate. The MIT Current Status, Advanced Frequency, Memory and Voltage settings make the business of overclocking as easy as pie. We were able to get our Core i7 870 up to 3.96GHz without much effort and it stormed through Cinebench at a furious pace.

Gigabyte P55M-UD4

The low price of the Gigabyte makes it a tempting proposition but we consider Core i7 to be an enthusiast product and the P55M-UD4 is a little too basic to make us reach for our credit card.

Reg Rating 80
Price £120 Click here for the best online price
More Info Gigabyte's website

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

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