Gigabyte micro-ATX G1.Killer motherboard pictured
Ryan Martin / 5 years ago
It’s not everyday that you see Gigabyte’s G1.Killer motherboard come in a micro-ATX form factor. In fact it will be the first time Gigabyte has ever launched such a product. However, don’t let it’s size fool you this motherboard packs an extensive feature set. The G1.Sniper M3 is going to be based on Intel’s upcoming Z77 chipset which is being specifically released for LGA 1155 22nm Ivy Bridge processors although if you just can’t detach yourself from your Sandy Bridge CPU and really want a new board then fear not as all LGA 1155 boards based on the Z77 chipset will be backwards compatible with any Sandy Bridge LGA 1155 processor.
Gigabyte have squeezed a high quality 9 phase VRM onto the board which should give even the enthusiast ample room for achieving 4.5GHz+, stable overclocks. Although, interestingly enough the board only draws power from a single 4 pin ATX connector not an 8 pin EPS so this is probably reflective of the fact Ivy Bridge is going to bring significantly lower power consumption to the table, and if previous information is true the 2500k/2600k/2700k successors will have maximum TDPs of just 77W.
As the CPU is identical in architecture to Sandy Bridge just with a process shrink, the memory controller has been kept the same. Meaning you will only get access to two lots of dual channel RAM. We’re assuming that these boards will support 64GB when 16GB modules come out in the future but for now 32GB will have to make do, and if that’s not enough then its time to shift to X79 and LGA 2011. If you want CrossfireX or SLI then you can do exactly that. Gigabyte have made two Generation 3 PCI express slots available to the user, supporting 16X/8X configurations. There is also a PCI-E 2.0 slot in the middle, this one is wired to the Z77 chipset whereas the two Gen3 slots are wired to the Ivy Bridge PCI-E controller. Note if you use a Sandy Bridge CPU these slots will automatically default to PCI-E gen 2 speeds of PCI-E 2.o 16X/8X as you can see the last PCI-E lane is only wired to 8X. Additionally there’s a PCI-E 1X slot in there as well also wired to the Z77 chipset, this slot is aimed at those who have wireless cards, audio cards and other cards of that nature.
For the first time in LGA 1155 development there is no reliance on third party controllers to provide SATA III. Intel have successfully managed to incorporate SATA III into Z77 so you will find Z77 now provides four SATA II and two SATA III. The fourth SATA II port is wired out on the rear I/O as an e-SATA port. USB 3.0 is also for the first time natively supported, two via the header and two via the rear I/O panel are all provided by the Z77 chipset. There is no fancy audio hardware this time, this board makes use of traditional HD audio probably some standard Realtek HD audio codec like ALC898. Intel Gigabit LAN, DVI, D-Sub (VGA), HDMI, Display port and a cluster of USB 2.0 ports make up the rest of the connectivity.