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Gigabyte address Z77X-UD5H rumours

We received an email today from an industry source who claimed that the Gigabyte Z77X-US5H had V-Core problems. The claims were made that this would hinder overclocking and perhaps even potentially reduce reliability long term.

We had no problems getting the board to 4.8ghz with a £20 cooler when we reviewed it, however we wanted to poke into this a bit further.

We received some pictures showing pictures of various Z77 boards from Asrock, MSI, Asus and Gigabyte.

It would appear that all other boards have populated the rear of the CPU socket with capacitors.

We spoke to an engineer in the Far East who wanted to remain nameless, but he made a comment.

He said “Those chips are 22uF capacitors (MLCC package) that used to follow Intel load line (spec of CPU voltage and current).

Those are most populated on back and front side of central CPU SKT. The quantity of capacitors would depend on each board maker’s design but the less quantity of Capacitors would impact some item as below:

1)      Impact the stability of CPU under high loading (overclocking).

2)      Impact the voltage recovery speed while CPU needs huge power (Vdroop feature).

3)      CPU compatibility.

Component spec:  CAP MLCC,22uF,6.3V,X5R,0805,20%,1.25mm.”

We called Gigabyte today and explained the rumours and concerns. They wanted to liase with their engineering team and replied after a few hours, sending us the following statement.

  1. The Vcore chip mentioned are actually ceramic capacitors.
  2. Our boards have an advanced power design that includes an industry-leading digital PWM and a 2x copper PCB that is exclusive to Gigabyte. None of our competitors use the same designs and technology. We have no idea what the capacitor ratings are on competitor boards and don’t wish to comment as that would be unprofessional, but it seems that they possibly need additional capacitors on the underside of their board designs and according to our testing and validation processes, Gigabyte do not.
  3. We are possibly being attacked by our competitors with pictures that are essentially meaningless. Other than showing these pictures, they haven’t so much as indicated what possible problem there might be or produced stats to prove there is a performance issue with the product.
  4. We are completely confident in our design and back it up with a comprehensive warranty on all our boards.
  5. Third party media reviewers have looked at the product and given it top marks for performance  and design these media do not work for Gigabyte and are independent, we feel these reviews reflect our commitment to product quality and speak volume in regard to the Z77X-UD5H itself.

Gigabyte seem confident in the design of their board and the reviews so far seem positive, from sites such as eTeknix, Tech Radar, Bit Tech, Overclock3D and Kitguru.

Kitguru says: Gigabyte have addressed the rumours.

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