MSI’s Big Bang-XPower II motherboard for LGA 2011 processors has yet to make its appearance on retailer shelves, but this Intel X79-powered board has already starred in a picture preview that revealed most of its secrets.
As most of you know, MSI’s Big Bang line is reserved for high-end enthusiast friendly products and since the XPower II is no exception to this rule the board comes with all sort of bells and whistles destined to make the overclocking experience a lot smoother.
These include not only the usual Power and Reset on-board buttons, but also a series of more advanced features such as dedicated voltage measurement points, a POST debug display, dual-BIOS support, a low temperature boot jumper as well as a series of DIP switches for enabling or disabling the seven PCI Express x16 slots installed.
According to MSI, four of these are linked to the Sandy Bridge-E processor and are PCI Express 3.0 compatible, while the remaining three are controlled by a PLX PEX8608 IC are just PCIe Gen 2 complaint.
The rest of the expansion options include a total of eight DDR3 memory slots, as well as no less than 10 SATA ports, six driven by the X79 PCH and 4 by an ASMedia 1061 controller.
On the back, users will find four USB 3.0 ports powered by a NEC IC, two Gigabit NICs, 8 channel audio with digital and optical S/PDIF out, a Clear CMOS button and a Firewire port.
Two additional USB 3.0 ports are available through an on-board header, so the Big Bang-XPower II is definitely a motherboard that isn't lacking in this department.
Power is provided via two 8-pin CPU power connectors and a regular 24-pin power plug, while the PCI Express slots can get some additional juice via an angled 6-pin PCIe connector placed right near the SATA ports.
Sadly, VR-Zone, who has posted this picture preview of the Big Bang-XPower II, hasn't provided us with any info regarding the price of this motherboard or the date when this becomes available in retail.