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MSI Big Bang XPower II X79 Monstrosity Smiles For The Camera
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Old 9th November 2011, 12:40   #1
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Default MSI Big Bang XPower II X79 Monstrosity Smiles For The Camera

MSI is among the most secretive companies with their socket LGA2011 motherboard early information as the big Sandy Bridge-E day approaches (mid-November), yet we managed to score some early pictures of their top-end product from our spy-satellites and a network of cold war era retirees. Enter the MSI Big Bang XPower II, the company's top-tier socket LGA2011 motherboard for enthusiasts. This board is designed in the XL-ATX form-factor, and will fit in cases with at least 10 expansion slot bays. Thanks to the added board area, it's able to accommodate both a strong VRM, and high room for expansion (with eight DDR3 memory slots and seven PCI-Express slots).

To begin with, the LGA2011 socket is powered by a 24-phase VRM that makes use of driver-MOSFETs, solid-chokes, and High-C POSCAP capacitors. The memory is powered by a 4-phase VRM. The board draws power, apart from the 24-pin ATX, from two 8-pin EPS connectors, and an optional 6-pin PCIe (to stabilize PCIe slot power delivery). We can see many accessories to this VRM, such as phase-loading LEDs, and consolidated voltage measurement points. We are particularly intrigued by the design of the heatsinks over the VRM and chipset. The one over the VRM looks like the barrels of a Gatling gun, while the one over the chipset looks like a small piece from an ammo belt. You will either love it or detest it.
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