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Custom Made for Games G1-Killer GIGABYTE G1.Assassin Complete Guide

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GG1A01.jpg

 

I still remember Intel launched the 1st Core i7 platform in Nov 2008 to depart from Core 2 Duo structure.

The 1st Core i7 chipset is X58 and CPU socket is LGA 1366 which position in extreme segment.

In mid 2009, Intel launched same structure with LGA 1156 socket which is mid to high end market.

Early this year, the 2nd generation Core i structure, LGA 1155, launched and the position is overlap with LGA 1156.

 

In the market, there are 3 platforms for Core i7 structure, but the most high-end is still X58.

As per the internet news, LGA 1366 product line will be available till end of 2011, and the life cycle will be over 3 years.

The existing time for the platform is catching up LGA 775.

 

GIGABYTE latest G1-Killer X58 series has 3 models, G1.Sniper, G1.Guerrilla and G1.Assassin

Even though this is late X58 products, if you use Intel latest Core i7-990X, it’s still the most top LGA 1366 platform.

Of course the cost is also high end market level.

 

G1.Assassin is the most high-end model of G1-Killer series.

The form factor is XL-ATX, 34.5cm x 26.3cm. The XL-ATX Case is still rare in the market.

The pantone is black and green. This is the first time for GIGABYTE MB.

There are 5 Smart Fan headers. The users can control the chassis temperature more efficiently.

GG1A02.jpg

 

G1-Killer is also the first GIGABYTE Gaming series MB.

In the past, many brands used to launch gaming series high end boards.

No matter components usage and features, G1.Assassin is really fit for Gaming. You will see the detail as following my further introduction.

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Accessories

Product manual, Software manual, Driver CD, I/O shield, SATA cables and CrossFireX/SLI bridge

GG1A04.jpg

 

G1-Killer poster and stickers

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Front Access Control Panel

It offers 2 USB 3.0 and 1 Power eSATA

Left side Quick Boost button can switch user to OC mode to enhance the system performance.

GG1A06.jpg

 

Lower-Left Corner

2 X PCI-E X16 support X16 bandwidth

2 X PCI-E X16 support X8 bandwidth

The PCI-E can support up to 4-Way ATI CrossFireX and 3-Way NVIDIA SLI

2 X PCI-E X1

1 X PCI

Bigfoot Killer E2100 LAN chip

Creative CA20K2 Audio chip supports Dolby Digital Live, DTS Connect, X-Fi Xtreme Fidelity and EAX Advanced HD 5.0 technology.

It supports up to 7.1 channel and High Definition Audio.

Design in Taipei

GG1A07.jpg

 

Lower-Right Corner

6 X black SATAII, provided by ICH10R, SATA2 and support RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5 and RAID 10

2 X white SATAIII, provided by Marvell 9182, SATA3 and support RAID 0, RAID 1

2 X 16 Mbit flash, Dual BIOS, dual protection.

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Upper-Right Corner

6 X DIMM DDR3 support 800/1066/1333/2200 and max capacity is 24GB

DDR3 has 2 phase PWM and next is 24-PIN power connector

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Upper-Left Corner

LGA 1366 CPU Socket, CPU metal cover uses plating one

G1.Assassin uses 16 phases PWM and support dual 8 phases power switching mode.

It needs GIGAYTE Dynamic Energy Saving (DES2) software to enable the dual power switching function.

Back is two 8 PIN design for enhancing system stability under high loading condition

GG1A10.jpg

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IO

4 X USB 2.0(black)

4 X USB 3.0(blue)

1 X RJ-45 LAN

1 X S/PDIF Optical/Coaxial output

GG1A11.jpg

 

Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Audio Processor, 20K2

Built-in 128MB Memory cache for 20K2. In my impression, this design is for Creative high-end audio card only.

Nichicon MUSE ES(green) and MW(yellow) Bi-Polarized audio capacitors. You can see the intention in audio design to get the best audio quality.

This is the first time I saw such high end audio chip, capacitors and cache design in MB. I have very high expectation for the audio quality.

Of course, this kind of design and other brands X-FI audio card quality must be made real comparison to see the difference.

GG1A12.jpg

 

LAN Chip is one more G1-Killer important features. It uses Killer E2100 chip, also called NPU.

Besides the past CPU and GPU, now you also can see NPU. You can feel how fast the computer hardware technology improvement.

It built-in 1GB DDR2 to process the network traffic control. It helps offload network traffic from the CPU.

Another feature is Game Networking, DNA, technology. It offloads gaming data directly to the NPU to deliver tremendous speed benefits.

GG1A13.jpg

 

The complete new design thermal module is based on bullet and cartridge, called Locked and Loaded Heatpipe Design .

The Upper-Mid and Left are VRM heatpipe.

Lower is X58 chipset heatsink and the 5 green LEDs are glowing after power on.

GG1A14.jpg

 

This SB ICH10R heatsink is very special Visual effect.

The outlook is copy cartridge with one copper bullet. It’s really eye catching.

Also the big heatsink, this thermal solution is both for good looking and performance.

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Boot Screen

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BIOS Main Page

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Main BIOS Tuning Menu, called M.I.T.

It displays BIOS version, CPU/DRAM clock, DDR3 capacity, CPU temperature and CPU/DRAM voltage info.

GG1AB03.jpg

 

You can adjust CPU ratio, clock and DDR3 multiplier.

The pic is CPU 200Mhz/DDR3 1600 set up screen.

GG1AB04.jpg

 

CPU Related Technology Items

C1E is for power saving.

Intel Turbo Boost is contrary with C1E. The CPU can boost speed during high load mode.

GG1AB05.jpg

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Memory Setup Page

GG1AB06.jpg

 

Advanced DDR3 parameters setup

GG1AB07.jpg

 

Voltage Page

Load-Line Calibration Standard/Level1/Level2

CPU Vcore 0.50000~1.90000V

QPI/Vtt Voltage 1.120~2.000V

CPU PLL 1.300~2.520V

ICH Core 0.920~2.380V

DRAM Voltage 1.300~2.600V

GG1AB08.jpg

 

PC Health Status

GG1AB09.jpg

 

During OC, besides CPU and DDR3 quality, the voltage tuning is also very important.

In above G1.Assassin setup screen, QPI/Vtt Voltage item is the key to pull high CPU clock.

This i7-930 CPU quality is not bad, in 200/1600 ratio, I don’t need to adjust QPI/Vtt Voltage.

If you want to run stable at 200/2000 ratio, the proper voltage is the key factor to OC X58 chipset.

 

System Configuration

CPU: Intel Core i7-930

MB: GIGABYTE G1.Assassin

DRAM: CORSAIR VENGEANCE CMZ12GX3M3A1600C9

VGA: msi N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II

HD: Intel X25-V 40GB RAID 0

POWER: be quiet! STRAIGHT POWER GOLDEN 550W

Cooler: Mega Shadow Deluxe Edition

OS: Windows7 Ultimate 64bit

GG1A16.jpg

 

OC Performance

CPU 200 X 21 => 4199.8MHz 1.325V

DDR3 1600 CL7 8-7-21 1T 1.600V

 

Hyper PI 32M X8 => 13m 55.912s

CPUMARK 99 => 660

GG1AOPI.png

 

Nuclearus Multi Core => 28279

Fritz Chess Benchmark => 32.02/15368

GG1AONM.png

 

CrystalMark 2004R3 => 313604

GG1AOCM.png

 

CINEBENCH R11.5

CPU => 7.23 pts

CPU(Single Core) => 1.47 pts

GG1AOCB.png

 

Windows Experience Index - CPU 7.7

GG1AOWIND7.png

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PCMark Vantage => 18792

GG1AOPCVAN.png

 

This Intel Core i7 930 is 45nm but the OC range is very good. I just need 1.325V to achieve 4.2GHz.

After that, I try to increase the CPU voltage and I can achieve 4.4GHz to run most software at around 1.4V.

However, I cannot run all software stable, so I give up this setting.

X58 platform OC performance is able to support most applications and conditions. Of course, for users, the speed demand is never enough.

Faster and faster DeskTop PC performance is always the never changed goal for IT industry.

 

DDR3 Bandwidth Comparison

DDR3 1600 CL7 8-7-21 1T 1.600V

Sandra Memory Bandwidth - 26409 MB/s

ADIA64 Memory Read - 17585 MB/s

MaXXMEM Memory-Copy - 19911 MB/s

GG1AO1600C7MEM.png

 

DDR3 2000 CL10 10-10-30 1T 1.640V

Sandra Memory Bandwidth - 30480 MB/s

ADIA64 Memory Read - 20361 MB/s

MaXXMEM Memory-Copy - 21168 MB/s

GG1AO2000C10MEM.png

 

LGA 1366 is the only 3 channel platform. The DDR3 bandwidth is extremely high.

Even though the latest Sandy Bridge LGA 1155 platform optimizes the Memory Controller, these 2 platforms have each own advantages.

X58 DDR3 bandwidth is key features and DDR3 OC range is better.

In this test, the CORSAIR VENGEANC DDR 1600 CL9 can OC to DDR3 2000 CL10.

Even the CL is not as good as DDR3 1600, pulling to higher clock is still good for bandwidth performance.

 

Temperature

Enter to Desktop - 37~43

GG1AOT1.png

 

CPU Full Speed - 66~76

Intel Burn Test v2.4,Stress Level Maximum

GG1AOT2.png

 

CPU OC voltage is low, so the temperature is lower as well. This is a good result.

In full speed, the temperature is around 66~76.

If you put all system into case and make good air flow, it will increase 5~8 maximum. For long time usage, the system is able to be stable

 

Power Consumption

Enter to Desktop - 158W

GG1AOIDLE.jpg

 

CPU Full Speed - 304W

Intel Burn Test v2.4,Stress Level Maximum

GG1AOFULL.jpg

 

OCCT POWER SUPPLY Mode - 525W

GG1AOOCCT.jpg

 

The VGA is nVIDIA latest mid-end GTX 560 Ti.

After OC, the power consumption as entering to Desktop is still acceptable. In 4.2GHz/4Cores full speed condition, it’s also just around 300W.

If you use OCCT to make CPU/VGA be full load, the total power consumption is going to 525W.

Normally, the PC power consumption is directly proportional. I recommend 600W Power Supply for this system.

 

3D Performance Test

msi N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II default is GPU 880/2100

 

3DMark Vantage => P23278

GG1AO3DVAN.png

 

StreetFighter IV Benchmark

1920 X 1080 => 289.56 FPS

GG1AOSTF4.jpg

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LOST PLANET 2

DX11 1920 X 1080 TEST B – 46.4 fps

GG1AOLP2.jpg

 

FINAL FANTASY XIV

1920 X 1080 => 4409

GG1AOFF11.jpg

 

As the latest GTX560-Ti, the 3D performance is mid to high level.

X58 the best advantage is the PCI-E bandwidth is much higher than P55/67 series.

It’s good help for ATI CrossFireX/NVIDIA SLI performance. It’s also more suitable for positioning to Gaming MB.

BTW, in previous review, I found nVIDIA performance drop issue at 1920X1200 resolution.

The new nVIDIA driver has fixed this issue.

 

G1.Assassin is not only focus on audio chip and capacitors. It’s also considering the headset.

It built-in Front Audio Headphone Amplifier and be able to drive 150Ω loads, allow Gaming users to enjoy the higher quality audio.

 

For real audio performance, I use CORSAIR HS1A Gaming Headset to test.

First of all, you can see the packing. It’s official 2 years warranty.

GG1A17.jpg

 

HS1A size is 210mm x 130mm x 235mm

The extra-large diameter and deep-dish design help prevent them from touching your ears to avoid the uncomfortable issue.

GG1A18.jpg

 

Overall, the headset components and quality are quite high level. If they can improve the wire, that will be perfect.

It also provides microphone for users to chat with the others during playing game.

The controller can adjust microphone switch and volume.

GG1A19.jpg

 

In OS, Creative application interface provides several language packs for users to choose.

GG1AOXFIO1.png

 

There are Entertainment, Game, Audio Creation modes.

The Game mode panel and items as below. It includes rich fine tune items.

GG1AOXFIO2.png

 

Audio Creation mode provides different panel and items.

It looks like Creative own EMU audio panel, but actually the items and features are different.

GG1AOXFIO3.png

 

Entertainment mode panel interface is easy to use.

Items and features are easy to understand. Creative application features are very varity.

GG1AOXFIO4.png

 

In Audio Creation Mode, listening songs or music.

The high frequency has no ear-piercing or uncomfortable tones. It’s good performance.

In intermediate frequency, I can hear all clear sounds.

However, it lacks of human sounds reality. This is the part X-FI chip needs to improve.

Low frequency is the key part of this headset and audio chip combination. The bass is very good. It’s really high standard.

The overall performance is quite average. For the sound field, it can perform well.

My most impressive part is the sound field is really surrounding.

The sound sophistication and reality restore quality are mid high standard. However, it’s not X-FI strength.

 

In Entertainment mode

This is the emphasize part of X-FI.

I use CORSAIR Gaming headset to listen all the sounds affect. The sound field is very good.

No matter for bass or fighting scene, the sound is very shock.

As this combination, it’s very high C/P for Gamers. It’s for your reference only.

 

Fianlly, I post Intel latest launched, end of March, the top end CPU, Core i7 990X Extreme default performance test

CPU 133.2 X 26 => 3463.2MHz

DDR3 1865.4 CL8 9-8-24 1T 1.600V

 

CINEBENCH R11.5

CPU => 9.22 pts

CPU(Single Core) => 1.24 pts

GG1AD990X.png

 

6C/12T has very high benchmark in default mode. In the future, I will find a chance to share you the detail 990X performance and OC share.

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GIGABYTE G1.Assassin

Good

1. G1.Assassin is most high end model of G1-Killer series. The packing and components are top level.

2. Built-in Creative CA20K2 audio chip, Japanese made high end capacitors and 128MB Memory cache.

3. Killer E2100 Network NPU chip with 1GB DDR2 cache for more efficient traffic control

4. Support both 4WAY ATI CFX and 3WAY NVIDIA SLI technology. It meet Gaming demand.

5. Exclusive Front Access Control Panel supports USB 3.0 and Quick Boost. It also Built-in Front Audio Headphone Amplifier

6. Rich BIOS items and high voltage range. CPU/DDR3 ability is excellent.

7. Very special military style thermal module design. The quality and visual affect are very good.

 

Bad

1. So far, LGA 1366 32nm/6Core CPU price is still too high

2. XL-ATX Case is rare.

3. X58 chipset power consumption is higher than other P series platform.

 

GG1A20.jpg

 

Performance ★★★★★★★★★☆

Components ★★★★★★★★★★

Specification ★★★★★★★★★☆

Outlook ★★★★★★★★☆☆

C/P Value ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

 

G1.Assassin is the top model of G1-Killer series. The components and features are most complete.

Of course the price is for high end market. The market price is around 15700NTD, 543USD.

Comparing to G1-Kille entry G1.Guerrilla, the price is 10700, around 370USD.

However, G1.Guerrilla has no X-FI audio chip and other spec is lower.

 

If you compare G1.Assassin with others top Gaming X58, G1-Killer price has no advantage. The key strength is new audio and network design.

Especially the audio performance is almost the best MB built-in audio currently.

I also test other brand X-FI audio card, duo to the chipset and components, the real sound field and audio affect is behind G1.Assassin.

 

G1-Killer Series is right position in Game filed.

For multi-VGA gaming X58 platform, it’s really satisfied the most gamer’s requirements to build an exclusive high end Gaming platform. :)

 

This review also post in my blog WIND3C

Welcome 3C lovers to visit and advise.

Thanks :)

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Very well done! I'll never see one of these up close, but very interesting to read about this sector of the market (with all the pretty pictures).

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Nice. That is one sweet looking board. :evilgrin:

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That board is pure sexyness!!! Great review.

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I'm honestly not sure why they waited so long to create/release this board. It seems like an awful waste of money to buy this, when 2011 is right around the corner. Let's face it, you could build a decent Sandy Bridge rig for slightly more than that board costs alone. :erm:

 

That said.. it's a damn sexy board. And I love the color scheme- it would go great with my WC setup :D

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thats a sweet looking board. and it is full of options. It is a little late in the game but I am sure that wont stop it from selling well...

 

As always nice review WWM....

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