Monday, February 6th 2012

Gigabyte Intros The 970A-DS3 Ultra Durable 4 Classic Motherboard

Gigabyte introduced a new value socket AM3+ motherboard designed for AMD FX processors, the 970A-DS3. Based on the AMD 970 + SB950 chipset, this board is a product of some clever cost-balancing by its designers, which will spice-up both its specs-sheet, and price-tag, compared to the 970A-UD3. To begin with, the 970A-DS3 uses a much lighter component loadout compared to the UD3. The 970A-UD3's Ultra Durable 3 Classic component loadout makes way for Ultra Durable 4 Classic on the 970A-DS3, which includes a better weaved fiberglass PCB that's better resistant to humidity; features high ESD-resistance ICs located in key circuits; anti-surge ICs that prevent installed processors and memory from getting fried if something goes terribly wrong with the VRM; and of course low-RDS (on) MOSFETs and 100% solid-state capacitor design.

The CPU is powered by a simple 5-phase VRM. It is wired to four DDR3 DIMM slots supporting up to 32 GB of dual-channel DDR3-1866+ MHz memory. Expansion slots include one PCI-Express 2.0 x16 (wired to the 970), one PCIe 2.0 x16 (electrical 2.0 x4, wired to the SB950), three PCIe x1, and two legacy PCI. Gigabyte didn't cheap-out on the southbridge (by opting for SB710), and so we have a full-fledged SB950, complete with six SATA 6 Gb/s ports supporting RAID5. There are two USB 3.0 ports on the rear-panel, driven by an Etron EJ168 controller. The audio is driven by Realtek ALC887, wired to just a 5.1-channel analog output cluster, apart from the front-panel header. Gigabit Ethernet driven by Realtek 8111E tops it up. Gigabyte included its DualBIOS (AwardBIOS) with the board. Expect this one to be priced around US $100 (or below), making it a nice buy for single-GPU budget gaming-PC builds.
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13 Comments on Gigabyte Intros The 970A-DS3 Ultra Durable 4 Classic Motherboard

#1
m1dg3t
Nice layout! Angled SATA port's would be nice
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#2
reverze
so its marked as DS but has the ultra durable layers like the UD marked mobos got?
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#3
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
reverze
so its marked as DS but has the ultra durable layers like the UD marked mobos got?
UD4 Classic is different from UD3 Classic, in that it lacks a double-thick copper layer (normal thickness), but has a more rigid fiberglass weave. Then there are active anti-surge and anti-ESD components.
Posted on Reply
#4
Batou1986
I got me a 970a-ud3 great board bios can be a little tweaky tho.
The ud3 is ~100$ i guess this will just fill its spot.

Just noticed no vrm heatsink and a 4pin cpu :confused: well there go's any oc potential glad i got my ud3
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#5
nonkX3
:ohwell: no VRM heatsink??? Again?? i can smell something's burning...
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#6
m1dg3t
Didn't realize VRM cooling was so important on newer board's, this is a budget board so they gotta save somewhere right? You can spend ~ $30 and sink the whole MOBO with Enzotech/Swiftech sink's if you wanted to push for heavy OC's
Posted on Reply
#7
nonkX3
On a budget board i think they better off ditching the second pcie slot...IMHO
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#8
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
nonkX3
:ohwell: no VRM heatsink??? Again?? i can smell something's burning...
My $210 X58 motherboard lacks VRM heatsink, and runs fine.
Posted on Reply
#9
nonkX3
btarunr
My $210 X58 motherboard lacks VRM heatsink, and runs fine.
Just some of my bad experience bta...i just think thats a pretty risky for me...cuz some people still don't mind about temperatures at all, i'm just imagining...that board, and an Oc-ed 81xx series. God knows what would happenned
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#10
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
nonkX3
Just some of my bad experience bta...i just think thats a pretty risky for me...cuz some people still don't mind about temperatures at all, i'm just imagining...that board, and an Oc-ed 81xx series. God knows what would happenned
I think it should be fine. Chokes don't produce as much heat, and there are two-each of up-dn FETs per phase on this board, so heat is spread between the two. My DX58OG has just 5 phases, and that too using DrMOS (nucleation of heat), it handles 130W CPUs with mild OC just fine. Besides if you want to do extreme OC, you would spend more than $100 on a motherboard. Gigabyte has a 990FX-based motherboard with VRM heatsinks under $140 (990FXA-UD3).
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#11
kid41212003
i see a retarded face with uneven eyes on the socket.
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#12
nonkX3
btarunr
I think it should be fine. Chokes don't produce as much heat, and there are two-each of up-dn FETs per phase on this board, so heat is spread between the two. My DX58OG has just 5 phases, and that too using DrMOS (nucleation of heat), it handles 130W CPUs with mild OC just fine. Besides if you want to do extreme OC, you would spend more than $100 on a motherboard. Gigabyte has a 990FX-based motherboard with VRM heatsinks under $140 (990FXA-UD3).
i thought so...and i'm not saying it as generally, just happens to me for a few times, again it's just an opinion based on self experiences, i also notice a $80 can stand years of usage, anyway :toast:
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#13
THE_EGG
I would only buy this because I have a Citroen DS3 car. :cool:
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