Last year, AMD released the Ryzen 5000 series desktop processors in one of the most monumental hardware launches of the modern era. This final step completed the Red brand's ascent back into the forefront of the desktop processor market that began with the launch of the first generation of Ryzen CPUs. Now, while Intel prepares to fire back with the launch of the 11th Generation Intel Core processors, we take a look at a less common specification of the forward-compatible 400 series.
While the 10th Gen Intel Core processors did not support PCIe 4.0 connectivity due to signal integrity issues, many of the 400 motherboards are designed to support the PCIe 4.0 specification. This is accomplished by adding clock generators to help clean up the signal. Generally speaking, when it comes to long-term platform support, AMD has been the trendsetter. Has AMD's long support of the AM4 socket on its newer generation processors inspired Intel to take similar steps?
So what is the 400 series offering right now? For starters, there has been a large focus on VRM and VRM cooling design. With the top-level Intel Core i9-10900K featuring ten cores along with HyperThreading, the ability to deliver clean, continuous power is going to be one of the primary factors that separates a good 400 series board from the competition. With the introduction of HyperThreading on Intel's mid-range line-up, power delivery is going to be vital in all segments.
The Vision line from Gigabyte targets content creators with a focus on connectivity, performance, and durability. The Gigabyte W480 Vision D features a direct 12-phase VRM for clean power delivery, as well as a direct-touch heatpipe for optimal cooling. An ample helping of USB ports, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and 2.5 Gb/s Ethernet promote superior connectivity while the white aesthetic lends visual flare. The W480 chipset supports Xeon W and ECC memory at the cost of locked down CPU overclocking.
Let's take a look at the Gigabyte W480 Vision D and see how it stacks up against its Z490 counterparts!
|CPU Support:||Intel 10th Gen or later Core processors|
Intel Xeon W series processors
|Power Design:|| CPU Power: 13-phase* |
Memory Power: 2-phase
|Integrated Graphics:||Dependent on installed CPU|
|Memory:||4x DIMM, supports dual-channel DDR4-4400 (OC) MHz,|
supports ECC unbuffered DIMM 1Rx8/2Rx8 memory (Xeon only)
|BIOS:||AMI UEFI BIOS|
|Expansion Slots:|| 3x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots (x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4) |
1x PCIe 3.0 x1 slots
|Storage:|| 6x SATA 6 Gb/s ports |
3x M.2 ports (SATA3/PCIe 3.0 x4)
|Networking:||1x Intel 2.5 Gb/s LAN|
1x Intel GbE LAN
|Rear Ports:||1x DisplayPort In port|
2x Thunderbolt™ 3 connectors
1x HDMI port
2x SMA antenna connectors
2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports (red)
4x USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
2x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
2x RJ-45 ports
1x optical S/PDIF Out connector
5x audio jacks
|Audio:||1x Realtek ALC1220 Codec|
|Fan Headers:||8x 4-pin|
|Form Factor:||ATX Form Factor: 12.0 x 9.6 in.; 30.5 x 24.4 cm|