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This has really been a bit of a mixed bag. Sapphire has delivered a very high performance product that doesn’t have the greatest looks and also doesn’t support NVIDIA’s SLI technology. There are going to be those that won’t be put off by its looks or lack of SLI support. If that’s you then you may have just found your next motherboard.
It’s really going to come down to your personal preference and the hardware that you already might have. If you’ve already got an AMD video card or two then the lack of SLI support isn’t even going to matter. If you’ve already got a build that features a very striking black and blue theme, then this board would also be one you should be considering. If these are things you are looking at purchasing for your next build anyway, then again this will be a board you should look into purchasing.
For performance that should come in at a very reasonable price, this board is going to stand out. Another problem that we had though was that we were unable to find any vendors that currently carry it in the U.S. This does make it difficult to recommend. It would have been nice if Sapphire had some vendors listed that you could purchase this from. Instead their website just has overview information, news and a download tab for this board. One other thing I should mention is that just because it doesn’t feature SLI support doesn’t mean that you can’t use a single NVIDIA card with this board. It just means that your upgrade options are limited to multi AMD cards only.
To wrap this up it really is going to depend on the price that this eventually retails at and how available it’s going to be. If there aren’t even going to be very many vendors that carry it then it probably won’t be very easily obtainable. I would love to see more vendors using some of the features of this board. LED BIOS debugging is one of my favorite features. It makes troubleshooting boot errors a real no-brainer. This board also has a very nice layout for the expansion slots. They run at x8, x8, x4, but this is fine for a CrossFireX setup. I wasn’t very pleased with the mixed color scheme on this board. There are going to be those that won’t mind it and there are going to be those that absolutely hate it. NVIDIA fans are probably going to avoid this board entirely. This is kind of a shame because it does perform quite well. There aren’t any issues with connector placement or CPU heat sink issues. It just doesn’t have some of the finishing touches or overall support that most of the other Z68 boards have. With so many Z68 options that are available, this board just falls a little short. Hopefully Sapphire will have pricing and vendors onboard soon, until then you will have to look elsewhere.