In the world of motherboards and manufacturer competition, the idea is to beat your competitor. To develop the product, with more features, more fancy gadgets, and perform better than your competitor at every price point. Today, we pit arguably the two most popular motherboard vendors at a price point that will see a significant number of sales from consumers and enthusiasts alike – the ASUS P8P67 Pro and the Gigabyte P67A-UD4, which were both released during the Sandy Bridge week for $190. Forget all the marketing fluff; this is a showdown!

When a new platform is released, a myriad of motherboards hit the shelves at the same time. Each vendor will usually come out with a few products, targeting their prospective markets. Big motherboard players, like ASUS and Gigabyte, will release motherboards ranging from the cheap low end, to that high-end halo product. They will bombard you with data, ideas, concepts, and reasons why their high-end products are better than their low end – in terms of numbers, features, or what is in the box. Whether you can really trust what each manufacturer says on the box depends on the interpretations of the benchmarks and analyses by review sites like AnandTech.

At the time of writing, Newegg has 56 Sandy Bridge motherboards available – 22 for H67 and 34 for P67. Of those in the P67 range, you can pick up an Intel motherboard for as little as $115, or an ASUS as expensive as $320. So what makes that expensive motherboard worth almost three times as much as the low-end board? What makes a $200 board better than a $150 board? Features? Warranty? Overclockability? Price? All of these points, while valid, carry different weight with every different consumer.

I reviewed the ASRock P67 Extreme4 at the Sandy Bridge release, and they offered a great product that is available online for $153. Today, we have two boards released at $190 by two of the biggest motherboard manufacturers – the ASUS P8P67 Pro, and the Gigabyte P67A-UD4. Firstly, the question is: if you had $190, which one would you buy? Then secondly, we have to ask: are these boards worth the ~$40 difference to the P67 Extreme4? Luckily, at least in my opinion, after using all three of the boards, the answers to both of these questions were self-evident.

Firstly, let us tackle the ASUS P8P67 Pro.

ASUS P8P67 Pro: Visual Inspection
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  • Rick83 - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    An ASUS Xonar DX costs around 50-70$ and does the same, and remains portable to any pcie board. I chose to go with that in the end...
  • sweetspot - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    See this is the point exactly overlooked,

    ""go get so and so sound card to solve your problems, but now look at the equation posted in the review ""

    2x 190 mobos or the 150 mobo which is better save 40 bucks ??

    See how can you save 40 bucks when they clearly did not do sound review at all, so you now need to go pay the extra 50-70 bucks for add on sound card, now you are not saving 40 bucks with the Asrock board are ya.

    Sure reader can go elsewhere and do alot of extra research on the parts for that info, but the review sites are supposed to cover that whcih is the whole reason people read them in the 1st place to get info they dont have access to read and not have to go web hopping for each detail to get information, and let an expert reviewer cover that research and testing for them, the whole reason review sites exsist. leaving out details so readers have to go elsewhere for items they reviewed is not a very helpfull at all, and readers waste time reading this to find out they are SOL later on, and need to spend more time on other sites for overlooked details.

    Sound is not small item or bug oversite, every mobo computer usually sound is a key part of their use for home / entertainment use types. So skipping sound and other mojor compnents in a review is terrible to the reader.
  • Voldenuit - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    Blegh. Too expensive.

  • Concillian - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    Seen a fair number of reviews of various $150+ P67 boards.

    OCing the 2500k looks to be about as non-complex as it gets, does a mobo really make a big difference anymore aside from 20 phase VRMs or whatever for the people doing water and phase change cooling and pumping 1.5 volts through these things?

    Seems like a normal person on air going for 4.4-4.6 should need nothing fancy except whatever pci-E slot config and ports they are after.

    I'm waiting on a <$150 roundup somewhere.
  • Rick83 - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    The worst part, is that I got a p55 UD5 for 150 euro, which has more features than the new UD5. (And cost less at launch)
    I don't even want to talk about the feature-decay with regard to my IP35 Pro.

    It's a sad state for the mobo buyer and best to stick to the low end.
  • Cashano - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    I read a lot of comments about wait for the (X/Z)(67/68) boards, problem is by then AMD is on the playing field with they new chipset and boards, but lets look at todays boards.

    When testing boards at $190, i would say its more fitting to test the ASRock P67 Extreme6 instead of the ASRock P67 Extreme4, seeing that its closer to the $190 mark and alot more SATA and V16 power, but thats just what I think.

  • Cashano - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    Forgot to add, that Ext6 has 2x 1Gbit LAN, or combined 2Gbit :P new feature.

  • seamusmc - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    Who really uses that feature though. I've never met anyone that takes advantage of that. Would be neat to try it.
  • Hogan773 - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    No - the POINT is that you compare based on what you GET and the ASRock is delivering all the features (and more) vs the $190 tier at both ASUS and GB.

    Maybe you're different, but when I buy something, my thought process is not "OK how much to I want to spend" but rather "what features do I want to buy" and from there, where can I get the lowest dollar price on said features.

    BTW beyond the bigger power phases there doesn't seem to be that many diffs between the ASR 4 and ASR 6. Thats prob because the ASR 4 is pretty fully loaded.
  • Cashano - Friday, January 21, 2011 - link

    You are right that there isn't a lot of difference between X4 and 6, from what i can see it is,

    X6 has 2x SATA3(raid), 4x SATA3(raid), 4x SATA2(raid), and V16+2 phase power, and Dual Lan.

    X4 has 2x SATA3(raid), 2x SATA3(raid), 4x SATA2(raid), and V8+2 phase power, and Single Lan.

    I don't know the price difference is in the US, I think its down to about $10.

    Well my thought process is, what do I need here and now for cheapest price, and what do I need in 3 to 6 months, for expansion and upgrades (like crossfire and hard disk's) but that's just me.

    But yes I would take the X4 over X6 if i didn't use Dual lan, or used 2 Raid setups.


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