Gigabyte GA-X58-USB3 Reviewgotdamojo06 - January 30, 2011
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The first thing that we need to do is put the Installation CD in the drive on your computer. Once you have your disk inserted, you are going to get a new window that automatically pops up for you, if it does not, just double click the CD logo in My Computer. Once you have this new window displayed on your computer, you can choose different options as far as what you are going to be able to install on your computer.
The first screen you will see is the Chipset Drivers screen with the XPress Install screen showing - this is where you are going to find all of the different drivers for your fresh Windows install with your new motherboard. You can also go to the Install Single Items tab that is going to allow you to only install the drivers you wish to have on your computer. There is an Install All button located at the top of this screen; this is going to install all of the drivers listed on the page.
The next screen that we are going to navigate to is going to be the Application Software screen, the first tab on this screen is the Install GIGABYTE Utilities tab. This is where to install all of the Gigabyte developed software such as G.O.M., Easy Tune 6, DMI Viewer, Face Wizard, @BIOS, Q-Share, and Update Manager. Your only option here is to install all of the applications individually by selecting the Install button by the name of the application. The next tab is the Install Application software tab,where third party software is found, such as Norton Internet Security, Acrobat Reader, Realtek Ethernet Diagnostic Utility, and FireFox. The third and final tab is the Install New Utilities tab. This screen is where the newest applications from Gigabyte are, such as Smart6, Dynamic Energy Saver 2, and Auto Green. Auto Green does require a Bluetooth dongle installed on your system so don't bother installing it if you do not have one.
The final screens that you are going to find are the Technical Manuals screen with the tabs: Application Guides, Driver Disk Contents, and User's Manual. These tabs are going to be helpful if you need to find more information about a certain application such as Smart6 or EasyTune 6. They also provide a Contact screen with Gigabyte's address, telephone numbers, fax numbers, and their website URL. The system screen is where you are going to find a simple system information list with information such as the motherboard name, BIOS version, CPU name, Memory information (total installed), OS information and finally your CD version information.
USB 3 Host Controller Information
The first application that we are going to take another look at is the USB 2.0 Host Controller information - this application is the controller for your NEC Electronics USB 3.0 ports on the motherboard. There is not much of anything that you can do from this application except for view the Driver version and Firmware Version. The Driver Version that I have installed on my system is 18.104.22.168 and Firmware Version 3025.
The next application that was installed on my computer is the Gigabyte application, @BIOS. This application is quite useful if you are not very handy with flashing a motherboards BIOS and you need to update your current BIOS version. Here you are going to find the Flash Memory Type, the Flash Memory Size, the BIOS Sign on Message, and the BIOS Vendor. You are going to be able to update the BIOS from GIGABYTE server, Update BIOS from File, or Save Current BIOS to a File to ensure you have it saved on your computer if you are happy with the current version you are running before you do flash your BIOS.
Gigabyte's Face Wizard application is where you are going to be able to change the image that is displayed when you first boot up your PC for your BIOS messages, you can have just about any image that you wish to have. You can select a BIOS that you have saved on your computer or the one that you have currently installed on the motherboard. You are also able to load a different image, select the Auto button to flash your current BIOS file with the new image you have selected, you can also save it if you wish to lend your cool BIOS loading screen to your friends with the same motherboard. Selecting the red help button will give you all of the information about the buttons you will need to know. In the help prompt you are also going to find out that your image must be saved as either a BMP or PCX file format and can not be any larger than 640x480.
I decide to use the Overclockersclub background image that we use in our reviews as my new BIOS startup image, what I had to do was resize it down to 640x480 and save it under a BMP file type, there was some color loss and detail as it is also required to use a smaller image file.
The DMI Viewer application is a nifty little application that is going to allow you to view different pieces of vital information about your computer and the currently installed hardware, and it does give you very detailed information. When I select the Processor Information, I am going to get information such as the Socket Designation, Processor Type, Processor Family, Processor Manufacturer, Processor ID, Processor Version, Processor Voltage, External Clock, Max Speed, Current Speed, Processor Upgrade, and Processor Status. The processor is not the only thing that you are going to be able to take a look at.
Dynamic Energy Saver 2
Dynamic Energy Saver 2 is a program that is going to help you to reduce the amount of power that your computer is going to consume when you do not necessarily need all of that power at your finger tips. When you first start it up, you are going to get a blacked out screen that lets you know how many watts your CPU is currently using. When you turn the system on, you are going to be able to go into your advanced settings which allows you to lower your BCLK up to -30%, change some of the voltage settings for your CPU, allow the application to lower the northbridge and southbridge voltages, turn your monitor off after a pre-determined time and lower the Core Clock, turn your HDDs off after a certain amount of time, lower your Memory clocks up to -30% (the same percentage as your CPU BCLK) as well as lower the voltages of the memory, finally you are able to use the Smart Fan feature that lowers any fans hooked up to the fan headers on the motherboard. At the bottom of the screen there is a Power Saving Level indicator that has three buttons labeled 1, 2, and 3. When level one is active, your Smart Fan and CPU power saving settings are enabled. Level two adds your graphics card and HDDs settings to your power savings, while level three is going to enable your Chipset and Memory power saving settings.