X48 is finally here!
It’s been a long wait with lots of anticipation and rumour mongering, Intel had changed the release date several times and nobody really knew what was going on.
Anyway, the wait is over and today we have our first X48 Express motherboard – the DFI LT X48-T2R.
It’s only been around 6 weeks since I first got my hands on the DFI LT X38-T2R. Now here we are again with an oddly familiar looking motherboard, getting ready to do it all over again, Déjà Vu anyone?
To the naked eye, the LT X48-T2R looks identical to its X38 predecessor in almost every way, except for the X48 logo on the PCB (see pic below). The bundle is identical and apart from the X48 logo, the packaging is similar too!
So what’s different?
Well, we have a new chipset. The X48 express chipset is purportedly a higher binned version of the X38 express chipset, and that should hopefully translate into better overclocks and higher performance – Read on to find out if it does....
Firstly, let's have a look at the packaging.
Inside that box, we have the motherboard in an anti-static bag and another box with the accessories in, which we will get to later.
In this corner we have the floppy connector, power/reset/HD LED jumpers & 8x SATA II sockets.
Left to right - SATA II sockets again, PATA, 24 pin ATX socket.
Nothing much to report here.
The now familiar and brilliantly uncluttered CPU socket area which is just perfect for sub zero cooling.
- The I/O Panel
- PS2 Keyboard
- PS2 Mouse
- Six USB2
- One Firewire
- Two Gigabit Lan
- Removable BIOS chip (centre left)
- 3x USB 2 Headers (centre)
- On board Reset & Power Switches (bottom left)
- Floppy Connector (centre bottom)
- HD LED/Power/LED/Reset headers (bottom right)
- 8x Angled SATA 2 ports (right)
- Southbridge Heatsink (centre)
- Fan Headers (centre x2, below SB heatsink, and bottom left x1)
- Battery (centre left)
- Post Code Display (left centre)
- 1x NorthBridge Heatsink (AKA The Heat Minator)
- 1x UV Green Rounded Floppy Cable
- 1x UV Green Rounded PATA Cable
- 4x UV Green SATA Cables
- 2x Molex to SATA Power Cable Adaptors
- 1x Copper CPU Shim (for the Transpiper)
- 1x Bernstein Audio Module
- 1x Bernstein Audio Module Cable
- 1x I/O Shield
- 1x Floppy Disc with RAID Drivers
- 1x Driver/Utils CD
- The Heat Minator.
This NorthBridge cooler should be familiar to many people by now as it has been used on several DFI motherboards over the last year or so and is a tried and tested design produced by Thermalright, and is of very high quality.
The only drawback with this design is that it doesn't allow for the fitting of larger heatsinks such as the Thermalright Ultra Extreme 120 unless you turn it 90 degrees so that the fan is blowing up or downwards.
Heat Minator Installed.
DFI supply a small tube of Shin-Etsu thermal compound and a spreader so you can fit the Heat Minator.
The Bernstein Audio Module.
The audio module supplied with the LT X48-T2R is identical to the one that came with the X38.