Gigabyte G1.Sniper A88X FM2 Review

Gigabyte G1.Sniper A88X Review


Recent years has seen AMD somewhat lose their way, with CPUs that weren’t quite as quick as the ones of old, or too hot, or just not priced competitively when compared to it’s Intel rivals. 

One of the clearest indicators of this trend has been the dearth of high end motherboards for the platform. After all, if a manufacturer of motherboards feels that the market isn’t there, it’s obviously a deeper problem than merely preferring one brand to another.

However, the AMD APUs are fantastic chips, capable of performance far higher than equivalent models from Intel when it comes to graphics performance. Such is their power that both of the next generation of consoles use AMD APUs at their heart, and this has been backed up by Gigabyte releasing their high-end G1.Sniper on the AMD platform, specifically the A88X chipset. 

As we have an AMD A10-6700 and A10-6800K on hand, it seems the perfect opportunity to see what the Gigabyte board has to offer.

Technical Specifications

It’s amazing how close the latest AMD chipsets are getting to the Intel boards. We have 2400MHz memory support, the excellent Realtek ALC898 audio, PCI Express 3.0, loads of 6Gb/s SATA ports and a fair selection of USB ports. The G1.Sniper certainly has the performance on paper. Let’s see how it looks.

APU FM2+ Socket:
  1. AMD A series processors
  2. AMD Athlonâ„¢ series processors

(Please refer “CPU Support List” for more information.)

  1. AMD A88X
    1. 4 x 1.5V DDR3 DIMM sockets supporting up to 64 GB of system memory
  1. Dual channel memory architecture
  2. Support for DDR3 2400(OC)/2133/1866/1600/1333 MHz memory modules
  3. Support for AMD Memory Profile (AMP)/Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) memory modules

(Please refer “Memory Support List” for more information.)

Onboard Graphics APU with integrated AMD Radeonâ„¢ HD 8000/7000 series graphics:
* To use the onboard graphics port, you must install an AMD APU with integrated graphics.
    1. 1 x D-Sub port, supporting a maximum resolution of 1920×1200
    2. 1 x DVI-D port, supporting a maximum resolution of 2560×1600
    1. 1 x HDMI port, supporting a maximum resolution of 4096×2160
  1. Maximum shared memory of 2 GB
  1. Realtek® ALC898 codec
  2. High Definition Audio
  3. 2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
  4. Support for S/PDIF Out
  1. Realtek® GbE LAN chip (10/100/1000 Mbit)
Expansion Slots
    1. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
      (The PCIEX16 slot conforms to PCI Express 3.0 standard.)

* To support PCI Express 3.0, you must install an FM2+ APU.

  1. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4)
  2. 3 x PCI Express x1 slots
    (The PCIEX4 and PCI Express x1 slots conform to PCI Express 2.0 standard.)
  3. 2 x PCI slots
Multi-Graphics Technology
    1. Support for AMD CrossFireâ„¢ technology
    2. Support for AMD Dual Graphics technology

* Only A series APUs support AMD Dual Graphics.

Storage Interface Chipset:
  1. 8 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
  2. Support for RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10, and JBOD
USB Chipset:
  1. 4 USB 3.0/2.0 ports (2 ports on the back panel, 2 ports available through the internal USB header)
  2. 9 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (5 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB headers)
Internal I/O Connectors
  1. 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
  2. 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
  3. 8 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
  4. 1 x APU fan header
  5. 3 x system fan headers
  6. 1 x front panel header
  7. 1 x front panel audio header
  8. 1 x S/PDIF Out header
  9. 1 x USB 3.0/2.0 header
  10. 2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
  11. 1 x serial port header
  12. 1 x Clear CMOS jumper
  13. 1 x Trusted Platform Module (TPM) header
  14. 2 x gain control switches
Back Panel Connectors
  1. 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
  2. 1 x D-Sub port
  3. 1 x DVI-D port
  4. 1 x HDMI port
  5. 2 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports
  6. 5 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  7. 1 x RJ-45 port
  8. 1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
  9. 5 x audio jacks (Center/Subwoofer Speaker Out, Rear Speaker Out, Line In, Line Out, Mic In)
I/O Controller
  1. iTE® I/O Controller Chip
H/W Monitoring
    1. System voltage detection
    2. APU/System temperature detection
    3. APU/System fan speed detection
    4. APU overheating warning
    5. APU/System fan fail warning
    6. APU/System fan speed control
  1. 2 x 64 Mbit flash
  2. Use of licensed AMI EFI BIOS
  3. Support for DualBIOSâ„¢
  4. PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.0, SM BIOS 2.6, ACPI 2.0a
Unique Features
    1. Support for @BIOS
    2. Support for Q-Flash
    3. Support for Xpress Install
    4. Support for EasyTune
  1. Support for Smart Recovery 2
  2. Support for ON/OFF Charge
Bundle Software
  1. Norton® Internet Security (OEM version)
  2. cFosSpeed
Operating System
    1. Support for Windows 8.1/8/7 32-bit/64-bit
    1. Support for Windows XP 32-bit
Form Factor
  1. ATX Form Factor; 30.5cm x 22.5cm