Intel releases budget SBE Extreme Board DX79TO
The chaps over at vr-zone spotted that that Intel's Extreme motherboards are getting less and less extreme by every iteration and after a slight delay Intel's more affordable X79 motherboard, the DX79TO has arrived, but it fits more into Intel's lower-end motherboard ranges than in the extreme category in our opinion. In fact, the DX79TO is a feature stripped DX79SI, something we didn't quite expect, especially as the DX79SI wasn't exactly breaking new territory so to say.
Intel has gotten rid of the x8 PCI Express slot and in lieu of that you get a x1 slot. Gone is also the front USB 3.0 ports, the secondary Gigabit Ethernet port, two audio jacks and the optical S/PDIF out. The two lower heatinks appear to no longer be connected via a heatpipe, instead a piece of metal connects them and it's possible that Intel has removed the top PWM heatsink as it's missing in the manual, but still present in the product brief. Also missing is the bundled Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ad adapter that comes with the DX79SI.
Stripping out all of those features makes the Intel DX79TO a really poor purchase, especially as it's listed for a retail price of around US$230 i.e. not much cheaper than the DX79SI which retails for around US$260, not to mention plenty of much more feature rich motherboards from Intel's motherboard partners. It looks like Intel decided it wasn't worth putting too much effort into its X79 motherboards, possibly due to the fact that Intel isn't expecting to sell a ton of them, but the DX79TO really is a lame duck that should never have been put into production.
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