In terms of aesthetics and visuals, we think the Gigabyte X79-UD5 looks great with its black PCB and contrasting blue and gray color scheme. The board layout is very good, there’s ample space to work with, and we had no troubles with a behemoth Noctua NH-D14 air cooler. However, you may seriously consider memory modules with low profile heatsinks. There are a couple awkward details like the reset/power buttons at the upper corner of the board, but those are minor details that won’t affect the vasy majority of users.
One of the most noteworthy features of the UD5 board is the all new Digital Power Control for both CPU and DRAM. Gigabyte’s X79 motherboards include their new DIGI+Power Control with three digital voltage controllers. The DRAM controllers offer precise memory tuning along with CPU voltage control, which of course means better efficiency, stability and performance, and we didn’t need to touch our 2133MHz memory either.
We love the new 3D UEFI BIOS that Gigabyte is presenting on their new X79 Chipset motherboards. This is one of the most user-friendly BIOS you will find on any board from any manufacturer. The interface is very simple and clean, yet very intuitive. You have the option of the “3D Mode” where you will find the most vital options for everyday use and with the click of your mouse you can switch to the “Advanced Mode” where you will find a multitude of settings to tweak and extract the most out of your system.
Working with new Gigabyte Smart 6 and EasyTune 6 software was very easy, so novice enthusiasts won’t feel overwhelmed. These features don’t come cheap though, as the UD5 is currently offered at $325. However, that’s very competitive with other manufacturer boards, and you get an awfully rich package here in return. You certainly get what you pay for, so no complaints. The Gigabyte X79-UD5 is a solid motherboard that will harness the power of LGA2011 chips, and form a great basis for your new rig.