H67 Motherboard Roundup
First off, let’s have a recap of the H67 chipset to understand what we’re actually looking at today. Intel’s development follows their "tick-tock" strategy; that is, one swing represents a new architecture, and the next focuses on process improvements. This development cycle is about 2 years each, so here we are in 2011 with the new architecture: Sandy Bridge.
Sandy Bridge brought a new socket 1155, and with it is the H67 chipset for integrated graphics. A block diagram is a quick and clean way of showing the H67 features.
As to the architecture itself, Sandy Bridge has been an evolution of what was started in Bloomfield with an integrated memory controller, continued with Lynnfield in the form of a PCI Express bus controller, then Clarkdale brought an integrated graphics core. Sandy Bridge then took these to a new level of refinement by bringing them all under one roof onto one chip. CPU cores, integrated memory controller, PCI Express bus controller, and finally graphics cores were put together, and this has really formed the basis for a new mindset going forward with the Intel platforms.
While the “K” series chips support onboard graphics, they do not support CPU overclocking, so they are more mainstream in their target market, while the P67/Z68 are more enthusiast-oriented, both in feature and pricing levels. The H67, while not exactly new, still remains a viable and cost effective solution.
Let’s jump into a closer look for each of these motherboards in our roundup next.