With Intel's Sandy Bridge processors set to debut at CES 2011, MSI has taken the opportunity to unveil its new flagship P67 motherboard offering, the "Big Bang Marshal
." Demonstrating the very definition of overkill, MSI's upcoming board utilizes the XL-ATX format and sports eight PCI Express x16 slots, eight USB 3.0 ports, and three BIOS chips.
The PCIe slots can pump x16 speeds on up to four slots or x8 when occupying all eight. That bandwidth is courtesy of a new Lucid Hydra chip, which may not support the ability to mix and match different graphics cards (and that's probably for the best
). The four true x16 slots can be disabled manually via onboard DIP switches dubbed "PCI-E CeaseFire".
The Big Bang Marshal also features a 24 phase DrMOS PWM design, two 8-pin CPU power connectors and one 6-pin for the PCIe slots, four DDR3 DIMM slots with support for up to 32GB of RAM, an LED POST display, power, reset and OC Genie buttons as well as a multimeter measurement point. There's also talk of "ClickBIOS," which is MSI's name for UEFI.
Connectivity includes four SATA 3Gb/s ports, four SATA 6Gb/s ports, and headers for six USB 2.0 and four USB 3.0 ports. The rear I/O plate is populated with two USB 2.0 ports, eight USB 3.0 ports (via a single host controller and two hubs), a PS/2 port, FireWire, dual-Gigabit Ethernet, and 7.1-channel audio with optical and coaxial S/PDIF output.