LANParty JR X58-T3H6 – FeaturesIt could be said that the LANParty JR X58-T3H6 is the mini-me version of the LANParty UT X58-T3eH8, providing many of the same features and design aspects in a much smaller form factor. Gigabit LAN, SATA RAID, 8-Channel audio, USB 2.0, SLI and CrossFireX all exist on this Micro ATX motherboard.
The dual PCI Express 2.0 x16 slots support either SLI or CrossFireX graphics cards, providing both graphics cards with the full x16 bandwidth. Again, DFI has included both SLI and Crossfire bridge connectors with this motherboard, and again this is something that most boards do not come with, often making it difficult to use multi-GPU technology out of the box.
There are six SATA II ports featured on the LANParty JR X58-T3H6 which are of course connected to the ICH10R south bridge chip and support RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 10, and RAID 5. Unlike its bigger brother there are no additional SATA controllers, which is why the board is limited to just six ports. That said, few mATX cases will allow you to use more than a couple of hard drives anyway.
Interestingly, while DFI is more than happy to do away with legacy connectivity, they have gone to the effort of including IDE support. Honestly I had hoped that by 2009 such dated technology would have made itself more scarce. Including the JMicron JMB368 PATA controller that is a waste of board space and money in my opinion.
For quite some time it's been far more difficult to purchase a PATA optical drive or hard drive, so we see no need to support it. In fact, while on the topic of useless connectors, we have a totally useless one at the bottom of the LANParty JR X58-T3H6.
The age old floppy connector is right there, a technology that was phased out almost a decade ago. It has been possible to boot off flash drives for ages now, not to mention it's more likely you will have a spare flash drive around than a floppy in working conditions.
Next time, if you are going to include a floppy disk connector, why not just include an integrated dial-up modem as well.
Moving on, network support comes from the same Marvell 88E8053 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controller. There is just one controller featured on the LANParty JR X58-T3H6, though we suspect this is what most users will require anyway. DFI has also dropped Firewire support for this small motherboard and again this is likely to be neglected.
Despite being a much smaller, more cramped motherboard, DFI has not gone with the sound card-like approach with the LANParty JR X58-T3H6. Rather the audio codec is built onto the motherboard in a more traditional fashion for integrated audio. The same Realtek ALC889 codec has been used, so quality should not be any different.