Board Design and Layout
To say that this board is meticulously thought out in terms of layout and design would be an understatement. EVGA enlisted the help of the overclocking community to make this board a reality, and the attention to detail certainly shows through. The X58 classified is designed for worst case scenarios, meaning every possible feature plugged in and active at this same time. Even if you're one of the few who would implement a configuration in such a scenario, the board still appears as if it would handle it with a shrug and a nod. The overall board design is simply excellent. The board is based slightly longer than a traditional ATX motherboard, which means you're best off installing this motherboard in an Extended ATX class chassis rather than a standard ATX. Be sure to check your chassis motherboard area dimensions regardless, if you're considering this motherboard.
Starting off at the CPU socket, we have our traditional 1366-pin socket with Intel-defined mounting holes. Here we see the first touch of high-end class, as the CPU socket itself is anodized to be black and shiny, the first treatment of this component we have seen to date. Certainly not necessary, as one will install a cooler on top of the socket and not see this aspect until they install a new CPU, but hey, we're talking high-end here, it's the details which count. EVGA does an excellent job of keeping components out of the way in this area, allowing you to mount obscenely large CPU cooling systems on to this board if need be. Folks who might consider this board will frequently use water cooling, huge air-coolers, and in rare cases, LN2 to keep their CPU's cool, Rest assured, the board will be able to handle just about as a cooler as you can throw at it.
EVGA's custom 10-phase digital PWM functionality is housed to the left of the CPU, sitting under its own custom fitted heatsink, complete with heatpipe. The heatsink will work without issue even when not actively cooled, but is placed in such a way that it airflow will likely be moving around it, from either the CPU cooler or from the case's rear exhaust fan.
For those needing to push a ton of power through their motherboard, EVGA offers another unique feature in that this is the only X58 board to date offering dual 8-pin +12V ATX power connectors. Typically only offered on dual-socket motherboards, this allows you to drive up to 600W of power to a single Core i7 processor, although there's no way we could imagine the CPU would ever need such power. The system certainly doesn't need both 8-pin connectors to operate, as it will run perfectly fine with one connected along with your standard 24-pin ATX connector on the right side of the board. Still, if you need it, there it is.
On the top right, we have six DDR3 DIMM sockets, in line with other X58 platforms. EVGA officially supports 24 GB of DDR3 memory on this board (4 GB max per socket) and clock speeds up to "1600+". Of course, the platform supports triple-channel DDR3 memory, so combinations of three or six are your best choice in terms of performance.