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Six months ago we reviewed the EVGA X58 SLI motherboard, which combined a Core i7 X58 chipset with triple graphics card slots. That set-up isn't especially unusual on high end motherboards but using an Intel chipset broke new ground for EVGA as it has been a long term exclusive nVidia partner.
Since then EVGA has expanded its range of Core i7 motherboards starting with the E756 Micro ATX and moving up to the E757 X58 LE which is a Lite version of the E759 which in turn replaces the E758 X58 SLI we reviewed. The differences between the two models seem to be slight to non-existent. Next we have the E760 X58 SLI Classified and at the top of the tree you'll find the water cooled E769 Classified Hydro Copper with a list price of US $570.
Today we're reviewing the E760 X58 SLI Classified which is a Deluxe version of the X58 SLI. Where the E758/E759 has triple graphics slots you will find the E760 has four slots which means that the E760 supports Tri-SLI with the option of a fourth graphics card that is dedicated to PhysX.
It's worth pointing out that the X58 chipset isn't terribly sophisticated when it comes to PCI Express support so two graphics slots can each have 16 lanes of PCI Express 2.0 but three slots have a x16x8x8 configuration and four slots get eight lanes each.
The E760 has been given a cosmetic makeover and looks quite striking compared to the E758/E759. The most dramatic change is the colour scheme which uses red and black to great effect. The memory slots alternate red and black, the four graphics slots are red, the PCI and PCI Express x11 slots are black, the six SATA connectors on the ICH10R Southbridge are black and the three SATA connectors on the two add-in JMicron controllers are red.
Across the foot of the board the Power button is red and the Reset button is black, along with red USB headers for the four ports on the supplied bracket. There are eight USB ports on the I/O panel along with dual Gigabit LAN, one Firewire, an eSATA and full surround audio with optical and coaxial digital connections. You also get a Clear CMOS button on the I/O panel for when the overclocking going gets tough.