EVGA supplies another bracket that carries a second Firewire port and this is the only point where the red and black rule breaks down as the header for this port is white in colour.
The other big change EVGA made for this Classified model is to the chipset cooling. The E758 uses a strange set-up with a tall passive cooler on the power regulation hardware that looks similar to a garden gate. The cooler on the Northbridge is linked to the Southbridge with a heatpipe and is also quite tall. It carries a small, noisy cooling fan and we found that, unfortunately, the fan is a necessity as the chipset cooler gets uncomfortably hot if you unplug the fan to cut the noise level.
On the E760 it’s all change as the Southbridge is covered by a large, passive, low profile, matt black cooler that sports a ‘Classified’ logo. The power regulation hardware and Northbridge have individual passive coolers that are great big chunky affairs. Instead of standing tall EVGA has chosen to make the coolers very deep or thick with the result that they don’t impinge upon the CPU socket to anything like the extent of the coolers on the E758. When we tested the E758 we were forced to install our Noctua cooler in a specific orientation to avoid fouling one of the chipset coolers. With the E760 Classified we could mount it however we liked.
While we’re in the region of the CPU socket the E758 has 8+2 power regulation hardware while on the E760 it is 10+3. There’s another unusual feature on the Classified as EVGA has installed two eight-pin EATX power connectors and claims that you can feed 600W into the board without any problem which sounds rather extreme. We don’t have a power supply with two eight-pin connectors but our Listan/Be Quiet did a fine job and appeared to power the Classified perfectly well.
We tested the E760 Classified back-to-back with the E758 using a Core i7 965 Extreme, 3GB of Kingston KHX16000 DDR3 RAM, a Radeon HD 4890 and an Intel X25-M SSD.
Both models of EVGA overclocked to the same speed of 3.87GHz and delivered the same performance in 3DMark Vantage, PCMark 05 and Far Cry 2. The E760 Classified drew slightly more power under load however the passive cooling system worked admirably well and was considerably more civilized than the active cooler on the E758. Other than that the two motherboards were effectively identical.