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One of the core values of Puget Systems is transparency

We detest hype in the midst of an industry that is full of it. Our mission is to provide the highest quality hardware and consultation services to our customers, and to back up our decisions by freely sharing what we've learned along the way. To earn a place in our product line, a computer component undergoes rigorous testing. We apply the results of our testing, along with our years of experience in learning reliability trends and manufacturer characteristics, to make prudent decisions about what we can put our name behind, whether that's an individual part or an entire computer. With the following articles, we are writing up the results of these internal processes and discussions, and taking them public. We feel we can take this on with a unique perspective as we evaluate each topic with the experience, resources, and objectivity of a system builder. If there is a topic you'd like us to write about, email us at !
Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/1030
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Core i7 7820X vs Core i9 7900X: Do PCI-E Lanes Matter For GPU Rendering?

Written on September 11, 2017 by William George

Benchmark results demonstrating that PCI-Express x8 vs x16 speeds don't impact GPU rendering performance.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/1021
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OctaneRender GPU Platform Comparison: Skylake X, Xeon W, and Threadripper

Written on September 6, 2017 by William George

This article looks at several motherboard chipsets, including X299 and X399, comparing how well they handle performance scaling across multiple GPUs in OctaneBench 3.06.2.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/1023
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V-Ray GPU Rendering Platform Comparison: Skylake X, Xeon W, and Threadripper

Written on September 6, 2017 by William George

This article looks at several motherboard chipsets, including X299 and X399, comparing how well they handle performance scaling across multiple GPUs in V-Ray 3.57.01.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/1024
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FurryBall GPU Rendering Platform Comparison: Skylake X, Xeon W, and Threadripper

Written on September 6, 2017 by William George

This article looks at several motherboard chipsets, including X299 and X399, comparing how well they handle performance scaling across multiple GPUs in the FurryBall RT benchmark.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/979
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X299 vs X99: What is the Difference?

Written on July 11, 2017 by Matt Bach

With the release of the first Skylake-X and Kaby Lake-X CPUs, Intel has also launched the new X299 chipset. But what makes it different from the old X99 chipset?


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/876
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Z270, H270, Q270, Q250, B250 - What is the Difference?

Written on January 5, 2017 by Matt Bach

Alongside the launch of Intel's new consumer Kaby Lake CPUs, there is also a whole new line of motherboard chipsets available. These six chipsets are divided into two separate categories: consumer and business. In this article, we will examine the features of each of the new chipsets to help you determine which is right for you.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/877
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Z270 vs Z170: What is the Difference?

Written on January 5, 2017 by Matt Bach

With the release of the first Skylake-S CPUs, Intel has also launched the new Z170 chipset. Unlike previous launches where Intel releases all the new chipsets and CPUs at the same time, this time only the top chipset and unlocked (K-series) CPUs will be available at launch.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/635
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Z170, H170, H110, B170, Q150, Q170 - What is the Difference?

Written on November 4, 2015 by Matt Bach

With the rolling launch of Intel's new consumer Skylake-S CPUs complete, there is also a whole new line of motherboard chipsets available. These six chipsets are divided into two separate categories: consumer and business. In this article, we will examine the features of each of the new chipsets to help you determine which is right for you.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/636
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Z170 vs Z97: What is the Difference?

Written on August 5, 2015 by Matt Bach

With the release of the first Skylake-S CPUs, Intel has also launched the new Z170 chipset. Unlike previous launches where Intel releases all the new chipsets and CPUs at the same time, this time only the top chipset and unlocked (K-series) CPUs will be available at launch.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/581
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X79 vs X99: What is new in X99 and Haswell-E

Written on August 29, 2014 by Matt Bach

The X99 chipset is a major improvement over X79 adding native USB 3.0 support, more SATA 6Gb/s ports, DDR4 support, and plenty of other little updates. Haswell-E also adds a lot of improvements, but has an overall drop in core frequency that makes it not as clearly better than Ivy Bridge-E.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/562
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Z97 vs H97 - What is the Difference?

Written on May 11, 2014 by Matt Bach

The Z97 and H97 chipset have recently been added to Intel's line of chipsets, replacing the previous Z87 and H87 chipsets. In this article we will take a look at the specifications for the Z97 and H97 chipsets to see what differences there are between them.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/561
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What is new in Z97 and H97

Written on May 11, 2014 by Matt Bach

The Z97 and H97 chipset have recently been added to Intel's line of chipsets, replacing the previous Z87 and H87 chipsets. These new chipsets are really more of an incremental update, but still add a little bit in terms of new features.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/473
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Z87, H87, H81, Q87, Q85, B85 - What is the difference?

Written on June 2, 2013 by Matt Bach

With the release of Intel's fourth-generation Haswell CPUs, there are also a whole new line of motherboard chipsets available. Initially there are six different chipsets that are divided into two separate categories: consumer and business. In this article, we will examine the features of each of the new chipset to help you determine which is right for you.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/176
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Product Review: MSI FM2-A75IA-E53 Motherboard

Written on March 6, 2013 by Matt Bach

AMD's FM2 platform is a great choice when you want decent graphical performance but either do not have the space or do not want to spend the money on a discrete video card. Unfortunately, there are only two mini-ITX boards currently on the market: the ASRock FM2A75M-ITX and the MSI FM2-A75IA-E53. Today we will be looking at the MSI FM2-A75IA-E53 to determine if it is a board we would like to carry in our product line; specifically to update our Echo line of systems.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/151
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Product Review: Asus P8C WS

Written on August 20, 2012 by Matt Bach

The Asus P8C WS is a workstation class motherboard that includes many features sought after by businesses and home users alike. Most notably, it supports Intel E3 Xeon processors and ECC memory, making it a very stable platform. The varied types of ports and headers also makes it great for machines where backwards compatibility with older devices is critical.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/148
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How it Works: Intel SSD Caching

Written on June 29, 2012 by Matt Bach

SSD caching is not new, but is something we have not inspected closely since its introduction with the Z68 chipset. In this article, we will be answering the questions: What is SSD caching? How do you set up and configure SSD caching? And what kind of performance improvements you should expect by using it.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/145
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Product Review: Intel DH77DF

Written on May 4, 2012 by Matt Bach

With the launch of the new 7-series chipsets, we spent the last few weeks looking at numerous Mini-ITX motherboards in order to update our Echo line of systems. There are many boards available from various manufactures, but the motherboard that immediately caught our attention was the Intel DH77DF.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/144
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Product Review: Intel S2600COE

Written on April 24, 2012 by Matt Bach

The Intel S2600COE is a part of the recently launched Romley platform and is intended exclusively for use in server systems. This motherboard includes onboard video and four integrated Intel Gigabit LAN ports, but is very limited in the number of USB ports available. Because of the strong server focus of this board, however, there are many desktop features (namely S3 sleep and fan throttling) that are not supported.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/138
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Technology Primer: Intel Ivy Bridge

Written on April 23, 2012 by Matt Bach

Intel's new 22nm CPUs - codenamed Ivy Bridge - has finally launched. When combined with one of the recently released 7-series chipsets, this new CPU/Chipset combination provides support for PCIe 3.0 and USB 3.0 as well as allowing RAM up to speeds of 1600MHz to be used natively. The onboard graphics has also received a nice upgrade allowing for the use of onboard graphics in a much wider variety of applications.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/139
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Qualification: Asus Z77 Motherboards

Written on April 9, 2012 by Matt Bach

At Puget Systems, we are always on the lookout for new products to keep our product at the forefront of technology. In this article, we will be looking at the Asus P8Z77-V Pro, P8Z77-V Deluxe, and P8Z77-M Pro motherboards to determine if they are worthy of a position on our product line.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/136

Product Review: Asus Z9PE-D8 WS

Written on March 6, 2012 by Matt Bach

The Z9PE-D8 WS is the first motherboard we have had a chance to qualify with the new Romley chipset. This board is geared towards workstation-class systems, but does it have what it takes to earn a place on our product line?


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/133

Product Qualification: Asus P8Z68-M Pro

Written on January 26, 2012 by Matt Bach

This motherboard is very nearly the ideal micro ATX motherboard for Intel 1155 CPUs; the chipset is well established to be a great performer with excellent reliability and all of the features present on this board have been well tested on other models. The main issue with this motherboard is the lack of an internal USB 3.0 header, although at the moment that is only a concern for a limited number of chassis.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/127

Product Qualification: Asus Rampage IV Gene

Written on January 17, 2012 by Matt Bach

The Asus Rampage IV Gene motherboard is a micro-ATX motherboard based on the Intel X79 chipset. Sandy Bridge-E has proven to be a powerhouse, but until not has been limited to full size computer systems. With this motherboard, Puget Systems will be able to offer smaller, micro-ATX computers with all the power of Sandy Bridge-E.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/129

Product Qualification: Asus P8H61-I

Written on December 27, 2011 by Matt Bach

Our Echo line of systems has always strived to balance size, cost and performance. The Asus P8H61-I has just the right balance of features and cost and comes in the small mini-ITX form factor. There are a few features missing on this motherboard (SATA 6Gb/s notably), but overall this is a great motherboard at a great price point.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/119

Product Qualification: Intel S1200BTS Motherboard

Written on November 30, 2011 by Matt Bach

The Intel S1200BTS (based on the C202 chipset) is a micro ATX server motherboard designed for small to medium-sized business applications. Puget Systems is already offering another micro ATX server motherboard - the Asus P8B-M based on the C204 chipset - but Intel motherboards are often better choices for a server platform than other brands. In this article we will be examining the Intel S1200BTS to determine if there is enough of a reason to replace the Asus P8B-M.