Gigabyte (or Giga-byte) Technology is a Taiwan-based manufacturer of computer hardware products best known for its motherboards. The company is publicly held and traded on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (2376.TW).
Established in 1986, its major customers include custom PC manufacturers such as Alienware and Falcon Northwest. The chairman of the company is Yeh Pei-Cheng.
In addition to the design and manufacture of motherboards hosting AMD and Intel processors, the company also makes graphics cards built around the ATI Technologies and NVIDIA GPUs, such as the GeForce GTX480 and Radeon HD 5770.
Secondary lines in the company's product portfolio include desktop computer, laptops, server motherboards, server racks, optical disc drives, liquid crystal display (LCD), monitors, keyboards, mice, cooling components, mobile phones (GSmart) and high end mobile phone products (personal digital assistant (PDA) phone, TV phone etc.), networking equipment, power supplies, and a line of computer cases.
Gigabyte was the first company in the world to produce a software controlled power supply for desktop computers, the ODIN GT series.
April 2011: Gigabyte S1080 is a tablet computer powered by an Intel Atom processor. A dual booting version is expected, i.e., each time it starts it can run one of two operating systems: Android, or Windows 7 Home Premium.
Gigabyte use a special system for naming their motherboards. For example the GA-P35-DS3R. The first segment, GA, simply denotes that it's manufactured by Gigabyte. The second segment indicates what chipset it is using, in this case Intel's P35. The third part shows what features the motherboard has. This segment mostly contains a number of abbreviations. General formula: GA-[Power saving method+Chipset name+form factor+Specific Feature]-[main features+minor Feature]
Available 1st segment abbreviations:
- If "A" appears after the chipset code, it has the 333 onboard acceleration (USB 3.0, USB Power X3, SATA 3.0 6 Gbit/s)
- If "M" appears after the chipset code, it is a mATX board.
- If "N" appears after the chipset code, it is a Mini-ITX board.
- If "M" appears in front of the chipset number it means it is for an AMD processor, but has a non-AMD chipset.
- If "MA" appears before the chipset number it is for an AMD processor and has an AMD chipset. ie: (GA-880GMA-USB3)
- If "E" appears before the chipset number it has Dynamic Energy Saver as energy saving method. ie: (GA-EG45M-UD2H)
Available 2nd segment abbreviations:
- E - If it appears as the first letter in the third segment (ie.GA-EG45-EUD2H), it means it has Easy Energy Saver feature.
- T - Only DDR3 SDRAM support (i.e: GA-MA770T-US3)
- C - Both DDR2 and DDR3 SDRAM support
- F - Includes FireWire port and header (i.e: GA-EG41MF-US2H)
- No T or C abbreviations mean that the motherboard only has DDR2 SDRAM support.
Available 3rd segment abbreviations:
- D (Durability) - Indicates that the motherboard uses only solid state capacitors.
- U/UD (Ultra Durable 3) - Introduces 2 ounces of copper for both the Power and Ground layers.
- USB3 - Indicates that the motherboard fetaured Ultra Durable 3 and USB 3.0 support
- S2 (Smart, Safe) - Various features such as Q-Flash BIOS etc.
- S3 (Smart, Speed, Safe) - Same as above, but includes overclocking features.
- S4 (Silent Pipe, Smart, Speed, Safe) - Same as above, but uses heat pipe cooling.
- S5 (CrossFire, Silent Pipe, Smart, Speed, Safe) - Same as above, but with CrossFire support.
- Q6 (Quad BIOS, Quad Cooling, Quad E-SATA 2.0, Quad Triple Phase, Quad-Core Optimized, Quad DDR2 Slots) - Indicates quad-core optimization.
Available 4th segment abbreviations:
- # (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 or 9) - Compares boards of same class. (i.e: GA-P55-UD3)
Available 5th segment abbreviations:
- R - 2 extra SATA 2.0 ports and possibly RAID support. May have FireWire port. May not have ATI CrossFire support. (i.e: GA-P35-DS3R)
- G - Solid capacitors for the CPU Volt Regulator Module.
- H - HDMI port. Possibly Changing, Using it for DisplayPort if HDMI port standard (i.e.: GA-H55-USB3 has HDMI)
- L - Probably "Lite". Fewer SATA 2.0 ports. No RAID support. No FireWire ports. No ATI CrossFire support. Heatsink cooling. (i.e GA-P35-DS3L). It could also indicate Gigabit LAN (as in GA-G31M-S2L, versus GA-G31M-S2C which has support for 10/100 Mbit/s Ethernet).
(update: L” / “C” / “E” / “G” means minor/customized spec change version)
- P - Silent Pipe, RAID, Extra PCI Express slots, extra SATA 2.0 ports. (i.e: GA-EP45-DS3P)