Giada released quite a few mini and small form factor PCs lately, but they also have a very impressive series of server and workstation motherboards. That series got a new family member now as Giada unveiled the N50M-BO Xeon E5 series server motherboard equipped for both connectivity and storage.
Next to an Intel Xeon E5 V3 series CPU, you can install up to eight DDR4 DIMM modules for a total capacity of up to 512GB RAM using quad-channel modules and ECC LRDIMMs. Using ECC RDIMM reduces the max capacity to 256GB and UDIMMs reduce it down to 64GB. You get two PCIe 3.0 x16 ports (x16/x8) and two PCIe 3.0 x8 (x4) ports for further expansion.
There is room for plenty of accessories thanks to all the USB ports. There is both a USB 3.0 Type A port and a header onboard and you’ll find two more USB 3.0 ports on the rear IO next to the two USB 2.0 ports. Remote control abilities are included through a dedicated IPMI 2.0 as well as the COM port. You won’t need a dedicated GPU in a system like this, which can be a big bonus for storage-oriented boards as this. The onboard ASMedia AST2400 takes care of this and the board comes with a standard D-Sub VGA connector.
This motherboard was just unveiled and there seem to be a few inconsistencies between the product page, the actual images, and the press release – so please bear over with me on this section. The main connectivity is handled by two Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 ports controlled by two Intel i210AT controllers and it also features a dedicated IPMI connector for remote management together with the AST2400. The press release and the photos both tell and show us that this motherboard also features two SPF+ 10Gb/s connectors controlled by an Intel 82599ES, but these aren’t mentioned in the specifications on the product page. So whether that’s an oversight or there will be two versions of the motherboard is unclear at this point.
You can also connect plenty of storage to this motherboard as the C612 chipset offers 10 SATA3 ports on its own, and two of these can be used for DOMs here. There are 8 more storage ports on the motherboard which aren’t fully clear where they come from. They could be controlled by an onboard LSI3008 controller, but that’s just a qualified guess from my side. The only reference to it from the company is the comment that “customers can expand and integrate a 12G capacity solution and enhance the performance via the standard PCI-E slots”.
Durability shouldn’t be an issue with Giada’s N50M-BO motherboard as it is built with ultra-durable solid capacitors that pass strict tests of 12,000 hours’ exposure in a temperature of 105℃, a lot more than a typical working environment. The Giada N50M-BO comes at a very reasonable MSRP of $477 USD considering all the features and options it provides.