ECS may not be the biggest motherboard manufacturer on the market, but they still make well priced quality motherboards and they are doing this for Intel’s upcoming X79 platform. The ECS X79R-AX Black Extreme Motherboard is due out for the Intel launch next month and the board is well equipped for a entry or mid level X79 system. The first look at the system shows only passive heat sinks with no heat pipes which implies at board orientated at a stock use of the LGA 2011 processors, hefty overclocking is not intended here. There are also only four DIMM slots supporting quad channel memory up to 2400MHz, this is contrary to a lot of Gigabyte, MSI and ASUS motherboards released with eight DIMM slots. The I/O panel is reasonably well equipped for an entry priced motherboard:
Clear CMOS button;
Two e-sata 6GB/s;
Bluetooth and WiFi;
Four USB 3.0;
Dual Gigabit LAN;
7.1+2 Channel HD Audio.
As far as storage options go you get 12 SATA ports internally although we think that if the rear e-sata ports are in use this affects two ports internally leaving only 10. But still 12 SATA ports is a substantial number, the II and III configuration is not specified but it seems likely to be half and half (6 SATA II and 6 SATA III ). There is a third party chipset to provide two of the SATA III ports because of the problems with the X79 chipset that limited the number of SATA III ports it could provide. There are four PCI-E 3.0 Lanes at 16X/8X/16X/8X with them dropping down to all 8X when more than two are occupied. There is also a couple of PCI-E 2.0 1X slots for any expansion cards you may have. Solid CAPs and Chokes are used throughout and there is also a voltage read off point near the 24 pin ATX connector for those who are interested in that kind of thing.
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