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ASUS Z170-A (Intel Z170) Motherboard Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Socket LGA 1150/1151 in Motherboards | Posted: Jan 7, 2016 2:40 pm
TweakTown Rating: 91%Manufacturer: ASUS

Z170-A Circuit Analysis Continued

 

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ASUS is using the Realtek ALC892 audio codec instead of the ALC1150 along with some Nichicon Gold Series capacitors and an RC4580 dual amplifier from Texas Instruments. There is a PCB divide to separate the audio PCB area from the rest of the motherboard, and there are three LEDs on the back of the board that try to illuminate the divide.

 

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ASUS is sticking with the Intel i219V PHY and integrated MAC to provide a 1Gbit Intel NIC, which isn't very common at this lower price point. An ASMedia ASM1142 provides two USB 3.1 ports, and the EtronTech EJ179v acts as a USB 3.1 type-C switch and USB Power Delivery 2.0 controller.

 

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An ASMedia ASM1083 provides the legacy PCI slot. The Realtek RTD2168 is providing the D-SUB (VGA) connector since Intel removed support for this display output from its standard package.

 

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An IDT6V41538NLG is a common clock generator found on Z170 motherboards for higher BCLK overclocking margins. The nuvoTon NCT6793D is the Super IO and provide fan, voltage, and temperature monitoring and control as well as PS/2 on the IO panel.

 

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There is a 128Mbit (16MB) Winbond BIOS ROM in a DIP socket. The TPU chip near it is a custom GPIO probably used to expand fan control and probably does something for the FLBK header that is used to re-flash a corrupt BIOS with an external device. Four ASmedia ASM1480 are used to switch 8x of bandwidth between the top two PCI-E 16x slots. One more ASM1480 is located near the SATA ports to switch bandwidth between SATA ports 56 and the bottom PCI-E 16x slot.

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