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EVGA Z170 FTW (Intel Z170) Motherboard Review (Page 3)

By: Steven Bassiri from Aug 10, 2015 @ 15:22 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 90%Manufacturer: EVGA

Circuit Analysis


In my opinion, motherboards look best when they don't have any heat sinks on them.


There are four major input rails to the CPU for Z170; VCC (VCore), VCCGT (Graphics core), VCCSA (System Agent), and VCCIO (CPU IO). EVGA decided to implement a 5+4+1 phase VRM for the CPU+iGP+VCCSA. The output filter is a mixture of 560uF 5K solid can-type capacitors as well as some 470uF tantalums. The inductors are custom made for EVGA, and they are most likely higher current inductors.


EVGA went with digital power for both the CPU and memory VRMs, however, the CPU's VRMs use two International Rectifier IR35201 digital PWMs which each support 6+2 phase operation. One is used for the CPU VCore and VCCSA providing 5+1 phase output to six International Rectifier IR3553Ms which are 40A integrated power stages. The second IR35201 is only used as 4+0 providing power to the iGPU power phases which aren't cooled by the heat sink. This is one of the better VRMs I have seen in both true phase count (five phases) as well as component selection (full digital and high current power stages).


The VCCIO gets its power from an International Rectifier IR3898 which is an integrated point of load device (POL) step down DC/DC regulator supporting up to 6A. The memory VRM is controlled by an International Rectifier IR3570 which is a 3+2 phase digital PWM.


Three IR3553, the same integrated power stages used for the CPU VRM, are used for the memory VRM. I believe that two phases are for DDR power and the VPP gets a single phase. Two single phase VRMs controlled by Anpec APM8720Cs are used for PCH power, or one of the VRMs controlled by Anpec is used for the DDR VPP, and the memory VRM is a three phase VRM. Either way, EVGA has done a very fine job with digital voltage regulation for the important power rails for the CPU and memory.

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