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ASUS Z270-WS Motherboard Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Socket LGA 1150/1151 in Motherboards | Posted: Jun 17, 2017 7:38 pm
TweakTown Rating: 92%Manufacturer: ASUS

Z270-WS Circuit Analysis Continued

 

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ASUS uses the Realtek ALC1220 with a custom EMI shield, Nichicon Gold series audio capacitors, two Texas Instruments RC4580I amplifiers (possibly in a multi-stage filter), and a physical division of the audio section of the PCB to improve overall audio quality.

 

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The Avago PLX PEX8747 provides x32 PCI-E 3.0 downstream from only x16 PCI-E 3.0, meaning if the CPU provides x16 then the PEX8747 can provide the GPUs with x32. The tradeoff is increased latency, but you will only really see diminishing returns if you only use a single GPU.

 

Multi-GPU configurations should benefit, and the PEX8747 is the only way to get 3-way and 4-way SLI on the Z270 platform. Multiple ASMedia ASM1480 quick switches move around PCI-E bandwidth, and we find a second clock buffer on the motherboard to facilitate the PEX8747, implementation.

 

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While we usually find the i219v on Z270 motherboards, ASUS has implemented the Intel i219LM, which is the workstation counterpart of the consumer Intel PHY used for Gbit LAN. The second Intel NIC is powered by an i210AT standalone NIC.

 

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The Z270-WS has many ROG specific chips located on the motherboard, they usually have a ROG symbol on them, and they provide extra functions such as those pertaining to overclocking or any of the many workstation features. For rear USB 3.1, ASUS has deployed the ASMedia ASM2142 controller and the ASM1543 type-C switch and controller.

 

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A second ASMedia ASM2142 is used to provide the internal type-C USB 3.1 header located near the 24-pin power connector. While not all of ASUS's Z270 motherboards support UEFI Flashback, the Z270 WS does support this feature. The chip labeled "BIOS" provides this functionality.

 

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An IDT6V41638B clock buffer is used to improve BCLK overclocking margins. The Parade PS175HDM provides HDMI 2.0 from the digital video output from the iGPU.

 

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An ASUS AURA chip provides RGB LED control for the RGB LED header. The TPU chip provides extra system monitoring and fan control. The Macro chip provides the special keyboard Macro functions of the motherboard.

 

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The nuvoTon NCT6793D is the SuperIO that provides fan control, system monitoring, a bunch of other system management features.

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