[section_title title=P4 : Board Layout – Part 2]
Board Layout – Part 2
‘Hybrid’ 8+2 phase power
Lets take a close look at the socket. As I had mentioned earlier, the board uses a ‘hybrid’ 8 phase power delivery system, what that basically means is that this board is using a slightly cut down version of the full 8ph design (which is found on the HERO) and employs 8 chokes, 8 MOSFETs but 4 shared PWM drivers. This is a measure to slightly cut down costs and at least in theory might impact your overclocking a little bit (remember, that’s on paper).
Here’s an interesting one. The port shown above is the M.2 port which allow much higher data bandwidth (uses PCIe 2 lanes) than the current SATA 3 standard (10Gb/s vs 6Gb/s). Since this board does not come with Sata Express, the M.2 essentially becomes the only other option. Currently not a lot of SSDs are available that use the M.2, but many manufacturers are expected to release them within this year. Do keep in mind, you can only use SSDs that fit with the size constrains and as mentioned in the manual, the SSD can have a maximum width of 22mm and length of 80mm. Also, pay attention, when you buy these M.2 drivers, some of them use the Sata 3 bus, which will not work in these ports.
Today’s SSDs are reaching close to saturating the existing Sata 3 bandwidth (~550 MB/s sequential reads) so its a good thing to have!