Featuring the Z270M-STX MXM Motherboard
ASRock at COMPUTEX 2017 is on the roll with concepts and slated product releases for both the Intel and AMD platforms. They basically have tons of motherboards and while I like most of them, my heart still beats for the small form factor. Luckily for me, ASRock also showed a number of them at their booth during COMPUTEX 2017.
AMD ITX Motherboards:
First off we get to see the X370 Gaming-ITX/AC and the AB350 Gaming-ITX/AC motherboards. These are ASRock’s ITX motherboards for the AMD X370 and the B350 platforms. Both motherboards appears to share the same controllers and I/O connectivity – even the VRM design. Almost a 1:1 copy of each other with the exception of the chipset. If you’re going to ask me, I’d take the B350 model any day for a snazzy AMD ITX build.
Intel ITX Motherboards:
Next up would be the ASRock X299E-ITX/AC. A motherboard for the LGA-2066 chipset. This one could be the most powerful ITX motherboard with support for the Intel Core X series of processors. It has a 7 phase VRM design with dual daughter boards to boot!
ASRock also showed the Z270M-ITX/AC. A more economical solution compared to the X299 in ITX form factor. It comes with Dual LAN from Intel. A redeeming factor for media streaming builds.
Intel STX Motherboards:
Perhaps what interest me the most is the Z270M-STX MXM motherboard. It is an emerging form factor, which is between the size of Intel’s NUC and the ITX form factor. The benefit of going STX is that you’ll get a smaller PC without troubling yourself with SoC CPUs. Allowing you to upgrade as time goes by. Speaking of upgrades, this one comes with an MXM module slot – which is standard on high-end gaming notebooks. That said, you can attach an MXM module here for a graphics performance boost.
One particular application would be a PSU size gaming PC, like the ASRock Desk Mini GTX 1060. It has a GTX 1060 in MXM module inside and gaming performance wise, it is comparable to a desktop’s performance. It’s even faster than my gaming PC on 3DMark 2013. FFS, this is what I’ve been always looking for. A small yet punchy gaming PC.
According to ASrock, they will supply the cooler for the MXM module, so if this blasted off the production, you’d get the Desk Mini with the motherboard, the case of course and the power adapter. Getting an MXM module will depend on you. I got no issues scoring an MXM module, but please give us an option to attach this baby to a VESA mount.
COMPUTEX is all about showing off what your company could do, with some concepts shown that will never going to take off. That said, ASRock doesn’t have a reputation of abandoning concepts early on – especially with the H110-STX MXM. A motherboard similar to the Z270M-STX MXM which is now out on their website. So, I am staying optimistic until then. Follow us for more COMPUTEX 2017 news.