The AMD 890FX is a new high-end chipset for AMD processors and the Gigabyte 890FXA-UD7 is a high-end motherboard based on this new chipset, bringing features like six PCI Express x16 slots, six SATA-600 ports, two USB 3.0 ports, Japanese solid capacitors, lots of overclocking features and more.

This new high-end chipset is a two-chip solution. The main feature of the north bridge chip is the presence of 42 PCI Express x1 lanes – almost double the amount present on AMD 890GX chipset (22 lanes) – which allows a very high-end configuration for the expansion slots as we will explain in the next page. The south bridge chip used is an SB850, the same one used on the AMD 890GX chipset. The main feature of this chip is the native support for six SATA-600 (a.k.a. “SATA 6G”) ports, so the motherboard doesn’t need an external chip to support this feature, and certainly the AMD 890FX and 890GX will help the new SATA standard to become mainstream.

A very important detail of this motherboard is the fact that it does not use the standard ATX form factor. Gigabyte says it uses the XL-ATX form factor (which is not a standard form factor), measuring 12.8" x 9.6" (32.5 cm x 24.4 cm), against 12" x 9.6" (30.5 cm x 24.4 cm) of standard ATX. In short, this means this board is one slot longer than a standard ATX motherboard, with eight slots and not seven; thus, it will not fit standard ATX cases (with seven expansion slots). The 890FXA-UD7 will need an eight slot case, or a case with extra room beyond the seventh slot (in this case, you will not be able to use the last slot).

In Figure 1, you can have an overall look at the Gigabyte 890FXA-UD7.

890FXA-UD7Figure 1: Gigabyte 890FXA-UD7.


Rafael Otto Coelho is a physicist with a master’s degree in Education, and is a college professor in Brazil.