MSI 870A Fuzion Power Edition EXCLUSIVE Review
Packaging & Initial Impressions
The MSI 870A Fuzion Power Edition arrives in a rather enthusiastic designed box. The front of the box is left fairly plain in terms of text, aside its product name and its status as a "Military Class Mainboard"...whatever that means.
The back of the box is a little more busy, detailing all the key features of the board.
In terms of accessories, MSI are pretty generous. Aside an I/O shield and a number of comprehensive manuals pertaining its features, you also receive four SATA cables, two molex to SATA adapters, a rear USB bracket and a front 3.25" USB 3.0 bracket. Annoyingly the MSI bracket is coloured in deep blue; this is likely to be an eye sore on many cases.
Then we get to the motherboard itself. The Power Edition version of the 870A Fuzion greatly resembles its inferior brother with the exception of its heatsinks. Now obviously the key difference between the two is the implementation of a 10 + 1 phase VRM power design but of course, chunkier heatsinks are required as well. Also note that the Lucid Hydra has been moved away from the Northbridge and closer to the Southbridge.
At the rear you will find a reasonably comprehensive I/O configuration, including six USB 2.0, one USB 3.0, SPDIF + 7.1 Audio, PS/2, Firewire and a CMOS clear button
We're a little unsure of the internally mounted "external" USB 3.0 port. You may either use an extender to mount the port at the rear with a PCI backplate or at the front with the blue 3.25" adapter. While it is great to have been offered the option to place a high speed USB port at the front of a computer, it just seems a little bit inconvenient (and a waste of a PCI position) should you wish to have a second USB 3.0 at the rear.
The motherboard layout itself seems to have been well thought out, particularly in terms of the PCI-Express spacings. Thus far we remain impressed by the 870A Fuzion Power Edition.