To be honest, if any company were to spring to mind when thinking about motherboards that bring lifestyle and personal computing together, it would be ASUS and their AI Lifestyle range. However, nothing could be further from the truth as Gigabyte have their 'Digital Home' range of motherboards, and Foxconn have have their 'Digital Life' range. Foxconn's Digital Life range currently has two motherboards available, the Intel P45 based ELA, and the AMD 790FX based A79A-S. It will be the latter that we be reviewing today.
The Foxconn Digital Life
range of motherboards are all about performance, enhanced connectivity and enabling digital entertainment. Whilst they don't aim to provide the extreme performance of say, the Foxconn BlackOps
, but more of an 'all-rounder' approach to personal computing - power on tap when you need it, but a range of connectivity options for those who require it. Let's hear what Foxconn have to say:
Digital Life...aims to bring more connectivity and digital entertainment capability to enthusiast motherboards. Digital Life is about giving users better capability to utilize their PC in the home environment, not just sat in the corner of a home office or being used as a high-end enthusiast rig.
We wanted to combine the performance and overclocking features found on enthusiast motherboards with some additional connectivity capabilities, which will provide for a more adaptable computing platform.
Well performance and increased connectivity is fine by me. but let's get started with the review of the Foxconn A79A-S Digitalife motherboard by having a look at its specifications.
The specifications for the Foxconn A79A-S Digitalife motherboard were unashamedly copied from Foxconn' product page
Processor: AMD Phenom™FX, Phenom™, Athlon™ 64x2, Athlon™ 64, Sempron™ processors, Socket AM2 and AM2+.
Chipset: AMD® 790FX + SB750
Front Side Bus: 5.2 GT/s HyperTransport™
Memory: Dual channel DDR2 1066/800/667/533 x 4 DIMMs, Max. 8GB
VGA on Die: Discreted
Expansion Slots: 4* PCIe2.0 x16, 1* PCIe2.0 x1, 1* PCI
IDE: 1* ATA133
Serial ATA(SATA)/RAID: 6* SATAII + 2* eSATA w / RAID 0, 1, 10, 5, JBOD
Audio: 7.1 channel HDA by Realtek® ALC888SDD, DTS CONNECT™ and Dolby Digital Live™ certified audio
LAN: Dual Gigabit LAN by Realtek®RTL8111B
IEEE1394: 2* 1394a connectors (rear panel x1, pin header x1)
Back Panel I/O Ports:
1 x PS/2 keyboard port
1 x PS/2 mouse port
1 x S/PDIF Out Coaxial port
1 x S/PDIF Out Fiber port
2 x eSATA ports
1 x Audio jack supports 6 jacks
6 x USB 2.0 ports
2 x RJ45 LAN ports
1 x 1394 port
Internal I/O Connectors:
1 x ATX 24-pin power connector
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
1 x 4-pin power connector
2 x 4-pin CPU / System smart fan connectors
3 x Onboard On/Off/CMOS reset buttons
3 x 3-pin power fan connectors
1 x Floppy disk drive connector
1 x CD-in connector
1 x Front Panel header
1 x Buzzer
3 x USB 2.0 headers support additional 6 ports
6 x Serial ATAII connectors
1 x ATA133 IDE connector
1 x Onboard power_LED
1 x Intrusion Alarm header
1 x Intel Azalia header
1 x COM1 header
1 x 1394 header
1 x IrDA header
1 x Speaker
BIOS Features: 8Mb flash EEPROM w/ LAN boot PnP, ACPI, WfM,
Support CD: Drivers, Adobe Reader, SuperUtilities, Norton Internet Security
Standards/Manageability: PCI 2.3, USB2.0, DMI 2.5
* Based on AMD 790FX chipset with AOD Extreme & SB750 Southbridge
* 4* PCIe x16 Gen2.0 with ATI CrossFireX™ support
* Dual Channel DDR2 1066MHz support with AM2+ socket Phenom™ processors
* DTS CONNECT™ and Dolby Digital Live™ certified audio
* Dual Digital Audio function enables separation of 2 different sound sources from your PC, and also provides 2 digital audio outputs via S/PDIF Coaxial and Fiber
* 100% SOLID Capacitor design and Ferrite Choke power delivery ensure a stable basis for overclocking and increased reliability
* Fully supports AMD OverDrive™ utility for overclocking, system monitoring and testing.
Form Factor: ATX (12" x 9.6")
The Foxconn A79A-S features an impressive array of features and connectivity options which should satisfy even the most discerning user.
Let's head over the page to see how the Foxconn A79A-S should arrive at your door, by taking a look at the packaging and contents...