ASUS MITX Motherboard Roundup
Published: 15th April 2016 | Source: ASUS | Price: £66 £135 £190 |
Once upon a time, long ago, PC motherboards came in a bewildering array of types and sizes. Instead of just deciding to buy the one that fit best within your price range, or perhaps colour scheme (which, to be fair, was largely a choice of blue or brown), you had to decide between P31 or P35 or G33 or X38. And those were just the Intel chipsets. nVidia also had their nForce series.
In fact back then the old "multiple hardware configurations so you might encounter some bugs" had a lot of truth to it. Far more than there is these days where we all are using either an AMD or one of the Intel offerings of chipset and either a Radeon or nVidia GPU. Even DirectX has solved the majority of hardware issues.
For those of us who have been hardware enthusiasts for a long time, the current uniformity is very much a positive thing. Instead of having to choose between umpteen models with vastly different capabilities, you can buy almost anything and be sure that it will work both easily and well.
So what has all that to do with today's bijou roundup?
ITX motherboards have grown rapidly in popularity in recent years, with ASUS leading the charge of providing high quality motherboards which are as good as their larger brethren, merely compact enough to fit into any chassis of your choosing. The Maximus VIII Impact - which we've reviewed before here at OC3D - is very much the 'does everything' option, and the Z170I Pro Gaming is likely to be the more affordable, slightly stripped down, version of that. But what's that on the right of the three? A B150I motherboard?
Is this move to a different chipset, a much cheaper chipset, a problem or does it have enough to find an audience of its own? That's what we're here to, albeit briefly, look at.