Articles: Mainboards

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However, we will mention not only the highs of the abit AW9D-MAX mainboard. abit has made it clear quite some time ago already, that the “MAX” in the model name indicates the absence of the so-called legacy connectors: COM and LPT. In this case, they are not just absent on the rear panel, but do not exist on the PCB at all, although the chipset supports both these interfaces. As a result, the mainboard back panel looks very scarce. Besides the already mentioned eSATA port, there are only PS/2 connectors for the keyboard and mouse, four USB ports and two network RJ45 ports.

You don’t see any audio connectors on the back panel, however, there are hardly any mainboards out there these days that have no sound. abit mainboard is no exception and boasts fully-fledged sound implementation. abit AW9D-MAX is equipped with an 8-channel Realtek ALC882 codec that has been moved onto a daughter card aka AudioMAX that goes into a special connector in the lower left corner of the mainboard PCB.

If you look at the PCB layout around the chipset South Bridge, you will also notice a few pleasing things. As you can see, the mainboard features power on and reset buttons, POST-code indicator and color-coded front panel connectors.

Summing up the results of our visual inspection of abit AW9D-MAX I would like to point out a few more things. All connectors are very conveniently located, except for the FDD connector and the four-pin additional power supply connector that is required for dual-graphics card configurations. They are both placed at the lower edge of the PCB. The mainboard is manufactured with very high-quality Low ESR capacitors and all jumpers feature long grips that will make the work with this mainboard extremely easy and comfortable.

Well, it looks like everything has been said about the PCB design, so let’s just sum up the technical specifications and functions of the product.

Technical Specifications



Supports Intel Core 2 Quad, Core 2 Duo Extreme, Core 2 Duo,
Pentium D and Pentium 4 with 1066/800MHz bus


Intel 975X / Intel ICH7R Express


Four 240-pin DDR2 DIMM slots
Supports maximum 8GB of RAM


Two PCI-Express x16 slots (dual ATI CrossFire Graphics)


Two Gigabit PCI-E controllers
Supports 10/100/1000M Ethernet


abit AudioMAX HD 7.1 CH
Supports Jack Sensing and S/PDIF In/Out
Dolby Master Studio certified

Expansion Slots

2 PCI Express x16 slots
2 PCI Express x1 slot
1 PCI slot
1 AudioMAX slot

Internal connectors

1 x Floppy
1 x UDMA 100/66/33
7 x SATA 3GB/s
2 x USB 2.0
2 x IEEE1394
1 x FP-Audio header
1 x CD-IN

Back panel

1 x PS/2 keyboard, 1 x PS/2 mouse
4 x USB 2.0
2 x RJ-45 LAN
1 x eSATA

Serial ATA

ICH7R: 4 x SATA 3GB/s. Supports Intel Matrix Storage
SATA RAID 0/1/0+1/5.
ICH7R: Supports SATA AHCI, NCQ and “hot swap”.
Silicon Image 3132: 4 x SATA 3GB/s, each pair
of SATA connectors supports SATA RAID 0/1

IEEE 1394

2 IEEE1394 ports with 400Mb/sec speed


RoHS compliant

Form Factor

ATX form factor: 305mm x 245mm

abit Engineered

abit uGuru technology
abit AudioMAX 7.1 CH
abit Silent OTES 2 technology
Power On and Reset buttons on the PCB
Blue LED highlighting at the bottom
High-quality Low ESR capacitors

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