MSI Announces New AMD And Intel Motherboards With USB 3.1

Subject: Motherboards | March 14, 2015 - 12:33 AM |
Tagged: usb 3.1, msi, FX, atx, asmedia asm1352r, amd, am3+

MSI recently announced a torrent of new motherboards that feature USB 3.1 ports. The refreshed lineup includes ten Intel models and, in an interesting twist, two AMD motherboards. MSI’s new motherboards support USB 3.1 by using an Asmedia ASM1352R controller that interfaces with the system via two PCI-E 2.0 lanes (PCI-E 2.0 x2). The controller is rated for the full 10Gbps USB 3.1 speeds. 

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It is worth noting that the boards use the traditional USB Type-A connector with one exception. The MSI Z97A Gaming 6 features the new reversible Type-C connector in the form of a single Type-C USB 3.1 port on the rear I/O panel. The other boards have at least two USB 3.1 ports on their rear I/O panels.

The new USB 3.1-supporting lineup is listed below:

  • AMD (970 chipset):
    • SLI Krait Edition
  • AMD (990FX chipset):
    • 990FXA Gaming
  • Intel (Z97 chipset):
    • Z97A Gaming 9 ACK
    • Z97A Gaming 7
    • Z97A Gaming 6
  • Intel (X99 chipset):
    • X99A Gaming 9 ACK
    • X99A Gaming 7
    • X99A Xpower AC
    • X99A Mpower
    • X99A SLI Krait Edition
    • X99A SLI Plus
    • X99A Raider

These new boards are all essentially minor refreshes of previous versions that add the Asmedia controller and faster USB 3.1 ports. You can expect all the multi-GPU and overclocking-friendly features to remain present on these new motherboards.

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MSI's X99 Xpower AC (left) and Z97A Gaming 9 ACK (right) now support 10Gbps USB 3.1 ports.

AM3+ is still technically AMD's enthusiast platform, but it is still somewhat odd that MSI chose to add USB 3.1 support to AM3+ motherboards with AMD’s aging 990FX and 970 chipsets rather than FM2+ boards with the newer A88X chipset. On the other hand, you can now add much faster external storage to your AM3+ system to give it a bit more life. 

There is no word on pricing but expect the USB 3.1 models to come at a slight premium over the older models in each respective series.

Source: MSI

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March 14, 2015 | 07:13 AM - Posted by collie

Question: I've seen usb C cables for sale, and they are expensive. The cheapest I've seen is 30$ for 1.5 feet. Is that simply because they are new OR is this like thunderbolt where the cable is hardware, not just a simple pass through?

March 14, 2015 | 08:57 AM - Posted by Tim Verry

I think it is just because they are new. Prices will come down as time passes and adoption on type c ports rises. For now you could try finding a cheaper cable at monoprice or amazon.

March 14, 2015 | 08:21 AM - Posted by JohnGR

New. Cables and adapters are the bread and butter for shops. On eBay things are differently.

Congrats to MSI for not forgetting the AMD platform.

March 14, 2015 | 11:20 AM - Posted by -- (not verified)

yea cable prices have always been b/s that cable prob cost 0.45 to produce. or ebay and get the cheapest you can find.

March 16, 2015 | 10:07 PM - Posted by praack

i imagine the FM socket will be upgraded by amd for native 3.1 along with ddr4 support.

while the current desktop fx chips and accompanying chipsets wither and die since we now know AMD is focusing on the FM and ARM platforms for the next few years.

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