For such a small board it happens to be packed with lots of useful features. One of the most impressive features is that this board is capable of using up to 32 gigs of DDR3 1866 memory. That is extremely impressive for a board like this. This will give users a great deal of expandability to keep their system running smooth for many years to come.
This board also features 6 SATA 3.0 ports that offer transfer speeds of up to 6 gigs per second. With this feature users will be able to use the latest and fastest storage interface. There is also support for RAID 0, 1 and 10 for storage expansion and performance. These ports are located at the bottom of the board to facilitate easy connectivity and will be easily accessible in most cases.
Audio on this board is really good. It uses ALC892 High Definition audio to make games, movies and music sound crisp and realistic. Normally the audio support on most motherboards has been fairly poor. This motherboard breaks out of that mold and delivers very good audio that most audiophiles would even approve of. On the rear I/O panel there is support for a full 7.1 channel speaker configuration.
Another amazing feature of this board is its graphical expansion capabilities. This board fully supports Crossfire with a single PCIe 2.0 x16, expansion slot and a PCIe 2.0 x4, expansion slot. With this expansion capability users will be able to really push their graphical potential with such a small form factor. Boards with this capability are quite useful because they can be very powerful and portable systems. Biostar has really made this board an incredible value.
This is a very durable board that features all Japanese solid capacitors that provide stable power at much higher temperatures than their wet counterparts. With the use of such capacitors this board is set for a long life and should stand up to even the harshest of conditions. You’ll notice that the cooling on this board is passive. What this means is that this board doesn’t have any fans of its own to cool its chipset or MOSFETs. This will require that the case you install this in has plenty of airflow. With most Micro-ATX cases you might need to add a fan to provide this, since most don’t come with enough fans.
Biostar has included one of my favorite features onto this board. This is a debug LED to troubleshoot boot errors. This LED will also show the current APU temperature once the system has fully booted. The reason I’m a big fan of this feature is that it makes troubleshooting boot errors very easy. I’ve had to sit and listen for beeps to determine problems with motherboards and this is a very tedious process. Being able to look at an LED and instantly know what’s causing the problem is much easier and less time consuming. To use the LED all you need to do is have your motherboard manual out and look at the corresponding codes. It really doesn’t get much easier than that.
This board also uses a UEFI BIOS that features a very easy to use graphical interface. These are becoming more common and will soon replace the older DOS based BIOS software. This particular UEFI is very simple and easy to navigate. All of your tabs for the different features are located at the bottom of the screen. From these icons you will be able to open the menu that you want to change. Once you’ve changed your settings all you have to do is exit the menu and go to the Save & Exit icon at the far right. This is one of the easiest and most user friendly UEFIs that I’ve seen so far. Biostar has obviously put a lot of work into it and it shows. This isn’t one of the flashiest UEFIs but it’s one of the easiest to navigate and that’s what counts.