[Tom's Hardware] Asus Prime Utopia Motherboard: Modular Ports, Rear PCIe and a Big Touchscreen
We’re not sure we’d go this exact route if we were to redesign the general concept of a PC motherboard from scratch. But Asus’ Prime Utopia concept is nothing if not an attempt and something different. Produced in conjunction with the company’s 30th anniversary and shown at the same Computex event as its X570 motherboards, the Prime Utopia re-imagines and twists motherboard conventions in several interesting ways.
The form factor change ia going to be a hard one, but I'd like to see the modular IO on the next extreme board. 10 GBE? Just swap it in. Thunderbol3? Just plug that in w/o a separate card.
Though each new IO connector will cost 50$ and won't come as standard.
I have a feeling this will increase prices, and you won't have full compatibility with new boards every couple of generations, so buy everything you need again.
While the idea is interesting, I'm sure it comes from a place to increase prices and reduce manufacturing cost without making it feel like increase prices.
Considering they are making intel motherboards with intel chips, I expect adding TB before could also be included in the license prices.
There were already TB supporting motherboards before it became royalty free.
Problem is not the motherboards, but the peripherals. Very few manufacturers made TB3 storage, monitors, whatever, because adding TB added to the price and limited usability. And with only a few peripherals which mostly surround apple eco system, they preferred to add more USB ports than TB ones.
So they turned the board upside down, and put a big oled screen and some flashy plastic over the heat shield basically. I'm actually on board with this. Would make cable management a lot easier for us lazy folks, and I really like the Idea of the modular ports.
gonna guess they are just running a 1x pcie lane to each modular port so in effect its just custom pcie expansion cards.
I think I will wait a generation though for all the bugs to get worked out, but all in all, I'm impressed.
If this is just the Prime board, what does the ROG one look like
Maybe someone in their marketing team looked up what the word "prime" actually means and bolstered by this new wisdom instructed the engineering team to make a board worthy of being called "prime".
Marketing man probably wanted to do this with the previous Prime boards, but it took him a year to convince the rest of the marketing staff that they wouldn't need an agreement with HASBRO for the board...