Electronic Design
Supermicro X8SAX Motherboard For Extreme Workstations

Supermicro X8SAX Motherboard For Extreme Workstations

Super Micro's uniprocessor X8SAX (Fig. 1) motherboard is based on Intel's X58 Express (Tylersburg-36S) chipset supporting LGA 1366 socket processors including Xeon and Core i7 Extreme Edition. The board takes advantage of the chip's 6.4 Gtransfer/s QPI support. It features 36 PCI Express 2.0 lanes and can handle up to 24 Gbytes of memory. 1.5V ECC and non-ECC DDR3 memory is supported by 6 DIMM sockets. Server platforms can take advantage of the optional IPMI 2.0 integration. The motherboard is available separately and in a range of 1U and 2U+ Super Micro systems and mini-tower and tower systems as well.

The ATX motherboard has six 3 Gbit/s SATA ports. These support RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 under Windows and RAID 0, 1, and 10 with Linux. There are dual Intel 82574L Gigabit Ethernet Controllers providing 100BaseT support. A total of 12 USB 2.0 ports are provided with 8 on the backpanel and four on-board. An internal USB A socket can come in handy for some installations. A pair of IEEE 1394A interfaces round out the high speed peripheral ports.

Other peripheral interfaces include Realtek's ALC883 7.1 HD audio support with S/PDIF digatal outputs. There is a PS/2 keyboard and mouse port for legacy deployments. Headers provides access to 16550 UARTs. There is a floppy interface if you can find a drive and media.

The motherboard provides a transitional environment that includes PCI Express and PCI slots. The pair of x16 PCI Express 2.0 slots are handy for graphics or storage cards. There is also a x4 PCI Express slot. The two 64-bit, 133 MHz PCI-X slots can handle a range of interfaces. There is also a single 32-bit PCI slot as well.

The motherboard has a range of thermal monitoring sensors. It also has six fan headers with status monitoring and control. There is also an overheat LED.

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