ECS RS400-A 1


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Board Layout

Click here for a 3000x2500 high-res shot of the board (3 MB download), the backside is here.

While we have seen boards with more space around the CPU area, there is definitely enough space for big monster coolers.

The back panel follows the standard really close. From left to right: PS/2 keyboard and PS/2 mouse, parallel port, serial port, VGA out, 4x USB 2.0, LAN and audio.

One interesting feature is the support to run either DDR1 or DDR2. One of them, not both at the same time. The purple slots are for DDR2, the blue ones for DDR1. Since there are only two slots each, the board will automatically use dual-channel, once you install two memory modules.


The placement of the ATX power connectors is ok, other boards have the ATX12V connector further to the right, so that cable lengths are reduced at a minimum. On the other hand routing a lot of power half across the board would create even more interference with other signal lines.

You can connect up to four PATA devices to the two ports. The four black SATA connectors are a bit hard to spot in above picture.

The front panel connector is color coloded, there is no text printed on the PCB which describes each individual pin group. Also located here is the Clear CMOS jumper which you use in case you change your BIOS settings to values which no longer boot your system.


A highlight of this motherboard is the support for both PCI-Express and AGP. If you need a lot of screen space, but not much 3D performance, this board offers three video cards (PCI-E, AGP and onboard-VGA), which means you will be able to connect up to 5 displays to it, using rather standard (=cheap) video cards. Unfortunately the AGP Express slot suffers a serious performance hit, but it still remains well usable for upgraders.
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