Gigabyte’s Aorus division has recently teased upcoming TRX40 boards to accompany AMD’s Threadripper 3000 series CPUs. The board is presumably a flagship one as it has a wide set of features.
Here is the original image:
First and most obvious feature is a chip with exposed silicon in the rear I/O section. It appears to be manufactured by Intel as an outline of Intel’s logo can be seen (two curves making an oval). This leads us to belive that it is most probably a NIIC (Network Interface Controller) or a Thunderbolt 3 controller. Given that normally on consumer motherboards AQUANTIA NICs are used for 10G networking either Intel is coming out with an improved next-gen 10G NIC or it is a NIC rated for more than 10G (15 or 20G possibly). This would be a killer feature although it might be usable only in enterprise environments as there are few consumer switches capable of 10G speeds, not speaking about 15 or 20 gigabits a second. This option is made more likely by the presence of presumably two FSP or FSP+ connectors but more about this later on.
Another option is that iit is a Thunderbolt 3 controller given that USB 4 capable of 40Gbps speeds will not arrive till 2020, Thunderbolt 3 is the only way to get such speeds. It would also be very useful for creators for whom this platform is targeted with its upto 64 core CPUs.
Although there are fairly low chances of it being the Thunderbolt 3 controller because such controllers are usually much smaller and come in a black package, without exposed silicon.
Probability of the chip being an NIC is increased by the presence of two connectors which appear to be similar to RJ45 (a big hole) but are enclosed in a much longer housing leading us to believe that these are FSP or FSP+ connectors, or some other sort of connectors used for high speed networking. Given that there are two of them would explain why the die of the mysterious chip is so big for a controller and is most probably exposed for better cooling.
Moreover, there appear to be a pair of buttons (or a new sort of connectors). If these are buttons they are most probably Clear CMOS and BIOS Flashback ones.
The VRM is substantial consisting of 16 power stages (possibly from Infineon) and 16 chokes as well as surrounded by caps. These 16 power stages are most likely to make up a true (without doublers) 16 phase VRM given availability of Infiineon XDPE132G5C controller supporting upto 16 phase which Gigabyte has already used in its high end offerings such as Aorus X570 XTREME. Here it is most probably running in a 13+3 configuration as the SoC will most probably be more power hungry than in Ryzen 3000 CPUs, although other configurations such as 14+2 or 12+4 are also possible (though the latter one would probably be overkill for the SoC).
Amongst other features are at least 3 PCI-E x16 slots running at Gen 4 speeds (most probably 4 of them) and 8 DDR4 DIMM slots.
Amongst more notable features is presence of most probably 3 M.2 slots for NVME SSDs running at most probably Gen 4 speeds. Outlines for only two of them are visible but the third one is most probably under the third PCI-E x16 slot as there is still more space on the board beyond what’s pictured.
All of the PCI-E slots are most compliant to Gen 4 standard as in the previous tease from Gigabyte where lower portion of the board was pictured, a fan was visible in the chipset area which also provides some PCI-E lanes on TRX40 platform as it does on X399.
So, the upcoming TRX40 promises to be a hot pick and the only aspect which may disappoint you is the price, such a board will probably come at around $1000 USD, and if you want to see a review from us, consider donating via Paypal by pressing a button below in order to help us afford to purchase this board alongside a CPU for review. Every dollar counts.