ASUS has formally unveiled the X99M-WS motherboard, a socket LGA 2011 v3 motherboard based on Intel X99 Express chipset. ASUS claimed that, this workstation class motherboard is the most feature-rich X99-based product in the micro ATX form factor. The board supports Core i7 ‘Haswell-E’ processors, in addition to certain Xeon E5 v3 series models. The board features four DDR4 DIMM slots, supporting up to 64 GB of quad-channel DDR4 memory.
The latest motherboard of Asus follows that trend with the workstation class X99M WS. This is not a teeny Mini-ITX board, but rather a proper high-end Micro-ATX X99 motherboard. At the center of the board is an LGA2011-3 socket, which is flanked by four DDR4 memory slots. There are also three PCI-Express x16 3.0 slots, and Asus said that it is its first Micro-ATX motherboard that will have 16 lanes enabled on each of those slots, if you use two for a dual-GPU setup. The board comes with Crystal Sound 2 audio hardware, Asus’ 5-way optimization technology, and a sleek professional appearance. The heat-sinks on the VRM circuitry are connected with a heat-pipe, and there is a small heat-sink on the chipset. For storage connectivity, Asus packed the board with eight SATA3 6 Gb/s ports, along with a single M.2 slot. Rear I/O connectivity is where things get particularly interesting.
Aside from the usual stuff, Asus packed the board with dual gigabit Ethernet which is expected for a workstation motherboard, 1300 Mb/s wireless AC connectivity, and most notably, two USB Type-A 3.1 ports. Asus didn’t apply a USB Type-C port, although it may have made that decision because Type-C is quite new to the market and appears to be mostly geared towards consumer devices and laptops. Storage connectivity includes eight SATA 6 Gb/s, and one M.2 32 Gb/s slot. Networking is care of two gigabit Ethernet interfaces both driven by Intel I210 controllers, and one 802.11 ac plus Bluetooth 4.0 WLAN interface. USB connectivity includes two USB 3.1 ports (both type-A), six USB 3.0 ports, and a number of USB 2.0/1.1 ports. 8-channel ASUS Crystal Sound 2 audio, and an optional PIKE SAS module, make for the rest of it.
Asus priced the board at $279.99 and announced immediate availability through its usual retailers.