Biostar's Gaming H170T mobo and GTX 980 Ti keep it simple


— 7:47 AM on October 19, 2015

Biostar might not be the biggest dog in the motherboard world, but it still has a new trick or two to show off. The company's latest efforts include the Gaming H170T motherboard and a GeForce GTX 980 Ti graphics card of its own.

The Gaming H170T looks to be an entry-level H170 mobo with a couple interesting add-ons. The main layout is fairly standard: 4 DIMM slots can hold up to 32GB of RAM, and we get two PCIe x16 slots in a 16+4 lane arrangement (no CrossFire support here, as far as we can tell). Dual Ethernet ports are an unusual feature, and they come courtesty of Intel I219V and Realtek RTL8111H controllers. Biostart also throws in its "SmartSpeedLAN" traffic-shaping software.

For storage, the Gaming H170T offers an M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 slot for next-gen drives. Two SATA Express ports plus two regular SATA 6Gbps ports make for six ports in total. The USB port selection is a tad barren, though, with only four USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports available in the backplate. No USB 3.1 or Type-C connectors this time around, folks.

The Gaming H170T has some music for your ears, however. Biostar claims the analog audio circuitry is isolated for better quality, and it claims a 110dB SNR spec. Realtek's ALC892 codec is the brains of this operation, along with a headphone amp good for cans with impedances up to 600Ω. On-board power and reset buttons and an LED POST code indicator should help prospective overclockers, too. The Gaming H170T will cost $119 when it goes on sale.

Biostar is also releasing its take on the GeForce GTX 980 Ti today, and it seems the company has just slapped its brand on a reference GTX 980 Ti. The $649 sticker price is less than what Asus or EVGA's tricked-out designs go for, but it's more than the $620 that PNY and Zotac are charging for their stock 980 Ti cards.

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