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When thinking of high end motherboards, ECS (Elitegroup Computer Systems) is probably not one of the first names that come to mind. That may change in 2010 thanks in part to its 15u Gold Contact motherboards. The metal pins on CPU sockets and memory slots are typically coated with 5u Gold (0.000127mm) on standard motherboards in order to provide protection from rust. However, frequent plugging in and unplugging of components can cause the gold plating to scrape away, leading to an unstable signal transmission. Furthermore, even though the gold plating is supposed to prevent rust, certain environmental conditions can lead to depletion of the gold plated layer, eventually causing oxidation. In order to address these concerns, ECS decided to triple the amount of gold to 15u (0.000381mm) to provide more durability and reliability. For those enthusiasts that are constantly upgrading and/or swapping out parts, this could provide a longer lifespan for your motherboard.
There are four 15u Gold Contact motherboards available - two for Intel and two for AMD. The P55H-A Ultra (not pictured) supports Core i5 and i7 processors (LGA1156 socket) and 4x DDR3 2200 (up to 16GB). The G41T-M2 Gold supports Core 2 Quad, Core 2 Duo, Pentium Dual Core, Celeron Dual Core, and Celeron 400 series processors (LGA775 socket) and 2x DDR2 800 (up to 8GB). For the AMD side, the A785GM-M Ultra and A790GXM-AD3 Gold both support Phenom II processors (Socket AM3) and 4x DDR3 1600 (up to 16GB).
ECS also unveiled a few new boards in its Black Series.
Here are a few new H55 Mini-ITX motherboards from ECS.
ECS also manufactures graphics cards from the NVIDIA camp.
Lastly, we got to see the ECS Vase Nettop PC that had been unveiled over the summer at Computex 2009. It features an Intel Atom 230, NVIDIA ION graphics, 1GB of RAM and a Blu-ray drive. Containing Ethernet and HDMI ports on the bottom that get hidden via the included stand, a power button inside the top, and a wireless keyboard with built-in track pad, this would make the perfect HTPC. And with an elegant look of a Ming Vase, your wife, girlfriend or mother won't mind it in the living room.