[Discussion] Your "dream" AM4 mITX config?

ChainedHope

Airflow Optimizer
Original poster
Jun 5, 2016
306
459
Just wanted to have a discussion of what you would want to see in an AM4 mITX setup as only 1 board has been announced and there is plenty of time before any more get announced and specs given. I've been thinking about it a lot and I have seen some pretty damn good ideas. This is a "dream" layout/config though so go wild with it for your use-case.

I'll start with mine :p

Ideally my setup would consist of something a bit extreme and unlikely. As AM4 only had 24 pcie slots (16+4+4) and you dont really need 16x for a GPU (8x is more than sufficient), I would love to see someone take 8 of the GPU lanes and split it off into 2x M.2 drives on the underside of the board coupled with a third one from the 4 lanes already given for M.2/storage. This way you could have 3 drives running in RAID, as with the current specs it would be virtually impossible as 1 drive would be coming from the CPU and another would have to be done through the chipset (which i dont think you would be able to RAID the two?). And taking it another step forward, I would love to see SODIMMs being used but not just 2. I would want to see 2 SODIMMs on the top side and 2 SODIMMs on the underside of the board. You could mount them in about the same location, albiet with more pcb layers to get a very nice layout. On top of this, wifi from the chipset wouldnt be so bad (a couple of pcie 2.0 lanes could be used).

This setup would then allow for an 8-core cpu, 4 SODIMMs, 3x M.2, wifi, GPU, and still have enough for a few USB ports (preferably with atleast 1 type-c connector). This would be the ultimate AM4 mITX board in my mind.
 
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King of Cable Management
Sep 26, 2015
774
758
Mini-ITX:
From Processor
x16 PCI-e 3.0 GPU slot
x4 PCI-e 3.0 M.2 slot
4 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports
From X300 Chipset
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to Intel GbE MAC+PHY
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ad/ae/ax + BT5 M.2 card
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to ASMedia ASM2142 USB 3.1 Gen2 2 x Type-C ports with DisplayPort Alternate Mode
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to ASMedia ASM2142 USB 3.1 Gen2 USB 3.1 Gen2 header
2 SATA III ports
TPM header
ESS SABRE ES9018S DAC

μATX:
From Processor
x16/x8 PCI-e 3.0 GPU slot
x0/x8 PCI-e 3.0 GPU slot
x4 PCI-e 3.0 M.2 slot
4 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports
From X370 Chipset
x4 PCI-e 3.0 to M.2 slot
x4 PCI-e 2.0 to Tehuti Networks TN4010 MAC and Intel X557-AT (10GBASE-T/1000BASE-T/100BASE-TX)
x2 PCI-e 2.0 to 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ad/ae/ax + BT5 M.2 card
x1 PCI-e 2.0 slot
x1 PCI-e 2.0 slot
4 SATA III ports
2 USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C ports with DisplayPort Alternate Mode
4 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports
1 USB 3.1 Gen1 header
4 USB 2.0 ports
1 USB 2.0 header
TPM header
ESS SABRE ES9018S DAC

Simple, straight-forward designs, the only complication being the switch between the SATA and USB on the mITX board.

Edit: Ultimate Mini-ITX:
From Processor
Broadcom PEX 8747 (?, really whatever switch was used on the Radeon SSG)
x4 PCI-e 3.0 to Tehuti Networks TN4010 MAC and Intel X557-AT (10GBASE-T/1000BASE-T/100BASE-TX)
4 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports
From Broadcom PEX 8747 (?)
x16 PCI-e 3.0 GPU slot
x4 PCI-e 3.0 M.2 slot
x4 PCI-e 3.0 M.2 slot
From X300 Chipset
x2 PCI-e 3.0 to 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ad/ae/ax + BT5 M.2 card
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to ASMedia ASM2142 USB 3.1 Gen2 2 x Type-C ports with DisplayPort Alternate Mode
x1 PCI-e 3.0 to ASMedia ASM2142 USB 3.1 Gen2 USB 3.1 Gen2 header
2 SATA III ports
TPM header
ESS SABRE ES9018S DAC

The idea here is to create a set-up that can handle an SSG-style configuration where both the CPU and GPU have direct access to the M.2 drives, deconflicted with the Heterogeneous Unified Memory Architecture (HUMA).
 
Last edited:

Aibohphobia

aka James
Gold Supporter
Feb 22, 2015
4,956
4,717
Kinda cheating, but I'd love to see a high-end Mini-DTX AM4 board with ECC support. It would make a great mini workstation board.
 
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King of Cable Management
Sep 26, 2015
774
758
Yeah, it would. I suppose it could be something similar to PCI-e bifurcation where the ability is there, but motherboard manufacturers may not enable/expose it.

AMD_james said:
yes, if you enable ECC support in the BIOS so check with the MB feature list before you buy.
 
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Aibohphobia

aka James
Gold Supporter
Feb 22, 2015
4,956
4,717
Yup, I wouldn't be surprised if manufacturers artificially limit it to higher-end SKUs due to the extra testing needed.
 
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IntoxicatedPuma

Customizer of Titles
Editorial Staff
Silver Supporter
Feb 26, 2016
984
1,248
an APU with 4 cores and SMT. HBM memory would be great but if it allowed really high clocked DDR4 would be cool too. As long as the GPU performance is about on par with a GTX 750 and CPU performance close to a lower TDP i7 i'd be ok.

Get rid of SATA connectors and give me more m.2 slots. Maybe some vertical design would be pretty cool, kind of like what Asus does with the "daughterboards" on some of its high end ITX motherboards.
 

alexep7

Cable-Tie Ninja
Jan 30, 2017
169
127
Basically same as above:
No GPU, 4 core/SMT APU with 3200+Mhz RAM. At least 2 m2 slots + pcie slot used for another m2 drive with an adaptor.
Ideally an aluminium case with rounded corners like the Streacom F1CWS but maybe a bit shorter depending on how hot the APU gets.
 

MarcParis

Spatial Philosopher
Apr 1, 2016
3,380
2,387
1st : Stable bios
2nd : complete OC RAM @3200 support
3rd : stability..:)
4th : stability..:)

Functionnalities :
  • PCI-e 16x
  • 1xm.2 nvme
  • 8 power phase (ability to OC R7 1700 to 3.9ghz)
  • good looking
  • rear usb ports with quick charge function
  • Wifi
Pretty standard design..but I guess that's what is required to conquer mini itx, enthousiast market..:D
 
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Mar 6, 2017
501
454
  1. X370 Chipset
  2. 10Gb LAN or DTX form factor
  3. 4x SO-DIMM (Do ECC DDR4 SO-DIMMs exist?)
  4. Two or more M.2 slots
  5. High end DAC
  6. Built in WiFi and Bluetooth
How cool would it be if we could partner with a motherboard manufacturer and vote on what we want in a board?
 

T_Tank

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Mar 16, 2017
118
80
Dream itx am4 setup.. Least I think this will be reasonable

Processor
R7 1700
Graphics card
R9 fury nano (already have one that's a year old)
Memory
16gb G.SKILL 8GB x2 NT Series (have my reasons)
Hard drive
120gb SSD samsung preferred
Largest laptop standard hard drive

As for motherboard wish list
Am4/Am3 heat sink mount holes
3 pwm fan headers
2 standard ddr4 slots 3000 oc 3200
1 pcie x16 3
1 mini pcie for WiFi Bluetooth (able to upgrade in the future)
1 nvme
4 sata6
High quality Japanese capacitors
Ultra high quality vrm with proper heatsinks

Maaaybe rgb on the motherboard and headers for it not sure on this yet.

I'm hoping Asus makes a am4 itx due to using their Am3 itx since it first came out with a phenom II x6
 
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zovc

King of Cable Management
Jan 5, 2017
852
602
I'm hoping to see some ITX ryzen boards with color accents that aren't just red! I like the blue that ASRock sometimes uses, and am considering a light blue as the accent color in one of my current builds.

RGB would be a cool plus for my S4 mini since it's very open.