Included Extras and Software
What good are all those on-board features without the tools to use them? One of my biggest pet peeves in the former motherboard generations was having a couple of USB headers on a board, but not having the retail package come with the connectors to use them. Let’s see YOU try to find someplace to buy a USB connector, and if you could, you better hope its the right one or you’ll be frying the board. Okay, enough rambling.
Asus provides everything you’ll need to take full advantage of the features on the A8N-SLI motherboard including eight SATA data cables and four SATA pwoer converters with two SATA connectors each. That’s enough cabling to power all eight SATA drives, if you happen to go that route and want to look into 800 watt power supplies. Also included are a pair of IDE cables and a floppy cable as well as a copy of the WinDVD suite.
We aren’t done yet, no sir. Asus also saw fit to include the cables you’ll need to take advantage of all the motherboard features they added on in the form of headers. There is a USB back plate, a Firewire back plate, a serial connection for your COM1 connection and game port connection too. Asus also included a unique feature for a motherboard package: an external SATA hard drive kit that allows you to connect a regular internal SATA hard drive to your system without opening your case up. By putting a molex power connector and SATA connectors on a back panel for you case, you can take advantage of the hot swappable SATA hard drives to make your own external drives (yes, the Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe supports SATA hot swapping).
Also included with this and all SLI motherboards is a motherboard manufacturer specific SLI video card bridge connector. NVIDIA decided it would be best for the motherboard manufacturers to supply this piece of the SLI puzzle to avoid any incompatibilities between cards and boards. Only a board manufacturer would know exactly what spacing their PCIe slots are going to have, so that manufacturer would be best able to make the connector for it. This gives the board vendors more design freedom instead of sticking them with a static platform specification, but also adds a bit of uncertainty. Don’t you just love a little risk?