The general layout of the FIC AU13 is
excellent. The main ATX and floppy/IDE connectors are in the
most ideal location to the right of the DIMM slots and there is nothing that will
negate the use of longer or full length PCI cards. You have to remove the
videocard to install memory, but that's a price you'll have to pay when you're
using a motherboard with six PCI slots.
Because Serial ATA hard drives require a
different type of power connection, we were extremely pleased FIC went out of
their way to include a molex-to-15 pin Serial ATA power connector. This is
especially useful if you consider OEM Serial ATA HDD's do not
come with this power adapter. We can only hope that powersupplies will start to ship with the right type of power connectors soon.
The AU13 is well labelled like most motherboards on the market
now, so if you're not sure what a certain header or jumper does just look around the PCB and you'll
find the description. There's an outline for a Port 80 diagnostics card on the
PCB, but no such device - I hope FIC eventually implement the port 80 card on future revisions.
The AU13 uses
nVIDIA's MCP-T which includes the SoundStorm APU (Audio Processing Unit) which
supports 5.1 speakers and is 100% Dolby Digital compliant. The MCP-T southbridge
works in tandem with the AC'97 codec to produce chrisp clear audio which rivals
even the top of the line soundcards on the market in terms of audio quality.
This is certainly good news for audiophiles, gamers and multimedia users alike.
One of the best qualities of nVIDIA's APU audio is that it takes up very few CPU
resources so you're overall computer experience will not suffer due to the
soundcard hogging the processor.