The AMD 880G chipset is a dual-chip solution; the SB710 is the southbridge chip used on the TA880GB+. The motherboard provides all of the six SATA-300 ports supported by the chipset. These ports support RAID 0, 1, and 10. Those SATA-300 ports are placed at one of the corners of the motherboard, as you can see in Figure 4. At the side of the SATA ports, you can also see two LEDs that show debug information, in case of there are any start-up problems.
The portrayed motherboard doesn’t have a parallel ATA port or a floppy disk port.
The TA880GB+ has 10 USB 2.0 ports, four soldered on the rear panel and six through three headers located on the motherboard. There are no USB 3.0 ports.
No FireWire (IEEE1394) ports are provided.
This motherboard uses an eight-channel codec, the Realtek ALC892, but it provides only six-channel analog audio. Maybe eight-channel audio is available through the SPDIF header of this motherboard, but we couldn’t confirm this. Finally, Realtek is disclosing the specifications of this chip, which include 97 dB signal-to-noise ratio for the analog outputs, 90 dB signal-to-noise ratio for the analog inputs, and up to 192 kHz sampling rate for both inputs and outputs. These specs are good for the mainstream user, but if you are looking into working professionally with audio editing, you should look for a motherboard that provides an SNR of at least 97 dB for the analog input.
The TA880GB+ doesn’t have on-board SPDIF outputs, but you can add an optical and/or coaxial SPDIF outputs or route digital audio to your video card in order to have digital audio in its HDMI output by using the motherboard “JSPDIFOUT1” header. It’s a shame that the analog audio 5.1 connectors are shared with the line in and mic in inputs, which means that you will “kill”" those inputs if you need to connect an analog 5.1 speaker system to your computer.
The Biostar TA880GB+ has one Gigabit Ethernet port controlled by a Realtek RTL8111E chip.
In Figure 5, you can see the motherboard rear panel with a shared PS/2 connector for keyboard and mouse, four USB 2.0 ports, VGA output, DVI-D output, HDMI output, one Gigabit Ethernet port, and shared analog 5.1 audio outputs.
As you can see, this motherboard comes with three different kinds of video connectors, but the HDMI and DVI ports cannot be used at the same time.
Other features present on the TA880GB+ include the presence of legacy serial and parallel ports (available through headers on the motherboard, but the motherboard doesn’t come with the adapters to use them), and a core unlocking feature, which allows you to unlock hidden cores from certain AMD CPUs (if you are lucky enough to have a CPU with hidden cores). There is also a power on and a reset button on the motherboard.
In Figure 6, you can see the accessories that come with the motherboard: SATA cables, case rear plate, drivers CD, and a SATA power adapter.