Foxconn DigitaLife ELA P45 Motherboard

Introduction Foxconn DigitaLife logo
Very recently we had the opportunity to review the Foxconn A79A-S DigitaLife AM2 motherboard based upon the 790FX + SB750 chipset. While the motherboard pulled out a few surprises, more notably, its overclocking prowess and very good motherboard layout, there were a few things that we didn’t like about it. A garish colour scheme; clunky BIOS layout; poor bundle and an over-the-top asking price all managed to make it a mediocre option for your dollar.
This time around, we are taking a look at the Intel P45-based Foxconn ELA DigitaLife motherboard, and we have high hopes of it redeeming Foxconn’s reputation. I’m not sure what the ELA acronym stands for, but I figure we can have a guess  – Everyone Loves Arithmatic…Electrical Loads Analysis…Eel Lovers Anonymous…Enterprise Licensing Agreement??? Anyone who tells me the right answer wins a cookie.
It’s hard not to make a comparison between the ‘what could have been’ Foxconn A79A-S, especially when we’ve been spoilt by the sheer awesomeness that is the Foxconn BlackOps. Here’s what Foxconn have to say about their Foxconn ELA motherboard:
Part of the Digital Life series of motherboards, the ELA offers enhanced connectivity and entertainment capability, backed-up by high-performance features and components. Based on the Intel® P45 chipset and supporting processors up to 1600MHz FSB (via overclocking). 3* PCIe Gen2.0 x16 slots are provided, enabling support for ATI CrossFireXâ„¢ technology, which harnesses the power of up to 3 ATI graphics cards. The ELA is designed for high-performance systems and supports Dual DDR2 1066MHz memory for better overall system performance. The onboard 95dB SNR audio includes both DTS CONNECTâ„¢ and Dolby Digital Liveâ„¢ certifications, and can split 2 different sound sources from your PC thanks to Dual Digital Audio technology, which also provides more audio output options – via analogue or 2 digital audio S/PDIF outputs.
Anyway, there’s no point in crying over spilled milk, so without further-ado let’s begin the review by taking a look at the Foxconn ELA’s specifications.
Processor: Intel® Core™2 Quad, Core™2 Extreme, Core™2 Duo, Pentium® Dual-Core, Pentium® Dual-Core processors, Socket T (LGA775)
Intel® P45 + ICH10R
Front Side Bus: 1600(oc**)1333/1066/800 MHz (FSB)
Memory: Dual channel DDR2 1066(oc**)/800/667 x 4 DIMMs, Max. 8GB
VGA on Die: Discreted
Expansion Slots: 3* PCIe2.0 x16, 2* PCIe2.0 x1, 2* PCI
IDE: 1* ATA133
Serial ATA(SATA)/RAID: 6* SATAII + 2* eSATA w / RAID 0, 1, 10, 5
Audio: 7.1 channel HDA by Realtek® ALC888SDD, with DTS CONNECT™ and Dolby Digital Live™ certifications
LAN: Gigabit LAN by Realtek® RTL8111C
IEEE1394: 3* 1394a connectors (rear panel x2, pin header x1)

Back Panel I/O Ports
1 x PS/2 mouse port
1 x S/PDIF Coaxial Out port
1 x S/PDIF Fiber Out port
2 x IEEE1394a ports (with 1* mini IEEE1394a)
1 x Audio jack supports 6 jacks
2 x eSATA ports
6 x USB 2.0 ports
1 x RJ45 LAN port

Internal I/O Connectors:
1 x ATX 24-Pin power connector
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
1 x 4-pin ATX 12V power connector
2 x 4-pin CPU / System fan connectors
3 x 3-pin fan power connectors
3 x Onboard On/Off/CMOS Reset buttons
1 x Front Panel connector
1 x Floppy connector
1 x CD-in connector
1 x IrDA header
3 x USB 2.0 connectors support additional 6 ports
3 x SATAII connectors
1 x on-board power_LED
1 x IEEE1394a header
1 x Intrusion Alarm haeder
1 x S/PDIF Out header
1 x IDE connector
1 x Front Audio header
1 x Buzzer

BIOS Features: 8Mb flash EEPROM w/ LAN boot PnP, ACPI, WfM, DMI
Support CD: Drivers, Adobe Reader, SuperUtilities, Norton Internet Security
Standards/Manageability: PCI 2.3, USB2.0, DMI 2.5

Special Features:
** Achieved by overclocking
* 3* PCIe2.0 x16 with integrated IDT PCIe switch provides ATI CrossFireXâ„¢ support with 3 slots x8 bandwidth
* 8 phase Digital PWM provides more robust power delivery
* DTS CONNECTâ„¢ and Dolby Digital Liveâ„¢ certified audio
* Dual Digital Audio function enables separation of 2 different sound sources from your PC, and also provides 2 digital audio outputs via S/PDIF Coaxial and Fiber
* 100% SOLID Capacitor design and Ferrite Choke power delivery ensure a stable basis for overclocking and increased reliability

Form Factor: ATX (12″ x 9.6″)

Since the release of the Intel P45 chipset we have seen an impressive array of motherboards from other manufacturers’, let’s hope the Foxconn ELA continues the trend. Let’s head over the page to see how the motherboard should arrive on your doorstep…