One of the best technologies to ever grace the PC is the advent of USB connectivity. Practically everything connects via USB these days, so why do some motherboards skimp on compatible ports? That's a good question, and one that is not applicable to Portwell's PEB-9783G2AR.
Behind the rather unassuming model name is a notable motherboard that packs 20 (yes, TWENTY) USB 3.2 ports on rear I/O panel. With that many ports, you could plug in a keyboard and mouse, your VR headset, a mixed reality headset, several external drives, a USB coffee warmer (opens in new tab), and still have a bunch of USB ports to spare.
These are native USB ports, too, albeit of the Gen 1 variety (10Gbps, which is half the speed of Gen 2) . The product page (opens in new tab) (original source: FanlessTech (opens in new tab) on Twitter) states the motherboard is a proprietary design. Some of the finer grain details are not mentioned, but it appears Portwell split the USB connectivity across Intel's W480E/Q470E chipset and some of the SATA lanes to stretch connectivity to 20 ports, as there are just two SATA 6Gbps ports.
Built for Intel's latest generation Comet Lake-S processors, you could build a modern gaming PC on this motherboard if you really wanted to, though it's really intended for workstation/server builds.
USB ports overload https://t.co/AoV2zmSUAY pic.twitter.com/XQUff3RBV9September 19, 2020
This board supports up to 128GB of DDR4-2666 RAM (by way of four DDR4 DIMM slots) with ECC support, and can accommodate a single M.2 form factor SSD.
In addition to a gang of USB ports, it serves up two DisplayPort 1.4 connectors, an HDMI output, dual ethernet ports (plus a header to add two more to the mix). It also features a system monitor for keeping tabs on voltage, fan speed, and temps.
You're not going to find this motherboard on Amazon or Newegg—anyone interested in buying it will need to request a price from Portwell.