Main Features / Overview
The ASUS M2N-MX is a Micro-ATX form factor motherboard from AsusTek Computer, Inc., Taiwan. This motherboard is based on a single-chip north/southbridge solution from Nvidia (NF-6100-430-N-A2) which integrates the GeForce6100 and nForce430 chipset. The motherboard also features a 940-pin "AM2 socket that supports AMD Athlon 64 CPUs (not included in this analysis). See feature list for feature details.
Found for as low as ~$75 USD at the time of writing (4/26/07)
Volume Estimations / Sector Performance
For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed a lifetime production volume of 1 Million units.
As a reminder, teardown volume production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed volumes are different by an order of magnitude, minor changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis because of this.
Main Cost Drivers Representing ~66% of total materials cost as follows :
Nvidia - NF-6100-430-N-A2 - Northbridge / Southbridge - Single Chip, GeForce6100 and nForce430, 425MHz GPU
PCB - 4-Layer - FR4
Foxconn - PZ9402A-3156-01F - Socket - CPU
Analog Devices - AD1986AJCPZ - Codec - Audio, AC'97 and HD, SoundMAX
iTE - IT8712F-S - I/O Controller - Super I/O Device, Low Pin Count
Attansic - F1 - Ethernet Controller - Single Chip Solution, Integrated 10/100/1000Mbps Transceiver, IEEE802.3u Auto-Negotiation, GMII & RGII MAC Interface
APEC - AP60T03GH - MOSFET - N-Channel, 30V, 45A (Qty: 4)
Combo Jack - 2xUSB / RJ45, Stacked, Vertical, w/ LEDs & Metal Housing
Total BOM Costs (w/Manufacturing) $44.03
What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis
The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing and test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.
Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions
We have assumed that for this device, that not only final assembly, but also any custom mechanicals (PCBs, plastics, and metals, etc.) were all sourced or manufactured domestically in China. Most motherboard manufacturers, while based in Taiwan, are assumed to be producing the bulk of their boards in mainland China.
Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of 'finished' sub-assemblies (such as chargers), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.
The issue of labor rates was revisited in Q2 2006 as we began to apply some research by one the major worldwide EMS suppliers and are now applying some of their research on total loaded costs by country and region to arrive at these new rates which are pronouncedly higher on the low end in China. Remember that labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines.
Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity
Motherboards, even when base on identical core chipsets, tend to take varying design approaches (and implementation of various features) and therefore will vary in terms of complexity, cost and component count. Using component counts and I/O counts, relative comparisons can be made between similar motherboards and other devices. In fact - this motherboard was analyzed against 3 other (4 total) motherboards with 940-pin sockets for AMD Athlon - so these other boards make for the best comparison.
The average component count for these 4 motherboards is 978, with the ASUS M2N-MX coming in by far below the average and at the bottom of the pack with a total component count total of 660.
Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design. The cost of manufacturing is also, to some extent, decreased in this case because of assumed labor rate applied for China.
Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.
The ASUS M2N-MX is based on a single-chip north/southbridge solution from Nvidia (NF-6100-430-N-A2) which integrates the GeForce6100 and nForce430 chipset. The motherboard also features a 940-pin ""AM2" socket that supports AMD Athlon 64 CPUs (not included in this analysis). We have not previously seen this chip(set) in other teardowns.
Here is a summary of the major components used in the ASUS M2N-MX design:
Northbridge / Southbridge
- Nvidia - NF-6100-430-N-A2 - Northbridge / Southbridge - Single Chip - GeForce6100 and nForce430, 425MHz GPU
- I/O Controller - iTE - IT8712F-S - Super I/O Device, Low Pin Count
- Ethernet Controller - Attansic - F1 - Single Chip Solution, Integrated 10/100/1000Mbps Transceiver, IEEE802.3u Auto-Negotiation, GMII & RGII MAC Interface
- Audio Codec - Analog Devices - AD1986AJCPZ - Audio, AC'97 and HD, SoundMAX
Memory (On Mobo)
- NOR Flash - SST - SST49LF040B-33-4C-NHE - 4Mb (512Kx8), LPC