Computer Electronics

Intel D946GZIS Motherboard Teardown

06 August 2007
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Benchmarking.

Main Features / Overview

The D946GZIS is a Micro-ATX form factor motherboard from Intel, and is part of their 'essential series' for "budget conscious users. This motherboard is based on an Intel 946GZS Northbridge, and 82801(GBSL) Southbridge chipset combination. The motherboard features a 775-pin socket that supports multiple Intel CPUs (including Core 2 Duo, Pentium D, Pentium 4 and Celeron D). See feature list for feature details.

Intel D946GZIS Motherboard Main ImageIntel D946GZIS Motherboard Main Image

Pricing and Availability

Found for as low as ~$80 USD online 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.

Intel D946GZIS Motherboard Cost AnalysisIntel D946GZIS Motherboard Cost Analysis

Cost Notes

Main Cost Drivers Representing ~74% of total materials cost as follows :

Intel - LE82946GZSL9R4 - Northbridge - Memory Controller and Graphics Hub

Intel - NH82801GBSL8FX - Southbridge - I/O Controller Hub (ICH7)

Catac Electronic - - 4-Layer - FR4, Lead-Free

Foxconn - - LGA Socket - Shepherd Hook Lever

Winbond - 8374LF2-C/L1 - I/O Controller - Super I/O, with Glue Functions, LPC Bus Interface

Sigmatel - STAC9227 - Codec - Audio, 8-Channel, HD

Intel - EP82562G - Ethernet Transceiver - 10BASE-T/100BASE-TX

Heatsink - Extruded Aluminum, Machined, w/ Thermal Transfer Material

Infineon - IPU09N03LB G - MOSFET - N-Channel, 30V, 50A (Qty: 6)

Analog Devices - ADT7476AARQZ - Fan Controller - dBCool™ Remote Thermal Controller and Voltage Monitor

Total BOM Costs (w/Manufacturing) $68.64

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.

Manufacturing Notes

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.

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.

There are no direct points of comparison that can be made (based on the previously unseen Intel chipset). However, the total component count for this Intel D946GZIS motherboard is 1300, placing it somewhere in the middle of the overall motherboard component count spectrum.

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.

Design Notes

This motherboard is based on an Intel 946GZS Northbridge, and 82801(GBSL) Southbridge chipset combination. The motherboard features a 775-pin socket that supports multiple Intel CPUs (including Core 2 Duo, Pentium D, Pentium 4 and Celeron D).

Here is a summary of the major components used in the Intel D946GZIS design:



  • Northbridge - Intel - LE82946GZSL9R4 - Memory Controller and Graphics Hub


  • Southbridge - Intel - NH82801GBSL8FX - I/O Controller Hub (ICH7)

I/O Interface

  • I/O Controller - Winbond - 8374LF2-C/L1 - Super I/O, with Glue Functions, LPC Bus Interface
  • Ethernet Transceiver - Intel - EP82562G - 10BASE-T/100BASE-TX
  • Audio Codec - Sigmatel - STAC9227 - 8-Channel, HD

Memory (On Mobo)

  • NOR Flash - Atmel - AT26DF041-SU - 4Mb, SPI Serial Interface, 33MHz


Intel D946GZIS Motherboard - Box ContentsIntel D946GZIS Motherboard - Box Contents

Powered by CR4, the Engineering Community

Discussion – 0 comments

By posting a comment you confirm that you have read and accept our Posting Rules and Terms of Use.
Engineering Newsletter Signup
Get the Engineering360
Stay up to date on:
Features the top stories, latest news, charts, insights and more on the end-to-end electronics value chain.
Weekly Newsletter
Get news, research, and analysis
on the Electronics industry in your
inbox every week - for FREE
Sign up for our FREE eNewsletter
Find Free Electronics Datasheets