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The Ultimate Storage Monster: 32 SATA Ports On A Single Motherboard

Onda has two very peculiar motherboards in the company's arsenal. The B250 D32-D3 and B250 D32-D3 IPFS motherboards both sport up to 32 SATA ports each.

(Image credit: Onda)

Chinese motherboard vendors are widely known for creating unorthodox products. For example, Soyo put out an H310C motherboard that supports up to four generations of Intel processors, or Huananzhi, which slapped DDR3 and DDR4 slots on an X99 motherboard. The list of unconventional motherboards continues to expand with Onda's B250 D32-D3 motherboard.

The Onda B250 D32-D3 measures 405.5 x 310.5mm and doesn't really comply with any established form factor. The motherboard evidently has an LGA 1151 socket, and it's based on the Intel B250 chipset, so processor support is limited to older Skylake and Kaby Lake chips. The B250 D32-D3 isn't your ordinary motherboard, though. It doesn't draw power from a 24-pin power connector, but, instead, from what looks like six 6-pin PCIe power connectors. However, the motherboard's uniqueness lies in the magnanimous number of SATA ports.

(Image credit: Onda)

Onda equipped the B250 D32-D3 with 32 SATA ports, like the kind you would find in laptops. Therefore, you can connect your hard drives or SSDs directly to the motherboard. Using the motherboard as a backplane would require a custom case, of course. Alternatively, you could spend some extra cash on SATA extension cables to connect your storage devices to the motherboard. It's highly improbable that the B250 chipset has enough bandwidth to handle the sheer amount of storage. Onda is most likely using third-party I/O controllers. Sadly, the motherboard vendor doesn't specify the brand or model of the controller. However, we managed to zoom into the chip, and the logo seems to belong to Marvell.

Other than the SATA ports, the motherboard's other specifications are pretty standard. The B250 D32-D3 has a single PCIe x1 slot and a USB 2.0 header. The rear panel houses two Ethernet ports, four USB 3.0 ports, one HDMI port, and one VGA connector. There's also a tiny button, whose function is probably to reset the motherboard's BIOS back to factory settings.

Onda lists the B250 D32-D3 and B250 D32-D3 IPFS for 3,299 yuan, which converts to around $466.80. We doubt you'll find either of these motherboards over in the U.S. market. You'll probably have to look on AliExpress.