TechDiscover Asus BTF: Creating Beautifully Clean Cable-Free PC Builds

Discover Asus BTF: Creating Beautifully Clean Cable-Free PC Builds

Asus BTF

Image: Brad Chacos/IDG

The War on Cables was declared as the hottest PC trend of 2023 after Computex last summer, and at CES 2024, the concept genuinely came to life. Asus was busy showcasing its vision for a desktop PC without visible internal cabling – called “BTF” for “Back to the Future” – and hot damn, is it slick. Even better, this wire-free initiative is kicking off in mere months, with most major PC case vendors pledged to support it.

The Asus BTF concept moves all the major cable and power connections for your components to the back of the motherboard (get the BTF name now?), creating a design aesthetic in the main part of your case. MSI and Maingear are also promoting a similar concept known as “Project Zero,” but the key difference between that and Asus BTF is in the way they handle graphics card cabling.

Asus BTF

Look ma, no wires!

Brad Chacos/IDG

Project Zero still has you routing those big, beefy GPU cables directly to the standard position on your graphics card, somewhat blemishing the no-wires aesthetic. Asus BTF, on the other hand, adds a proprietary, smaller 600 watt PCIe slot to both compatible graphics cards as well as compatible motherboards, eliminating even GPU wires. It’s deliciously sleek while also helping combat GPU sag. (BTF motherboards will also work just fine with standard GPUs if you prefer.)

Asus BTF

The front of BTF motherboards don’t have any traditional connectors for power or data cables…

Brad Chacos/IDG

Asus BTF

…instead, they’re all moved to the rear of the motherboard and hidden inside the rear of your case.

Brad Chacos/IDG

BTF motherboards will be priced a little higher than their traditional counterparts – they need more, thicker shrouds on the front to account for extra soldering points necessitated by moving the power connectors to the back – but it shouldn’t be too bad. Asus representatives told me the company is targeting roughly a $30 price premium for a BTF mobo. The company is also releasing new cases that are compatible with BTF builds as well as traditional ATX motherboards.

Asus plans to roll out BTF to the masses via kits at first, so unsuspecting buyers don’t accidentally purchase graphics cards and motherboards that can’t be used with traditional components. First up is an all-white Asus TUF-branded kit with the specialized TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4070 Ti Super BTF White Edition, targeting a roughly $1,500-$2,000 total system price when it rolls out sometime around February.

Asus BTF

The ROG Strix BTF kit.

Brad Chacos/IDG

For the ballers among us, Asus is also planning on releasing a high-end, black-and-RGB’d out ROG Strix kit close to the end of the quarter, powered by the ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 BTF Edition with that special 600W connector. Both kits will have motherboards and cases matching their respective GPU’s aesthetic,

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