At the expansion slot area are the following interfaces: one PCI Express x16, two PCI Express x1, and two PCI. There is also an additional two SATA ports in this area of the motherboard and the single IDE ATA-133 connector. For users still relying upon IDE devices, the location of this connector may be a bit of hassle with cable management, but with the decreasing number of IDE devices this should not be of concern much longer.
Nearing the CPU socket is the Intel P965 Chipset which is covered by Abit's Silent OTES. The Silent OTES on the AB9 extends from the Northbridge to the I/O panel area where the heatpipe ends with a second heatsink that provides cooling for some of the power circuitry. Also on other PWM circuitry are smaller heatsinks. This revision of OTES has seemed to last the longest, and from testing a number of motherboards this cooling design has been very successful. Around the CPU socket area there is no power circuitry that should obstruct the installation of any aftermarket heatsinks or waterblocks.
At the rear of the Abit AB9 motherboard are a single Gigabit ethernet connection, four USB 2.0, six audio, SPDIF, and two PS/2 connectors. With this design seeming to be based upon the KN9 Ultra, we have no complaints about the layout and should work out well for most enthusiasts.