I have a legacy-free motherboard. It's not totally legacy-free as it still has a floppy drive controller but what it does lack are serial, COM and PS/2 ports.

The reasons to change to a legacy-free computing world:

  1. Less legacy ports mean more USB ports. Before I went legacy-free I was forever running out of USB ports, now I have 8 USB ports to play about with. More than I need for my mouse, keyboard, mp3 player, digital camera, etc.
  2. Better future compatibility. Legacy-free motherboards usually come with USB 2.0 and Firewire as standard. My board even came with 4 RAID connectors, meaning I could potentially attach 12 IDE devices to it!

The reaons not to change to a legacy free computer world:

  1. Ownership of legacy free devices. When I upgraded I had to buy a new keyboard, not a big deal really. Luckily I already owned a USB printer and I don't connect to the internet via a modem through this computer. However, if I did, I could have used a USB or PCI hardware modem (yes, they do exist!).
  2. Expense. The only legacy-free motherboards on the market at the moment are the Abit boards and they are at least 50% more expensive than a non-legacy board, although this is probably down to the exta RAID connectors, on-board 5.1 sound with digital output, on-board LAN, etc.
  3. Cheap USB/Fireward PCI cards. What's the point of getting rid of all these potentially useful legacy-port when you can add a PCI and have the best of both worlds?

I think the question of performance is a false one. The differences are minimal and the benchmarks have proved that the Abit legacy-free boards are among the fastest on the market today.

Whether to go legacy-free is down to personal preference. I expect one day everyone will use legacy-free computers, even if it's not exactly necessary at the present time.