Audio Modem Riser

Definition of Audio Modem Riser

Audio Modem Riser (AMR) is a specification for a hardware interface on a computer’s motherboard, developed in the late 1990s. It allows manufacturers to incorporate audio and modem functionalities onto expansion cards while reducing costs. AMR cards typically share system resources with the CPU, leading to minimal impact on the system’s overall performance.


The phonetic pronunciation of “Audio Modem Riser” is:- Audio: /ˈɔːdi.oʊ/- Modem: /ˈmoʊdəm/- Riser: /ˈraɪzər/

Key Takeaways

  1. Audio Modem Riser (AMR) is a specification designed for integrating audio, modem, or both functions on a single expansion card, helping reduce costs and save space in computer systems.
  2. Motherboard manufacturers usually produce AMR cards and are specifically tailored to the specifications of their motherboards, resulting in enhanced compatibility and performance.
  3. With the development of newer technologies like AC’97 and PCI Express, the use of AMR cards has gradually declined and they can now be considered obsolete.

Importance of Audio Modem Riser

The term Audio Modem Riser (AMR) holds importance in the realm of technology as it refers to a compact and cost-effective expansion slot that enables the integration of various input/output sound and modem functions directly onto the motherboard of a computer system.

Introduced in the late 1990s, this modular solution supported efficiently utilizing hardware resources. It minimized the need for multiple communication peripherals, contributing to more streamlined computer designs and reduced manufacturing costs.

Although later superseded by newer technologies, AMR still stands as a notable milestone in computer architecture development.


The Audio Modem Riser (AMR) is a unique technology component specifically designed to enhance the functionalities of motherboards while maintaining cost-effectiveness and space optimization. Its primary purpose is to facilitate the connection of audio and modem devices to the motherboard without additional expansion cards or complex installations.

AMR offers a compact and economical solution for system integrators and manufacturers who aim to produce computer systems with efficient multimedia capabilities while conserving resources and adhering to budget constraints. In practical use, AMR enables integrating sound and telecommunication features within motherboard designs.

This grants users access to high-quality audio capabilities and the ability to connect to the internet via dial-up modems—though dial-up modems might be considered obsolete by today’s standards. When used alongside corresponding devices, the AMR slot also lessens the burden on the Central Processing Unit (CPU) by offloading specific processing tasks related to audio and telecommunication signals.

Consequently, the AMR technology is a valuable addition to the computer systems as it effectively balances enhanced functionality, resource optimization, and cost management.

Examples of Audio Modem Riser

Audio Modem Riser (AMR) is an older technology introduced in the late 1990s, designed to enable cost-effective, integrated audio and modem capabilities on motherboards. Here are three real-world examples involving AMR technology:

Early integrated audio solutions: In the late 1990s and early 2000s, computer manufacturers, such as Dell, HP, and Acer, used Audio Modem Riser (AMR) technology as a cost-saving measure. By using an AMR-compatible motherboard, manufacturers could reduce costs and use a single slot for audio and modem. Some of these computers had a low-cost AMR audio or modem card pre-installed.

Soft modems: At the time of AMR’s introduction, soft modems were quite popular, as they relied on the computer’s main processor rather than dedicated hardware. AMR-based soft modems provided cost-effective dial-up internet access for a wide range of computers, making them an attractive option for users building their home computers.

Legacy support: As newer technologies like Audio Codec ’97 (AC’97) and High Definition Audio emerged in the early to mid-2000s, AMR technology gradually lost its relevancy and was replaced by more advanced alternatives. However, some users who needed to maintain compatibility with older software or hardware continued to use AMR-based devices. In this situation, legacy support for AMR was necessary and sometimes achieved through specialized drivers or adapters.

Audio Modem Riser FAQ

What is an Audio Modem Riser (AMR)?

An Audio Modem Riser (AMR) is a hardware slot or expansion slot on a motherboard designed to accommodate audio, modem, or other communication functionalities as an add-on card. It allows manufacturers to provide cost-effective and flexible solutions for managing motherboard audio and modem devices.

What is the purpose of an Audio Modem Riser?

The primary purpose of an AMR slot is to minimize the manufacturing cost of the motherboard by moving the typically integrated audio and modem components to an optional separate riser card. This provides users with the choice of adding these features to their system at their discretion, and enables manufacturers to score more variations from a single motherboard design.

What kind of devices can be connected to an AMR slot?

Devices specifically designed for an AMR slot, such as AMR-compatible audio or modem cards, can be connected to the AMR slot. These cards usually do not have the full range of features found in standalone audio or modem cards but are more affordable and suitable for systems with basic requirements.

Is the Audio Modem Riser technology still in use?

AMR technology has largely been replaced by more modern solutions like Communications and Networking Riser (CNR) or Advanced Communications Riser (ACR). These newer standards provide additional features and capabilities compared to AMR. Currently, most motherboards come with integrated audio and network functionalities, eliminating the need for a separate AMR, CNR, or ACR card.

Can I use an AMR card on modern motherboards?

Most modern motherboards no longer support AMR slots, as they come with integrated audio and network functionalities. If you need to expand or improve audio or network features, using PCI or PCIe expansion cards that are widely available and compatible with modern motherboards is recommended.

Related Technology Terms

    • AMR Slot
    • Sound Card

Sources for More Information


About The Authors

The DevX Technology Glossary is reviewed by technology experts and writers from our community. Terms and definitions continue to go under updates to stay relevant and up-to-date. These experts help us maintain the almost 10,000+ technology terms on DevX. Our reviewers have a strong technical background in software development, engineering, and startup businesses. They are experts with real-world experience working in the tech industry and academia.

See our full expert review panel.

These experts include:


About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

More Technology Terms

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents