Right, we start with a series of photo's on the product. We have a good look at the motherboard which can be recognized by that familiar look and feel design wise, a nearly impossible to differentiate layout and a common feature set. It is nice looking motherboard alright as you'll find out. The focus of this motherboard is that it has a dark looking design whilst remaining competitive with pricing.
We dig the two tone (black/red) design a lot, its themed after the ROG style of course. Dark colored PCBs are the trend these days. What immediately catches the eye are the sheer stylish looks and heatsinks sitting on top of the chipset. The board has lots of features which we'll walk you through in a minute.
We received the final retail sample and as such it comes packed with a quite decent product bundle. Among the gear inside the kit, you'll find the following the Motherboard; 2-Way/3-way SLI Bridges, ROG-connect cable, I/O Shield SATA 6G cables Quick connector kit, Manual and Driver CD.
Obviously ASUS tried hard to keep this motherboard affordable. The extras you need to seek in the overall design and components usage, which is impressive all by itself when you peek at the motherboard for the first time.
Notable features include 7x SATA 6G connections, one eSATA connectors, USB 2.0 and 3.0 internal headers, 4x PCIe x16 slots (physical), a legacy PCI slot. The mobo has DDR3 2133 MHz support straight out of the BIOS but that requires an OC mode. We spot socket AM3+, and also quality capacitors and solid core chokes.
Rear IO connectivity then
1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
1x external eSATA
1x Lan 10/100/1000 (Intel controller)
4x USB 3.0/2.0 ports
8x USB 2.0 ports (one for ASUS ROG connect)
1x S/PDIF optical output
8 channel analog audio
1x CLR CMOS button
7.1 audio which is managed by the Realtek ALC982 codec which supports High Definition audio up-to 7.1 channels. Audio will receive a Creative Labs SupremeFX layer for optimized audio quality (software suite).
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