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ASUS ROG Rampage III Extreme (X58 Express) Motherboard - BIOS and Overclocking

ASUS drops another top-end Republic of Gamers board on us. This time it's the X58 Rampage III Extreme, ready and waiting for our Core i7-980X to make the most of it.

| Socket LGA 1366 in Motherboards | Posted: Jun 25, 2010 9:14 am
TweakTown Rating: 92%Manufacturer: ASUS

BIOS

 

The word BIOS stands for Basic Input/Output System. It was intended to be just that, a place to control the basic elements of the computer system (it was also intended to replace a ton of dip switches and jumpers). On the ASUS Rampage III Extreme, the BIOS is anything but basic.

 

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The place you will spend the most time is the Extreme Tweaker page. Here you can quickly find and adjust almost everything that you need to get the most out of your CPU.

 

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You can even drill down to adjust all of the memory settings as well as to install (that means save) your overclocks to the OC profiles available in the system.

 

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The Advanced page allows you to enable or disable the built in peripherals individually or to simply turn them all off at once.

 

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On the Tools page is another spot where you can adjust the O.C. Profiles loaded into the system. You can also setup the Go Button profiles, BIOS FlashBack and the Drive Xpert settings.

 

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As we have already shown you the OC Profiles, we will start with the Go Button settings. As you can see, the Go Button can allow you to set up a quick OC that you can activate while the system is powered on and in Windows. It is a handy little feature.

 

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The Drive Xpert page allows you to setup a hardware based RAID system quickly and easily without the need to enter a secondary BIOS system. On the RIIIE it works with the two SATA 3.0 controllers for an extremely fast RAID option (if you chose RAID 0).

 

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As always with the ASUS BIOSes, you can ether move through the settings in steps or you can actually manually key in the numbers for items like BLCK, Voltage, etc. I have to say that this is one of my favorite things about the ASUS BIOSes, as it is much faster to get the settings I want entered and get to testing.

 


Overclocking

 

Overclocking the RIIIE was very simple. The board seemed to want to be pushed. I started off with a conservative BCLK but soon found myself pushing for much more. In the end I was able to get into Windows at just over 4.5GHz, but without any hope of stability, as I backed things off I was able to hit a stable clock of 4.38GHz. This was without major tweaks so with a little more time I am sure that the RIIIE would allow me to hit 4.4GHz + stable using our air-cooling.

 

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You can see the validation for the Rampage III Extreme here.

 


TurboV

 

While the TurboV software will look very familiar on the surface, the version that ships with any of the Extreme ROG boards is subtly different. Gone are the easy, auto and Turbo Key options, while the manual option is a little more detailed.

 

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Here you can see your system status at a glance as well as overclock the CPU, memory and GPU fairly quickly.

 

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Also, if you have not set the ratio manually in the BIOS you can adjust the ratio using the TurboV software.

 

ROG Connect

 

We covered both the ROG Connect and the Bluetooth Connect in our review of the Maximus III Extreme. This feature is very handy if you have an extra system to use, or your phone supports the BT Connect application. As our iPhone 3G S does not support this we can only show you the screen shots of what this will look like on your system.

 

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Here you can get the readings from the extra Thermistors. Too bad ASUS only includes one.

 

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Here you see the clocks and frequencies; we are also seeing the extra functions available in the RC TweakIT.

 

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This confusing picture shows most of the extra features of the RC TweakIT software.

 

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Here you can choose what you want to see on the main display.

 

BT Connect

 

We have not been able to test this software out yet, but we are told that it is quite impressive in action (and that was not by an ASUS employee).

 

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As all overclocking results are dependent on the hardware you use, your results may vary. Results of our overclocking tests are included in the performance section with the stock scores.

 

Important Editor Note: Our maximum overclocking result is the best result we managed in our limited time of testing the motherboard. Due to time constraints we weren't able to tweak the motherboard to the absolute maximum and find the highest possible FSB, as this could take days to find properly. We do however spend at least a few hours overclocking every motherboard to try and find the highest possible overclock in that time frame. You may or may not be able to overclock higher if you spend more time tweaking or as new BIOS updates are released. "Burn-in" time might also come into play if you believe in that.

 

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