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ASUS Rampage IV Extreme (Intel X79) Motherboard Review

The first motherboard to go through the Sandy-E gauntlet comes from ASUS and is the Rampage IV Extreme we've been using for our launch coverage.

| Socket LGA 2011 in Motherboards | Posted: Nov 14, 2011 8:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 99%Manufacturer: ASUS

Introduction

 

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The Rampage IV Extreme. We've already looked at it in preview form and the board looks the goods. It's also been the main board that's behind our 3960X launch coverage for the simple reason it looks to be one of the best available come launch day.

 

Since everything is already sitting so nicely in the Rampage IV Extreme, it seemed like the perfect motherboard to look at first up. The ROG line of boards have a strong past and having already previewed the Rampage IV Extreme, it's pretty fair to say that they're going to have a strong future.

 

Unfortunately in our preview we couldn't look at everything that was included in the board with the main thing we missed out on being the included bundle and a break down on the PCIe expansion slots. Normally what we'd do is just quickly cover them and move on and while in the coming pages they're really the only two things we will cover, we have included all the pictures of the board in case you didn't get a chance to look at our preview.

 

If you're interested in getting a bit more specific on the controllers used throughout the board, then I'd highly recommend that you check out our original preview linked above, if you're not too worried about that, though, and instead just want to see the bundle and see what's going on in the PCIe department, you may as well just stay here, enjoy some more sexy photos of the Rampage IV Extreme before we get into the BIOS and cover the overclocking side of things.

 

 

The Package

 

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The bundle for the Rampage IV Extreme is actually huge and there's some real stand out inclusions. Looking above, you see a lot of the things we're used to seeing; manual, Driver CD, eight SATA cables, I/O back plate and EZ Connectors. We've got a couple of cables that also let us monitor the voltage of the board in certain areas and in the far right bottom corner we've got a 1366 back plate.

 

What this back plate does for is, if you're using LN2 pots, a serious Water Cooling solution or anything like that, you're able to replace the back plate on the current board and use this one. In turn your 1366 socket coolers will then be compatible. If you've paid loads of money for really high end cooling equipment on your X58 platform, the inclusion of just a simple bracket is going to be so appreciated.

 

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On the VGA connector front we've got four included. Along with a SLI and CrossFire one, we've got a 3-Way and 4-Way SLI connector included in the package. Above you can also see we've got our white USB cable which is used for ROG Connect if that's something you want to make use of.

 

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Another set of cables included are the VGA Hotwire Cables and these allow you to adjust the core clock and monitor areas of your VGA card. This is something that most users aren't going to use. Instead it's more designed for LN2 overclockers wanting to get the most out of everything. Normally you'd be using separate devices for this kind of stuff. ASUS has instead implemented it all into the motherboard.

 

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Finally, the biggest addition to the package is the new "OC Key" from ASUS. Connecting to your motherboard and working through your monitor, the new "OC Key" brings a completely new way of overclocking to the table. We're not going to go heaps into this here, as honestly there's a heap to say about it, so we'll go into it in more detail in just a moment.

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