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ASUS Maximus III Gene LGA 1156 Micro ATX Motherboard Review

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Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: Asus
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Introduction and Specifications

ASUS rolls out Maximus III Gene for hardcore LAN gamers

 



Photo courtesy of ASUS

At PC Perspective, we get the privilege to test a wide range of motherboards that target many of our site's core audiences like PC enthusiasts, hardcore overclockers, HTPC builders, and PC gamers. The feature sets on many boards can vary widely depending on who they are geared toward, but there is a consensus right now for these basic options -- quad core CPU support, quad GPU graphics support, premium audio (onboard or as add-on), and higher rated DDR3 memory support. These are tall orders for many boards to live up to, but one such micro ATX solution that fits the bill is the ASUS Maximus III Gene. This LGA 1156 solution hits the mark on several key areas like support for quad GPU SLI and CrossfireX graphics configurations, DDR3 2133 (overclocked), and a Creative SupremeFX X-Fi audio chip onboard.



Photo courtesy of ASUS

The Maximus III Gene is only one of two ASUS micro ATX P55-based motherboards that garner the Republic of Gamers brand. Receiving the ROG branding means ASUS threw everything including the kitchen sink into the Maximus III Gene. Not only do users get high-end hardware components, but they also get a plethora of software utilities to enhance almost every aspect of the gamer and overclocker's experience with this motherboard.



Photo courtesy of ASUS

Some of the exclusive features on all ROG motherboards includes ROG Connect, CPU Level Up, and Voltiminder LED. ROG Connect monitors the status of a user's PC and programs precise performance tweaks in real-time automatically. CPU Level Up will give any installed LGA 1156 processor a speed boost through an added CPU clock cycle. An interesting feature for advanced overclockers is ASUS's Voltiminder LED, which ASUS describes as acting like the "red zone" of a tachometer, which displays the voltage status of the CPU, PCH, and memory in a color-coded LEDs. There are several other bundled applications that should give novice and experience users more out of the Maximus III Gene than many other standard micro ATX P55-based boards out there today.

 

ASUS Maximus III Gene technical specifications (taken from ASUS website)

CPU   

  • Intel® Socket 1156 Core™ i7 Processor/Core™ i5 Processor
  • Supports Intel® Turbo Boost Technology

Chipset

  • Intel® P55 Express Chipset

Memory

  • 4 x DIMM, Max. 16 GB, DDR3 2133(O.C.)*/2000(O.C.)/1600/1333/1066 Non-ECC,Un-buffered Memory
  • Dual Channel memory architecture
  • * Hyper DIMM support is subject to the physical characteristics of individual CPUs.
  • **Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)

Expansion Slots   

  • 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (support single at x16 or dual at x8/x8 mode)
  • 1 x PCIe x4
  • 1 x PCI 2.2

Multi-GPU Support   

  • Supports NVIDIA® Quad-GPU SLI™ Technology / ATI® Quad-GPU CrossFireX™ Technology

Storage  

  • Intel® P55 Express Chipset built-in
  • 6 xSATA 3.0 Gb/s ports
  • Intel Matrix Storage Technology Support RAID 0,1,5,10


JMicron® JMB363 SATA controller

  • 1 xExternal SATA 3.0 Gb/s port at rear (SATA On-the-Go)
  • 1 xSATA 3.0 Gb/s port

LAN   

  • Gigabit LAN controller featuring AI NET2

GameFirst

Audio   

SupremeFX X-Fi built-in

  • 8-channel High Definition Audio CODEC
  • EAX® Advanced™ HD 4.0
  • X-Fi CMSS®-3D
  • X-Fi Crystalizer™
  • Creative ALchemy
  • Blu-ray support
  • Supports Optical S/PDIF out port on rear

IEEE 1394   

  • 2x 1394a ports (1 port at back I/O, 1 port onboard)

USB   

  • 14 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (5 ports at mid-board, 9 ports at back panel)

ASUS Unique Features   

  • MemOK!
  • MemPerfect
  • ProbeIt
  • Onboard Switches: Power / Reset / Clr CMOS (at rear)
  • ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
  • ASUS Q-Connector
  • ASUS Q-Slot
  • ASUS Q-DIMM
  • ASUS EPU
  • ASUS Fan Xpert
  • ASUS MyLogo3
  • ASUS EZ Flash 2
  • ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3

CPU Power Design

  • 8-phase CPU power
  • 2-phase VTT power
  • 2-phase Memory power

Overclocking Features

  • ROG Connect
  • CPU Level Up
  • iROG
  • Extreme Tweaker
  • Loadline Calibration

Intelligent overclocking tools

  • ASUS TurboV EVO
  • O.C. Profile

Overclocking Protection

  • COP EX (Component Overheat Protection - EX)
  • Voltiminder LED
  • ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)

Back Panel I/O Ports   

  • 1 x External SATA
  • 1 x S/PDIF Out (Optical)
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a1 x LAN(RJ45) port
  • 9 x USB 2.0/1.1
  • 1 x PS/2 Keyboard port (purple)
  • 1 x Clr CMOS switch
  • 1 x ROG Connect On/Off switch

8-channel Audio I/O with gold-plated jack

Internal I/O Connectors   

  • 3 x USB connectors supports additional 5 USB 2.0 ports (1 port reserved for ROG Connect at rear)
  • 1 x IEEE 1394a connector
  • 7 x SATA connectors (one is from JMicron® 363 (black))
  • 5 x Fan connectors: 1 x CPU / 2 x Chassis / 2 x Optional
  • 1 x SPDIF out header
  • 1 x CD audio in
  • 1 x Front panel audio connector
  • 2 x thermal sensor connectors
  • 1 x 24-pin ATX Power connector
  • 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector
  • 1 x En/Dis-able Clr CMOS header
  • 5 x ProbeIt measurement points
  • 1 x Go Button

System panel connector

  • BIOS    16 Mb Flash ROM , AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.4, ACPI2.0a Multi-Language BIOS
  • Manageability     WOL by PME,WOR by PME,PXE

Accessories  

  • User's manual
  • 1 x I/O Shield
  • 1 x ROG Connect Cable
  • 1 x ROG Cable Labels (12 in 1)
  • 1 x SLI Cable
  • 1 x 2-in-1 ASUS Q-Connector Kit
  • 3 x 2-in-1 SATA signal cables
  • 1 x Cable Ties
  • 1 x ROG Theme Label 

Support DVD

  • Drivers and applications
  • Sound Blaster X-Fi Utility
  • ROG GameFirst Utility
  • ASUS TurboV EVO Utility
  • ASUS PC Probe II
  • ASUS Update
  • ASUS AI Suite
  • Kaspersky® Anti-Virus

Form Factor  

  • uATX Form Factor
  • 9.6 inch x 9.6 inch ( 24.4 cm x 24.4 cm )

June 7, 2011 | 11:06 PM - Posted by Roberto Rivera (not verified)

Hello, i was interested in your post because I have the same motherboard and processor that you have. I would like to know step by step how did you overclock you processor i7 860 from 2.80GHz to 4.15GHz. Please reply me this message as soon as possible. Thanks.. My email is robertoj.riveraarroyo@gmail.com

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