Asus Striker II Extreme 790i DDR3 Motherboard
There's no denying that Asus are on a roll at the moment when it comes to releasing top quality motherboards and the Striker II Extreme is yet another trophy for their cabinet. Featuring everything that we've come to expect from the Republic of Gamers series including an extremely comprehensive BIOS with insane voltage options and the Voltminder LED system to give you a visual warning when you're close to cooking your hardware, the Striker II Extreme is guaranteed to have overclockers drooling.
As we said not so long ago on the Striker II Formula review, all connectors on the board are just where you'd expect to find them and there are no stray molex connectors or other anomalies that are often common on motherboards from other manufacturers. Asus has also made a few small adjustments to the Striker based on customer feedback which ensure that the board is a delight to set up, and 'tidy freaks' aren't left with cables trailing across their motherboard that can't be hidden.
Of course, it's hard to talk about the Striker II Extreme without giving nVidia's latest chipset; the 790i some of the limelight. To put it simply, the 790i is everything that SLI'ers will have been waiting for. Not only does it run cooler than the likes of the 680i, but its performance is on par and often better than Intel's X38/X48 chipsets. Add to this the fact that the chipset is also an overclocking monster, effortlessly taking our Q6600 to new heights as well as managing a very respectable FSB speed of 508mhz on a QX9650, and it looks like nVidia may have just brought some of Intel's fun to an end.
If pre-order prices are anything to go by, the Striker II Extreme is set to be one of the most expensive boards ever to hit the market. Coming in at £260-£280 at various retailers, its hard to recommend purchasing the board unless you absolutely must have SLI along with DDR3 support and top overclocking all in one package. Hopefully nVidia will reduce the price of their latest chipset shortly after launch so that manufacturers like Asus can bring the price of their 790i boards more in line with their Intel counterparts.
• Thanks to the 790i, overclocking is no longer a weakness of the nVidia chipsets.
• 490fsb easily obtainable on a Q6600 - 508fsb on a QX9650
• Insane range of voltage options.
• Performance on par or better than a lot of Intel chipset boards.
• Great layout with tons of innovative features.
• Fusion cooling system works well without water.
• BIOS options not as extensive as on some of Asus' Intel chipset based motherboards.
• If it ends up costing anything near £280 - the price!!!
Thanks to Asus
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