ASUS 2010 Product Seminar
Published: 28th May 2010 | Source: ASUS |
Rampage III Extreme
ASUS’ top of the line board, the Rampage III Extreme has been out for a little while now. The board was designed extreme performance in mind, using the best components and technologies available. One thing the board lacks however, is support for 4-way SLI, which requires 2 nVidia NF200 chips.
Why no NF200’s on the R3E?
ASUS decided to build the Rampage III Extreme without using NF200 chips because such a small percentage of users will run a 4-way SLI set-up. Also the NF200 decreases performance in 3-way SLI setups, being another component in between the chipset and PCI-Express subsystem.
Building the board with NF200’s onboard would also add more heat and power consumption for such a niche feature, not to mention increasing the cost and complexity of what is already a very high end motherboard.
But what if I want to run 4-way SLI?
To cater to the hardest of the hardcore, the extreme overclockers attempting to beat world record benchmark scores with 4-card setups, ASUS have developed the ROG Xpander.
The ROG Xpander is an add-in board containing the 2 NF200 chips required for 4-way SLI. It plugs into the motherboards existing PCI-E slots, providing 4 well-spaced PCI-Express slots to allow for insane GTX480 quad-SLI setups.
The ROG Xpander will be sold separately from the Rampage III Extreme, allowing you to choose if you want NF200 or not. The raised height of the PCI-Express slots will no doubt cause problems installing the board in a case, however for the target market of extreme overclockers, this will not be an issue.