Asrock X58 Extreme3 Review


Asrock X58 Extreme3 Review


Asrock should be a name familiar to most of you as their motherboards have provided the basis for many pre-built systems over the years. They have provided motherboards in the value bracket for a long time, but with the advent of many new technologies recently it's a very good time to combine everything into one high-end motherboard and really go to town.

So, does the well-known ability of Asrock to provide motherboards that undercut the competition marry well to the need for high performance?

Time to find out.

Technical Specifications

Nipping along to the Asrock website we can get a list of the specifications for the X58 Extreme3

  1. Supports the Core i7 980X 6-Core CPU
  2. ASRock DuraCap (2.5 x longer life time), 100% Japan-made high-quality Conductive Polymer Capacitors
  3. Advanced V8 Power Phase Design
  4. Supports Triple Channel DDR3 2000 (OC)
  5. Supports ATI™ CrossFireX™ and Quad CrossFireX™
  6. Supports NVIDIA® Quad SLI™ and SLI™
  7. 1 x Powered eSATAIII/USB Connector, 2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connector, 2 x USB 3.0 Ports
  8. ErP/EuP Ready, Dr. Debug
  9. Smart Swith Design : Power / Reset / Clear CMOS Switch with LED
  10. Supports ASRock Instant Boot, Instant Flash, OC DNA, Multi-Speed Fan Control, OC Tuner, IES, Good Night LED
  11. 7.1 CH HD Audio (VT2020 Audio Codec with QSound), SRN 110dB & Premium Blu-ray audio support
  12. Combo Cooler Option (C.C.O.)
  • Free Bundle: CyberLink DVD Suite - OEM and Trial; Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi MB - Trial

With native support for the very latest 32nm Intel processors and the 333 (eSATA 6Gb/s, SATA3 6Gb/s and USB3.0) technologies this definitely ticks all the boxes for our hardware needs. Running down the list the only thing we're slightly concerned about is the use of the VIA VT2020 instead of the excellent Realtek ALC889 found on nearly every other X58 motherboard.

Okay time to take a look at what we get.

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Most Recent Comments

12-05-2010, 06:47:16

What a excellent well thought out review.

I agree a floppy and IDE is a bit nuts. the ide i could live with just for moving across old stuff or to use some of the old 750 gigs i have lying around how ever the floppy . that got me scratching my head. Allso why do they have PS2 ports. they could have saved a few quid buy removing all this old gear.

I wasn't to fussed about placement of parts until you said about the small fan. oh dear me comes to mind here.

The sound OH MY OH MY OH MY .. squealing , electrical noise .. oh dear me a throw back to the early days of the first on board sound comes to mind. That is one hell of a major flaw esp since a hell of a lot of people now a days use on board sound. Something doesn't sound rite at all.

ASrock have all ways mixed old and new tech but if the old tech is a bad interference on the new tech then is it a worth while thing to do. All so i noted that the caps next to the ram slots are well to say the least unbelievably close to the ram slots does that cause any problems (just wondering). Ive seen ppl miss when placing ram in there slot and them caps look a little fragile. I could imagine them being ripped off by accident,

Ah well asrock nice try may be a ver 2 would be on the drawing boards pritty much straight away ....

p.s Love the Insta Boot if it works that well.Quote

12-05-2010, 10:39:48

Yea the big performance thing that caught me off guard was the 3DMark Vantage scores. There must be some serious things screwed up there. My Q6700 at 3.5ghz easily gets to 30k on performance for CPU. Why would a better CPU get less? This mobo seems to be one to stay away from.

I do like that instant on feature though. That's pretty cool to get into Windows so fast.Quote

12-05-2010, 12:03:46

The 3D mark scores you get are probably physx enhanced, which won't be the case for these scores. Mine will only hit 35K or so standard. Also, floppy drive, welcome to the 1990s?Quote

12-05-2010, 13:24:28

Probably for people that still flash using floppy maybe?Quote

12-05-2010, 14:52:50

Hmm I have used this for about 3 weeks Just to give it a shot and be fair.Its ALOT better than i thought . BUT how true that it cant hold the OC's without CRAZY voltages.:0.. soall and all if they had a few Minor tweeks IE. Board layout ect and Updayed the bios WAY more often then they do. I would have givein it a shot. As it sits I just Orderd the RAMPAGE 3 EX. because if you can find that in stock you wouldnt want anything Asrock could go along way if promted to and Tried alittle harder. Quote

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