Asus Crosshair IV Extreme



Our comprehensive evaluation of the Crosshair IV Extreme has identified a number of the board's strengths but also a number of pitfalls.

In terms of performance, it would generally appear that we are onto a winner here. During our testing, we were able to reach a peak HTT of 350MHz and the CH4E's Lucid Hydra performance proved to be very competitive. This would have been brilliant news to us had the board have launched over two weeks ago, but alas we have also spent this month working on MSI's 870A Fuzion Power Edition.

It is unusual for us to start mentioning a motherboard that is almost £100 more affordable, but its performance almost suggests otherwise. While a maximum base HTT of ~350MHz would have been impressive to us in the past, our MSI 870A Fuzion rumbled its way to a stonking 400MHz. Of course a base HTT of 350MHz is unlikely to hold any current non black edition processor, but it really is food for thought that the range topping Crosshair IV Extreme can't match it.

Unlike MSI, Asus have implemented the highest specification Hydra module (LT24102), which offers three way and four way Multi GPU configurations. Our 3DMark Vantage benchmark showed the Crosshair IV Extreme gain a 1000 mark advantage over the MSI Fuzion. As a system orientated towards multiple graphics cards, it would most certainly appear that the Asus is the way to go.

Then there's the board's convenience features. Aside PCB mounted Power Toggle buttons, the board offers instant BIOS recovery, the ability to power, overclock or diagnose your system remotely and also determine graphics card faults with a switch panel. While you pay a lot for these conveniences, most of these are unique to the AMD platform.

One mustn't either forget that the Crosshair IV Extreme is in essence an AMD equivalent to the Rampage III Extreme. Despite offering an identical feature set, the Crosshair IV Extreme is set to cost substantially less, which goes a long way towards offering a (like for like) VFM advantage against Intel's Core i7 platform. For many however, the concept of spending upwards of £200 on a Socket AM3 motherboard is cringe worthy regardless.

The Crosshair IV Extreme was all set to blow us all away but unfortunately, the 870A Fuzion stole some of its thunder. To summarise, if you are in the market for the world's most feature rich Socket AM3 motherboard, then this is it. So long as you can find a use for all of its mod-cons you will never be disappointed. Our suggestion? If you have the money, then go for it; just prepare to budget some noise cancelling headphones to complement the purchase...

The Good
- Leading Lucid Performance
- Feature Set
- Board Layout

The Mediocre
- Max HTT of 350 falls short of cheaper 870A Fuzion

The Bad
- Active Heatsink cooler

Thanks as ever to Asus for the CH4E on test today, you can discuss this review in our forums.

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Most Recent Comments

29-09-2010, 19:28:31

Good review as usual though it did seem a little short. I had a bad feeling regarding the actively cooled heatsink when i first looked at the board a few weeks back, out of interest how hot does it get when the fan is unplugged? Hydra performance is thankfully better than i expected too. At £250 its not cheap especially with AMD's new none compatible CPU's coming quite soon. Never the less I will give this board some serious consideration for my new build.Quote

29-09-2010, 19:34:47

Originally Posted by tinytomlogan View Post

At last, it's finally here. After four weeks of examining Asus' flagship AMD motherboard, what do we think of it?

Continue Reading
there is no graph for metro fella

man i realy wished this performed better its a shame thoQuote

29-09-2010, 20:08:41

I must admit that I'm not a fan of the ROG motherboards. I liked the CHIV but this one goes too far with add on crap that's all a bit pointless.

I mean sure, if you are a gadget freak then it may appeal to you, but the bottom line on a board of this cost is function. Function should come over form as it does with the MSI.

Yet it wasn't even able to match the MSI's bottom line function.

So all of the stick on tat does very little if it is being compared to what I would call a budget board.

It was the same with my CHII ROG. Loads of stupid tat (The LED poster for one) that was fun for about five minutes and then got old fast. The only thing I really liked on that board that explained away the premium price was the cmos reset on the IO shield - that was bloody marvellous. But the rest? I ended up disconnecting the LED poster after about six boots never to use it again.

And then I got my M3A32 deluxe wifi which was also a very expensive board, yet doesn't have any silly bits on and has far more to offer in the way of function.

Again I suppose Asus are going to cater to many people with this board, but what with this, the Ares, the Mars II (if it ever comes along) and that add in board previewed today I just worry sometimes that they are being a bit over indulgent and started to fritter away their successes on stupid stuff.

It's all starting to seem a little... How do you say it?... EVGA.

Sorry if I sound harsh or pessimistic, I am only thinking aloud. But I think this time MSI have shown that stuff like this and EVGA boards are all rather pointless.

Thanks ever so much as ever for the reviews guys. Quote

30-09-2010, 01:11:52

hi, i wanted to know if any of you readers, or even tom could tell me if this mobo is able to boot from a PCI e slot. im looking to build a system and have been hoping this board comes out, but was set on getting the formula. the only thing holding me back was the fact that it couldnt boot from pcie. i was planning on an OCZ RevoDrive ( but on the OCZ site, it states, "-Asus Crosshair IV – Please check with motherboard manufacturer for BIOS update to enable boot over PCIe." basically, with the new board, has the bios been updated to allow pci e booting? or am i still SOL...Quote

30-09-2010, 03:52:20

PCIE booting is not something we test for so Im affraid you will have to look on the Asus website for specifics dude sorry Quote

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