Asus P5E3 vs. Asus Maximus Extreme

Discussion in 'Asus' started by Matt, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. Matt

    Matt Guest

    Hello. I'm looking around for a new motherboard to go in my new build
    and am interested in two Asus boards:

    - Asus P5E3 (£111)
    - Asus Maximus Extreme (£177)

    However, having looked on the Dabs website (which is where I got the
    prices from) the only things the more expensive model has over the
    chepaer model are:

    - 1 extra eSATA port
    - SMBIOS 2.4 support instead of SMBIOS 2.3
    - "2-Phase DDR3" (whatever that is)
    - ASUS CPU Level Up
    - ASUS Crosslinx Technology

    I'm no overclocker, so am I going to miss any of these features if I
    decide to spend the money on a better CPU?

    Kind Regards,

    Matt, Jul 3, 2008
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  2. Matt

    Paul Guest

    One issue I see, is the Maximus Extreme is larger than the ATX standard
    for motherboards, of 12"x9.6". So you may have to search for a case
    big enough to hold it. It is an inch wider than normal, and the corner
    mounting hole, on the right hand end of the board, as a result are
    no longer in the corners. I guess that is to make room for the chunk of
    metal over the Southbridge. The Maximus Extreme also has hose barbs, for
    the optional connection of water cooling, to the chipset.

    I'd check the Newegg reviews, and, for more info on the
    respective boards.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
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  3. Matt

    Matt Guest

    Also, are their any other motherboarss around the £110 mark that I
    should be considering? I'm aware Asus boards are popular with
    overclockers. However, as I am not an overclocker would I be paying a
    premuim for features I wouldn't use?

    Kind Regards,

    Matt, Jul 3, 2008
  4. Matt

    Paul Guest

    P5E3 is X38 chipset, and offers two fully wired PCI Express video
    slots. You could look for P35 chipset as an alternative, like
    P5K3. P5K3 looks like it has the same Vcore setup, for powering
    the processor. Both boards only have PS/2 keyboard plug, and no
    PS/2 mouse plug (an issue only if you are using a KVM).

    To some extent, the higher end boards are supporting better
    potential video capabilities. X38 would be for Crossfire, with
    two ATI cards in tandem. Nvidia SLI chipsets would handle two
    Nvidia cards in tandem. If you don't need those kinds of gamer
    features, and can live with one video card (driving up to two
    monitors), you have a lot more options.

    P35 or P45 should be cheaper than X38, X48, or some high end
    Nvidia SLI chipset. And as long as the Vcore setup looks
    good, and the reviews look good, that should be a good
    enough solution. Some models are differentiated, by having
    a Firewire connector on the back, or other I/O enhancements,
    and that accounts for the small dollar spread between some
    of the models. But not all the pricing differences are
    rational. And the junky additions of the super high end
    boards, adds nothing to the computing experience. Who
    wants a motherboard that mocks you with "CPU Init" on a
    tiny LCD display, when a cheaper board posts every time
    and never complains ?

    The reason I picked the P35 or the P45, is there can be
    much older chipsets (P965), but the maximum FSB might be
    lower on those. A lot of processors are FSB1333 now, which
    is a reason to try to use a more current chipset. Boards
    seem to reach FSB2000 or so, as an upper limit on overclock,
    but you've already mentioned you're not an overclocker.
    And that gives you some idea how much headroom, for normal
    operation, that these chipsets have.

    X38 and X48 have ECC capability, but the feature is not
    well supported (i.e. is missing from motherboard adverts,
    may not support DDR3, may not actually be working). If you
    are interested in enhanced memory error detection, it is
    an uphill struggle. The last time I looked, I don't think
    I could find any DDR3 with ECC. Only DDR2 had ECC, and the
    sticks weren't that fast. So one of the selling features
    of those chipsets, is the addition of ECC, but in general,
    the motherboard makers haven't gone out of their way to
    promote it, or make it work. P35 and P45 don't have ECC
    as an option, so you're saved from even thinking about it.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  5. I recently purchased the Gigabyte GA-EP35-DS3L board and it worked fine
    with the E8400 CPU I installed in it. At $84 it is much less than the
    £110 figure the OP was looking at.
    Michael W. Ryder, Jul 3, 2008
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