Asus And DFI: Core i7 Micro-ATX Motherboards Compared

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IzzyCraft

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Shame the DFI board didn't do better it help shut up people going where is the Rampage II gene in the Builders marathon.

Although this review let me have a little more respect for the board I'm still asus and gigabyte all the way.
 

Proximon

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Really nice article! BIOS screenshots are so important when helping someone configure their board on line, and we do a lot of that around here. I thought you hit all the major points and I especially like the conclusion format.
 

andy_mcp1

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Great article. About time the facts were laid on the table. I've not quite got to upgrading to I7 M-Atx yet, but got an Asus P5E-VM (not the best admittedly) and an E8400 which on air is oc'd to 4.1Ghz stable (for the past 8 months), which I’ve on countless occasions used to show my mates who have full atx systems that bigger isn’t always better as my 3dmark and pcmark scores were better than theirs (of comparable full sized board builds).

Good point, and I agree, that the hardest thing for the market is for those who have idealisms that the atx board with the most slots are best, have to admit that this not the case, that they don’t need and wont likely use them. It’s about time technology moved on and we start shrinking the components. We've come a long way from house sized computers but seems to have got stuck with fridge-sized atx, time to change that and join the 21st century!
 

doomtomb

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The prices between the DFI and Asus are nearly the same, a difference of $20 or $30. The Asus Rampage II Gene wins it in my opinion.
 

SpadeM

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For me, it's about the features and backplate I/O ports not the performance, when it comes to motherboards with the same chipset. The differences between them is so little that it doesn't matter in real life. Plus given the fat that motherboards, like processors, aren't identical I might get one that performs lower/better then what's in this review.
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]IzzyCraft[/nom]Shame the DFI board didn't do better it help shut up people going where is the Rampage II gene in the Builders marathon.Although this review let me have a little more respect for the board I'm still asus and gigabyte all the way.[/citation]

Really, the reason the Rampage II Gene wasn't considered for the $2500 PC is that it didn't show up under a Newegg category search (LGA-1366, Micro ATX) and Newegg didn't fix that until this week. It's a good board, and if you need a weird cooler style, supports the more popular LGA-775 coolers.
 

atamanroman

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I like it that uatx is getting more and more attention, since my own i7 uatx cube project is only a few weeks away.

but im missing the MSI X58M (160€ best prive vs 198€ asus and 190 dfi) here, theres a great review at anandtech. the board really rocks and has only a few weak points (fan control and s3 wake up problem if overclocked). i think ppl would be glad if the msi could be added to this comparison.

best regards,
roman
 

zehpavora

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Very good article, but I think that the components chosen should be from the same time frame, because I think that the P6T is "too old" compared to the GENE board. Maybe the P6T V2 would be a better idea. Now I fear the Mini-ATXs.
 

avatar_raq

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Nice article..I wonder if you were planning on it for a while or you wrote it in response to our comments in the SBM..And yeah it showed what I always expect from ASUS; top notch mobos.
P eople go for a full atx build simply because they can :)P), and because larger cases offer better cooling especially for SLI and CF, it's much easier to build and, other than portability, there is no real advantage of a micro-atx build, even the price difference is not worth it in my opinion. But the article does a good job of showing that u-atx boards can be excellent performers.
 

Onus

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Excellent article. Any differences between those boards are molehills, not mountains.
Personally, I'd probably give up a tiny bit of performance for the more noteworthy reduction in power used by DFI; I like the cooler flexibility of the Asus though. It would be a tough call.
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Former Staff
[citation][nom]atamanroman[/nom]I like it that uatx is getting more and more attention, since my own i7 uatx cube project is only a few weeks away.but im missing the MSI X58M (160€ best prive vs 198€ asus and 190 dfi) here, theres a great review at anandtech. the board really rocks and has only a few weak points (fan control and s3 wake up problem if overclocked). i think ppl would be glad if the msi could be added to this comparison.best regards,roman[/citation]

The article was put together a month ago, written two weeks ago, and waited in queue while other articles that had time restrictions went up first. That unfortunately left MSI out of contention, since its Micro ATX motherboard was more recently released.
 

dman3k

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[citation][nom]jtt283[/nom]Excellent article. Any differences between those boards are molehills, not mountains.Personally, I'd probably give up a tiny bit of performance for the more noteworthy reduction in power used by DFI; I like the cooler flexibility of the Asus though. It would be a tough call.[/citation]
I don't know why anyone thinks Asus's Rampage II Gene is better than DFI Lanparty Jr.

A mATX shouldn't drain as much power as full ATX. Asus's draining more power on idle is a huge negative. I've also always assumed that mATX will not match full ATX in performance. DFI's 14.44% more overall efficiency with 2.26% less performance vs. Asus's 2% more overall efficiency with 0.46% better performance, DFI wins this hands down.

Sure, if you're out there to get a full ATX board, you might as well get the mATX Asus Rampage II Gene. But if you're out to get a mATX board, which is what this comparison is for, DFI Lanparty Jr is way better.

DFI is the clear winner in this category.
 

ta152h

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I agree with the author on the first page, about micro-ATX being more than adequate. I prefer them over ATX, or BTX motherboards, for the simple reason the cases can be smaller, and generally are more attractive. EATX is useful for dual processors, but ATX is probably either too big for what people need, or too small (for multi-processor configurations, typically server).

I'd like to see micro-ATX get more popular, and there's really no reason why it should not be. There's no reason at all for lower performance. None.
 

KyleSTL

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I'm disappointed by the lack of peripheral testing (USB, SATA, IDE, LAN) these are the things that really set MBs apart from one another.
 

atamanroman

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[citation][nom]KyleSTL[/nom]I'm disappointed by the lack of peripheral testing (USB, SATA, IDE, LAN) these are the things that really set MBs apart from one another.[/citation]

so true, but i havent seen any bad usb performances on x58 boards yet.
 

Summer Leigh Castle

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Good review. As stated before, micro-ATX mobos are more than enough for most users. With most modern motherboards coming standard with IEEE and o'plenty of USBs, the need for additional PCI slots or 3xPCI-E is becoming unnecessary (and seriously, 2xPCI-E is more than enough). Also, I'm glad that Gene went with 4x 4-pin fans instead of the typical 3-pin design. I'm hoping to see more companies follow suit with micro-ATX boards.
 
G

Guest

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Since when is Firewire obsolete?? It still has better continuous throughput than USB, and works much better with those video appliances that use 1394. While Firewire a and b certainly do not match ESata for throughput, most of the ESata external drives have interfaces that don't take full advantage either - And 1394c will come very close to most drive's maximum throughput if anyone chooses to implement it.
 

blevsta

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I'm surprised by these mATX performances. I think it will still be hard to pick out the gems like these vs. some of the junk that's already out there.

A couple of questions: I noticed the temperatures for overclocked results weren't included. Do you think it would have varied from the stock settings results? Also, as someone else mentioned, the P6T now has a V2. Do you think the mATX can hang with a higher performance full ATX like the P6T V2 or the Rampage 2 Extreme?
 

Crashman

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[citation][nom]Blevsta[/nom]I'm surprised by these mATX performances. I think it will still be hard to pick out the gems like these vs. some of the junk that's already out there.A couple of questions: I noticed the temperatures for overclocked results weren't included. Do you think it would have varied from the stock settings results? Also, as someone else mentioned, the P6T now has a V2. Do you think the mATX can hang with a higher performance full ATX like the P6T V2 or the Rampage 2 Extreme?[/citation]

Wow, you're surprised? The most important part of the motherboard is the portion between the top row and second row of screws, its the same size between Micro ATX and full ATX so there's no excuse not to have similar performance.

That means when the VRM is the same (look at DFI), you get the same temps for the same configuration

The P6T was the top finisher from the previous roundup. Look at the roundup before that for the Rampage II Extreme. V2 means nothing for performance, and if you don't get that, dial all the way back to the Rampage II Extreme review to see how these boards compare.

The same configuration has been used for all three X58 motherboard roundups, the numbers can be compared exactly.
 

ossie

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[citation][nom]mjk - blah[/nom]Since when is Firewire obsolete??[/citation]
It's "obsolete" since m$ "developers" weren't capable (or willing) to write some decent support - originally it's Apple technology - so just crappy USB support is "in" - wintel "technology", great to unnecessarily load the CPU (wasn't nicknamed "unused serial bus" for years, for nothing). Winmodem anyone?
Don't forget, TH is bend over to glorify any m$ $hit - the two m$ fanbozos (yummy boy & tuanny boy) are representative for this trend ($$$ involved).
 

atamanroman

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[citation][nom]ossie[/nom]It's "obsolete" since m$ "developers" weren't capable (or willing) to write some decent support - originally it's Apple technology - so just crappy USB support is "in" - wintel "technology", great to unnecessarily load the CPU (wasn't nicknamed "unused serial bus" for years, for nothing). Winmodem anyone?Don't forget, TH is bend over to glorify any m$ $hit - the two m$ fanbozos (yummy boy & tuanny boy) are representative for this trend ($$$ involved).[/citation]

yup, apple doesnt care about "$$$", go get a mac mini for the same amount of "$$$" and compare performance.

but its true, the gene has a way better connectivity, who needs a floppy nowadays?
 
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