AMD A85X Mobo Roundup: ASRock, Gigabyte, Asus

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Asus F2A85-V Pro

At $140, the Asus F2A85-V Pro is the most expensive of the three motherboards in our roundup. Does it have the features to match its price?

The F2A85-V Pro has a black PCB and follows the same dark blue/light blue/black color scheme as the rest of Asus’ mainstream motherboards. It has the full complement of rear panel ports: PS/2, two USB 2, four USB 3.0, DisplayPort, HDMI, SPDIF, VGA, DVI, eSATA, Ethernet, and HD audio. It has three physical x16 slots, two x1 slots, and a PCI slot.
Asus F2A85-V Pro
Specifications & Features
CPU: Supports AMD Socket FM2 100W Processors
Supports CPUs up to 4 cores
Supports AMD Turbo Core 3.0 Technology

Chipset: AMD A85X (Hudson-D4)
Memory: Dual Channel DDR3 memory technology
4 x DDR3 DIMM slots
Supports DDR3 2400(O.C.) / 2250(O.C.) / 2200(O.C.) / 2133(O.C.) / 2000(O.C.) / 1866 / 1600 / 1333 / 1066 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Max. capacity of system memory: 64GB
Supports Intel Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) and AMD Memory Profile (AMP)
 
Graphics: Integrated AMD Radeon™ HD 7000 Series Graphics in A-series APU
Multi-VGA output support : HDMI/DVI/RGB/DisplayPort ports
Supports HDMI with max. resolution 1920 x 1080 @ 60 Hz
Supports DVI with max. resolution 2560 x 1600 @ Hz
Supports RGB with max. resolution 1920 x 1600 @ 60 Hz
Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 60 Hz
Maximum shared memory of 2048 MB
AMD® Dual Graphics technology support *1
Supports DirectX 11
Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX Technology
Supports LucidLogix Virtu MVP Technology
Audio: Realtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
Supports Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
LAN: Realtek® 8111F, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)
Slots: 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8)
1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (x4 mode)
2 x PCIe 2.0 x1
2 x PCI
SATA3: 7 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), gray
1 x eSATA 6Gb/s port(s), red
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10, JBOD
USB 3.0: ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller :
2 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, blue)
AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4) chipset :
4 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, , 2 at mid-board)
AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4) chipset :
10 x USB 2.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, , 8 at mid-board)
Rear Panel: 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse combo port(s)
1 x DVI
1 x D-Sub
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
1 x eSATA
1 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
2 x USB 2.0
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
6 x Audio jack(s)
Form Factor: ATX Form Factor
 

As with other A85X boards, you can't run two PCIe x16 slots at x16. Add a second and they both drop down to x8. The third physical x16 slot is limited to 4 lanes.

One feature overclockers will appreciate is the DirectKey, which when pressed makes your next reboot go into the UEFI automatically. The ASRock board has a similar, software-based feature, but having a dedicated button for that really helps the Asus board stand out for overclockers. All the fan headers on the motherboard are four-pin PWM headers, which work with Asus’ Fan Xpert 2 to allow fan tuning from within the UEFI and with a software utility. Asus also includes AI Suite II, of course, as well as a disc full of other utilities (plus a little bit of bloatware). Another useful feature is BIOS flashback, which allows BIOS flashing without a CPU or RAM installed, just the PSU.  No question about it, this is one full featured motherboard.

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