If you're in the market for an X58 motherboard, there are plenty of options available. A quick search fetches countless results that fill a wide range of price points. Budget conscious enthusiasts looking to save some scratch will be happy to find that almost every motherboard maker offers an X58 model under $200. On the other end of the spectrum, companies offer performance enthusiasts and overclockers a number of products that cater to pushing the performance envelope that often manifests itself while attempting to break world records.
Asus provides serious hardware enthusiasts an excellent shot of achieving their goals with the Rampage III Extreme X58 motherboard. As the flagship model from the Republic of Gamers product line, it comes with almost every possible feature you could ask for. With an LGA1366 socket, it supports the latest Core i7 processors, providing six DIMM slots that can house up to 24GB of memory. Enough PCI Express 2.0 expansion slots are available for Tri-SLI or Quad-CrossFire configurations, allowing you the capability to maximize your system's pixel pushing power. Note the RIIE has an extended ATX form factor (12" x 10.6") which makes it about an inch wider than standard ATX.
Asus Rampage III Extreme X58 Motherboard
Layout and Features
LGA-1366 i7 9xx Series Processors
Six 240-pin DDR3 SDRAM DIMM sockets
Supports up to DDR3 2200 MHz / 24GB max
4 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slot
( x16; x16/x16; x16/x8/x8; x8/x8/x8/x8 )
1 x PCIe x4
1 x PCIe 2.2
Intel ICH10R Southbridge
JMicron 363 Controller
Marvell PCIe SATA 6Gb/s Controller
8-Channel HD Audio Codec
Gigabit Intel PHY
V2.0/2.1 + EDR
RC Bluetooth On/Off Switch
Extended ATX 12 x 10.6 inches
( 30.5 cm x 26.9 cm )
3 years based on serial number
We agree $379 is a lot to pay for a motherboard. Interestingly enough, the Rampage III Extreme isn't even close to being the most expensive board on the market. Gigabyte's X58A-UD9 sells for a whopping $699, while EVGA's dual socket SR-2 retails at $599. Looking at those prices makes Rampage III Extreme's asking price just a bit easier to swallow. But if you're the type of consumer who has never spent hours tweaking your BIOS settings or even thought about insulating your motherboard to prevent condensation from subzero cooling, perhaps these products aren't designed for you. Yes, the performance capability offered by the Rampage III Extreme comes at a cost, but its nothing new for benchmark junkies that are willing to pay extra for top of the line parts.
Before we get to the performance numbers, let's take a closer look at the features of RIIE on the following page.