Asus CrossHair NF590 SLI: Republic of Gamers

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Our Test Systems and PCMark05

How we configured our test systems: When configuring the test systems for this review, we first entered their respective system BIOSes and set each board to its "Optimized" or "High-Performance Defaults."  The hard drives were then formatted, and Windows XP Professional (SP2) was installed. When the Windows installation was complete, we installed the drivers necessary for our components, and removed Windows Messenger from the system.  Auto-Updating and System Restore were then disabled, and we set up a 1024MB permanent page file on the same partition as the Windows installation. Lastly, we set Windows XP's Visual Effects to "best performance," installed all of our benchmarking software, defragged the hard drives, and ran all of the tests.

Test System Specifications
"Intel & AMD Inside!"
System 1:
AMD Athlon X2 5000+
(2.6GHz)

Asus CrossHair

Asus M2N32-SLI Deluxe
(NVIDIA nForce 590 SLI)

2x1GB Corsair PC-6400
CL 4-4-4-12 - DDR2-800

GeForce 7900 GTX
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD740 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows XP Pro SP2
nForce Drivers v9.35
NVIDIA Forceware v91.27
DirectX 9.0c

System 2:
Core 2 Duo E6700
(2.66GHz)
Pentium Extreme Edition 965
(3.73GHz)

Intel DX975XBX

(975X Express)

2x1GB Corsair PC-6400
CL 4-4-4-12 - DDR2-800

GeForce 7900 GTX
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD740 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows XP Pro SP2
Intel INF 8.0.1.1002
NVIDIA Forceware v91.27
DirectX 9.0c

 

 
Futuremark PCMark05
Synthetic CPU and Memory Benchmarks

"The CPU test suite is a collection of tests that are run to isolate the performance of the CPU. The CPU Test Suite also includes multithreading: two of the test scenarios are run multithreaded; the other including two simultaneous tests and the other running four tests simultaneously. The remaining six tests are run single threaded. Operations include, File Compression/Decompression, Encryption/Decryption, Image Decompression, and Audio Compression" - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.

PCMark05's CPU performance module had the Asus CrossHair finishing just behind the M2N32-SLI. The performance delta was minimal though, as it should be considering both of these boards are based on the same chipset.


"The Memory test suite is a collection of tests that isolate the performance of the memory subsystem. The memory subsystem consists of various devices on the PC. This includes the main memory, the CPU internal cache (known as the L1 cache) and the external cache (known as the L2 cache). As it is difficult to find applications that only stress the memory, we explicitly developed a set of tests geared for this purpose. The tests are written in C++ and assembly. They include: Reading data blocks from memory, Writing data blocks to memory performing copy operations on data blocks, random access to data items and latency testing."  - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.

According to the memory performance module built-into PCMark05, the Asus CrossHair offers slightly better memory performance than the M2N32-SLI, but again the delta separating the two boards is minimal.  For all intents and purposes, the CrossHair and M2N32-SLI performed on the same level here.


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