Author: Bob Buskirk
It has actually been quite some time since I have reviewed an ASUS motherboard. The last one I reviewed was a P67 board, so it has been a while. I have reviewed many other boards and when I received the P9X79 Pro I once again realized why so many people choose ASUS over other motherboard manufacturers. The quality, addons, and useful software really make ASUS boards stand out.
Starting with looks the P9X79 Pro does a great job of having a sleek look that stand out, but at the same time looks professional. The black PCB with blue accents will look good inside of any case. The heatsinks provide more than enough cooling power and are designed to not only cool your components, but look cool as well.
This board really gives you what you want in an X79 board. You have full support for up to 64GB of memory! Meaning you have dual quad channel memory support! Something we did not see on the Gigabyte X79-UD3. Another great thing to see is support for up to 4 graphics cards. Many X79 boards have support for only 3 so it is good to see support for 4 here. Also has removed the legacy PCI slot from this board, which in my opinion is a step in the right direction. Talking about expansion this board does have support for 4 SATA 6GB/s ports, 4 SATA 3GB/s ports and 2 eSATA ports.
Another thing that ASUS is great at is adding features to their motherboards that users will actually use. So right off the bat on this motherboard you have Bluetooth support. This means you can easily connect your Bluetooth devices and even your phone for fast file transfers. The BIOS flashback is another great feature. It allows you to put a flash drive loaded with your BIOS file in the BIOS Flashback USB port, press the BIOS flashback button and your BIOS will instantly be updated. One thing that is great about this is you only need your motherboard and power supply installed to update the BIOS. ASUS’s SSD caching allows you to team your normal hard drive with a solid state drive to improve performance. It is very easy to setup and unlike other caching solutions your solid state drive can be any size. In our testing the SSD caching gave us greatly improved read speeds. The USB 3.0 boost is something worth mentioning as well. It really speeds up your USB 3.0 devices, you can see what I mean on page 5 of this review.
ASUS makes it extremely easy to overclock your system and there are quite a few different ways to overclock. For beginners there is a very simple auto tuning feature in the AI Suite II software that will automatically overclock your system. If you want something a little more advanced you can use the TurboV EVO software to overclock your system right within Windows. Once thing I really liked was that I did not have to restart my system when using the TurboV EVO software. Finally you can go into the BIOS and overclock that way. ASUS’s UEFI BIOS is extremely easy to use and seems very polished compared to other UEFI BIOS’s that we’ve seen. Check out our overview video to see for yourself. I was easily able to achieve a 1.15GHz overclock bringing my i7-3820 all the way up to 4.75GHz. I am no expert overclocker, but I believe anyone can achieve these results easily. A lot of the stability of the motherboard is made possible by ASUS’s Dual Intelligent Processors 3 (DIP3) which provide accurate power delivery to both the CPU and memory.
When it comes to motherboards in this price range ($299 at Newegg). This motherboard has to be at the top of your list. With all of the added features, digital power control and of course the quality we expect from ASUS you really can’t go wrong here. Overall ThinkComputers gives the ASUS P9X79 Pro Motherboard a 10 out of 10 score and our Recommended Award!
- DIGI+ Power Control
- UEFI BIOS
- AI Suite II Software
- Easy Overclocking
- USB BIOS Flashback for easy BIOS updating
- Support for up to 4 graphics cards
- None that I found