Showing Results: Most Recent
Pros: Nice BiOS setup program
single plug for front panel connectors is a good idea.
Good placement of PCIe 1x16 slot
User Manual is better than most (although not great)
Cons: Some quirky functionality (see other thoughts)
It has 4 PCIe 2.0x16 slots but I have no idea why. No matter what I tried I could not get 3 video cards to work, let alone 4. Considering they are AMD cards it is shocking they they would not work with an AMD chipset!
In my case this board resulting in slower performance than the older board it replaced.
Other Thoughts: When you write a review about a motherboard, getting it to work is a given. That it is fast" when coupled with an FX processor goes without saying. The question is, how does it compare to other motherboards. People who write reviews should keep this in mind.
I bought this Asus motherboard from another vendor in a pinch because my Asrock board died and I needed a replacement asap. My Asrock board had the 970 chip set and was a champ right up until the day it died. so when I replaced it with this board, (all other components were the same as before) and noticed the performance was slower by a lot I was surprised, especially considering all the positive reviews this board got. Not only that, my Asrock board allowed me to run 4 AMD R9 290s flawlessly, including 1 I had in a PCIe x1 to 2x16 riser cable.
This MB has 4 PCIe 2.0x16 slots and I can only get 2 cards working. Plugging a 3rd card into the 2nd PCIe slot causes the fan on the card to run full speed even though the MB does not recognize the card as a "display device". The 4th slots almost works but the drivers will not install so its useless too. Only two slots work correctly.
I have a Sempron 145 processor coupled with this Asus MB and maybe its not a great choice - but I am looking for low power draw. In any case, the Asus MB with this processor is about 4 times slower than the same CPU and memory in the Asrock MB. It is so slow with the Asus MB it is excruciating. Loading the AMD GPU drivers takes almost 30 minutes when it takes 7 minutes with the Asrock MB. Plus, the Asrock BIOS allows for core unlock, even with a Sempron I can use 2 cores. The Asus does not appear to offer this feature. Even at one core, its is slower than the Asrock with one core active.
The Sempron does not support memory at speeds higher than 1066 (theoretically), but for some reason this Asus MB when set to Auto for memory frequency defaults to 1600. I was getting BSODs constantly until I figured this out and set the memory speed manually. Most MBs I have used detect this and set the memory frequency to the speed supported by the CPU. I wasted a day and a half before I located a small footnote in the manual.
My advice is to stay away from this MB. I usual buy Asrock but could not find the one I wanted locally so I settled for this. If you feel compelled to buy this MB, I would advise another CPU other than a Sempron. If you feel you must buy this board and use a Sempron, CPU then don;t forget to set the memory frequency to something the CPU can handle.
If you want to use more than 2 PCIe graphics cards, do some research and see if you can find one that others have been able to use successfully with more than 2 cards. Maybe I have a bad board, but its acting more like it just doesn't work right.
One final thought. I have used MB with the 990FX chip set and boards with the 970 FX chipset and maybe its just the sample of MB I have gotten but I find the 970FX MB are by far more
Pros: Runs cool and quiet.
Cons: Not as fast as other R9 290s
Other Thoughts: I just wanted to give a follow-up from my last review. I had RMA'd one of my HIS ICEQ 2x R9 290s after my system started black-screening and hanging. After weeks of testing every component and reinstalling Windows 7 I removed the card and put it in another system. The new system started hanging and black screening just like the first so I RMA'd the card. TO HIS's credit they sent me an RMA number and replaced the card no questions asked. They sent me what looked like a brand new card - in new packaging.
I installed it in my system and it works fine, except this card performs even worse than the other two ICEQ 2x cards I had originally purchased and reviewed! I don't know what it is but I did notice that GPU-Z reports the new card as having Samsung memory. I have seen R9 290s with Elpida and Hynix but not Samsung. I don't know how good or bad Samsung GDDR5 is but its something I will look into.
Pros: These cards are very quiet compared to most other R9 290s. Yes, its a physically large card but that's because it uses larger diameter fans which produce more air at less RPMs and that equals quiet operation and cooler temps.
These are also less expensive than most R9 290s or at least they were when I purchase mine.
Cons: I bought two of these cards. The first one I bought is running like a champ after 8 months of non-stop use. The second one has one flaky on me after 5 months. It works most of the time but every few hours it starts reporting hardware errors and it crashes. I just RMA'd it.
As for performance, these cards just do not perform as well as other R9 290s I have used, including the original reference cards. These just run a lot cooler because of the heat sink and fans.
They need 2 8 pin power connectors.
Other Thoughts: I have purchased and used R9 290s from 5 different manufacturers so I can compare them for performance. Many R9 290s are quirky. The motherboard, PSU, drivers, etc. call be issues with these cards. The HIS cards are fairly stable and seem to play well with other components and drivers. I am not sure why they need 2 8 pin power connectors though. I have not noticed that they use more power than the other cards. All of my other R9 290s use 1 6 pin and 1 8 pin - some are faster than these cards so its a mystery to me.
Overall, I won't be purchasing any more of these cards, even for the money. I have an R9 280x that outperforms these cards, although it make more noise.
Since I had to RMA one of my HIS cards, I can give an update on how that goes. It is warranteed for 2 years and mine failed after 5 months so I do not anticipate any problems - but we'll see.
Some manufacturers place restrictions on how details of their products may be communicated.