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This review is from: ASUS P9X79-E WS LGA 2011 Intel X79 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 SSI CEB Intel Motherboard
Pros: 1. Easy out of the box setup
2. Great processor support
3. ECC DIMM support
4. True Quad PICIE 16x slots
5. Great UEFI BIOS
6. Easy BIOS flash from the BIOS
Cons: 1. Poor RAID support with built in SATA
If I run a RAID set I will use a LSI RAID controller anyway.
My only problem was when I went to flash the BIOS I was mislead by the negative reports of how difficult it was to flash along with Asus's own poor documentation. The auto flash button did not work for me either.
Other Thoughts: I have had this board up and running for over 7 months. I was not an Asus fan when I purchased it but it was the only board that met all my requirements at the time. I guess you could say I am a convert now to Asus. It was easy to setup with my hexa-core i7 processor, 4 8gb sticks of RAM and Samsung EVO 256gb SSD. It has been running great ever since with Win 8 and now 8.1.
I was fooled into thinking that updating the BIOS was a problem by negative reviews and Asus's own poor documentation. All I had to do was put the .cap file on a memory stick and go into the BIOS and choose to flash it from the EZ-Flash utility (advanced mode) in the BIOS interface itself. I did rename the file to P9X79EWS.cap but I don't know if that was even necessary as I had performed this step based on negative reviews prior to finding the simple way to perform the flash. BIOS flashed without incident and showed the progress on reboot. All is well and the BIOS flash, combined with turning off all the IPV6 settings for the TOE NIC, fixed my issues with Win 8 and sleep mode.
Pros: Successfully upgraded the RAM today from 4gb to 8gb. I just replaced the one 4gb DIMM with an 8gb DIMM. There are two slots so I could go to 16gb. Not sure if I need that in a laptop and since performance is better with matched DIMMs I will probably stick with the 8gb for now. I would recommend caution opening up the back. You need a small Phillips with a very fine point. Also be careful when you take off the back, the clips that hold it on the hinge side are very small and delicate plastic. Also, be sure and disconnect the battery before performing the memory upgrade. There is actually a diagram showing how to do this inside by the battery. It's easy to find good instructions how to do this with a little googling. I am contemplating upgrading the SSD next with a larger 256gb mSATA SSD from Crucial. That will take a bit more time so it might have to wait a while
Cons: No cons, upgrading the memory was easy.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Price is hard to beat right now (around nine Benjamins.
Very light weight for the specs.
Very nice back lit keyboard.
Nice large touchpad.
Battery life seems awesome.
Nice utilities included to update drivers and manage settings.
Cons: Screen is large and reasonably hi-res with decent contrast (once adjusted properly), BUT, the viewing angles are very limited.
Windows 8 takes some getting used to.
Needs more RAM (going to try and upgrade soon)
Had some issues with battery life until I updated the software and drivers.
Had some issues with the keyboard back light until I rebooted after driver updates were applied.
My only really significant issue is with the sharp edges around the base of the laptop. No big deal when typing since there are large hand rest areas around the touchpad. But, when just surfing using the touchpad it can dig into your wrists a bit and become uncomfortable.
Other Thoughts: The screen viewing angles aren't a big deal for me since I view it from straight on and don't often need to share the screen with others. However, I could see it being annoying if you were trying to share some photos with a bunch of people.
I am shocked that laptop manufacturers haven't figured out the importance of ergonomics and putting softer curved edges on laptops. Dell had it figured out several iterations ago and then forgot about the importance of this in newer versions. I know it is likely a function of reducing weight but I would live with another ounce or two to not be damaging my nerves in my wrist. <end of rant>
I am going to upgrade the RAM and possibly the hard drive. I will report back results.