The Asus A8R-MVP created quite a stir when Asus introduced the $100 AMD Socket 939 motherboard based on the ATI RD480 chipset. This was a mainstream motherboard that featured the ULi M1575 Southbridge for full SATA2 3GB/sec drive support and uncompromised USB performance. In addition, the A8R-MVP turned out to be an outstanding overclocker. We were very pleased with the value of the A8R-MVP and praised the board in our A8R-MVP launch review.

However, some realities set in as the A8R-MVP made its way to market in volume. Many complained that a 2T Command Rate was required for overclocks above 260/265 clock speed - something that we initially missed due to 2T being the Auto default on reset of the A8R-MVP. The A8R-MVP was very fast at 2T, but everyone expected that it would be even faster at 1T. In addition, the high overclocks required a slow progression to the overclock speed in 5 to 10 MHz increments, as we had reported in our initial review. We had seen this on other boards, but this overclocking requirement is often a real time-waster with serious overclockers.

The great news with the A8R-MVP was that it had no difficulty whatsoever with ATI Dual x8 Crossfire. The simple paddle design seemed to succeed where more complicated designs often failed with 2 ATI video cards in Crossfire mode. The A8R-MVP, therefore, became the board of choice for ATI Crossfire video.

Fast forward to today's launch of the ATI RD580 chipset. Asus is now shipping the updated Asus A8R32-MVP, which is widely available for purchase at the launch of the ATI RD580 chipset. Asus has certainly updated their ATI chipset board with the RD580 chipset and Dual x16 capabilities to compete with the best AMD chipsets available, but they have done more than merely update the A8R-MVP with a new chipset. Asus has listened to buyers and answered the concerns, complaints, and suggestions of A8R-MVP buyers. The result is an Asus A8R32-MVP that is definitely worth your attention.

We said in our A8R-MVP review that we really hoped that Asus would deliver a super high-end board, much like the Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe, which is an 8-phase Asus design. The A8R32-MVP is still not that top-end design, but Asus has added enough to the A8R32-MVP to move it to the Deluxe name. When we talked to Asus about the positioning of the A8R32-MVP, they were clear that the board performance had been improved and the board is a superb overclocker. However, we will likely not see the full-blown treatment until the AM2 version of the A8R32.

In checking with other major motherboard manufacturers, DFI and Abit will be launching top-end RD580 motherboards, but many vendors like MSI and ECS will not have an RD580 offering until the AM2 launch. This makes some sense, since RD580 fully supports AM2 and AM2 is now expected within 3 months of this official RD580 launch. However, we are grateful that Asus, DFI and Abit decided to go ahead with a Socket 939 version of RD580, since it is looking as if RD580 will be an outstanding chipset for the AMD processor.

Two things stand out about the Radeon Xpress 3200 chipset:
  • RD580 is a true Dual x16 PCIe design with both x16 PCIe slots off the north bridge.


  • The RD580 was designed from the ground up for high-speed overclocking. In fact, most RD580 boards will be able to run at around 300 clock frequency at the base 5X (1000) HTT frequency instead of having to drop to 3X (600) as on other chipsets.
This a review of the shipping A8R32-MVP Deluxe. This is an important and much talked about update to the popular Asus A8R-MVP. As a result, we wanted buyers who are trying to make an AMD buying decision to know what will is now in the market. The RD580 was broadly covered in our ATI RD580: Dual x16 Crossfire Preview last November.

Asus A8R32-MVP: Board Layout
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  • Spinne - Monday, March 06, 2006 - link

    NewEgg still doesn't have them in stock, neither does Monarc Computers. Wonder how long it'll be before they get them and the prices drop. Reply
  • dennis hs - Sunday, March 05, 2006 - link

    I've just gotten this mobo.. It's pretty sweet! I really like the ALC882 onboard sound! It's really crispy and all good :D

    Overall I don't have any issues with it. It's a damn good mobo!

    [vietnamese hooker mode on]
    " Me love it longtime :) "
    [vietnamese hooker mode off]
    Reply
  • tonser - Friday, March 03, 2006 - link

    It is nice that manufactors listen, but why do they still bring out Motherboards for SLI and Crossfire, where the normal PCI cannot be used with their heigh end grafic cards - I am wondering ? Reply
  • yacoub - Thursday, March 02, 2006 - link

    This board gets an official "daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaamn, Gina!" rating.
    Holy crap it flies with an X1900XT!
    Reply
  • theOracle - Wednesday, March 01, 2006 - link

    In the table - "PEG Bugger Length" Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, March 06, 2006 - link

    Corrected the Brokeback Mountain reference Reply
  • DigitalFreak - Wednesday, March 01, 2006 - link

    No one has any RD580 boards in stock in the US. Hell, Newegg doesn't even have any listed! Looks like another classic paper launch to me. Reply
  • glynor - Wednesday, March 01, 2006 - link

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82...">Oh, and how about from Newegg here Reply
  • SLIM - Wednesday, March 01, 2006 - link

    http://www.antaresdigital.com/customer/product.php...">1
    or
    http://www.atacom.com/program/print_html_new.cgi?&...">2

    Please get a clue before posting. All these people complaining about not making proper comparisons because Anandtech went the extra step of testing the latest vid card from ati on their latest chipset in ADDITION to making a very fair comparison with what nvidia has to offer currently.

    Nice article, too bad people don't pay attention to the graphs before they complain about them.
    Reply
  • DigitalFreak - Thursday, March 02, 2006 - link

    Moron. Did you happen to notice the "Out Of Stock" button?

    And what's with the bitching about proper comparisons, blah blah blah? Reply to the wrong thread, did we?
    Reply

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