Nothing special to report against other P55 boards, we all know the drill by now:

Gaming Performance - Far Cry 2

Application Performance - Sorenson Squeeze 6


Power Consumption

Our power consumption testing utilizes the same batch of components under similar circumstances in a bid to monitor variances between idle and CPU load conditions. We install the vendor supplied power saving utilities on each board and enable power saving modes that don't involve any kind of underclocking or CPU core frequency modulation in order to run an apples to apples comparison.

ATX PSU switching losses are absent from our figures because we monitor power consumption directly at the DC rails of the PSU. These figures measure only the CPU, motherboard and memory DC power draw and exclude any other peripherals such as 12V ATX power draw for the graphics card, or any power for case cooling fans and hard drives etc. Actual AC power consumption for the motherboard will be anywhere from 15~40% higher than these figures depending upon the efficiency of your power supply.

Motherboard DC Power Consumption - i7 870 CPU - Idle

 Motherboard DC Power Consumption - i7 870 CPU - OCCT Small FFT

The ASUS M3E comes out on top in both idle and full load conditions due to a more efficient VRM for VCC. Minimum switching frequency on the ASUS board is 250KHz, compared to the Classified's 800KHz 10 phase Volterra solution.



Using air and water cooling, most P55 boards are on an even keel, it’s all about the CPU. Our retail i5-750 and i7 - 860 both reached the same frequencies on this board as they have on everything we’ve tried them on before:

The retail CPU’s aren’t that good, so we checked out what was possible with a good ES just to make sure everything is a-ok.

4.4GHz will pass Linpack under watercooling with this chip, and on the M3E we got that pretty easily, we’re limited by temps here because we’re hitting temps in the mid 80 Celsius region under full load.

We also made some compares using sub-zero cooling using a dual rotary cascade. The testing itself was just basic enough to find maximum frequencies in both heavy-load and light-load synthetic benchmarks. Like other boards out there, cold booting Clarkdale processors requires the modification of the onboard PEGR BIAS compensation resistor either by shorting it or replacing it with a potentiometer and dialling down to a usable value. This late in the game, we were expecting ASUS to have addressed this with a litte finesse or some kind of control via a GPIO. Be prepared to sue a little conductive ink if you want to benchmark this board below -100 Celsius.





During heavy load benchmarks like Vantage, the EVGA scores slightly better in single card:




Super Pi 32M next:





Where ASUS have got things right though is that it’s far easier maxing out a CPU on the M3E than it is on EVGA’s E659 Classified 200. The Classified 200 has a lot more hardware tweaks, but in this instance we found that we had to use those tweaks to keep up with the M£E rather thans surpass it. In fact, you have to take a lot more time making adjustments on the EVGA board to get the same clock speeds as the ASUS M3E in almost every bench. That's why the 32M scores are a little behind on the EVGA E659 - we tired out the OS trying to match the M3E's clock speed in Super Pi. Put simply, the M3E is easier to overclock in most areas.

There’s probably a little room for fine tuning of how the ASUS board posts over 220 BCLK when using higher QPI ratios; certain CPU multiplier ratio’s can’t be engaged from a power cycle, so its a case of setting a low CPU multiplier at first post, re-enering BIOS and then changing the ratio to suit your desired operating frequency. Still, it’s something that only manifests when pushing real hard, we’ve yet to come across a board that does not have some kind of quirk when it comes to increased QPI speeds and booting past 220 BCLK.

ASUS Maximus III Extreme - P55 for $349 Board Features


View All Comments

  • duploxxx - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    nice looking, nice features expensive board and really expensive knowing that the platform is dead early next year.

    what a waste
  • miburns100 - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    Nice board, but way too expensive. Reply
  • jriofrio - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    Too expencive compare with alternatives... Reply
  • Micki57 - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    Super Nice of you to give this system to some lucky reader! Reply
  • DLeRium - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    You're promising a new X58 roundup - Yes quite honestly your first X58 roundup was a joke. It was really like a 4 mobo roundup of the motherboards that were available at launch. Tom's Hardware had like 4 roundups or something to cover the budget end and the enthusiast end.

    You also promised an in depth i7 overclocking guide. Really, there was nothing. The most you ever mentioned about overclocking was in those investigations into high vDIMM or whatever. And it's obvious most of those articles were really more like lab testing notes geared for those with systems ready to OC.... not the general reader.

    Also there was never a DDR3 roundup as you promised.

    So yes, let's hope you deliver on this one. I know there's been a gradual shift in the change where Anand likes smartphones and stuff, and don't we all, but there have been cell phone geeks from the beginning, and that's why there are places like Mobile Review, Howard Forums, GSM Arena, Phone Arena, etc. Let's stick to our core and get the cpu+motherboard+video card reviews down yeah?
  • Rajinder Gill - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link


    It'll be pleasing for you to know that this X58 'round-up' is only going to be the refresh boards only. It's four boards.

  • gasgas - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    If you’re in such a dire need of an i7 over clocking guide, you really should not be near a PC. It’s the easiest platform to overclock ever.

    Anandtech’s coverage of H55/H57 was unsurpassed in honesty. The very fact you mention Tom’s here shows the line is very fuzzy for you.

    Granted, things were promised in the past that did not get posted, but it looks like everything that’s been promised over the past 6 months has arrived. Maybe you should stick to cruising Tom’s instead of trolling here.
  • Taft12 - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    You're awfully quick to rush to AT's defense and ignore every issue the original poster said. How does "H55/H57 was unsurpassed in honesty" refute any of his points?? Almost every AT article refers to an upcoming roundup that never appears. The quality of Toms articles are not as high as AT, but give them credit for much wider coverage of available parts than AT provides. Reply
  • Rajinder Gill - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link


    Fully respect what you guys are saying. We've been trying hard to stick with the articles we've promised this year and so far everything we've said was coming has been delivered. I shall re-iterate, don't expect anything huge on the X58 - there are four new boards we'll be comparing (they're high-end).

  • thorgal73 - Monday, April 26, 2010 - link

    In support of Raja, I don't think any of you realise how much time goes into the review of one motherboard (they're generally the worst in my experience, followed by ram reviews), let alone four or more.
    As a reviewer, it's sometimes hard not to fall for the abundance of products different manufacturers offer you, which in the end gets you frustrated because of lack of time and lack of progress, further leading to long waiting times for the readers or even outdated products before you even get to publish the product review. In my opinion it is a virtue to stick to the stuff you can manage within a reasonable deadline.

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