ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review :: ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Layout

05-31-2006 · Category: Motherboards

By Doc Overclock
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe - Wireless Spec Sheet
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Part NumberM2N32-SLI Deluxe - Wireless
ManufacturerASUS
Price CheckFind Best Price
DownloadsBIOS
Drivers
Manuals
ChipsetNvidia nForce 590 SLI
North BridgeNvidia nForce 590 SLI
SocketSocket AM2 (940)
Processor Types
Number of CPUs
Front Side Bus1GHz HyperTransport Bus Link
Memory TypeDDR2
Memory ChannelsDual
Maximum Memory8GB
External GraphicsPCI Express x16
IGP
South BridgeNvidia nForce 590 MCP
Audio8-channel
IDE133/100/66/33
SCSINone
SATA3.0 GB/s
RAID0, 1, 0+1, 5
LAN10/100/1000
FirewireIEEE 1394a
USBUSB 2.0
Expansion Slots
BIOSAWARD
Form FactorATX
Motherboard Photo

ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review

ASUS has done some good and some bad with the layout of the M2N32 series of boards and we will point those out as we go along in the review. In pic1 you see a shot of the board on its back and this gives a good view of where everything is laid out. The reintroduced 940 ZIF Socket allows just enough space around it to use most CPU coolers that are designed to standard specs, but anything wider will run into the heat-pipe. This will not affect most users, but those who want to use after market liquid cooling solutions may run into a snafu if more space is required.


ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review

I do like the memory being located above the CPU Socket as seen in Pic2 and ASUS almost has all the power connectors in the optimal place, all that is except the 12V VGA connector which is annoyingly located between the Wi-Fi card and the top SLI slot, c'mon people, why go to all the trouble to make such a cool layout and then place that here is beyond me. This means a cable has to be wound around the top of the case or just un-ergonomically ran across the board. When I build my machine I want everything nice and tidy like, and with no messy wiring jobs. This is my major bitch about the boards design and if the connector was located by the 24-pin main power connector it would have been a more ergonomically designed board.


ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review

The heat-pipe not only looks space age it works like a charm and keeps the NVIDIA 590 board's major chipsets running cool and without the noise or failure rate of fans and their associated moving parts. Another thing I like is that ASUS put the two absolutely useless slots in between the SLI VGA slots, and that is good as those other slots are just wasted real-estate in today's PC environment. The space between the SLI slots is very adequate and will allow the use of any combination of 2-slot cards in an SLI configuration. NVIDIA has new card around the corner and the M2N32 series will be ready to accommodate them on arrival. For now even the big beefy 7900GTX cards will fit side by side without problem. Two, what are soon becoming old-school PCI slots are still available and this is good for those wanting to use a discreet sound card solution, or other PCI inline card.


ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review
ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review

The main SATA connectors are all conveniently located in one place. The board offers up six internal connectors via the NVIDIA MediaShield, and two external connections via the Silicon Image 3132 controller. There are enough SATA controllers for any system configuration. The board supports a variety of RAID arrays, from the simple RAID 0/RAID 1 to the better 0+1, all the way up to the best RAID 5 configuration. RAID 0 (Striping) and RAID 1 (Mirroring) require two identical drives, RAID 0+1 requires three drives, two identical and one large enough to store the RAID 0, and finally RAID 5 which requires up to four drives, but offers the best system backup. It is amazing how far advanced the new NVIDIA chipsets take the entire RAID functionality and move the desktop into the workstation class environment.


ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wi-Fi Edition Motherboard Review

You can easily read the screen printed text on the motherboard which helps get all the system wires and cables connected, and this is also helpful if you for some reason do not have access to the manual and need to know where everything goes. The board has a good visual aspect as well and this will please those wanting build a custom system that will show the motherboard through a clear windowed enclosure. As far as the layout of the board goes everything is cool overall except that damn 12v connector so the board should prove to be very easy to work with and install. In the next section of the review we show all the features of the motherboard in detail and I decided to write this review a bit differently than the usual format and style we are known for. Instead of just writing out all the technical specs and rewriting the manual again I focused on the layout in lieu of just a bunch of specs. For those of you who want the detailed spec, read on it's the next chapter.