Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review :: P5N-E SLI Layout

01-11-2007 · Category: Motherboards

By Benjamin Sun

The layout of the board is excellent in most respects, allowing the user easy installation without issues as to placement. The CPU area is relatively clear of obstacles, making easy CPU installation of most after-market cooling. Moving on to the memory area of the board, there are four DIMM sockets that allows the motherboard to use up to 8GB of DDR2 memory. The nForce 650 chipset supports up to DDR2 800Mhz. I installed a couple of DDR2 800Mhz memory sticks from Corsair and two 1067MHz memory sticks and both came up as DDR2 800, as expected. The memory slots do not interfere with the first PCI Express slot at all, meaning that insertion and removal of memory or the video card isn't blocked by the other item.


Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review CPU area

CPU area

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review DIMM slots

DIMM slots

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review PCI Express x16

PCI Express x16

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review PCI Express x1

PCI Express x1

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review PCI Express x16 locks

PCI Express x16 locks


The P5N-E SLI board has two PCI Express x16 slots for SLI. The placement of the slots gives plenty of space for airflow in the case between the two cards. The P5N-E SLI requires a SLI card to be installed to change from Single card or Dual Card mode. The switch is a simple matter of releasing the hold clamps sliding out the card and inserting the card back into the slot and pushing it into place. Also present are two PCI slots for legacy PCI devices and a single PCI Express x1 slot for the new PCI Express devices. This slot is separated from the first PCI Express x16 slot, meaning insertion of a 8800GTX or other dual slot video card won't interfere with the PCI Express x1 slot.


Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review SATA connectors

SATA connectors

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review FDC controller

FDC controller

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review IDE controller

IDE controller

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review Expansion

Expansion

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review ITE chip

ITE chip

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review LED

LED

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review FP Connectors

FP Connectors


The board has two IDE controllers. Both are situated sideways making for easier cable routing on the board. The nForce 650i chipset supports a single IDE controller, meaning the second one is controlled by a JMB RAID controller. ASUS put the floppy drive controller on the far left corner of the board meaning you have to route the cable around and over the video card or other expansion devices. This can be an issue with the new 8800GTX cards as they are 23cm in length on some boards. The 430 MCP supports up to 4 SATA ports natively, with a 5th port on the back plate controlled by the JMB RAID controller.


Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review Heatsink

Heatsink

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review nForce 430

nForce 430

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review Capacitors

Capacitors

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review More capacitors

More capacitors

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review Chassis Fan

Chassis Fan

Asus P5N-E SLI Motherboard Review 24-pin power

24-pin power


ASUS has installed a large heatsink over the nForce 650i Northbridge. The board is Fanless, meaning that the heatsink needs to be large to effectively cool the NB. The Southbridge is the nForce 430 which is bare on this board. The nForce 430 has been around since the time of the nForce 4 SLI launch. The positioning of the 4-pin power and 24-pin power connectors is in the correct location, meaning routing from the PSU to the connector is easy and painless.