ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review :: ASUS Maximus Formula

03-26-2008 · Category: Motherboards

By Ben Sun

The board sports four DIMM sockets bringing the total memory supported on the Formula board to 8GB with Windows Vista 64 or a 64-bit OS as the 32-bit OS can only support 4GB of memory. Maximus Formula supports 8GB of unbuffered non-ECC DDR2 1066MHz memory. As the X38 chipset supports DDR3, the use of DDR2 allows the user a choice between the faster DDR3 memory and the lower cost lower latency DDR2 memory. The CPU area of the board is free of obstructions allowing the use of after.

ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review   PCI Express x1 slots

PCI Express x1 slots

ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review   Maximus Formula logo

Maximus Formula logo

ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review   PCI Express Generation 2 x16 slots

PCI Express Generation 2 x16 slots

The Maximus Formula sports two PCI Express Generation 2.0 x16 slots, allowing for the installation of up to two video cards in CrossfireX mode. PCI Express 2.0 doubles the bandwidth available to the video card from 2.5Gigabits/second to 5Gigabits/second per x1 lane. A x16 2.0 slot will provide up to 8GB of bandwidth compared to 4GB on the first generation offering. NVIDIA's SLI is only available on Skulltrail and NVIDIA chipsets, meaning that you can't officially install SLI on this board, but Crossfire is supported. Kind of ironic that the main opposition to Intel in the CPU business can offer their multi-GPU solution on Intel motherboards but NVIDIA's SLI solution can't.

Also on the board are two PCI slots and two PCI Express x1 slots. PCI Express devices have replaced PCI devices as the main standard for expansion but PCI devices are still abundant in the market and having two legacy slots is convenient for the end-user. The spacing on the motherboard expansion slots are perfect for someone wanting to Crossfire their two-slot video cards like the 3870 or the 3870X2. One of the slots is used for the onboard audio solution.

ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review   SATA ports

SATA ports

With the advent of Windows Vista, virtually every sold system today uses SATA hard disks. The Maximus Formula has six SATA ports that are perpendicular to the board, allowing for easy insertion/removal of the SATA data cables. A legacy IDE port and a legacy FDD port round out the drive expansion on the board. USB expansion on the board consists of two USB ports, allowing up to four additional USB devices to be attached with adapters.

ASUS Maximus Formula Motherboard Review   Rear I/O

Rear I/O

The rear I/O of the board has six USB ports, bringing the total supported on the board to 10. Most people no longer have a use for PS/2 mice and the replacement of the PS/2 mouse port is welcome and long overdue. Also on the rear is a Optical and a Coaxial S/PDIF Ouptut port, 2 RJ45 PORTS FOR THE onboard LAN, a IEEE1394a port and a Clear CMOS button.