Hello everybody, first post. What's the general opinion of the ASUS P5ND motherboard as i am thinking of basing my gaming pc on this board?
It's a decent overcloker with dual cores. I've managed to hit 4.4ghz(489 * 9) with E8400. Quads will be a challenge, you're looking at around 3.6ghz for all flavors of quads.
Sli will be a pain, because the second slot, if used with a dual slot video card, will cover up 2 of the SATA ports. You may get 3 useable SATA if you use a 90degree SATA cable.
Since BIOS update 0801, you can now use 1066mhz ram, previously you couldn't.
Personally I'd steer clear, had it for 6 weeks and performance was worse than the 650i hybrid board I had before by 15% in benchmarks. The board layout is a pain - CPU socket is placed high, SATA connecters are few and are a fiddle. N/b heatsink is huge and will foul any card in the top slot and PCI-E slots are too close together. It runs hot, vdroop is insane and generally feels cheap. If you were going to go for a 750i then get a EVGA or XFX, but as they are nearly the same cost as a cheaper 780i board I'd forget the 750i altogether and go 780i.
CPU socket placement is just like any other.
All 750i motherboards only support 4 SATA ports, this is a limitation Nvidia designed on the 750i chipset.
NB heatsink is huge because it also cools the NF200 chip, which provides the 16x 16x SLI capabilities. Using the provided NB fan, I've never had any problems with the NB cooler.
NB cooler will not interfere with any video card. I've used 8800GTX, 9600GT, and now GTX260 and never had any problems with the 1st PCIe slot.
What runs hot? NB, CPU, memory?
Vdrop is .04v on avg. This can be eliminated with pencil mod if you are inclined to do so.
This board is not perfect, but complaining about board layout is just dumb. You have plenty of choices to view the layout, before you make the purchase. If I could chose again, I would take EVGA 750i FTW instead. However you are looking at a $30 - $40 difference.
When I got it, I bought it as an interim board while another was RMAd, and all I was doing was trying to share my experience of it with the OP! Sorry if I offended you!
However the CPU socket is placed higher than other boards - I know this because had to swivel my TRUE to face up at the powerpack on this board, venting all that nice CPU heat into the already hot PSU - great! Don't believe me then look carefully at the relation of the top mount holes to the PS/2 sockets on the P5N-D vs the P5N-T say. The reason for this is the badly designed n/b heatsink which is too big. Other boards have managed to incorporate the NF200 easily without something that size.
The n/b runs hot, and you have to use that 'optional' fan really to keep it at sensible levels, and the second PCI-E slot should have been moved down one so the SATA connectors were not in the way. And if you have SLi you cannot get round this with 90o cables as placing one of those on the left would cover at least 2 other ports as the cable ends are rigind plastic.
Bottom line is the performance of the 750i is sub standard, not up to the performance of the previous gen chipset, albeit with added 45nm support, and the implemention by Asus on this P5N-D board is also poor.
I had this board for about 5 weeks and then it burned up on me. I had everything connected correctly (I'm not a beginner) and would leave the computer on all day long with no problems... then one day it just smelled like burnt plastic and the 24-pin connector was all melted. I tried to get my power supply manufacturer to help me out but they didn't help me (don't buy anything from Xilence). Then I contacted Asus and their customer service is very poor. They will not return my emails. I ended up buying the gigabyte motherboard that was used in the most recent system builder marathon article (for the low-budget gaming pc).
heres how i fixed the sata problem with SLI P5N-D
my board overclocks the e8500 to 4ghz easy with a zalman cooler