Asus’ ROG (Republic of Gamers) is set to release Rampage IV Extreme, its flagship motherboard for the upcoming release of Intel's LGA2011 (Sandy Bridge E) processors.
The Rampage IV Extreme has the standard red/black color scheme and comes packed with OC features and goodies.
The motherboard supports both the LGA-2011 and LGA 1366 CPU coolers by switching out the standard LGA-2011 bracket with a custom Asus bracket, which provides support for LGA-1366 coolers. As you look at the CPU socket, you’ll quickly notice the four DDR3 DIMM slots (two per channel) on either side of the socket for a total of eight DDR3 DIMM slots (DDR3-2400 OC). The CPU and memory VRM areas are located along three sides of the socket, all cooled by heatsinks that are connected by heat pipes. These VRM heatsinks share heat with the one over the X79 PCH, which is actively cooled by a fan.
The Rampage IV Extreme have four PCI-Express 3.0 x16 (red) that operate at x16,x16 in SLI / CrossFireX mode and x8,x8,x8,x8 when in 4-way SLI or CrossFireX. There is one PCI-Express 2.0 x4 and one PCI-Express x1 to round out the expansion slots.
The I/O panel offers 7.1 channel audio, Gigabit LAN, Bluetooth V2.1+EDR, 4 USB 3.0 ports, 2 eSATA ports, PS/2, 8 USB 2.0 ports, S/PDIF out (optical), and 2 buttons to activate ROG Connect and reset CMOS.
There are two SATA 6 Gb/s (red) and four SATA 3 Gb/s (black) powered by the Intel X79 chipset, and 2 more SATA 6Gbps ports (red) provided by an ASMedia controller. In addition, you can plug in the "Subzero Sense" (black block on the right) to get the readings from the motherboard's temperature diodes during extreme LN2 sessions.
As with all ROG motherboards, the Rampage IV Extreme is packed with goodies for overclockers. A “GO" Button to trigger MEMOK! before POST or O/C Profiles after POST, a DIP switch to enable/disable PCIe slots, Power/Reset Buttons, a PORT 80 display, LN2 "slow boot" switch and LEDs next to each voltage measurement point for easy troubleshooting of OC failures. An OC Key device (bundled with the motherboard) connects to your graphics card, which allows an adjustment to overclock settings in real-time without using additional software or hardware.
The motherboard’s power is drawn by the standard 24-pin ATX and 8-pin EPS but ROG adds an additional 4-pin ATX (CPU power) and a 6-pin PCIe to help with electrical stability during overclocking. The ROG connect feature lets you monitor and overclock your board from Bluetooth-enabled smartphones.
The Rampage IV Extreme is slated to come with a free copy of Battlefield 3 Special Edition, upon its release. Pricing hasn’t been released but users should expect the motherboard to be around the $300 range.