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Rampage II Extreme BIOS, Software, And Accessories

Intel X58 Roundup: Six $300+ Platforms Compared

A CPU reference clock limit of 500 MHz could take a lowly Core i7 920 to an astounding 10 GHz, that is, if only CPU technology were so kind. Other interesting frequency limits are a maximum DRAM-clock-to-reference clock ratio of 8:1, (16:1 data rate). The resulting 2,133 MHz data rate at stock reference clock is just a little more than the memory controllers most Core i7 processors can stably support.

BIOS Frequency And Voltage Settings
CPU Reference Clock

100 to 500 MHz (1 MHz)

Clock Multiplier Adjustment


DRAM Ratios

DDR3-800 to DDR3-2133 (266 MHz)

PCIe Clock

100 to 200 MHz (1 MHz)

CPU Vcore

0.8500 to 2.500 volts (0.00625 volts)

QPI/DRAM (Uncore) Voltage

1.20 to 2.50 volts (0.00625 volts)

IOH (Northbright) Vcore

1.10 to 1.70 volts (0.020 volts)

ICH (Southbridge) Vcore

1.10 to 1.70 volts (0.020 volts)

DRAM Voltage

1.50 to 2.76 volts (0.020 volts)

CAS Latency Range

tCAS:3-11; tRCD: 3-10; tRP: 3-10; tRAS: 3-31

These pertinent controls, along with several lesser-known settings, are found across several BIOS menus. Note that Intel Turbo Mode requires SpeedStep to be enabled on the Rampage II Extreme.

Other menus allow BIOS profiles to be saved, restored, or transferred to a different system.

The Rampage II Extreme even allows copying between primary and backup BIOS ICs from within BIOS.

Asus EZ Flash 2 allows one to update BIOS from several drive formats, including non-bootable USB flash drives.

Asus' EPU-6 Engine is an automatic underclocking software that also adds a slight overclock (2%) in Turbo mode. Performance mode represents standard settings, while both medium and maximum power savings modes drops the reference clock by 2% and the CPU multiplier to 12x. Effectiveness of this software is questionable, as our system drew 182 W when idle at both stock settings and with EPU power-saving modes enabled. Furthermore, the power-saving settings didn’t respond properly to changes in CPU load, keeping our Core i7 920 at 1,570 MHz with eight threads of Prime 95 running. Peak power dropped by 72 W, but only because the CPU was underclocked, and that’s something anyone with a little BIOS experience could do without additional software.


Documentation and Software

Motherboard Manual

Motherboard Driver DVD


1 x SupremeFX X-Fi Audio Riser

1 x 80-pin Ultra-ATA Cable

6x SATA Cable

1 x Auxialiary VRM Fan

1 x External LCD Poster

1 x USB/FireWire Breakout Plate

4 x ProbeIt voltage probe leads

1 x 3-way SLI Bridge

1 x SLI Bridge

1 x 4-pin to SATA Power Adapter (2 drives)

1 x LED Backlit I/O Panel Shield

1 x Asus Q-Connector Kit

While the Intel X58 Express chipset supports both Nvidia SLI and AMD CrossFire technologies, it ships with SLI bridges only. Dual-card and three-way bridges are included, along with the SupremeFX X-Fi audio riser card, an auxiliary chipset/VRM cooling fan, an LCD system status display, and enough cables to complete most builds.

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