Holiday Buyer's Guide 2006, Part 6: Gifts For Geeks and Gamers

Asus 'Republic of Gamers' line of Motherboards

To say that the items offered under the Republic of Gamers brand are 'motherboards' is like saying that Lamborghini makes 'cars'. There's so much more to it that the plain and simple noun doesn't do it justice. Like a Lambo, the 'Republic of Gamers' motherboards are all about the Go and the BLING BLING, not the plain utility.

While the raw specifications indicate solid platforms that any enthusiast would be happy tinkering with, it's the extras that set this line of motherboards apart: For starters, these boards are covered with flashy LED lights. For those of us who tinker with settings and hardware, there are illuminated buttons and switches on the board itself. Even the connections are marked with electro-luminescent labels to help you plug the wires where they are meant to go. There is also a large LED display that will help you diagnose what's going on with the board during POST. And there are dozens more enthusiast-oriented features, capped with the inclusion of some great software like a commercial copy of 3dMark 06 Advanced Edition. Asus even has both CPU lines covered, with an AMD socket AM2 board named the 'Crosshair' and an Intel Socket 775 board named the 'Striker Extreme'.

Now we have some capable hardware available that's pretty enough to put on a poster and hang in your garage. How cool is that?

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