Despite the fact that Intel’s P45 chipset was delayed, Intel is still sticking to the June launch next month at Computex. ASUS will be fielding an entire family of motherboards based on the P45 chipset at Computex and the six models that make up the P5Q family share many of the same specifications.
One thing that the new boards have in common that will be most welcome to computer users is the new Express Gate feature that promises to get users from boot up to online in 5 seconds without using Windows. ASUS says that with Express Gate you can view images, listen to online music and surf the net.
Another common feature between the six boards in the family is the EPU-6 engine that provides phase switching for components including the CPU, video card, memory, fans, drives and chipset. The technology provides the ideal power needed for the components via acceleration and overclocking eliminating excess power to save energy.
Both the P5QC and P5Q3 boards support DDR3 and the P5QC supports DDR2 as well. Since DDR2 and DDR3 aren’t slot compatible the board has RAM slots for both formats with four for DDR2 and a pair for DDR3.
The boards support bus speeds appropriate for the newest Intel processors of 800/1066/1333/1600 MHz. The P5Q3 Deluxe/WiFi also features onboard 802.11n networking. Another very welcome feature on some P5Q boards is five available USB headers providing a total of 10 external USB ports. Some lower end models of the P5Q family have four USB headers.
ASUS says that its P5Q boards will be available and shipping to resellers in June.
The best motherboard ASUS in introducing is the ASUS Maximus II Formula. The board will support the Intel P45 chipset and uses DDR2 RAM. The board also features a SupremeFX X-Fi audio card and uses interesting overclocking technology called CPU Level Up.
CPU Level Up allows for CPU overclocking without any knowledge of overclocking. The board also features Extreme Engine power to deliver stable voltages to connected components.
Motherboards are far from the only cool computer gear coming from ASUS at Computex. ASUS will be showing off one of the most interesting graphics cards around. ASUS calls it the “Concept Car” graphics card and it is known by the name ASUS EAH3850 Trinity.
The EAH3850 Trinity sports three RV670PRO GPUs on one board. ASUS says that the Trinity offers a 139% performance improvement over a standard single GPU card. The Trinity also offers two additional DVI outputs for a total of four. To keep the Trinity cool ASUS uses an exclusive specially designed water cooling solution that sits inside two 5.25-inch drive bays. Each of the three GPUs on the Trinity has 512MB of RAM for a total of 1.5GB of RAM.
In addition, ASUS is introducing another video card that they are likening to a car -- this time a hybrid car. The ASUS EN9600GT Matrix graphics card has a combo of fan and heatsink solution on one card. This approach allows the card to keep cool under full load and save power when the card is idle or doesn’t need the fan running.
ASUS is also announcing a new complete gaming system called the ASUS Ares gaming PC. The machine can be optioned with a Core 2 Extreme CPU, 8GB of DDR3, NVIDIA Quad SLI or ATI CrossFireX and up to 4TB of storage space. The system uses liquid cooling to keep the processor running cool.
Finally, ASUS plans to launch new Eee models at Computex as well.