Asus Rampage Gene II Review - An Extreme 2 On A Diet?

Motherboards/Intel S1366 by leeghoofd @ 2009-07-20

We got the MicroATX Asus Rampage Gene II on the test bench. Does this PCB shrink mean it doesn´t have the full package on board? Is it really worth cashing out for its bigger brother, the Rampage Extreme II? Some questions that many users would like to see answered in this not so usual motherboard review. Most of you have seen a zillion of photos/reviews already of this piece of art. Madshrimps will take a light approach on its features, but dedicates a few more pages to focus on performance and overclocking!

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A brief closer look

A brief closer look:

As all current 1366 motherboards, the GENE II is also based on the X58 chipset. Even though it's a ยตATX mobo it supports 6 Dimms (max 24Gb), full Crossfire and SLI support, no cutbacks there. Also it is part of the ROG series meaning it's designed for durability, flexibility and max performance. With the iROG chip onboard users can tweak their setup while it's running.

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Some piccies and a few added words for clarification:

2 pictures, one of the Gene II solo, other one on top of the full blast Rampage Extreme II.

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The heatsink of the IOH can be unscrewed so water-cooling enthusiasts can add their preferred cooler on top. Also note that there's no heatpipe link between the IOH and the ICH.

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The Red line clearly indicates it's a shrunk down version. Still it has all the big features onboard :

An 8 phase power design, 2 phase QPI/DRAM power, 2Phase IOH power and 2 Phase Memory power circuitry.

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Full Crossfire and SLI support via 2 x PCIe 2.0 x 16, 1x PCIe 2.0 4x and finally one PCI 2.2 slot.

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Some nice features like onboard power, reset buttons and the nice MemOK! button.

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The MemOk! button loads fail safe settings for your memory so you can enter the bios safely to adjust the necessary timings and voltages. The Tweakit function is controlled by the keyboard, so don't look for a joystick on the Baby Gene II.

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The backpanel has 1 PS2 Keyboard port, 6 USB ports (12 totally supported) , 1 Firewire 1394a (2 supported), 1 external SATA, 1 LAN (RJ45), one S/PDIF (optical) and finally one Clr Cmos Button (can be disabled via a jumper setting). The Soundcard provides 8 channel audio and supports supreme Xifi HD audio.

Now the boring part is over let's go on with the testing,

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